Federal Court Strikes Down IL Ban On Second Amendment

The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit struck down the State of Illinois ban on carrying firearms for self-defense outside the home or business, declaring the law as unconstitutional. The case is being funded by the National Rifle Association. The lead plaintiff in the case is Mary Shepard, an Illinois resident and trained gun owner, who is also licensed to carry a concealed handgun in Utah and Florida. The Illinois State Rifle Association is a co-plaintiff in the case.

In the ruling, Judge Richard Posner not only declared the ban unconstitutional, but said,

“One doesn’t have to be a historian to realize that a right to keep and bear arms for personal self-defense in the eighteenth century could not rationally have been limited to the home. . . . Twenty-first century Illinois has no hostile Indians. But a Chicagoan is a good deal more likely to be attacked on a sidewalk than in his apartment on the 35th floor.”

“Today’s ruling is a victory for all law abiding citizens in Illinois and gun owners throughout the country,” said Wayne LaPierre, Executive Vice President of NRA. “The court recognized that the text and history of the Second Amendment guarantee individuals the right to carry firearms outside the home for self-defense and other lawful purposes. In light of this ruling, Mary Shepard and the people of Illinois will finally be able to exercise their Second Amendment rights.”

"We are disinclined to engage in another round of historical analysis to determine whether eighteenth-century America understood the Second Amendment to include a right to bear guns outside the home," Judge Richard Posner wrote in the court's majority opinion.

"The Supreme Court has decided that the amendment confers a right to bear arms for self-defense, which is as important outside the home as inside. The theoretical and empirical evidence (which overall is inconclusive) is consistent with concluding that a right to carry firearms in public may promote self-defense," he continued.

In the minority opinion, Judge Ann Williams wrote that Illinois was within its rights to ban weapons in "sensitive places" like government buildings, churches and universities in the name of safety. She wrote, "The Illinois legislature reasonably concluded that if people are allowed to carry guns in public, the number of guns carried in public will increase, and the risk of firearms-related injury or death in public will increase as well. And it is also common sense that the danger is a great one; firearms are lethal."

Personally, this falls into typical liberal type logic. Think of it. If one enters a Wal-mart and is carrying concealed, what is the difference of risk than if carried in a school, government building, or church? Oh that's right there would be no more threat in either, except in those "sensitive places" people would be unarmed and defenseless.

"Today's ruling is a major victory for law-abiding Illinoisans—and for everyone who understands that the Second Amendment protects the right both to keep arms, and to bear arms," added Chris W. Cox, executive director of NRA's Institute for Legislative Action. "This ruling makes clear that Illinois cannot deny law-abiding residents the right to carry a firearm for self-defense outside the home. This is a step in the right direction for all gun owners. We know it probably won’t be the end of this case, and we’re ready to keep fighting until the courts fully protect the entire Second Amendment."

The case stemmed from a 2009 attack on Shepard, 69 at the time, and a co-worker Leona Mount, 76 at the time. Both women worked at the First Baptist Church of Anna, Illinois. Both women were viciously attacked and beaten by Willis Bates, a 45-year-old, 245 pound, six-foot-three-inches tall man. Both women were fortunate to survive the attack. Bates got away with a few hundred dollars.

Bates was arrested on October 5, 2009. A grand jury has indicted Willis Bates on two counts of Attempted Murder, two counts of Theft and a count of Burglary at a Place of Worship. Incidentally, as a side note, Mr. Bates was also charged with possessing a firearm as a felon, though it was apparently not used in the attacks.

Ms. Shepard's injuries required extensive surgeries and she continues physical therapy to this day attempting to recover from her injuries. Ms. Mount remained in the hospital more than a month after the attack. She was on a respirator for a time, until she could breathe on her own and had to have reconstructive surgery due to the fact that every bone in her face was shattered in the attack.

This should outrage all who read this and cause every American to demand, not only justice for these women against Bates, but also to demand that the federal government or the state government stop making it more difficult for law abiding citizens to do what the Second Amendment is supposed to protect against and that is simply be able to "keep and bear arms."

