The Supreme Court has recently decided to hear the landmark Second Amendment case of McDonald v. Chicago. This case will address the application of the Second Amendment to the states through either the Due Process clause or the Privileges or Immunities clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The case has major implications for the legality of restrictive gun laws not only in Chicago, but also in other cities across the United States. The decision to hear the case, which will be argued early next year, gives Second Amendment advocates across America hope that this fundamental freedom will not be infringed by unreasonable state and local laws.
Previously the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit held that the Second Amendment does not apply to state and local governments. That opinion left in place the current ban on the possession of handguns in Chicago.
Many legal scholars believe that the Seventh Circuit should have followed the lead of the earlier Ninth Circuit panel decision in Nordyke v. Alameda County, which found that those cases don’t prevent the Second Amendment from applying to the states through the Due Process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. To the contrary, a proper incorporation analysis supports application of the Second Amendment to the States.