The United States bishops have urged the Supreme Court to uphold a federal law that restricts access to firearms in cases of domestic abuse. Source: The Tablet.
The US Conference of Catholic Bishops has submitted an amicus brief in a pending Supreme Court case on a law that allows people under domestic restraining orders to be banned from carrying firearms.
“As the Church teaches, and this nation’s historical traditions demonstrate, the right to bear arms is not an unqualified licence that must leave vulnerable family members to live in fear,” said the bishops’ amicus brief, submitted on August 22.
“Abused victims are precisely the people whom a just government is tasked with protecting. The Second Amendment does not stand as a barrier to their safety.”
The Supreme Court will hear the case US vs Rahimi in its upcoming session in response to a lower court decision.
In May, a three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals sided with Zackey Rahimi, a Texas drug dealer with a violent history.
The lower court vacated his conviction for illegal gun possession while under a domestic violence restraining order. The court said the 1994 federal law Rahimi violated was not consistent with the Second Amendment and American traditions of law.
People who are under domestic violence restraining orders do not lose their constitutional right to own firearms, according to the ruling.
The bishops’ amicus brief stated that Church has an interest in US v Rahimi because it is particularly important to advance “the protection of the dignity and wellbeing of vulnerable and disadvantaged persons who live under threat of violence”.
The brief argued that Congress has “legitimate authority to disarm those who have demonstrated – to the satisfaction of a juridical fact-finder – that they pose a unique danger to those close to them and to the common good.”
US bishops ask Supreme Court to uphold gun ban on domestic abusers (By Kevin Jones, CNA via The Tablet)