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  • Big Bruce

    It is sad that the American courts are greatly influenced by fascist organizations like the NRA. The majority of America and the rest of the world wants gun control and gun control will be implemented. Stop the madness let the loonies carry squirt guns instead. At least they can't kill 26 people with that!!

    • Patriot

      Yep, Phineas Taylor Barnum had it right when he said "There's a sucker born every minute" Looks like we now have proof positive. Hey, Big Bruce, try reading your world history then read your Constitution/Bill of rights. You might want to gander at the Federalist Papers if it's not too heavy a read.

  • waterman

    It's about damn time, I was wondering if we could ever defeat Illinois's anti-second amendment agenda. This is so cool.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rachel-Guess/100001271026565 Rachel Guess

    It's ironic to me that this was even a question before the court. The 2nd Amendment states "...the right of the people to keep and BEAR Arms, shall not be infringed." That is pretty straight forward because you 'bear arms' when you are going somewhere with your weapon, which it is logical to assume is away from your residence. I don't think they would have assumed it only meant you could 'bear arms' when walking to your kitchen sink.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rachel-Guess/100001271026565 Rachel Guess

    Guns promote peace, not violence. An armed society is a polite society because they have to be, as exemplified by Kennesaw, Georgia, where gun ownership is mandatory with exclusions allowed for financial/religious reasons.


    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003457282985 Mike Slaney

      Well said!

  • leesjokers


    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003457282985 Mike Slaney

      Good question!

  • har82

    I guess - bates - wanted to show the world how macho he was beating on 2 - old - ladies . I do hope someone in that vicinity shows him ,,,, the same treatment the next time he is out and about lol.
    Being married ( and I'm sure many other men can sympathize ) at one time for some 18 years I have often wanted to smack my wife.. But I never laid a hand on her because I was raised to believe men do not ,,, beat on women. Looks like things are different back east hmm ...
    And cudo's to the judge for being a real open minded judge with Constitutional learning as his guide. Seems a lot of judges these days hold the Constitution in contempt.

    • Tamara

      Pride can really skew the way we view ourselves. You aren't much different from the man who wanted to show the world how macho he was. A real man wouldn't have wanted to smack his wife ever. Perhaps you should have exercised mind control and learned to love your wife, even if she was unlovable. I'm quite certain you weren't lovable either.

      Real men will sympathize with the hard work it takes to love their wife, but that the cost is worth it. Real women sympathize with how hard it is to respect her husband, but the cost is worth it.


    • har82

      Hmmm, spoken like a real liberal feminist - tamara - . The - fact - ,,, that I never laid a hand her matters little to your ilk. It is the - thought - that matters. Not ,, the action. And don't even - try - to tell me women are easy to live with lol. They - never - admit they are wrong even when you prove it to them. As for me being - unlovable - ??. Just how the hell would - you - ,,, know??. Take your self absorbing BS and stuff it.

    • Tamara

      Har82, a "true feminist" would not wear a headcovering in submission to her husband, which I do. Yet, I am not deceived in thinking a mere headcovering makes me holy. I am a sinner; a much bigger one than you, I assure you. God should kill me for the sins I committed before I even got out of bed this morning, but He is merciful and slow to anger, even to the unrighteous, not willing that any should perish.

      I pointed out the sin of pride and its deception of thinking you are doing a "good" thing based on mere morality, when in fact, God says that even our "good" deeds are as filthy rags. We are very deceived people when it comes to our own sins.

      You said you never hit your wife, but you had the thought of doing so. We are told in scripture, "Thou shalt not murder", but Jesus said that if we even hate our brother, we are a murderer. Have you ever hated someone? The Bible says, "Thou shalt not commit adultery", but Jesus said that if we even look at a woman to lust after her, we have already committed adultery in our heart. Have you ever lusted after a woman?

