Trudeau’s gun ban “wouldn’t stand a chance” under US constitution: Expert

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s new proposed gun restrictions have raised concerns that similar measures could be pushed in the US, but those kinds of reforms would be barred under the US Constitution, according to an expert.

The US gun control debate was brought to the fore again last week after the mass shooting at a Texas elementary school that killed 19 children and two teachers. Trudeau’s proposed measures, which would ban the sale of handguns nationally if passed by Canada’s Parliament, have drawn strong criticism from US conservatives, who fear similar measures could be introduced in America.

But Joseph Blocher, a law professor at Duke University whose research interests include constitutional law and the Second Amendment, said news week that he believes there is “neither politically nor constitutionally” a chance that a similar ban could gain traction in the United States

“It’s the phantom threat,” he said. “The idea of ​​banning handguns is nowhere near the political agenda in the mainstream United States — it hasn’t been for decades.”

Trudeau Gun Ban Concerns
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s new proposed gun restrictions have raised concerns that similar measures could be pushed in the US, but those kinds of reforms would be barred under the US Constitution, according to an expert. Above: Trudeau speaks at a joint news conference with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy May 8 in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Alexey Furman/Getty Images

Blocher said that instead of calling for a ban on handguns, politicians and gun violence prevention advocates had pushed for other measures such as background checks and red flag laws that would allow authorities to temporarily remove firearms from people believed to be in possession becomes that they pose a danger to themselves and others. He added that even if there were moves to ban handguns, “the Supreme Court has made it clear that the Second Amendment protects the fundamental right to have a handgun in the home for self-defense.”

“Even if a gun ban were politically enforceable, the courts would scrap it,” Blocher said. “I think the focus should be on what people are really pushing for, which is things like background checks and red flag laws that don’t even remotely violate the Second Amendment.”

Despite pushes by Democrats and even some Republicans for certain types of gun reforms in the wake of the Texas shooting, the GOP has remained largely resistant to the idea. Texas Senator Ted Cruz, for example, while speaking at the annual National Rifle Association conference last week said “technocratic solutions” alone would not stop these deadly events and urged improvements in school safety.

“Ultimately, as we all know, armed bad guys are what stops armed bad guys,” he said.

Blocher said the “real thing” going on in the US is a “fear of lopsided slopes”.

“Gun rights advocates over the years have very successfully suggested that giving guns a toll means giving guns a mile, that if we allow background checks, the next thing will be registration,” Blocher said. “And if there’s federal registration, next is federal seizure.”

“These arguments play on fears and that makes them very hard to refute, but it’s just nowhere near the suggestions that people are making today, all of whom are operating on the sidelines to prevent prohibited people from acquiring guns in the first place, either through a background check system or.” keeping guns out of the hands of the dangerously mentally ill through red flag laws,” he added.

Surveys over the last few years have shown that support for gun selling background checks is generally high. According to Politifact, 81 percent said they supported the measure in a 2021 Pew Research Center poll. Red flag legislation has also garnered support from Republicans and Democrats alike.

https://www.newsweek.com/canada-gun-ban-u-s-constitution-1711790 Trudeau’s gun ban “wouldn’t stand a chance” under US constitution: Expert

Rick Schindler

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