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District of Columbia v. Heller, Part 2

The District of Columbia v. Heller case, that I wrote about previously, was argued before the Supreme Court yesterday. The links below are to the C-Span audio of the argument and to the transcript.

Listen to the audio recording of the oral arguments (RealPlayer required)

View the transcript (PDF format)

It lasts 1 hour and 37 minutes, but it's worth listening to just to hear such an argument in action. The recording also shows who is speaking and displays a photo of the speaker.

I’ve read parts of Supreme Court arguments before, but never listened to one. It’s history in action. It can be frustrating, too, because there are times when everyone involved just misses the crux of the matter being discussed at that moment. There were times I wanted to reach out, grab someone and give a good shake while saying “Shut up a moment and listen!” The personalities of the different Justices comes through and you can tell the ones that want to get to the real issue and which ones get distracted by trivia.

 If you have time, I recommend giving it a listen. At the Heller web site (www.nraila.org/heller), there are copies of all of the briefs in the case.

There is also a 21-minute video of press statements by the parties after the case was argued. This is very enlightening as you get to see the mayor and police chief of the District blatantly lie about the effect of the law on crime rates.

Press Conference

The biggest issue that all people missed in oral arguments was the fact that laws only have effect if people obey them. That essentially means that laws only apply to the law abiding and not to the criminals whose actions the laws would like to restrict. Thus, overwhelmingly, the weight of any restrictive laws falls upon those who are doing nothing wrong and who are hurting no one.

March 19, 2008

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