Kristen Fyfe

According to the Post this misunderstanding didn’t irk Mr. Heller.  What did irk Mr. Heller was the “strict storage requirements” mandated by the newly revised D.C. gun laws.

But Heller and von Breichenruchardt angrily criticized the city over other aspects of the handgun ownership and registration process, outlined in emergency legislation approved this week by the D.C. Council and Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D).

The new law includes strict storage requirements that opponents of the handgun ban say violate the Supreme Court ruling. Gun owners must keep their pistols at home, unloaded and either disassembled or equipped with trigger locks. Weapons can be loaded and used only if the owner reasonably believes that he or she is in imminent danger from an attacker in the home.

Note the spin.  The Washington Post indicates that it is a matter of opinion whether the storage restrictions violate the high court’s ruling.

It’s not opinion.  It’s fact.  Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the majority, stated, “In sum, we hold that the District’s ban on handgun possession in the home violates the Second Amendment, as does its prohibition against rendering any lawful firearm in the home operable for the purpose of immediate self-defense.”

It is clear that the D.C. restrictions requiring the gun to be “unloaded and either disassembled or equipped with trigger locks” render the gun inoperable for the purpose of immediate self-defense.

Further, as reported by Jeff Johnson of One News (a former NRA employee) but not reported by the Post,  the District’s requirement that every gun submitted for licensing be test-fired by police ballistics experts violates a congressional ban on federal agencies creating any kind of gun owner registry.

The Supreme Court’s ruling in the Heller case did leave room for municipalities and states to put reasonable restrictions on gun ownership.  But it also made clear that excessive regulation would violate the Constitution. The Second Amendment-loathing folks as the Post need to set their anti-gun bias aside and report the facts as facts.  

Kristen Fyfe

Kristen Fyfe is senior writer at the Culture and Media Institute, a division of the Media Research Center.

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