Clarence Thomas is the longest serving Justice on the Supreme Court.
Thomas has spent his years on the bench trying to push the Court to the right.
Now one federal judge has hit Clarence Thomas with the one piece of news he’s waited for.
In recent years Justice Thomas bemoaned the fact that the Supreme Court had not taken up a major Second Amendment case since its 2008 Heller decision where the majority ruled that owning a firearm was a fundamental right.
The late Justice Scalia – who authored the opinion – wrote that the Constitution forbids government from banning commonly owned firearms.
But judges across the country then refused to hear challenges to laws banning so-called “assault weapons” despite the fact that millions of Americans own semi-automatic rifles.
That may soon change thanks to California Southern District Federal Court Judge Roger Benitez who recently struck down the state’s so-called “assault weapons” ban.
Judge Benitez noted that these weapons were ordinary weapons found in homes across America.
“This case is not about extraordinary weapons lying at the outer limits of Second Amendment protection,” Benitez ruled. “The banned ‘assault weapons’ are not bazookas, howitzers, or machineguns. Those arms are dangerous and solely useful for military purposes. Instead, the firearms deemed ‘assault weapons’ are fairly ordinary, popular, modern rifles.
“This is an average case about average guns used in average ways for average purposes,” Judge Benitez ruled.
Judge Benitez continued, explaining that the Constitution protects individual rights against the tyranny of the majority so even laws that may enjoy support in blue states like California are not exempt from Constitutional scrutiny.
“While the Court is mindful that government has a legitimate interest in protecting the public from gun violence, it is equally mindful that the Constitution remains a shield from the tyranny of the majority,” Benitez added. “As Senator Edward Kennedy said, ‘[t]he judiciary is – and is often the only – protector of individual rights that are at the heart of our democracy.’ Law-abiding citizens are imbued with the unalienable right to keep and bear modern firearms.”
The liberal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals will almost certainly overturn this ruling.
But in doing so it will create a controversy that the Supreme Court could step in to resolve.
Renewed Right will keep you up-to-date on any new developments in this ongoing story.