The constitutional right to bear arms does not apply to Washington, D.C., residents, a federal judge has ruled. The Washington Post says that U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton rejected a lawsuit by residents who argued that a 1976 city law banning the possession of guns left them vulnerable. Walton called Washington a “uniquely designed governmental entity” that did not fall under the Second Amendment’s allowing state militias to take up arms against the federal government.
“The judge unfortunately has selectively looked at only part of the Second Amendment’s history and ignored cases in which all of the rest of the Bill of Rights have been applied to the District of Columbia,” said Richard Gardiner, attorney for the residents. “Citizens of the District are as much citizens of this country as anyone else.” Gardiner will appeal.
The decision was hailed by gun-control advocates. “This is a rejection of the National Rifle Association’s effort to overturn D.C. gun laws, which have stuck in their craw for years,” said Matt Nosanchuk of the Violence Policy Center. “It is a victory for public safety of city residents who don’t need any more guns on city streets.”