Imagine that several reasonably beloved people — a local sportscaster, a B-list celeb recently out of rehab, and, say, a friendly Irish Setter — are killed by handguns in California.
Say that Californians Against Handguns gets an initiative on the ballot saying simply "California's constitution is amended to reflect that handguns are illegal in the State of California." They argue that it doesn't violate the Second Amendment because it reasonably restricts only one category of easily concealable firearms, and that there is no reason to believe the the Framers — who had in mind big, obvious, hard-to-conceal-or-load-or-fire-or-even-carry guns — had Saturday Night Specials in mind when they wrote the Second Amendment.
Say several other mildly likable people get nined just before the election, and the initiative narrowly passes.
Say that Californians For Putting Holes In People Who Are Askin' For It files suit in federal court in, say, Orange County.
Say that a George W. Bush appointee, a rootin' tootin' shooter himself who is reputed to carry beneath his robes either a Desert Eagle or a particularly unsightly gunt, finds that the initiative violates the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Californians Against Handguns want an appeal. But the Governor and Attorney General agree with Judge Rootin' Tootin's ruling, possibly because of political and cultural affiliations, crass evaluations of impact on future elections, and contempt for the views and values of anti-gun folks. They refuse to appeal. Californians Against Handguns purports to appeal. Naturally, a major focus of the appeal becomes standing.
Who would be talking about the will of the people, and disregard for the same?
Who would be talking about un-elected black-robed tyrants?
Who would be talking about outrageous cultural and political bias among judges?
Who would be talking about a de-facto "veto" of the initiative by the Governor and Attorney General?
Who would be talking about the death of democracy?
I have guesses. They may not be the same as yours.
Last 5 posts by Ken White
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