McDonald vs Chicago (a.k.a. Alan Gura part II)

If you have not heard, Alan Gura, the lawyer who argued the case for Dick Heller in DC vs Heller will now be arguing for McDonald vs Chicago.  This case has the potential to a) defeat Chicago draconian and “unreasonable” gun ban, and b) garner incorporation of the 2nd Amendment. Which would require states to also acknowledge and adhere to the ideals of the 2nd Amendment.

Below is the press release by Alan Gura for the Second Amendment Foundation as well as some other relevant links.


WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Supreme Court announced today that it will hear the case of McDonald v. City of Chicago, and decide whether the right to keep and bear arms secured by the Second Amendment protects Americans from overreaching state and local governments.

At issue is a 27-year-old Chicago law banning handguns, requiring the annual taxation of firearms, and otherwise interfering with the right of law-abiding individuals to keep guns at home for self-defense. The case was brought on behalf of four Chicago residents, the Second Amendment Foundation, and the Illinois State Rifle Association.

Last year, in the landmark case of District of Columbia v. Heller, the Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right to keep and bear arms. However, as that case concerned the actions of the District of Columbia government, a federal entity, the high court was not called upon to decide whether the right bound states and local governments. Over the years, almost the entire Bill of Rights has been held to apply to state and local governments by operation of the Fourteenth Amendment.

“The freedoms we enjoy as Americans are secured to us against violation by all levels of government,” noted Alan Gura, of Gura & Possessky, PLLC, lead counsel for the McDonald plaintiffs. “State and local politicians should be on notice: the Second Amendment is a normal part of the Bill of Rights, and it is coming to your town.”

Otis McDonald, a Chicago resident since 1952 who led the fight to integrate his union local in the 1960s and is a plaintiff in the case, welcomed the news.

“I am grateful the Supreme Court has agreed to hear this case,” McDonald said. “I now pray that the Court secures me and all other law-abiding citizens the right to defend ourselves and our families.”

SAF founder Alan Gottlieb said the case is of paramount importance to American citizens, to see that their constitutional rights are respected not only by the Congress, but by state and local governments.

“SAF was delighted to bring this case in cooperation with the Illinois State Rifle Association and the four local plaintiffs because a gun ban is no less onerous to civil rights in Chicago than it was in the District of Columbia,” Gottlieb observed. “Such a law cannot be allowed to stand unchallenged.”

Chicago attorney David Sigale commented, “The City of Chicago cannot take from millions of Americans the fundamental freedom of self-defense in one’s own home. We are confident the Court will stand on the side of the law-abiding citizens and the Bill of Rights.”

“We’re pleased to hear that the Supreme Court has decided to take a look at Chicago’s gun laws,” added ISRA President Don Moran. “In this time of economic uncertainty and increasing lawlessness, the good people of Chicago ought not have to choose between violating Chicago’s gun ban, and protecting themselves and their loved ones.”

The Chicago gun ban challenge will likely be among the most closely watched constitutional law cases in decades. At stake is not just the question of whether the Second Amendment secures the right to arms against state and local governments, but also the extent to which the Supreme Court preserves individual liberty against encroachment by state and local governments.

Oral argument will possibly be scheduled early this coming winter, with a decision expected by June 2010. Gura will argue the case on behalf of the McDonald plaintiffs.

More Info:

Second Amendment Foundation:  Press Release by Alan Gura

U.S. Supreme Court docket

Wikipedia Article

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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Will Alan Gura be helping progressives with 2nd Amendment case?

    Alan Gura is working feverishly to have the 2nd Amendment applied to the States, ostensibly to protect the people’s right to keep and bear arms. It is said that the 2nd Amendment is useless unless it is applied to the States. But I for one believe our founding fathers would have strenuously disagreed with that notion, especially since the first ten amendments of our federal Constitution, which includes the 2nd Amendment, was specifically intended by the founders to restrict the newly created federal government and was not intended to create a legal path for the federal government to enter the States and impose its will upon the people under the pretext of enforcing the federal “Bill of Rights” and its restrictions upon the people of the various States. In fact, the people of the various States intended to bind and enforce the restrictions of the federal Bill of Rights upon the federal government!

