by Eric Ruben, fellow, Brennan Center for Justice
*This piece was originally posted by the Brennan Center for Justice
Keeping and bearing arms is a constitutional right, but the Supreme Court has gone to great lengths to emphasize that it is not absolute. In 2008, the late Justice Antonin Scalia wrote in District of Columbia v. Heller that “the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited.”
In the wake of the Parkland, Florida school shooting, major U.S. retailers have decided to raise the minimum age to buy a gun to 21. Lawmakers and reform advocates, meanwhile, are offering several laws to regulate guns – but opponents of at least some of those reforms have cited the Second Amendment’s 27 words to reject such proposals out of hand.