Let’s talk about the Second Amendment
, and at the same time let’s settle an argument once and for all, an argument that began as early as the 1800s. It is a discussion that often is in heated argument with radical opinions on both sides; however, opinions do not change the rule of law and those set of laws are in the Constitution and its amendments. The basic Constitution of the United States
was written to provide the ground rules of government and addresses its limitation as well as its extent of power.
A recent wire release from the Associated Press
entitled High Court Looks at Reach of Second Amendment
, March 2nd
2010 demonstrated that people are still arguing over an amendment that is concise and easy to understand; and yet fail to understand that all states that are part of the union of the United States must comply. State governments are allowed to add to the Constitution but not pass any laws or articles within their state constitution that counters those they agreed to when becoming a state.
The article reads:
The Supreme Court appears willing to say that the Constitution’s right to possess guns limits state and local regulation of firearms. But the justices also suggested that some gun control measures might not be affected. The court heard arguments Tuesday in a case that challenges handgun bans in the Chicago area. The suit also asks the high court to extend to state and local jurisdictions the sweep of its 2008 decision striking down a gun ban in the federal enclave of Washington, D.C. The biggest questions before the court seemed to be how, rather than whether, to issue such a ruling and whether some regulation of firearms could survive. On the latter point, Justice Antonin Scalia said the majority opinion he wrote in the 2008 case “said as much.”
reaffirms that finally, in 2008, the paragraph in the Second Amendment is quite clear that individuals have the right to keep and bear arms.
There should no longer be an argument – the law is stated plain and clear and all 50 state of the United States must comply. The Second Amendment:
A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
Maybe this amendment is too simple, but I believe that people just make it complicated because of their ideology.
The first portion declared that militia helps secure and keep a state free, therefore a militia is constitutional. The second part states that the People may keep (own) and bear (carry, transport) firearms.
Too often arguments begin with the statement that a militia is not required or that only militia, approved by government, may exist.
The framers of the Constitution of the United States
created the articles and amendments reasoning and experience, the reasoning coming from anti-firearm advocates, lawyers, philosophers and political scientists of the day; yet the gist of the concept of freedom, liberty and the republic goes farther back in human history that the 18th
century. Those learned men who formed the government of the United States wanted to ensure that government received its marching orders as to its limitations and provide, at the same time, the larger scope of individual rights of those citizens of the United States.
The first ten amendments, which is called the Bill of Rights, clearly demonstrates what was felt important to provide citizens unalienable rights that are concrete and provide the liberties and the power to the People, not the government. Those that are elected are chosen to operate and safeguard constitutional law, as well as protecting it on behalf of the People. That is their duty – that is the reason why they were elected.
The early Americans knew the consequences of totalitarianism
and so used that experience in creating laws of the newly founded nation of states. We need only examine recent history of the Nazi
[Night of the Broken Glass
] and Soviet
regimes to see an example of this practice of tyranny. Any government that fears citizens having the right to defend themselves should be feared by the People.
The First Amendment brings immediate attention to freedom of speech and freedom of religion and the concept of religion separated from the actions of the government. It does not mean that mentioning the word God
or public display in a government building of the historical Ten Commandments is forbidden; but instead the government is forbidden to declare any religion to be sanctioned by the government as a national declared religion. Printing the word God
on our currency or in our Pledge of Allegiance
is not unconstitutional. Public display of the Ten Commandments
or the public display of a seasonal, traditional holiday symbol like a Christmas tree or the Nativity
scene is not against anyone’s rights. Citizens who do not believe in it can just simply ignore it.
Passing a law or an executive order that provides an agency of the government to be involved in religious matters, like the Faith Initiative
that President George W. Bush
initiated after his sworn oath of office was/is unconstitutional. It was not approved by the US Congress nor is it authorized by the Constitution. That order has not been rescinded by President Barack H. Obama
nor has it ever been addressed by the Supreme Court – and that is their duty of office as the Justices – to ensure that any executive order signed by the President of the United States or legislated laws enacted by Congress are constitutional; and it is also why a new amendment is proposed that all bills brought before the congress for committee and congressional vote should have a statement stating that the bill abides by the articles and amendments of the Constitution of the United States.
The United States, thus how our country got its name, began as 13 colonies that were governed separately but formed a union under a central government. That government was designed and initiated as a representative democratic republic
– nothing else – and nothing to date has proven better.
The Constitution provides the rules of how much power the central government has, as well as the state governments who are members of that union. The 37 states that applied for and were accepted in that union ratified and joined in agreement of the Constitution and its amendments when they became states of the Union.
I found an example of those that are anti-firearm and advocates of gun control that is common among those who follow the principles of Marxism and who advocate that our form of government be different from which it was created.
discussion states that that the following statement is a myth
The Second Amendment guarantees the individual right to own a gun.
The author (and general advocacy of anti-firearm citizens) claims the following as a fact:
The Supreme Court has always interpreted this as a state militia’s right, not an individual’s.