    The simple truth is, after creating our federal Constitution with its delegated powers which became effective in 1789, ten amendments were quickly adopted [1791] which were intentionally designed “to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers”, and this is stated in the Resolution of the First Congress Submitting Twelve Amendments to the Constitution; March 4, 1789

    Perhaps Alan Gura is not aware but the people of each state prior to creating our federal Constitution had created State constitutions with specific rights and privileges to be protected. For example, the people of Pennsylvania declared in their State’s Declaration of Rights, adopted in 1776:

    XIII. That the people have a right to bear arms for the defence of themselves and the State; and as standing armies in the time of peace are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be kept up; And that the military should be kept under strict subordination to, and governed by, the civil power.

    And, after placing the right to bear arms in their State Constitution to restrict their state government, they went on to place this same restriction on the federal government by the adoption of the first ten amendments to our federal Constitution, thereby preventing the federal government from using its force to enter the states and infringing upon rights already acknowledged and protected under each State’s Constitution!

    As a matter of fact, the people of the various States intentionally adopted the Tenth Amendment to specifically preserve federalism, our Constitution’s plan, protecting the right of the people, in each of the various states, to determine their own destiny within their own State’s borders!

    Does Alan Gura not realize “progressives” who are dedicated enemies of federalism are anxiously awaiting a time when and if the right to keep and bear arms within each state will be in the hands of federal judges who may protect that right subject only to necessary and proper regulations which are made for the general welfare of the people of the united states, but will most certainly be enacted to effectively disarm the people and dissolve the protection now afforded under State Constitutions?

    Apparently there are those who do not understand the advantages of federalism, our Constitution’s plan, which was intended to preclude an absolute power being created in Washington, but which some, including Alan Gura, foolishly seem to be only too willing to set aside under the false hope that the federal government will protect their right to keep and bear arms.

    Question is, will the federal government protect that right? History proves otherwise. Keep in mind the federal government has the exclusive power to enact legislation in the District of Columbia and has effectively disarmed the people in spite of the 2nd Amendment, and they now keep the people disarmed in spite of the Heller Case by newly created rules and regulations allegedly enacted for the public safety which are applied to law abiding citizens seeking to bear arms, but in effect the rules and regulations adopted in spite of the 2nd Amendment makes it almost impossible, and extremely costly, for law abiding Citizens to purchase and register a handgun in the District of Columbia. Do we really want the 2nd Amendment applied to the various states which opens a legal path for federal judges to uphold and impose the District of Columbia’s rules and regulations within the borders of every state in the Union? If not, then why does Alan Gura work so hard to falsely pretend the 2nd Amendment may be constitutionally enforced upon every State in the Union under the 14th Amendment?

    If Alan Gura gets his way and has the 2nd Amendment applied to the States via the 14th amendment and federal judges start enforcing the 2nd Amendment upon the States, can we really expect the federal government to not then apply the same federal rules and regulations now used in the District of Columbia upon the people in every state in the union which are intentionally designed to disarm law abiding citizens under the guise of the people‘s general welfare and safety?

    I’m beginning to suspect Alan Gura’s real motives may not be as noble as he claims because those in the past who have pretended the 14th Amendment has made various parts of the federal Bill of Rights applicable to the States have done so for nefarious reasons and to enlarge the reach and power of the federal government while imposing their personal whims and fancies upon the people of the United States. One such activist being none other than Ruth Bader Ginsburg who began her assault upon the 14th Amendment during the 1970’s while volunteering for the ACLU and now sits on the U.S. Supreme Court, and has proven to be a domestic enemy of our written Constitution and the documented intentions and beliefs under which it was adopted.

    Aside from the above, I think concerned Americans who support a citizen’s right to keep and bear arms for their own defense, defense of their family and in defense of the state and the country, ought to check their State’s declaration of rights and make certain there is appropriate wording that clearly protects this right for all citizens not convicted of a felony or other infamous crime who may then be subject to such restrictions as the Legislature may think proper. Bottom line is, each state must declare in their state Constitution something to the effect that:

    no law shall be passed or enforced in this State abridging the right of citizens to keep and bear arms for their own defense and defense of the state excepting regulations which may be adopted and imposed upon persons who have been duly convicted of a felonious crime.

