The SCOTUS handgun ruling

From the New York Time letter page. This is not my letter, but the sentiment is the same.

To the Editor:

Every year, millions of people across the United States willingly have their First Amendment rights to free speech and assembly restricted when local governments hand out permits for parades. The governments decide who can march, where they can march and when they can march, and require them to have a permit.

The recent Supreme Court ruling on the Second Amendment seems to set the right to buy and bear arms above the rights of the First Amendment. It deprives local governments of their right to decide who can carry a weapon, where they can carry a weapon and when they can carry a weapon, and, for all we know today, may lead to a time when people can carry concealed weapons without a permit.

Words are almost always harmless. Unfortunately, guns, by design, are never so.

Zachary I. Gold
Massapequa Park, N.Y., June 29, 2010

That’s what I don’t get. We routinely accept controls and limitations to our constitutional rights and these are done as a “common sense” measure.

No one says “let’s stifle freedom of speech and assembly”, but I can’t get 200 of my close friends for a protest without filing and obtaining a permit.

We have freedom of speech but no one expects that to permit someone yelling “FIRE!” in a crowded theater.

How are guns different? We can restrict some rights but why does the 2nd amendment get a pass on limitations or controls? I know full well that the ruling is about the outright ban on handguns, and is not about “Guns for everyone!” But if the law is re-worded, will it still pass this test?

Why can’t a state regulate that some types of guns are just not allowed?

Thumbnail credit goes to leasepics / Lala Roe for the image.