Supreme Court Deciding on UN Treaty Superseding US Law

The Supreme Court is currently hearing a case that has been dubbed the “Toxic Love” case. The case is Bond v. U.S. (12-158). A ruling is expected by the spring.

Here is a very brief overview of the circumstances of the case. Ms. Bond finds out her very good friend Myrlinda Haynes is pregnant. Then she finds out the father of the baby is her husband Clifford Bond. Needless to say she is more then a little but upset and vows revenge. Things become dicey when Ms. Bond who goes by the name Betty procures arsenic-based 10-chloro-10H-phenoxarsine from her company as well as potassium dichromate over the Internet. Both substances in heavy doses can cause toxic, even lethal harm with very little physical contact.

Over the next several months Betty attempts to poison Myrlinda over 2 dozen times. Sprinkling small amounts of the chemicals on an apartment doorknob, car door handles, and a mailbox. The Mailbox becomes an important issue in this. Anyone who has made stupid mistakes as a kid may be aware that tampering with a Mailbox is considered a Federal Crime!

Myrlinda reaches out to local police but gets little help. Her next step is to reach out to the Post Inspectors. Betty was videotaped stealing mail and placing chemicals inside the mailbox and a car muffler, court records show. She was soon arrested.

Bond admitted her guilt early on and claimed she never meant to kill Haynes, but only wanted to cause her “an uncomfortable rash.” The defendant also said her friend’s betrayal caused an “emotional breakdown” that made her respond in such a shocking fashion.

Instead of being charged with simple assault, which may have gotten her six months to a year or two in state prison, Bond was indicted in federal court on two counts of mail fraud and two counts of violating a federal law and international treaty on the possession and use of “chemical weapons.” The Federal charges actually would certainly be applicable here since the mailbox is considered Federal property. It burns my ass that I have top buy it and maintain it in my yard but it is gov’t property but such is the law.

The truly ridiculous part here is the international treaty on the possession and use of “chemical weapons”. Her lawyer and her argued this was a state level case and tried to get the charges moved to the state level of courts. These attempts were blocked and Ms. bond pleaded guilty was charged with 6 years and nearly 12K in fines.

Why am I bringing this up on 248Shooter? This is not a Michigan case and this is not a gun rights case. The fact is this case may be one of the most dangerous cases to ever go before the supreme court. An American citizen on domestic soil was just tried based on an international treaty designed to prevent and convict war criminals! The federal court instead of using US federal or state laws on the books instead allowed the use of treaty to supersede local law.

Justice Anton Scalia had this to say:

“Let’s assume that an international treaty is approved by two-thirds of the Senate and the President, which requires states to approve same-sex marriage. All right?” he said. “Now, if that were a self-executing treaty, same sex marriage would have to be approved by every state. If it is not self-executing, however, it will be up to Congress to produce that result, and Congress would do it by having a federal marriage law.”

Justice Samuel Alito expanded on this:

“If you told ordinary people that you were going to prosecute Ms. Bond for using a chemical weapon, they would be flabbergasted”. “This statute has an enormous breadth  anything that can cause death or injury to a person or an animal. Would it shock you if I told you that a few days ago my wife and I distributed toxic chemicals to a great number of children? On Halloween we gave them chocolate bars. Chocolate is poison to dogs, so it’s a toxic chemical under the chemical weapons convention.”

Justice Stephen Breyer also worried about the scope of federal power:

“In principle your position constitutionally would allow the President and the Senate, not the House, to do anything through a treaty that is not specifically within the prohibitions of the rights protections of the Constitution,” he told Verrilli, citing a 1920 high court precedent giving Congress the power to enact treaties, even if it steps outside its traditional constitutional authority by usurping state laws. “And I doubt that in that document the Framers (of the Constitution) intended to allow the President and the Senate to do anything”. “I am worried about that and I think others are, too”.

In the wake of  this case and the signing of the UN Gun Treaty could a legal precedent in this case establish the right for federal prosecutors to ignore local, state and federal law and impose international law? Would this give the President the ability to pass legislation on an international basis through the UN that would undermine the sovereignty of both the states and the federal gov’t?

Senator Ted Cruz thinks so:

“The proposition that the Treaty Clause is a trump card that defeats all of the remaining structural limitations on the federal government is not a proposition that is logically defensible”.

The ruling on Bond v. U.S. (12-158) is expected this spring. Rest assured we will keep an eye on this and keep our readers up to date.

Charles is the editor for 248 Shooter a midwest based gun news and gear review site as well as Online Content Director for On Target Magazine. He is an avid student taking classes from top tier trainers around the country. Charles shares his love for training as well as experience and opinions on some of the most talked about gear and products used by competitive shooters, military, leo and civilians.