Excerpted from the upcoming Manifesto de Arjay:
The 2nd Amendment is always fun to talk about and the discussions are usually pretty amicable between opposing opinions. Like other topical issues such as abortion and same sex marriage, folks on both sides of the issue have no trouble understanding the other side’s point of view. LMAO!
The thing most people seem to miss when expressing their opinions is that they are just that, opinions. The worst of the worst, are those who think their opinions are expressions of divine decree.
In my humble opinion, if you think someone up above (or down below) is talking to you, your problem is more serious than who marries whom or what women you do not know are doing with their private parts.
The 2nd Amendment reads:
“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.”
By the time the 2nd Amendment was adopted in 1798, all 13 colonies had ratified the Constitution of the United States and, in doing so declared themselves to be independent states, free of the rule of the British Empire. In doing so, they also declared themselves part of the United States.
Many traits can be ascribed to the Founding Fathers, including racism, pettiness and short-sightedness. It can not be said, however that they were not articulate.
The wording of the 2nd Amendment is concise. It is at once brief and comprehensive. There is a lot of information conveyed in a very few words.
It is also based on the English Bill of Rights of 1689, where the term “arms” included broad swords and crossbows.
Like anything written in the 18th Century, the intentions expressed in the 2nd Amendment are based on the world as it was known at that time. From the perspective of the 18th Century patriot, concealing a weapon would be carrying a couple of musket balls in your pocket.
Understanding that the future is unknowable, the Founding Fathers purposefully started the 2nd Amendment with the words, “A well regulated Militia.” No stretch of the imagination could interpret that to include every slack-jawed, mouth-breathing redneck driving around in a pickup truck with a gun rack.
Even a poorly regulated militia would require some organizational affiliation, something most gun owners don’t have.
In 18th Century America, the threats America faced included the British returning to reclaim their colonies (like they tried in 1812), the French invading, the Indians trying to get their land back and a slave uprising.
At the time the Constitution was written, there was serious opposition to maintaining a standing army. Article I of the Constitution only allows for two years of appropriations for an army. Most people at that time feared a standing army of the government as one of the greatest threats to their freedom.
The second phrase of the 2nd Amendment refers to “the security of a free State,” not free states. Those guys knew how many states there were and they knew the difference between the words “State” and states.
They used the word “State” in the federal sense, as in State Department and affairs of State.
Tthe right of citizens to bear arms is based upon their belonging to groups that would defend the country, should the need arise. It was only a whacked out Supreme Court that conveyed that right to individuals in 2007.
Now that I’ve incensed the NRA, I will admit that we will not be getting that genie back into the bottle. Nor do I think we should.
One of Hitler’s first initiatives on his trek of infamy was to confiscate guns, especially from Jews. In the depths of despair, poverty and unrest following their defeat in World War I, the will of the German people was too weak to defy Hitler.
Contrary to what the NRA’s Wayne LaPierre says, no one is coming for our guns.
We live in an increasingly dangerous and violent world. The cops can’t be everywhere. There may come a time when it will be up to individuals to protect their families. For better or worse, guns are here to stay.
We can’t, however let ourselves be governed by pseudo-patriotic, macho-sound-byte bumper stickers. Common sense should prevail.
With rights come responsibilities. If we insist on the right to bear arms, then we need to accept the responsibility to be discriminating about who gets to buy them. Crazy people need not apply.
Everyone who wants to buy a gun should have to go through some sort of background check. If we allow anyone who wants to buy a gun to be able to do so, no matter what types of criminal acts he or she has committed or to what terrorist organizations he or she now belongs, then we share culpability for the tragedies that will surely ensue.
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