By James A. Kidney The Supreme Court appeared split 4-4 Tuesday during oral arguments over whether the family of an unarmed Mexican teenager can sue the U.S. Border Patrol agent who shot and killed him. The agent was on U.S. soil firing into Mexico to kill the boy. You can find the details here and here. The matter was being argued before the Court. A decision is expected by summer. But the description of the argument raises troubling issues. Foremost among them, but not directly raised in the dignified court arguments 20,000 feet above reality: Is it OK for the Border Patrol and civilians to kill Mexicans across the border without liability to the families of those murdered, or even to the country whose land was invaded by U.S. bullets? Briefly, an unarmed teen-aged Mexican was playing with friends at a culvert dividing the two countries. The game was to … Read more of this post . . .
By James A. Kidney Excerpts from recent opinions by Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia: This week: Friedman v. City of Highland Park, Illinois, denial of certiorari, Thomas joined by Scalia dissenting (Dec. 7, 2015). Denial of cert meant that the suburb’s ban on assault weapons is legal. The City’s ban is thus highly suspect because it broadly prohibits common semiautomatic fire- arms used for lawful purposes. Roughly five million Americans own AR-style semiautomatic rifles. . . . The overwhelming majority of citizens who own and use such rifles do so for lawful purposes, including self-defense and target shooting. . . . Under our precedents, that is all that is needed for citizens to have a right under the Second Amendment to keep such weapons. Future opinions by Justices Thomas and Scalia: Big Pharma v. Federal Food and Drug Administration, denial of certiorari. Thomas and Scalia dissenting: The FDA’s heavy … Read more of this post . . .