Massachusetts’ ban on the private possession of stun guns—an “electrical weapon” under the statute—does not violate the Second Amendment right to bear arms, the state’s top court has ruled.
The decision says (PDF) that the US Constitution’s framers never envisioned the modern stun-gun device, first patented in 1972. The top court said stun guns are not suitable for military use, and that it did not matter whether state lawmakers have approved the possession of handguns outside the home.
Nevertheless, we note that stun guns deliver a charge of up to 50,000 volts. They are designed to incapacitate a target by causing disabling pain, uncontrolled muscular contractions, and general disruption of the central nervous system…. It is difficult to detect clear signs of use and misuse of stun guns, unlike handguns. Stun guns can deliver repeated or prolonged shocks without leaving marks. …The Legislature rationally could ban their use in the interest of public health, safety, or welfare. Removing from public access devices that can incapacitate, injure, or kill a person by disrupting the central nervous system with minimal detection is a classic legislative basis supporting rationality. It is immaterial that the Legislature has not banned weapons that are more lethal. Mathematical precision by the Legislature is not constitutionally required.
The court, ruling in the case of a Massachusetts woman caught with stun gun, said the stun gun is a “thoroughly modern invention” not protected by the Second Amendment, although handguns are protected.
Read 11 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Leave a Reply