When do we use the 2nd Amendment


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rm23
January 25, 2010, 12:16 AM
When do we use the 2nd Amendment? Do we wait until we are told to turn in our guns? Do we wait until someone tries to rewrite the Constitution? Or when we are forced to buy health care?

When does government become tyranny? I'm not saying anything about today's progressive socialist type that controls the federal government and I'm not trying to be political with this. I just want to know what people think.

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PA Curmudgeon
January 25, 2010, 12:17 AM
When you get angry enough, grab your rifle and run outside. If you're the only one there, it's not time yet. ;)

ETA: I "use" the 2nd amendment every day when I open carry for protection.

The_Pretender
January 25, 2010, 12:24 AM
The second amendment doesn't give the right to bear arms. It recognizes that we have this right and that it shall never be taken away.

The beauty of it is, you don't need it until they try to take it away.

Ohio Gun Guy
January 25, 2010, 01:58 AM
I like PA Crumugeon's answer.

jakemccoy
January 25, 2010, 02:31 AM
We have had, and constantly have, plenty of opportunities to utilize the full extent of the Second Amendment. Some people exercise the Second Amendment as they see fit, even when their actions may violate a local law. Some of these people get into legal trouble for doing so.

On the other hand, many other people sit around and analyze these Second Amendment cases to the point that they feel comfortable with their inaction. These people usually don't support the NRA or any other pro-gun organization, don't write letters to lawmakers, and do criticizing people who open carry, etc. It's these freeloaders who need to start carrying their own weight, or at the very least get the heck out of the way.

Deus Machina
January 25, 2010, 05:32 AM
When you get angry enough, grab your rifle and run outside. If you're the only one there, it's not time yet.

The beauty of it is, you don't need it until they try to take it away.

That's about right. When they start taking what we have now, it may be time to make a point.

PA Curmudgeon, I love that one. Mind if I sig it? :)

PA Curmudgeon
January 25, 2010, 06:13 AM
Deus Machina, be my guest. I'd love to take credit for it but the truth is I've seen it in other forums myself. I have no idea who first said it, but it generates a lot of comments, always in agreement!

RebelRabbi
January 25, 2010, 07:05 AM
The Second Ammendment protects the first, as long as you are free to complain, gather in groups to complain and pray however you wish about it, you don't need the 2A, YET.

bdickens
January 25, 2010, 07:27 AM
I use it every day.

Deus Machina
January 25, 2010, 07:41 AM
Well, if anyone asks, I'll tell them where I heard it. I'd attribute it to you if you were the first.

Personally, I thankfully think that 'the time' is still a little ways off. If things keep picking up as a lot of states are doing, it may never--at least not over this issue. If it goes like a lot of politicians want, it will still be a few decades at the least.

People will take a lot before 'militia nutjobs' or 'insurgents' turn into 'a revolution'.

Bliggida
January 25, 2010, 07:53 AM
Having a retention holstered gun doesn't mean I use the gun everyday.
Likewise, having the retained right of the 2nd amendment doesn't mean I use it everyday.

That said, I feel its important to stress the idea that we have the optioned right to the 2nd amendment, and the actual use of it would be a catastrophic failure on many levels.

I also have the right against unreasonable search and seizures. That doesn't mean that, everyday I find the first LEO I see and taunt him to inaction. As that would be unwise.
Similarly, I have the right to free speech but that doesn't mean I stand outside the state/federal building yelling something risque whilst banging a pot and ladle.

Point being, the right to do something, versus the exercised right to do something. One is invaluably more important than the other.
The simple right will go infringed. When it all changes for the bad, the exercised right will subsequently be illegal, and it won't really matter then anyway.

LemmyCaution
January 25, 2010, 07:59 AM
If you keep and/or bear arms on your person or in your home, you are exercising the 2a. There seems to be some confusion about what the 2a entitles one to do. Nowhere in the 2a is granted the right to overthrow a duly elected government, no matter how loudly Newscorp crows about its alleged 'socialism.' It is not the right of an angry, barely literate rabble to run amok over the unexamined hearsay spoonfed them by a group of billionaires who have a vested interest in making sure no one can work toward the common good (disclaimer: nowhere should the above be taken to imply that I believe that the Current Occupant is working for the common good. Rather, he's wholly owned by those same billionaires).

shockwave
January 25, 2010, 08:31 AM
I got together with my neighbor yesterday. We discussed who is armed on the block (that we know of), and where dangers are most likely to occur.