In the summary:
Over the centuries, the Supreme Court has always ruled that the 2nd Amendment protects the states’ militia’s rights to bear arms, and that this protection does not extend to individuals. In fact, legal scholars consider the issue “settled law”. For this reason, the gun lobby does not fight for its perceived constitutional right to keep and bear arms before the Supreme Court, but in Congress. Interestingly, even in interpreting an individual right in the 2nd Amendment presents the gun lobby with some thorny problems, like the right to keep and bear nuclear weapons.
First let’s address the lunacy of a private citizen keeping and bearing a nuclear weapon. It is the custom of the Marxist-minded American (or European) to come up with such a statement. Any sane person would agree to any law that forbids a citizen to have the right to own or use a nuclear weapon – and for the sake of argument we will use the statement that it would be an endangerment to other citizens having such a device. Leftist thinking individuals have difficulty determining the difference between apples and oranges. It has to do with what Thomas Paine called common sense.
In the author’s argument, after printing the exact wording in the Second Amendment:
…Pro-gun advocates claim that this amendment guarantees their individual right to own a gun, and that gun control laws are therefore a violation of their constitutional rights. … If gun control laws are so obviously a violation of the Second Amendment, then why doesn’t the National Rifle Association challenge them on constitutional grounds before the Supreme Court? …
The author, like so many who think like him/her ignores the second part of the Second Amendment separated by a comma:
… the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
Just because advocates of liberty and rights have not succeeded in the argument to date with the Supreme Court or anyone else (until recently
) – the common sense statement of the Second Amendment doesn’t mean that it is, or ever has been, null and void.
The Second Amendment does not require interpretation – it is quite clear: a well-regulated militia is constitutional and therefore allowed and ALL people [individuals] of the United States have the right to keep and bear arms. Just because the specific word individual is not inserted, the anti-firearm people continue to banter without any resemblance to common sense; and like everything else they advocate they refuse to accept the word NO.
There are other amendments that apply in this matter, which protect the second and other amendments:
Amendment IV: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Amendment IX: The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
Amendment X: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
State governments [or local] cannot rescind or alter the rights established to citizens of any state of the union, which includes the second amendment. Because of this we have those who argue concerning the militia and ignore the rights of individuals, as well as justifying those laws that counter the Second Amendment – national law.
States do have the right to add (but not alter); thus, for example, common sense state (and federal) laws that forbid any person who has been convicted of a felony, especially with a firearm, is no longer allowed to purchase, own or carry firearms. A state or federal law that forbids any person who is undergoing psychiatric treatment or has, at any time, been committed for psychiatric treatment in an institution not lawfully purchase or possess a firearm is common sense. A state law that requires firearm owners and especially those who carry them concealed or in open be required to attend a firearm safety course is within realm of common sense. Firearms being prohibited to be carried into government buildings or establishments that serve alcoholic beverages are also reasons within the realm of common sense. Requiring background checks of individuals who purchase,
own, or carry a firearm is perfectly acceptable; for how else could officials determine whether a citizen was qualified or not?
State governments cannot forbid any sane law-abiding citizen to purchase, own or carry a firearm because as a state of the union they must comply with the constitutional law established for the states as part of that union we call the United States.
Just because a Justice, like William O. Douglas
wrote in 1972, concerning individual rights of firearm ownership and carry, doesn’t mean that the Second Amendment is null and void:
A powerful lobby dins into the ears of our citizenry that these gun purchases are constitutional rights protected by the Second Amendment … There is no reason why all pistols should not be barred to everyone except the police.
Justice William O. Douglas forgot to mention the militia and the members of the US Armed Forces. He provided opinion and not what the law is.
Advocates of gun control, confiscation and making owning firearms unlawful, seem to ignore that other justices spoke differently and that those who created the Bill of Rights also speak clearly as to what the Second Amendment is all about:
A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. … Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks. Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to Peter Carr, 1785.
One loves to possess arms, though they hope never to have occasion for them. Thomas Jefferson, letter to George Washington, 1796.
And more specifically, by one of those who established constitutional law:
We established however some, although not all its important principles. The constitutions of most of our States asset, that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves, in all cases to which they think themselves competent, or they may act by representatives, freely and equally chosen; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed. Thomas Jefferson, letter to John Cartwright, 1824.
Whereas, to preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them; nor does it follow from this, that all promiscuously must go into actual service on every occasion. The mind that aims at a select militia must be influenced by a truly anti-republican principle; and when we see many men disposed to practice upon it, whenever they can prevail, no wonder true republicans are for carefully guarding against it. Federal Farmer, Anti-Federalist Letter, No.18.
The people are not to be disarmed of their weapons. They are left in full possession of them. Zacharia Johnson, speech in the Virginia Ratifying Convention, 1788.
Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. James Madison, Federalist No. 46.
Many state governments and their constitution comply
with the amendments of the Constitution of the United States, 38 of them at this writing; however, other states do not, Wisconsin being one of them.
