The US Supreme Court has, according to the BBC, ruled by a 5-4 majority that the US Constitution
protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home
and therefore that it is unconstitutional not to allow people to keep guns in their homes. While not allowing these guns to be used in anger, the ruling apparently implies that the state is not allowed to stop irresponsible people acquiring and keeping guns, which they can then use for all kinds of criminal purposes for which the only protection is a greater fire power of other guns. In other words, the Supreme Court has ruled that America must be governed by gun law, and state governments are powerless to stop it.
As I wrote last year, the result of this is that the rate of “intentional homicides committed with a firearm” in the USA in 2001 was about 20 times higher than in England and Wales. The striking down of the limited laws restricting guns which have been in force can only mean further increases.
Perhaps (although the slim majority implies that the legal arguments are ambiguous) the Supreme Court should not be blamed for their interpretation of the Second Amendment, passed at a time when the USA had only just broken away from the mother country and there may have been a need for citizens to defend themselves with guns. But in these times there can be no justification for proliferation of murderous weapons.
I call on the presidential candidates to announce their intention to amend the Constitution, to repeal or greatly modify the Second Amendment and introduce tight controls on hand guns. Only in this way can the USA become a safe place for future generations.