The Supreme Court justice asked a question for the first time in 10 years, revealing a different dynamic since the passing of Antonin Scalia.
by Garrett Epps • The Atlantic
At heart, law professors are simply overpaid nerds, the kind who take notes in three colors of ink and use two sizes of Post-its to tab out a casebook. We tend to have the ability to find something interesting in proceedings that would bore a normal human being into a state of coma.
Thus it was that at 10:45 a.m. Monday, I was in a sparsely populated Supreme Court press gallery watching Assistant U.S. Solicitor General Ilana Eisenstein provide a rapid wrap-up to a desultory argument over the meaning of “use” as applied a domestic-violence statute forbidding a defendant from “intentionally, knowingly or recklessly” causing “bodily injury or offensive physical contact” with a domestic partner.
Like a drowsy One-L Criminal Law class, the discussion had droned idly from Black’s Law Dictionary to Blackstone’s Commentaries. The topic, insofar as one could be found, seemed to be whether under a given state’s statute, “offensive physical contact” could be merely “reckless,” or had to be “intentional or knowing.” And if a defendant has been previously convicted of physical contact that was offensive but “merely” reckless, could that conviction be the basis for a later conviction under federal law that forbids anyone “convicted…of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence” from “possess[ing]” guns or ammunition? Continue reading
by Charles C. W. Cooke
KGW News has identified the Oregon shooter. He was just 15 years old.
What does this mean for our public policy? Well, pretty much nothing. Despite all of the chatter from the White House and beyond, “universal background checks” have absolutely nothing to do with this case. In Oregon, 15-year-olds are not allowed to purchase firearms of any sort – whether from stores or from private sources. Last year’s Toomey-Manchin proposal, which would have mandated checks for all private sales, would therefore not have applied to this case and could not have stopped this shooting. To pretend otherwise is downright dishonest.
We also know that the shooter broke a number of other laws. Continue reading