Headline RoundupJune 21st, 2024

SCOTUS Upholds Law Banning Guns for Domestic Abusers

Summary from the AllSides News Team

The Supreme Court on Friday upheld a 1994 federal law prohibiting those subject to domestic violence restraining orders (DVROs) from posessing firearms, bringing a widely-watched Second Amendment case to a close.

The Details: In the case, United States v. Rahimi, a Texas man challenged a court’s 2020 decision to bar him from having a gun as part of a civil protective order. Writing for the eight-justice majority, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote, “Our tradition of firearm regulation allows the government to disarm individuals who present a credible threat to the physical safety of others.” Roberts stated that while the Second Amendment was not “a law trapped in amber,” courts should consider whether gun laws are “‘relevantly similar’ to laws that our tradition is understood to permit, applying faithfully the balance struck by the founding generation to modern circumstances.” Justices Sotomayor, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, Barrett, and Jackson each wrote their own concurring opinions. 

Thomas’ Dissent: The only dissenter, Justice Clarence Thomas, wrote that “not a single historical regulation justifies the statute at issue,” adding, “The question is whether the Government can strip the Second Amendment right of anyone subject to a protective order—even if he has never been accused or convicted of a crime.  It cannot.”

How the Media Covered It: News coverage was mostly similar across the spectrum, covering key points from Roberts’ and Thomas’ opinions. Opinion articles were more varied, with one Slate (Left bias) writer declaring victory over “Clarence Thomas’ guns extremism.”

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