Wednesday, February 20, 2013

McDonald v. City of Chicago case brief

McDonald v. City of Chicago case brief summary
130 S. Ct. 3020

SYNOPSIS: Petitioners, residents and organizations, filed three suits against respondent municipalities in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, alleging that municipal ordinances banning handgun possession violated the Second and Fourteenth Amendments. The district court upheld the ordinances, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed. The Supreme Court granted certiorari.

-The challenged ordinances effectively banned possession of handguns by private citizens. 

-The Court held that the Second Amendment protected the right to keep and bear arms for the purpose of self-defense and that the Second Amendment was fully applicable to the states.

Self-defense was a basic right and was the central component of the Second Amendment right, and the Court had recognized that the Second Amendment right applied to handguns, which were the preferred firearm to keep and use for protection of one's home and family. 
-A plurality of the Court found it unnecessary to disturb existing precedent that narrowly read the Fourteenth Amendment Privileges or Immunities Clause to protect only rights that owed their existence to the federal government. 
-However, the framers and ratifiers of the Fourteenth Amendment counted the right to keep and bear arms as a fundamental right necessary to the nation's system of ordered liberty. 
-The Fourteenth Amendment was not solely an anti-discrimination rule. 
-The plurality therefore found that the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms was incorporated and made applicable to the states by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

OUTCOME: The court of appeals' judgment was reversed, and the matter was remanded for further proceedings. 5-4 Decision, 2 Concurrences, 2 Dissents.

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