A Follow-Up to David's Follow-Up:
Just two quick responses to David's latest response.

  1. David, where did you get the idea that the police are breaking into homes to look for guns? I haven't seen any news reports that say this, but you have mentioned this repeatedly. Can you point me to the news reports of this happening? Or is this just supposed to be a hypothetical? The police do seem to be knocking on doors, and maybe they have broken into houses, too. If they have broken into houses, they necessarily must have done so without a warrant: the courts are flooded and all the judges have fled town, so there are no warrants that could possibly be obtained. But I haven't seen anything about breaking into homes to take guns.

  2. On the more substantive question, David's argument seems to be that there is an implicit nontextual limitation on the power to "control the possession" of firearms: specifically, that this power cannot be construed in a way that can have functionally similar effects to the power the government would have if the statute permitted the government to "prohibit the possession" of firearms. This just seems like a big stretch to me: I just don't see the textual hook for such a reading. For example, David's reading would seem to make the power to "control the possession" a nullity. It would make the power to control the possession identical to the power to regulate the possession, which would seem to violate his own interpretive principles that every word must be treated as having a very distinct meaning. Indeed, I don't know what the power to regulate possession could mean under David's view, as someone who refused to follow the regulation could be arrested for his possession, which would once again be the functional equivalent of prohibiting possession. In any event, perhaps David and I will just have to agree to disagree on this point.