“A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed”. One of the ordinary modes, by which tyrants accomplish their purposes without resistance, is, by disarming the people, and making it an offence to keep arms, and by substituting a regular army in the stead of a resort to the militia. The friends of a free government cannot be too watchful, to overcome the dangerous tendency of the public mind to sacrifice, for the sake of mere private convenience, this powerful check upon the designs of ambitious men. … The militia is the natural defence of a free country against sudden foreign invasions, domestic insurrections, and domestic usurpations of power by rulers.
Often the anti-firearm advocate cites the Supreme Court 1939 case of United States v. Miller, as well as others; but fails to address or cite the fact that Jack Miller and Frank Layton were transporting an illegal firearm, because the federal law states that shotguns cannot have a barrel less than 18 inches; the case presented the argument:
…we cannot say that the Second Amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear such an instrument.
In other words, the act was not that the government was saying that those two men had the right to keep and bear arms, but went against the law of restrictions concerning firearms. Apples and Oranges.
The Supreme Court did not make a decision that people, citizens, do not have the right to keep and transport/carry firearms, only those firearms that are deemed unnecessary or dangerous to the general public. So, in common sense, a citizen does not require a fully automatic weapon in order to defend oneself, or an artillery piece, or a nuclear weapon, or a missile firing weapon or a shotgun whose barrel is less than 18 inches – there is still a multitude of firearms of choice available.
In reality, gun control laws only harass the law-abiding citizen, because in real life, a criminal cares nothing for laws. Criminals would prefer that citizens are unarmed.
History has shown that governments who confiscate the means of self defense from their citizenry are free to take away other rights as well.
Law enforcement, no matter how efficient they try to be, cannot be everywhere at once. More often than not, law enforcement shows up after crimes of violence have already been committed. Citizens should be afforded the opportunity to defend themselves whether in their home, on their personal property, or in public places. Private business entities have the right to post and mandate that customers are not allowed to enter with a firearm – governments are not allowed to make such mandates.
When a citizen forces entry and enters a citizen’s home or trespassed on private party armed and with intent to do bodily harm or take what is not theirs, or commits any act of violence on or off private property must suffer the consequences of those actions and the victim or intended victim has the right to use a firearm against the aggressor or aggressors.
I understand the necessity and formality of holding a court hearing to determine if a firearm was discharged was self defense or not; however a criminal who has been proven to have committed an unlawful act that caused him injury should not be allowed to have the right to sue the citizen or citizens that used a firearm or any object as a weapon in an act of self defense.
To provide laws that require permits to carry concealed or openly displayed weapons is acceptable, but laws that state that firearms cannot be transported, carried, concealed or in the open, fully loaded is against the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States.
Individuals, not just militia, are allowed to keep and bear firearms.
It is time that the state of Wisconsin comply with the Constitution of the United States and allow keeping and carrying firearms, concealed or not, for the individual in personal defense, defense of his family and fellow citizens, as well as defending personal property.
For those anti-firearm individuals, I can only say that the Constitution does not mandate that THEY own, keep or carry firearms; but they have no right to prevent those who choose to do so.
Just because the Supreme Court, past and present, failed to address certain issues pertaining to the Second Amendment, or perform its duties in ensuring that state governments comply, doesn’t mean that the Second Amendment is null and void.
I demand my rights be honored, as well as other citizens of the United States rights be honored, and that NO state government disallow the rights of the clearly defined Second Amendment.
It is true that scholars, bloggers and whoever have dissected that simple paragraph in the Second Amendment – but beyond comprehension in the aspect of common sense.
The framers of the Constitution chose to use precise and concise paragraphs in the articles and amendments, using understandable language (unlike the legislation of modern times).
In affect, they follow the military acronym:
KISS = Keep It Simple Stupid
I fail to see how any literate person cannot comprehend the meaning of the following statement, argue over its meaning, and feel compelled to interpret it when it is written in plain English:
A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a Free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
I am linking this sight and once more addressing the usurpation of state governments against the guaranteed rights of the Bill of Rights, in this case the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, to my representative and senator of the US Congress representing the people of the state of Wisconsin and that the governor of Wisconsin and members of the state assembly who have willfully ignored those rights and the will of the majority of the citizens of the state of Wisconsin by not passing due and proper legislation that reinforces the US Constitution by denying law-abiding citizens of sound mind and with no criminal record the right to keep and bear firearms, either concealed or not, in the state of Wisconsin; as well as the lawful use of firearms in an act of self defense against aggressive and violent criminal acts of others.
The recent incident where our local school was fired upon in early morning hours demonstrate that some citizens deserve to lose the rights of the Second Amendment; however it does not mean that law-abiding citizens should not be allowed to exercise the rights of the Second Amendment because a minority of the populace choose to be criminals.
Statistics prove that geographical areas where citizens are armed have less violent crimes that those who are not; and those citizens who have permits to carry concealed weapons, who have violated the law and/or misuse their rights of the Second Amendment, represent less than 1% of the total population of the United States.
There are no conflicts in the Constitution of the United States; only those that court decisions produce.
The Supreme Court and the Second Amendment … Gun Cite.