November 27, 2007
There is much talk in the United States as to what the Second Amendment truly means. Is this an amendment for families of hunter and gathering traditions? Or how about the ideas of self defense of nation and home? Or is it for the lunatic fringe wanting to keep the deceitful government in check by bearing arms? The Second Amendment, as stated; "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." Is this amendment being toyed with, being manipulated, being trashed?
Cases are currently pending in the Supreme Court as to what kind of 'arms' a citizen can own. Is it a handgun ban, an automatic rifle ban, a bullet ban? What does infringe mean? To transgress or exceed the limits of or to violate is to infringe. The District of Columbia currently has a case where the issue of handgun ownership has been brought up. The claim is that the Second Amendment does not grant citizens the right to bear arms, only militias. The District of Columbia is currently embroiled in a case of gun ownership rights. The case has been taken to the District Courts where the laws in place for Washington D.C. are deemed unconstitutional. The Supreme Court could uphold this ruling or overturn the District Courts ruling.
This case is a little more complex than just the issue of a collective right or an individual right. With the handgun ban that has been on the books in the District of Columbia for over 30 years, city Officials are claiming it does not keep individuals from owning guns, just not handguns. Officials say citizens can own rifles and shotguns, but they have to be dissembled (what good is a gun if it is in pieces?). The same officials tout handguns have no purpose in an urban setting.
The questions still remains, what is a militia? From the landmark 1939 case of US v Miller - Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations, Book V. Ch. 1, contains an extended account of the Militia. It is there said: 'Men of republican principles have been jealous of a standing army as dangerous to liberty.' 'In a militia, the character of the labourer, artificer, or tradesman, predominates over that of the soldier: in a standing army, that of the soldier predominates over every other character; and in this distinction seems to consist the essential difference between those two different species of military force.
A Washington Times editorial from November of 2007 states, â€œthe court did not hold that only militia members have Second Amendment rights, as some gun-control advocates have contended â€¦ [r]ather, it ruled that those rights only cover militia-related weapons, and the standard handguns that D.C. prohibits obviously meet that criteria.â€
From my understanding, a militia is a citizen army, not a federally controlled military, or even a state controlled reserve unit. The militia can be considered any well bodied citizen that, at the drop of a flag can bear arms and defend their home and nation from any form of invasion, be it foreign or domestic. This type of citizen action is essential for the safety and security of a free state, so therefore the rights of the people to own and bear arms shall not be infringed. Plain and simple.
Gun Grabbing - The Blackwater effect.
On Saturday, October 27, Springfield Illinois organized a Gun Buyback Program, promising 100 dollars for any firearm turned in with no questions asked. Understandably, some of these guns, more than likely, could have been stolen or even used in a violent crime, probably. The State Journal-Register of Springfield Illinois reported on the highly successful buyback program that harvested 526 guns in exchange for a gift card worth 100 dollars. Some bringing in their firearms received the gift card drawing from drug forfeiture money. Many others received â€œIOUâ€™sâ€ because the drug forfeiture money totaled only 15,000 dollars. All together, the city of Springfield owes more than 52,000 dollars for guns that were turned in at bargain prices.
These programs are not unique to any given region of the country. The Boston Globe reported in April 2006 about Bostonâ€™s buyback programs between 1993 and 1996 bringing in over 2,000 guns, paying 50 dollars for each firearm. The article sites criminologists who say the firearms are old and more than likely not used in violent crimes. In another heavy crime region of the country, Washington D.C., the Washington Post reports in September 2006 that police plan on using a quarter of a million dollars of taxpayerâ€™s money to buyback guns off the streets. The same Washing Post article touts â€œ[a]uthorities will test the weapons later to determine whether they were used in any crime, before destroying themâ€.
Buying back guns is not the only thing government can do with firearms. Even though Australia is not within the United States, and does not necessarily adhere to the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights, we can still look at a report from the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) from February of 2007 as a model of just what is possible with government and gun buyback programs. The SMH reports that a network of gun dealers had rorted (intentional fraud) â€œthe $600 million national guns buyback scheme, and weapons supposedly destroyed years ago have resurfaced in criminal handsâ€.
Another recent story out of Boston tells of Police going door-to-door asking permission to search childrenâ€™s rooms in hopes of finding firearms. Parents have the right to refuse permission on the basis or illegal search and seizure and also the Second Amendment, but what does this say about the current state of our Second Amendment right to keep and bare arms.
