Washington Post: Supreme Court Could Make a Move on Guns...In An Unconventional Way

Beth Baumann
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Posted: Nov 02, 2017 5:36 PM
Washington Post: Supreme Court Could Make a Move on Guns...In An Unconventional Way

Yesterday, two gun control-advocating UCLA professors penned an OpEd in the Washington Post detailing how the Supreme Court could rule on the Second Amendment without actually taking up a case on gun rights.

Their Claims

According to social welfare professor Mark S. Kaplan and law professor Adam Winkler, the Supreme Court could tackle "gun violence" by limiting gerrymandering, the practice of drawing district lines in favor of the party in control.

The justices are being asked to decide if this practice of manipulating district lines to guarantee one party a disproportionate number of seats unconstitutionally dilutes the other party’s supporters’ right to vote. 

The professors believe the reason "significant new gun laws" haven't be enacted in recent years is because gerrymandering has allowed the GOP to stay in power. 

They also believe the National Rifle Association's power stems from gerrymandering.

Much of the NRA’s strength, however, comes from partisan gerrymandering. Through its endorsements, the NRA is able to swing the intense, single-issue, pro-gun voters who vote in large numbers in Republican primaries. As a result, candidates fear supporting even minimal gun safety reform for fear of losing the NRA’s support and being “primaried” by a more ideologically rigid candidate backed by the nation’s leading gun rights group.

The professors also argue that because of gerrymandering and Americans' views on guns, we're less likely to see a moderate candidate in office. 

Although there is no pro-reform organization with the political pull of the NRA, partisan gerrymandering may also push Democrats away from compromise on guns. Gun control has become increasingly important to many of the party’s voters in recent years, with 85 percent of Democrats supporting stricter gun legislation. This, too, may mean that Democratic candidates with more moderate positions on guns are less likely to succeed in their primaries.

Translation: Democrats don't have a chance at winning elections so now people with fancy degrees are trying to make a connection between two areas that are unrelated.

The Truth Behind Gerrymandering

Does gerrymandering negatively impact politics? Of course. I know very few people who would argue in favor of playing with district lines, unless they're A) the leader of a state political party or B) a politician who is greatly impacted by how district lines are drawn.

There's one simple reality behind gerrymandering: It has always taken place and it always will. Asking people to put their political differences aside to draw these lines is unfathomable. That's asking political movers and shakers to put their political aspirations and beliefs aside for the greater good of their constituents. 

While I believe most are inherently good, let's face the music: politicians strive for political power. They make their living off successfully running campaigns. What motivation do they have of letting gerrymandering go when it can almost ensure their reelection? Answer: None.

National Rifle Association And Guns

Liberals have an absolute obsession with the NRA. How a liberal feels about guns and the NRA has become their litmus test. That being said, these professors are no different. Arguing that gerrymandering is the way to fix America's "gun violence" problem is just...stupid.

The Second Amendment is a fundamental right protected by the United States Constitution. Those of us who want to protect ourselves for self-defense — or simply because we want to utilize our right — shouldn't be punished by anti-gunners who feel we're overstepping our boundaries.

These professors should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. Advocating for the Supreme Court, the highest court in the land, to take an activist role in a public policy problem is dangerous. The job of the Court is to interpret the law, not make it. 

If anti-gunners want to try and push gun control legislation, so be it. But do it the right way. Go through Congress, have them propose and pass legislation. If the votes aren't there then the votes aren't there. It means the American people have spoken. The majority of Americans believe in protecting the Second Amendment, not abolishing firearms with "sensible gun laws." 

Want to come after our guns? To that I say MOLON LABE.