Abstract

THE SECOND, FIFTH, AND NINTH AMENDMENTS—THE PRECARIOUS PROTECTORS OF THE AMERICAN GUN COLLECTOR

ROLAND DOCAL

This Comment issues a "call to arms" for American gun collectors by highlighting the serious threat posed to their legitimate endeavors through the combined forces of popular sentiment, a vociferous anti-gun lobby, a compliant Congress, and a complacent judiciary. Part I reviews the historical and common law foundation for a constitutionally endorsed right to bear arms. Part II discusses the congressional "arms race"—the increasingly frequent legislative enactments aimed at the unqualified regulation, if not the outright elimination, of firearms in American society—and anticipates a possible course of future federal legislation. Part III examines the United States Supreme Court's silence on the issue of gun rights and the consequent failure to enforce the Second and Ninth Amendments. Part IV predicts continued success for gun control forces to culminate in a series of statutory measures eliminating firearm transactions or confiscating guns outright. Part V reviews the Court's confusing and inconsistent adjudication of Fifth Amendment "takings" cases. Part VI considers the viability of applying the Fifth Amendment to the potential outcomes explored in part IV. Finally, part VII explains the jurisprudential principles that the Supreme Court must apply in order to fulfill the Court's constitutional role as protector of the Bill of Rights. In conclusion, this Comment challenges the Supreme Court to bypass the popular sentiment contradicting gun rights and defend the Bill of Rights through strict adherence to the express provisions of the Constitution.


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