BELLEVUE, WA – The Second Amendment Foundation has submitted an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in a complicated case known as United States v. Rahimi challenging a civil restraining order disarmament provision. The brief relies on last year’s ruling in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen to argue that the total disarmament is not analogous to the Founding era regulations, calling into question the constitutionality of such provisions.
SAF’s interest in this case is based on the fact that many firearms owners in this country suddenly find themselves subject to civil restraining orders, which deny them their fundamental constitutional right to keep and bear arms in a manner that does not comport with the Second Amendment’s text, as informed by history.
“As our brief explains,” noted SAF Executive Director Adam Kraut, “laws mandating total disarmament, in the relevant historical period, were related to disarming loyalists to preserve the integrity of our newly-formed government. The current federal law governing how gun owners’ rights are treated in relation to civil restraining orders lacks any well-established historical analogue.”
Historically, at the time of the Founding, any laws that disarmed an entire category of people were limited to those individuals who remained loyal to the crown because they posed a threat to the success of the patriot cause in the Revolutionary War. Many of these people were literally considered to be enemy combatants and the total disarmament was viewed in the context of a war and the survival of a fledgling nation. Today’s laws that disarm private citizens subject to civil restraining orders must be considered in a peacetime context, where national security is not an issue.
“Our specific interest in this case focuses solely on current laws and how they may, or may not, comport with historic precedent from the Founding era,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “Under Bruen, the government must affirmatively prove that its firearm regulation is part of the historical tradition that delimits the outer bounds of the right to keep and bear arms.”
SAF is represented by attorneys Edward A. Paltzik and Meredith Lloyd of Bochner PLLC in New York.
About the Second Amendment Foundation:
The Second Amendment Foundation (www.saf.org) is the nation’s oldest and largest tax-exempt education, research, publishing and legal action group focusing on the Constitutional right and heritage to privately own and possess firearms. Founded in 1974, The Foundation has grown to more than 720,000 members and supporters and conducts many programs designed to better inform the public about the consequences of gun control.