Special interest groups with twisted ideals, private security outfits commissioned to confiscate guns from law abiding citizens during a natural disaster, and a global government taking over piece by piece, has the Second Amendment been taken off life support and allowed to die? When faced with an automatic machine gun carried by a Blackwater contractor in the flood waters of Katrina, many citizens willfully gave up their rifles and handguns they possessed for protection from criminal looters. This was not only carried out by private contractors, but also by the National Guard; Americans forcefully confiscating guns from Americans. These same citizens wishing for protection felt they had absolutely no rights left in this country. What can a person do to protect themselves from supposed law enforcement? Do they have the right to protect themselves from a menace being contracted by the Defense Department? These questions lead to alarming and disturbing answers. Just how is a citizen supposed to defend their right to bare arms, should violence be an option? Ruby Ridge, Waco and the Branch Davidians, both are monstrosities under the guise of public safety. How many more events will occur in the future?
PTSD, Mentally ill and psychotropic drugs
Violence in schools may be considered a new phenomenon by some, but going back to the college shootings at the University of Texas in Austin August 1, 1966 onto the latest one in Virginia Tech, it is a dilemma dating back to the founding of our country. There are even stories dating back to 1764 with the Enoch Brown School Massacre. What causes this type of activity and should we get rid of all guns to keep these disturbing events from happening? Shortly after the Virginia Tech shootings there were growing concern of guns in the hands of the mentally ill placated on the mainstream media. The voices shouting, â€œget rid of the gun-free-zones and this type of thing will be squashed before it gets out of handâ€ seems to have been silenced in the mainstream.
Veterans, that have sacrificed years of their lives to defending the freedom in this country, may come home to their rights to defend their home thrown under the bus. A good friend of mine, who served overseas for a year in the Air Force and is still currently active in the Air Force, applied for a Firearm Owner Identification Card (FOID) several weeks ago and received a letter from the state telling him he could not be granted a FOID card because of a conviction he had as a minor. We can serve our country in the Global War on Terror, but when it comes time to register as a firearm owner, it can be denied for a decade old offense.
Legislation is being pushed through that will not allow veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) to own firearms. This same legislation will restrict individuals that have taken any kind of anti-depressant or psychotropic drug from possessing firearms. All in the name of public safety. The concept of school shootings also brings up the issue of gun free zones. Just think how many lives could have been saved at Virginia Tech if a teacher or a student had a concealed carry permit and stopped further violence with the pulling of a trigger.
Criminals will do what criminals want to do. This does not mean we should not have laws, but it means not matter what law you have, a criminal will do what a criminal wants.
Celebrities and candidates speak out about the 2nd amendment
Presidential candidates, congressmen, senators, governors, mayors, rock stars and actors have much to say about the Second Amendment, both for and against. Republican candidates vying for votes from National Rifle Association (NRA) card holders speak at conferences. The problem is, members of the NRA don't understand the damage to the second amendment the NRA is doing. An example is NRA involvement in Firearm Owners Protection Act, which is an amendment to the 1968 Gun Control Act. Many NRA members felt betrayed that the Association did not work to repeal the Gun Control Act entirely.
What is the 2nd amendment for? Hunting or Protection? "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." This statement known as the 2nd amendment does not even allude to hunting in any way. Our founders had the concept of protection in mind. They strongly believed in a defensive position against tyranny and one way to ensure that would happen is to allow citizens the right to bear arms. As Ted Nugent puts it, "the Second Amendment is my concealed carry permit". I would have to agree with him. The right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. To bear something is to have it on ones person, to hold, to carry.
What would I do to enhance the Second Amendment? Going back to massacres that take place on schools, one can only think about the Kent State Massacre of 1970 where members of the Ohio National Guard opened fire, killing four students and injuring nine others. I would make further provisions to control the arms that police can have. In the current time, we need a clear definition of not only what citizens are allowed to posses, but also what law enforcement should posses. I strongly believe that law enforcement should be restricted to carry only what citizens can carry or visa versa. This should be in the form of riot gear, pepper spray, high voltage tazer guns, batons, ect. I feel the right to protect myself and defend myself from threats both foreign and domestic shall not be compromised in any way.