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.

Prion
January 25, 2010, 08:37 AM
Right on Lemmy!!!

CoRoMo
January 25, 2010, 10:31 AM
I own and carry everyday.

When does government become tyranny?
Good question, but I'm forbidden from answering it.
I just want to know what people think.
That's also something that this forum dissuades me from doing.

huntsman
January 25, 2010, 10:44 AM
When do we use the 2nd Amendment? Do we wait until we are told to turn in our guns? Do we wait until someone tries to rewrite the Constitution? Or when we are forced to buy health care?

When does government become tyranny? I'm not saying anything about today's progressive socialist type that controls the federal government and I'm not trying to be political with this. I just want to know what people think.
"I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, & as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical." - Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, Paris, 30 January 1787[1]

http://wiki.monticello.org/mediawiki/index.php/A_little_rebellion...%28Quotation%29

seems to me Jefferson understood how to "use" the 2nd amendment.

wishin
January 25, 2010, 10:48 AM
I own and carry everyday.
.
^^
My sentiments exactly, I keep and bear!

Arkansas Paul
January 25, 2010, 10:48 AM
RebelRabbi, that's good stuff.

danprkr
January 25, 2010, 10:55 AM
huntsman, thanks for saving the trouble of looking up that TJ quote.

LemmyCaution - see huntsman's post for arguably the most influential Founding Father's views on the subject.

shenandoah
January 25, 2010, 11:05 AM
Good advice, PA Curmudgeon .....

LemmyCaution
January 25, 2010, 11:47 AM
LemmyCaution - see huntsman's post for arguably the most influential Founding Father's views on the subject.

I'm well aware of Jefferson's views, and largely agree with them. That is a far cry from agreeing that Jefferson's personal views are in any way enshrined in the Constitution. That we are a nation of laws, not men sort of trump Jefferson's views on rebellion, as far as I am concerned.

The crux of it comes when the government does not obey the laws and/or Constitution. I'd argue that the previous administration was just as bad as the current, in that regard, but more importantly that most of the people who rail against the current administration would replace it with something equally, if not more vile, as far as the rule of law is concerned. That is why I tread carefully around discussions of rebellion. Rebellion is a destructive act. One had better have a pretty good idea of what will replace what has been destroyed before acting. I'm not confident in the Tea Party Movement's skills, in that regard.

That we, as a populace, have given our tacit agreement that the amendments 4th, 5th, 8th, 14th &etc. ad nauseam are quaint and anachronistic in light of the War on Terror gives me little hope that the rest of the Bill of Rights will last very long, either. And I lay the blame not on the overreaching of the government, but on our own complacency.

As Justin is fond of pointing out, we get the government we deserve, and we need to get it good and hard.

huntsman
January 25, 2010, 01:32 PM
The crux of it comes when the government does not obey the laws and/or Constitution. I'd argue that the previous administration was just as bad as the current

As far as I'm concerned the changes needed to be made in 1968 or at least 72 when Nixon took us off the gold standard but we didn't, and now look what this nation has experienced.

As Justin is fond of pointing out, we get the government we deserve, and we need to get it good and hard.

I too am a firm believer in this and I also believe the system we have is the best, but at some point we have to acknowledge that the system is corrupted by the people in power and by those who choose to keep them in power because of promises of gain.

The way for this system of government to flourish is it needs moral people as representatives and citizens.

I believe Jefferson understood human nature that's why he made his comments, to overthrow the people not the system.

Justin
January 25, 2010, 01:45 PM
How about this:

After you've exhausted your ability to protest publicly, speak out at open political events, call, write, fax, and email your reps, bring lawsuits, donate to organizations that fight to uphold the bill of rights, volunteer with a campaign, or run for office yourownself, that's the time to go use the 2nd Amendment.

"Oh, but that's so hard. I don't want to have to waste my time on a stupid phone call or writing a letter to the editor or using things like logic and reason to persuade people to my beliefs!"

Yeah, well, it's a lot easier than living out your Red Dawn/SHTF/Rambo fantasy...

hso
January 25, 2010, 02:16 PM
When there's no other political recourse.

Until then put the same effort into stopping the need for revolution that you'd put into winning one.

