Letter: Read Constitution, then Supreme Court decisions


Share
Posted Online: Jan. 03, 2013, 3:16 pm
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story
To the letter, "Constitution brilliantly written; now read it," I must respond that reading it is not enough.

In 1803 Chief Justice John Marshall in Marbury v. Madison declared that the U.S. Constitution says exactly what the U.S. Supreme Court says it says. Every court since has agreed.

In the decision of the 2008 case District of Columbia v. Heller, the major decision was that the district could not place certain requirements on gun owners such as requiring a trigger lock. The decision delighted the right and the gun lobby but the total ruling was really quite liberal.

In the final decision, Justice Antonin Scalia stated that the phrase stressed in the letter, "A well regulated militia," is merely prefatory and adds no value to the Second amendment. I cannot think of another example of the court stating that any other phrase in the Constitution ought to be just ignored.

Additionally, Justice Scalia invented a new Second Amendment constitutional right, the right of self-defense. A right to self-defense is not mentioned anywhere in the U.S. Constitution and therefore ought to be left to the states or the people as the constitution stipulates.

It is indeed a good start to read the U.S. Constitution, but you cannot stop there. You must know what the Supreme Court says it says.

James Tucker,
Riverdale

















 




Local events heading








  Today is Thursday, April 17, the 107th day of 2014. There are 258 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: Journeymen shoemakers of Rock Island struck for higher wages yesterday morning, asking 25 percent increases. Employers have acceded to their demand.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Lighting struck wires of the Merchants Electric Light Co. during a furious storm, and many Rock Island business houses were compelled to resort to gas as a means of illumination.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Members of the First Church of Christ, Scientist, decided to erect a new edifice at a cost of about $60,000.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Willard Anderson, junior forward for the Augustana College basketball team, which won 17 out of 22 contests, was elected captain of the quintet.
1964 -- 50 years ago: John Hoffman, Moline, president of the Sac-Fox Council of Boy Scouts, will be honored for his 50 years in scouting by members of the council at a dinner Thursday evening.
1989 -- 25 years ago: The Quad-Cities has what is believed to be the area's first elite-class gymnast. It's the stuff upon which Olympic competitors are made. Tiffany Chapman, of Rock Island, not only has earned the highest possible gymnast ranking, she won the honor at age 11.






(More History)