email from my friend matt horan

The Usual Suspects were fond of saying that if the Supremes limited Roe v Wade in any way, it would be the first time that a Constitutional right had ever been narrowed by the Court. Of course, that is incorrect. But never mind. It appears that the Supremes will for sure narrow a Constitutional right here pretty soon, the sacred Sixth Amendment right of delusional bums to represent themselves in criminal trials.

One Constitutional right, the right to bear arms, has been rudely treated by the Supreme Court, judging from Miller v. United States, a 1939 case that is being (indirectly) reviewed in the argument over Washington D.C.’s handgun ban. Now, I think I have a way out of this one, I call it Positively Scalian. I call it Scalia on Steroids. I call it Originalism with a Vengeance.

Here it is: what did “arms” mean in the 1780’s? Smooth-bore muskets, flintlock pistols, swords, and small cannon. PERMITTED!!!!

Machine guns, atomic bombs, nerve gas, rifles, SUBJECT TO REASONABLE REGULATION!!!

I like the seamlessness of this interpretation with the rest of the text: “A well-regulated militia,being necessary to the security of a free state….” Yes! There are Indians threatening our little settlement, and, if not Indians, then teenagers with too much bass blasting rap music all wide and around: Summon the militia and FIRE AT WILL.

And not just Will. Fire at Frankie, Jesus, and Tyrone, too. For wearing their britches too low, and other unspeakable breaches of taste.

Finally, Former First Lady Hillary Clinton ducked sniper fire in Bosnia, or didn’t, as the case may be. This resume-padding has gotten somewhat out of hand. Her confusion is understandable. When she first came to Arkansaw, we played a trick on her we like to play on all dumb Yankees, we took her snipe hunting.

Damn if she didn’t come home with a big one in her bag.

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hey matt – are u a poker player

3 Responses to “email from my friend matt horan”


  • Okay, okay. I LOL’d a little at this one! Someone needs to add “Positively Scalian” to urbandictionary.com

  • I also got a laugh out of the “positively Scalian” remark, but wanted to add a couple of serious points.

    First, if you read the Supreme Court’s decision in the 1939 Miller case, it’s plain that a “militia weapon” is whatever the military is using at a particular time. Since, in 1939, the US armed forces were not using short-barreled shotguns (although they did in WWI and WWII), Miller’s shotgun was not a militia weapon.

    The Miller decision means that M16’s, M4’s, squad automatic weapons and other now-prohibited guns are “militia weapons,” and should be available to US citizens. It will probably be years before a challenge on the National Firearms Act of 1934 and the Firearms Owners Protection Act of 1986 are challenged, they will be. And, if the philosophical makeup of the court resembles what we have today, bans on machine guns will be held unconstitutional.

    As for the weaponry available in the 1700’s, few people are aware that there were already fully-automatic weapons at that time. The Puckett was a machine gun invented in 1715. (Oddly enough, it fired a square bullet).

    The Heller decision is going to change a lot of laws over the next several years.

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