Justin
January 25, 2010, 02:23 PM
But, hso, that's no fun! Why, when I'm prepping for the revolution, it means I can go out in the woods and wear camouflage and run around with my Mosin Nagant and pretend to be a hero!

Ed Ames
January 25, 2010, 02:29 PM
Technically speaking, the 2nd is only used in court. Heller was a recent example of the 2nd being used. Everything else (including Jeffersonian posturing) is what happens when we can no longer use the 2nd (or the constitution in general) to secure and defend out rights.

The reason for the BoR is to make fightin' issues into arguin' issues.

huntsman
January 25, 2010, 03:56 PM
donate to organizations that fight to uphold the bill of rights, volunteer with a campaign, or run for office yourownself,

Sorry I have a strong distain for PAC's, lobbyists and the current attitude in Washington.

The system in Washington isn't functioning like the founding fathers intended so it needs to be overhauled with new leaders.

I'm a NRA member and support state Firearms organizations because I believe that's where it should be fought.

zombieoutfitters
January 25, 2010, 04:13 PM
This seems like a good time to post this. I read it CLOSELY for the first time not too long ago. Check out the underlined portion...

The Declaration of Independence: A Transcription

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security....

IMHO...THAT is "when".

Big Matt
January 25, 2010, 08:56 PM
Yes we still have the ability to protest publicly, speak out at open political events, call, write, fax, and email your reps, bring lawsuits, donate to organizations that fight to uphold the bill of rights, volunteer with a campaign, or run for office our ownselves; however, what happens when our "reps" in Washington no longer seek to do what we ask them to do?

I email and snail mail my rep and two senators several times a year. What sort of response do I get? "Thank you for your concern on (insert topic here). However I am going to continue supporting (insert topic here) as I feel that I am better informed/suited/educated to make these sorts of decisions." That is when you actually get the courtesy of a response. It's as if they forget that they work for us. Then when a situation like Mass occurs and the voters throw the bum out, they still ignore the message.

huntsman
January 25, 2010, 10:10 PM
I email and snail mail my rep and two senators several times a year. What sort of response do I get? "Thank you for your concern on (insert topic here). However I am going to continue supporting (insert topic here) as I feel that I am better informed/suited/educated to make these sorts of decisions." That is when you actually get the courtesy of a response. It's as if they forget that they work for us. Then when a situation like Mass occurs and the voters throw the bum out, they still ignore the message.

The lobbyist voice is amplified by millions of dollars our voice is just a whisper.

miamivicedade
January 25, 2010, 10:29 PM
Illinois doesnt recognize the Second Amendment.

1) You have to pay and get approved to get a FOID.
2) There is no conceled carry allowed.

Any "May Issue" state does not recognize it either.

mljdeckard
January 25, 2010, 11:23 PM
Do we not use it every day?

The fact that we have been armed for 200 years has ensured by deterrence that violence was not necessary to preserve our rights.

Shadow Man
January 26, 2010, 12:04 AM
The Founders knew that armed rebellion was a serious thing, only to be attempted when all other forms of change had been exhausted. As I see it, the Second is there to protect the other Nine, and while I have always considered myself a man of action, it would take some serious injustices and transgressions of our rights to get me to join an open rebellion. In fact, without due cause, to attempt to do such a thing is treason...a crime still punishable by death, so not a matter to be taken lightly. As our country was formed upon three ideas, that of a Declaration of Independence, an Alliance with Foreign Powers, and a Confederation of Laws (Constitution), the Declaration is still very relevant and it states that our country gives us the undeniable right to change the government, but only after a certain set of criteria have been met. We are far from meeting those criteria, and I hope we never meet them...yet I cannot help but fear for my Country...

BP44
January 26, 2010, 12:04 AM
While I partially agree that we "use" the second Amendment every day I feel that it has been infringed upon. I also feel that it will continue to be infringed upon little by little, untill we will be forced to overthrow our government with single shot .22's and black powder rifles because they are the only ones that they allow us to have :cuss:

If you take one link out of a dogs chain at a time every week, soon the dog will not be able to move,eat, or drink. The best part is that the dog never fights and is none the wiser untill it's to late.

