People calling other people a “disgrace to their profession” has lost a little bit of its luster from overuse, but I’m pretty sure it’s applicable to former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens.
Stevens wrote an op-ed for the New York Times on Tuesday in which he praised gun control protesters, saying that “they should demand a repeal of the Second Amendment.”
Here’s a portion of what Stevens wrote:
That support is a clear sign to lawmakers to enact legislation prohibiting civilian ownership of semiautomatic weapons, increasing the minimum age to buy a gun from 18 to 21 years old, and establishing more comprehensive background checks on all purchasers of firearms. But the demonstrators should seek more effective and more lasting reform. They should demand a repeal of the Second Amendment.
Why don’t we just get rid of the First Amendment as well? Why not get rid of all the amendments? That’s what will happen if you get rid of the right to bear arms.
Stevens, who was appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1975 by Republican President Gerald Ford, also marveled at the amount of people who participated in this past weekend’s March for Our Lives protest that didn’t accomplish a whole heck of a lot, except for an attempt to improve their sign-making skills.
“Rarely in my lifetime have I seen the type of civic engagement schoolchildren and their supporters demonstrated in Washington and other major cities throughout the country this past Saturday,” Stevens wrote. “These demonstrations demand our respect.”
What’s with all of these demands? Respect is earned, sir. It’s not given.
Stevens was not done by a long shot. He called the Second Amendment a “relic of the 18th century,” and even went so far as to call the National Rifle Association (NRA) a “propaganda machine.”
This is what Stevens wrote concerning the NRA as well as adding another attack on the Second Amendment:
In 2008, the Supreme Court overturned Chief Justice Burger’s and others’ long-settled understanding of the Second Amendment’s limited reach by ruling, in District of Columbia v. Heller, that there was an individual right to bear arms. I was among the four dissenters.
That decision — which I remain convinced was wrong and certainly was debatable — has provided the N.R.A. with a propaganda weapon of immense power. Overturning that decision via a constitutional amendment to get rid of the Second Amendment would be simple and would do more to weaken the N.R.A.’s ability to stymie legislative debate and block constructive gun control legislation than any other available option.
Former Chief Justice John Paul Stevens has now joined the ranks of those pushing the narrative of — not only calling for the end of the Second Amendment — but also an end to the NRA.
Stevens interpretation of the Constitution and its amendments are disgraceful to the position he once held. It’s time to return the Supreme Court to the days of enforcing the Constitution instead of using personal political opinion to interpret it.
(Cover Photo: Michael E. Cumpston)