      It is very clear that Jesus was getting at the fact we can *boast* in our prideful hearts that we have not physically done the act, but it is not what we do that matters, but that all we do starts in the heart! For out of the heart, the mouth speaks. The heart is wicked above all things, who can know it? Can you trust a heart that is wicked? Clearly we cannot, as Jesus demonstrated. And James points out that if we break one commandment, we are guilty of them all, which is punishable by death and hell.

      Yet, God in His mercy sent His own Son, who humbly submitted Himself to the Father by emptying Himself (something the mind cannot grasp) to become a mere man, without sin, and paying for our court fine against us that we could not pay on the Cross, in His life's blood. What mercy! What grace! Then He rose again, defeated death, and sits at the right hand of the Father today, ruling and reigning! We have a great Savior for our great need of forgiveness! We must turn from our sins (repent) and trust in Christ alone for that forgiveness. If you are truly born again, you will begin to see fruit in your life (not perfect) and you will desire to obey Him. I pray that if you have not done this, that God in His mercy will compel you to do so.

      If Christ can do this for sinners, whose debt is far greater than towards Him than anything any other person has ever done to us, can we not also humble ourselves to love others, even when they are unlovable? Can we exchange wicked thoughts for good thoughts, thinking of others as greater than us? We can do all things through Christ who gives us strength.

      I will humbly pray for you. May the LORD bless you!


    • har82

      This Tammara, is not a discussion for an open forum lol. Believe me , I do not think I am an angel lol. Quite the opposite really. But I have ,, been blessed ,,, in my life in so many ways I fail to see them all. The things I have done, the places I have been, even the things I have seen the world over ,, I can not even explain them all. So do not think, I believe I am holier than thou ,, for I am not.

    • Patriot

      You go har82! :) & Dittos!

    • har82

      Patriot, I really have a dislike for - self absorbed - females lol. It's hard enough to live with a good one lol. Maybe that's why I've been single for 16 years now after my divorce lol. I have to admit I - might - be hard to live with. But my woman has no fears from anything , or anyone ( other than me of course lol ) ..

    • Patriot

      Hey har82, after 41 years, you have to know that I have the patience of Job! :) See, the first thing you have to get established is that marriage is a partnership. Next a captain has to be established. Whatever he says goes.:)

    • har82

      Im always ,, the Captain, wherever I go . :)

  • Patriot

    Thanks to Judge Posner for defending our Constitution in spite of those who want to destroy it.

  • Krazeehors

    Guns, in and of themselves, are NOT lethal. The judge is a moron. The PEOPLE who USE the guns are the LETHAL ones. Why can't we ban THEM??

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/KMIMFI2ZNGZ3XF6CXRAB3K634U H.DA

      You may be a moron

    • Krazeehors

      Nope. I have never seen a gun leap off of a store shelf and kill someone. Have you?
      Guns have to be in the hands of a PERSON in order to be lethal. Subtract gang murders and gang violence and you will find that MOST gun owners are law abiding citizens and non-violent, who ONLY use their guns for hunting and/or personal protection or because they enjoy target shooting at a shooting range. Most are educated in gun safety. Again, discounting gang violence and gang shootings.

    • sadbuttrue

      I wish people would read comments and get their meaning before they make their own comments. I read what you had to say one time and got it. They noticed you were attacked by two readers and wondered why? You made perfect sense to me. Guns don't kill people, people kill people. And yes the minority court judge Williams is a moron. So yes I totally agree with you. And am sorry others didn't bother to properly read your statement. Hang in there they'll get it eventually. That an armed society is a polite society. If I were a criminal with bad intentions and even slightly thought a potential victim was armed I sure wouldn't attempt it. Better safe than sorry.

    • siquijorisland

      it seem so simple however the answer is so complex you would not get it,

    • Krazeehors

      Believe me, I get it. Our government will not stop until they disarm every single American, and with the massacre in Connecticut yesterday, the cries for even more crushing anti-gun legislation will be bombarding the airwaves and newspapers.

