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American Opinion: On ruling protects gun rights, restrictions

An excerpt from recent editorials in newspapers in the United States:

From The Associated Press

On ruling protects gun rights, restrictions:

The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in McDonald v. Chicago, applying the Second Amendment to the states ... proclaimed it for all the states.

The Second Amendment, which grants a right "to keep and bear arms," has been in the U.S. Constitution for more than two centuries. But it was only two years ago that the court applied it to individual citizens.

Recently, the court said states, counties and cities cannot wipe out this right. Specifically, the court said Chicago cannot ban handguns entirely.

But Chicago, and any other government, can still do many things to restrict guns if it can offer a good reason. In the past two years, federal appeals courts have ruled that state and local governments can forbid guns to juveniles and illegal immigrants, ban guns with obliterated serial numbers, require a permit for a concealed weapon, ban guns in a government parking lot, ban machine guns, ban unregistered sawed-off shotguns, and impose stricter sentences for crimes when guns are present.

Under the Supreme Court ruling, all these cases still stand, as do the governments' long-standing power to ban guns in sensitive places such as courthouses and schools.

The decision means there is a limit to such restrictions. A state or city cannot pile on so many that the right to use a handgun for self-defense is meaningless. But the right to own and carry a gun remains subject to reasonable regulation.

-- The Seattle Times