By Doug Book, editor
According to District of Columbia, City Council member Phil Mendelson, gun ownership and the carrying of firearms “must be more heavily restricted [in D.C.] than any place else in the nation.” After all, says Mendelson, “four U.S. presidents have been assassinated by gunfire” “and there are frequent threats on the foreign diplomatic corps.” (1)
But Mendelson and the rest of D.C.’s gun grabbing, Democrat gentry were finally stripped of their ability to ignore the Constitution when the District’s longstanding ban on carrying a firearm for self-defense was declared illegal.
On July 26th, U.S. District Court Judge Frederick Scullin provided gun rights and 2nd Amendment advocates what plaintiff’s attorney Alan Gura called a “significant victory” when he ruled that: “In light of Heller, McDonald, and their progeny, there is no longer any basis on which this Court can conclude that the District of Columbia’s total ban on the public carrying of ready-to-use handguns outside the home is constitutional under any level of scrutiny…” (2)
Judge Scullin sat on the case of Palmer vs D.C. for an incredible 4 years, resulting in the 2nd Amendment Foundation filing a petition in 2013 for a writ of Mandamus which asked the D.C. Federal Court of Appeals to direct Judge Scullin “to produce an appealable order” within 7 days.
But although the petition was apparently ignored and Judge Scullin labored another 8 months on a mere 19 page ruling, at least he got it right, directing that the District of Columbia and D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier “…are permanently enjoined from enforcing D.C. Code…to ban registration of handguns to be carried in public for self-defense by law-abiding citizens…” (2)
Not surprisingly, 2 days ago Judge Scullin granted the District a 90 day stay during which time D.C’s attorneys will either file an appeal or draft legislation to bring the District into compliance with the judge’s order.
For decades, residents of the District of Columbia were subjected to the most virulently anti-gun rights legislation in the country. Handgun ownership itself had been illegal prior to the 2008 Supreme Court decision in D.C. vs Heller.
But were D.C. residents actually obeying the unconstitutional restrictions placed on 2nd Amendment rights by their Democrat potentates? From the 2008 Heller decision which found the handgun ban unconstitutional until today, only 3000 firearms have been registered in D.C. Just 3000 registrations in an area with a total population of 600,000. It’s obvious that countless people refused to obey the District’s abusive gun laws in the past just as they continue to refuse to register their firearms today.
It will be interesting to watch the pattern of registrations when D.C. Democrats finally begin to obey the latest court order, probably years in the future.
(2) http://www.foxnews.com/politics/interactive/2014/07/26/palmer-v-district-columbia-decision/ Judge Scullin’s 19 page decision