    • Ort

      The judge is NOT the moron here. If law abiding citizens are disarmed by our fascist government, then only the criminals/gangbangers will be armed.

      I will NEVER EVER be a victim. I will put my attacker in a coffin before I allow that.

    • Krazeehors

      The judge who approved the violation of the 2nd Amendment is the one I was referring to.
      You are right, of course.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Darlene-Thecolaratlady/100000275763531 Darlene Thecolaratlady

      I;m a non violent non gangbanger, non drug dealer, non pimp, WELL TRAINED ,,,,,simply put non CRIMINAL who always carries a .45 for self defense, the defense of some innocent victim of a crime .shoot first, THEN call 911 and tell them to send the coroner b/c a criminal THUG has just been taken off the streets, oh and btw if it is a LEGAL KILL definied by our laws, our sheriff, our DA, we cant be arrested, tried, sued..NOTHING.

    • Krazeehors

      My comment was pure sarcasm!!! I fully support the 2nd amendment!!! Also a veteran and an oathkeeper.

  • http://www.facebook.com/brian.gough.9028 Brian Gough

    well we should have the right as long as we are lawfull abiding people its only the mentaly
    chalenged we should be aware of.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/KLW5YS2TXNKKIV4R2L4DTVB42E m

      Like democrats?

    • grassroot

      Or more to the point, morally challenged,

  • Ort

    Hell yeah!! I just applied for my FOID card and am taking a class end of December. Yeah, baby!! I don't live in Illinois, but I am happy for the citizens there. : )
    Think I will buy a .38 special crimson trace. Yeah, that's the ticket!

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Darlene-Thecolaratlady/100000275763531 Darlene Thecolaratlady

      like a salesman told me, the last thing a MALE criminal wants is to be shot by a tiny woman with a pink handled handgun..i bought a pink 1 just b/c of what he said lol

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rachel-Guess/100001271026565 Rachel Guess

      Darlene, I am a retired peace officer and I have a concealed permit as well. Periodically I get asked why I carry and my answer is always the same: Because the officer didn't fit in my holster and was too heavy to carry anyway.

      When you need help now, remember that the police are at least minutes away. That is the best reason to be prepared by owning and keeping your firearms at the ready.

    • Krazeehors

      LOL!!! I love it. I made a comment that PEOPLE are the ones who make guns lethal -- I got back several very sarcastic remarks from idiots who obviously did not understand my comment for what it is -- 100% PURE SARCASM!!!

  • Carl Stevenson

    Great news. Expect The corrupt, statist politicians in IL to appeal to SCOTUS.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Barry-Levy/1091577549 Barry Levy

    wonder how that call to 911 went for help. OOOPS seems by the harm done that calling 911 after an event has started isn't quite the response time that a weapon drawn and fired at the assailant would be. But what the heck, liberals will change their mind when they are the victim and nobody is there to respond, and then some lawyer takes the case for the criminal thug, and gets him off on a technicality that they supported when it didn't affect them personally

  • Spenserr

    Illinois thought the other 49 states were wrong.... geez!

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Darlene-Thecolaratlady/100000275763531 Darlene Thecolaratlady

      or in Odumba's case. 57 states

    • Tamara

      Actually, it was 57 states with one more to go. Then he stated he was not allowed by his staff to go to Alaska or Hawaii. Depending on how one interprets that, he could have meant 58, 59, or 60 states. He's not really sure and no one else is either.

  • retiredmillwright

    The Chicago criminals and muggers union are ticked off
    today. Their long time members now face the job hazard of being shot on the
    street by law abiding citizens. This will force the hard robbing members of the
    muggers union to move to another city, that has strong anti-gun laws, or worse
    still get a job like their victims have. I am sure Obama is working hard as we
    speak to repeal the law allowing abiding citizens from having a fighting chance, by
    having a gun to protect themselves and family on the streets of Chicago.

    • WhiteFalcon

      All Chicago's muggers and criminals can now move to New York and DC, where the top criminals are in charge of things.