Heller in the Rocky

Today The Rocky Mountain News published my article on the Heller decision. It begins:

Self-defense is a fundamental human right. Now the Supreme Court has affirmed what most Coloradans have long held and what our state’s constitution also strongly protects: the individual’s right to own a gun.

The June 26 ruling on District of Columbia v. Heller overturns Washington, D.C.’s handgun ban and requirement that guns be kept inoperable in the home. Gone is the fantasy that the Second Amendment protects only state militias.

I go on to quote a bit from the decision, discuss its various defensible qualifications, and then criticize some of its looser language.

The Rocky does a great job editing material. I did want to add three brief points, though, that didn’t make it through editing. First, concealed carry properly is restrained by the policies of private-property owners; those who wish to ban guns on their property are free to do so. Second, the checks that our Founders instituted are not limited to those of the three distinct branches; voters check all the branches directly or indirectly, the two houses of Congress check each other, etc. Third, we should see Supreme Court decisions in general “as the minimum standard of liberty” (I also had in mind issues of free speech and economic freedom).

Read the entire piece.