collegestudent22 wrote:I wouldn't call 50 to 100 yards "at range" for a trained or practiced shooter, which the 'sniper' was. I can hit a target from 50 yards with an M9 pistol, and I have minimal training.
Snipers are gunmen who strive to deliver a single shot, usually lethal, from a hidden position. Distance does not matter. Do you think police snipers take their shots from 500 yards out?
BTW, hitting a target on a regular basis (especially center-of-mass shots) from 50 yards with a 9mm pistol may actually be a matter of some accomplishment. I've been firing guns for a long time and have had professional training, and anything past 25 yards is difficult for me to hit consistently with a pistol.
You're also completely ignoring the issue of reasonableness. From the very beginnings of the Supreme Court, it has recognized that reasonable limitations may be placed on rights. Speech that involves imminent harm, such as a speaker telling his followers to go and attack someone in particular, may be prohibited, and religion that allows human sacrifice may be curtailed. The press may be prohibited from printing libelous statements. A literal reading of the First Amendment would leave all of these possible.
Even in Heller
, the majority recognized the issue of reasonableness in limitations on the right to keep and bear arms. Part III of the opinion covers this (citations removed for clarity):
Like most rights, the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited. From Blackstone through the 19th-century cases, commentators and courts routinely explained that the right was not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose. For example, the majority of the 19th-century courts to consider the question held that prohibitions on carrying concealed weapons were lawful under the Second Amendment or state analogues. Although we do not undertake an exhaustive historical analysis today of the full scope of the Second Amendment , nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms.
We also recognize another important limitation on the right to keep and carry arms. Miller said, as we have explained, that the sorts of weapons protected were those "in common use at the time." We think that limitation is fairly supported by the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of "dangerous and unusual weapons."
It may be objected that if weapons that are most useful in military service—M-16 rifles and the like—may be banned, then the Second Amendment right is completely detached from the prefatory clause. But as we have said, the conception of the militia at the time of the Second Amendment's ratification was the body of all citizens capable of military service, who would bring the sorts of lawful weapons that they possessed at home to militia duty. It may well be true today that a militia, to be as effective as militias in the 18th century, would require sophisticated arms that are highly unusual in society at large. Indeed, it may be true that no amount of small arms could be useful against modern-day bombers and tanks. But the fact that modern developments have limited the degree of fit between the prefatory clause and the protected right cannot change our interpretation of the right.
This section may well go on as one of the major portions of Second Amendment jurisprudence guiding future cases. Heller
set down the individual right to bear arms, and McDonald v. Chicago
may require the states to recognize it as well. But deciding which
weapons are allowed would be guided by the above section, which focuses entirely on reasonableness.
If I show up at your door, chances are you did something to bring me there.