    It’s time for those who support the right to keep and bear arms to make certain this right is protected in each state’s Constitution! Keep in mind the buck stops with We the People and We the People must take back our country from all those who are now acting in rebellion to our written constitutions, state and federal, and the documented intentions and beliefs under which these constitutions were adopted!


    “In matters of power let no more be heard of confidence in men, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.___ Jefferson

  2. I’ve heard such arguments. But when we reflect on the issue we come to the following conclusion.

    1. Presently, by standard interpretation, nothing prevents the Federal government from doing any of the above. We can talk about state rights, but such did not prevent the 1994 AWB. Case in point…we’ll be no worse off than we already are.

    2. The right is not one derived from either the Federal or State governments. Rather it’s an inherent right granted by the divine/natural.

    3. Having an interpretation that recognizes that right on the part of the Federal government AND on the states will be an advantage. As it will provide those in lesser privileged states to pursue the restoration of their liberties in Federal courts when all options have been exhausted in state courts.


  3. Well, it’s difficult to discuss the issue when the Constitution is of little concern.

    Unlike Alan, I have studied the big picture for many, many years, and how progressive activists have used the “law”, and especially misrepresentations of the 14th Amendment, to impose their vision of social justice and social reforms upon the entire population of the united States. One of their clever tools has been pretending the 14th Amendment was intended to allow the federal government to enter the States and enforce various parts of the federal Bill of Rights upon the people of each State, which is exactly what Alan is promoting.

    I wonder if those who support Alan are happy with the federal government entering the States to allegedly enforce the intentions under which the 1st Amendment was adopted to which is now used to attack religion in every state in the Union, and attack it to such a degree that the singing of Christmas Carols is now banned in every State in the Union.

    How about the 5th Amendment being enforced upon the people of the various united States, which is now used by federal progressive judges to allow murderers, rapists, and other criminals to go free because of Miranda rights created out of thin air by federal justices, rather than state legislatures where such power properly resides under our system of government?

    Or, how about Roe vs. Wade in which federal judges unconstitutionally used both the 14th and Ninth Amendments to subjugate State law and impose their idea of social reforms upon the entire population of the united States? Is Alan happy with Roe vs. Wade and the Ninth Amendment being enforced upon the States by federal Judges?

    And now, the latest assault upon the people of the united States, which is in harmony with Alan Gura’s legal thinking [a misrepresentation of the 14th Amendment] is the creation of a federal “Hate Crimes” law under which the federal government intends to enter the various united States and then enforce a law which makes distinctions in the penalty of a crime and its prosecution, such as assault, if the assault is alleged to have been committed because of the victims race, color or sexual orientation, which in fact creates an identifiable privileged class receiving more than the “equal” protection of the law as required under the 14th Amendment..

    The irrefutable fact is, there is nothing in the wording of the 14th Amendment, nor anything to be found during the expressed intentions of the 14th Amendment when it was debated by the 39th Congress, suggesting support for different treatment for victims based upon race, color or sexual orientation. Quite the contrary, the 14th Amendment’s provision demands the “equal” protection of the laws of a State for all victims without reference to their characteristics.

    So why, when history has repeatedly proven that applying parts of the federal Bill of Rights to the States has allowed federal judges and the federal government to exercise powers never intended by the people, and is now used by progressive federal judges to impose their visions of social justice and social reforms upon the people of every state in the Union and without their consent under Article 5, does Alan Gura attempt to apply the 2nd Amendment to the States, repeat history, and have federal judges in charge of the enforcement? What on earth is in his mind? Or is it that Alan Gura is really a sheep in wolf’s clothing?

    Those who believe the federal government ought to be in charge of their right to keep and bear arms would have been laughed out of the Constitutional Convention of 1787. But heck, seems as though the nanny state mentality has even spread its infectious disease into the minds of those who do support the fundamental right to keep and bear arms. How sad!


    ” I believe that there are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachment of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.” ___ Madison Elliot`s Debates, vol. III, page 87

  4. A lot of people argue for states rights. But really, the rights we’re defending exceed state’s rights.

    And to be honest, more people are facing more stringent laws at the hands of their states than the Federal government.

    There is an advantage to having only one enemy to fight instead of that same enemy and 50 others.

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