More McDonald v. Chicago

Jennifer Rubin at Commentary Contentions notes a WaPo editorial regarding the McDonald decision in which the editors observe a new-found respect for the opinion of legislatures and ask the courts to “‘act with proper restraint and respect for the limits of the judicial role’” with respect for Second Amendment rights.  Her key observation: “Once you acknowledge that something is a fundamental right, the highest level of judicial scrutiny applies — whether it is abortion, free speech, or gun ownership.”

Ms. Rubin is quite correct.  McDonald creates a real problem for those on the left who are enamored of certain rights and want them to be sacrosanct and inviolate, while being less concerned about legislative encroachment on what they deem to be lesser rights.  If forced to support fairly draconian restrictions on the Second Amendment as reasonable, they will be undermining cases, particularly abortion cases, that have previously held that restrictions on rights deemed fundamental must be very strictly reviewed and narrowly tailored. 

The problem runs in both directions, of course.  But given the left’s decades of advancement of their chosen policies through the courts as fundamental rights, pushing the debate into somewhere in the middle is probably a pretty good trade-off for many on the right.

Published in: on June 29, 2010 at 11:45 am  Leave a Comment  

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