So what larger lessons does Heller teach? First, the differing methods of interpretation employed by the majority and the dissent demonstrate why appointments to the Supreme Court are so important. In the future, we should be vetting Supreme Court nominees to see if they understand how Justice Scalia reasoned in Heller and if they are committed to doing the same.It seems to me that both the Legislative and Executive branches of government will inherently (because of their natures) be threats to liberty. If we are to have a hope of a government for liberty, then I think it is important that the members of the Supreme Court see their role in our government as defenders of a constitution for individual liberty. It seems the Heller opinion is a good illustration of all of this.
We should also seek to get a majority of the Supreme Court to reconsider its previous decisions or "precedents" that are inconsistent with the original public meaning of the text. This shows why elections matter – especially presidential elections – and why we should vet our politicians to see if they appreciate how the Constitution ought to be interpreted.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Court & Constitution
RANDY BARNETT on Heller: