Today the Supreme Court let stand the Fourth Circuit’s holding in Kolbe v. Hogan that semi-automatic rifles are not constitutionally protected “arms,” and in doing so declared the Second Amendment guarantees only a second-class right.

While Kolbe v. Hogan was but one of four circuit court decisions to have upheld state or local bans on semi-automatic rifles, this case differed greatly from its predecessors.

In Kolbe, a case challenging Maryland’s “assault weapon” ban, the full Fourth Circuit held that the AR-15 and the semiautomatic AK-47 (and other banned semi-automatic rifles) are “not constitutionally protected arms” because they are “weapons that are most useful in military service.”

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