December 10, 2005

Denver Can Still Go To Hell

Via Jed.

Court weighs city's ability to write gun laws

"The city of Denver told the Colorado Supreme Court on Wednesday that it wants to protect its citizens by being able to write its own gun laws.
But the state of Colorado said the laws should be written by the state legislature to provide gun-legislation consistency and to avoid a hodgepodge of regulations written by home-rule cities such as Denver.
The arguments were heard by the justices and about 600 students at Arapahoe High School.
The justices are expected to rule within the next two months."

This is the appeal of the case where a certain bastard in a robe decided that "home rule" included the ability to trample on people's Rights.

For some background on this case I offer you two previous posts Warning: Denver Does Not Want Your Business & Rocky Mountain Low.

"During the arguments, Colorado Solicitor General Allison Eid, representing the state, and Denver Assistant City Attorney David Broadwell went at it."

I'll sum it up for ya: Broadwell (may he never find a convenient parking space again as long as he lives) argued that Denver should be allowed to regulate firearms as part of its police power & due to its increased level of crime than the rest of the state. Eid argued that the state has a clear interest in making the regulation of firearms uniform so that a person does not need to know different sets of laws for different places within the state.

Now here's the kicker:

"Eid argued that with a wide array of gun laws, citizens don't know their rights when traveling in Colorado. In one city, their actions may be lawful; in another, unlawful. Eid told the justices the case is similar to the one where the legislature imposed statewide uniformity in the use of photo-radar systems over the objections of four home-rule cities.
'In photo radar, we weren't dealing with a constitutional right. In this case, we are,' she said."

Huh? If that's the case (bad puns are always intentional) then why the hell wasn't a constitutional Right argued? From what I have gathered the state of Colorado's position has been that they need to write the gun laws so that everything is uniform, not that there's a constitutional Right of the people that's being stomped on by such laws. Colorado feels that the state & only the state should trample on a person's Rights, whereas Denver wants to trample on a person's Right too.

This entire case (from what I've read) has merely been a small jackal & a larger jackal fighting over a carcass. I have not seen mention (except in passing dismissal by that bastard in a robe fellow Meyers) of a person's Right to arms as acknowledged by the state constitution.

I'll be very interested in seeing a transcript of the arguments in this case if I can lay my hands on them.

What should have happened would have been for the state to argue that even it lacks the power to do what Denver is doing because the state constitution as well as the u.S. constitution forbids it.

Instead what has happened is the state has argued that only the state can pass laws concerning possession because it's the only way to fairly & equally infringe the Right to Arms.

The Colorado Supreme Court is notoriously liberal/leftist in make-up. It's been a while but I could have sworn I recall a friend who is more up to date on these matters say that several of the justices are from the "living constitution" school of thought. If that is the case then I doubt the state has much of a chance. But even if the justices in question do act like they have some smarts from time to time there's only a slim chance that they'll uphold the state constitution's prohibition on governments within the state making such laws to the detriment of the people.

& 600 high school students got to see the arguments. Considering what they're likely being taught I doubt if any of them caught that the issue was who gets to trample a Right, not whether or not that Right should be protected.

I am not pessimistic or optimistic by nature. I don't typically hope for or worry about most things (at least in excess). But I am pessimistic by observation when it comes to government & considering the way the courts have been ruling in the last few decades I doubt that Denver will be stopped in its infringement of the Right to Arms. For that, Denver & all who support its decision to ban "assault weapons" & open carry can go to hell.

Posted by Publicola at December 10, 2005 08:55 AM | TrackBack

At first blush - I haven't looked up any statistics - I wonder IF Denver has a higher crime rate than other jurisdictions in Colorado.

Aurora, Commerce City, maybe Pueblo, or even Grand Juntion might have higher rates per capita?

Posted by: Walter at December 10, 2005 11:50 AM
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