View Single Post
Old 07-09-2019, 05:26 PM
Bone's Avatar
Bone is offline
Charter Member
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 11,026
Originally Posted by Anny Middon View Post
I was thinking ammunition tax, but a lot higher than 30%. Plus an equally high tax on gunpowder so that making your own bullets would also be expensive. I suspect that mass shootings would become, if not less common, then perhaps less deadly. The Las Vegas shooter is estimated to have fired 1100 rounds. I f each bullet cost him $5, how many rounds would he have shot?
A court would need to make a determination on how much any restriction impacted the right, and how closely the restriction was to a valid purpose. Any restriction would need to satisfy intermediate scrutiny at a minimum.

When faced with a $1000 excise tax on handguns, a federal court ruled in MURPHY v. GUERRERO :

The Court agrees with Murphy that the tax places an excessive burden on the exercise of the right of law-abiding citizens to purchase handguns for self-defense without a corresponding important government interest. Accordingly, the law cannot stand.


The principle that a court must protect constitutional rights from extinction by means both direct and indirect has a significant pedigree with the Supreme Court. In Carey v. Population Services, International, for instance, the Supreme Court noted that "[l]imiting the distribution of nonprescription contraceptives to licensed pharmacists clearly imposes a significant burden on the right of the individuals to use contraceptives if they choose to do so." 431 U.S. 678, 689 (1977). Had the Supreme Court upheld the New York statute in question, which required non-medical contraceptives to be distributed by a licensed pharmacist, the right to contraceptives established in Griswald v. Connecticut would have been, if not lost, severely impeded. See 381 U.S. 479, 485-86 (1965). The same was true in Minneapolis Star and Tribune Co. v. Minnesota Commissioner of Revenue, where the Supreme Court struck down a tax on newspaper ink and paper because it burdened the First Amendment freedom of the press. 460 U.S. 575, 585 (1983); see Grosjean v. American Press Co., 297 U.S. 233, 250 (1936) (striking down a similar Louisiana tax on larger newspapers).

Last edited by Bone; 07-09-2019 at 05:26 PM.