FROGO207
January 26, 2010, 07:53 AM
Sheeesh Guys............Try using it as an education tool to prove why we need it to remain in effect and the true cost if we collectively loose it.:banghead:

Shadow Man
January 26, 2010, 09:02 AM
That would be explaining it, or teaching others about it, not actually using it. Unless I have horribly misunderstood the OP, he was acking when we actually put the Amendment into practice...which, in reality, is not fairly often.

The Gunman
January 26, 2010, 09:42 AM
There seems to be some confusion about what the 2a entitles one to do.
-LemmyCaution

And herein lies the ultimate root of tyranny, to make the citizens feel they have no privilege without it being enumerated by the government.

Our Constitution DOES NOT enumerate what the citizen can do, it restricts what the government is allowed to do. Remember way back to history class. The Constitution was written by a people who had been under the boot of tyranny for some time. They had a deep fear and hatred of all powerful government. The framers did not come together as a group of holier-than-thou rulers who gave permission to the lowly citizens of their new country. They came together as a group who knew the true evil of tyranny and chose to limit government to protect themselves as citizens of that new country.

I see more and more laws and bills written from a view that they are giving a privilege instead of restricting what one can be punished for. Here in Illinois we have a law that allows the government to prosecute one for carrying a firearm on your person, openly or concealed. If that law is repealed, we would then have carry. Instead, we push for a law that "allows" the citizen to pay for a permit or attend a class so that we may be given the privilege of bearing a firearm. It's like a kid being bribed to do something with a piece of candy. As long as that is the mindset, we are truly under the control of the government. If we want something we must dance to get the candy, and when we are needed to dance again we are threatened with withdraw of the candy privilege.

Many posts seem to indicate a belief that the Second Amendment is a privilege that allows for the overthrow of the government. The Second does not say,"A well regulated militia, being necessary to overthrow the government, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed." It simply restrains the government from disarming us. If we should ever come to the necessity of armed rebellion the Constitution and laws would be negated as that would be the very instruments we would be fighting.

So to answer the original post's question, every time I am not prosecuted for keeping a firearm in my home, target shooting, hunting, or God forbid using a firearm to defend my family I have exercised the Second Amendment.

LemmyCaution
January 26, 2010, 10:54 AM
So to answer the original post's question, every time I am not prosecuted for keeping a firearm in my home, target shooting, hunting, or God forbid using a firearm to defend my family I have exercised the Second Amendment.

Which is exactly the point I was making, but somehow I've become the poster boy for the 2a as a privilege, rather than I right, through your use of cherry picked quotation. You seem to be implying that I believe that the RKBA is an entitlement of the 2a. Nowhere did I make that assertion, or even imply it. Rather, like you, I was making exactly the same point you sarcastically make here:

A well regulated militia, being necessary to overthrow the government, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

In other words, the 2a does not entitle one to effect a coup d'état.

What gives?

Rebellion may someday become necessary, but like all rebellions, it will be an illegal act, and one would be a fool to look for justification from the corroded system one is attempting to supplant. If there is going to be rebellion, it will be of necessity, and will not need pretty words to excuse it.

huntsman
January 26, 2010, 11:10 AM
Another quote for those who don't seem to get it.

"We, the People are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts - not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow men who pervert the Constitution.'' - Abraham Lincoln

berettaprofessor
January 26, 2010, 01:56 PM
The Second Ammendment protects the first, as long as you are free to complain, gather in groups to complain and pray however you wish about it, you don't need the 2A, YET.

Got to say I disagree, just a little, with this statement and others like it; the quote is okay as far as it goes, but those who might deprive us of rights know this very well. That's why attempts at disarmament will likely come before free speech is severely threatened. So to me, the statement by several here is correct, 2A doesn't give us the right to overthrow without threat of treason. In my mind, however, 2A is not the final supporter of the other nine, but the first line of alarm and the first defense.

In simpler words, "they" aren't going to control all the media first and then confiscate the guns. They'll get the guns first. Witness what's happening in Venezuela right now.

Shadow Man
January 26, 2010, 04:35 PM
Many posts seem to indicate a belief that the Second Amendment is a privilege that allows for the overthrow of the government.

I would have to respectfully disagree. Further reading into the ideals and principles of the Founders clearly states that an armed populous is a sure way to keep any government from becoming totalitarian and wrestling the ultimate authority from the people, where it Constitutionally resides.

I am not suggesting open rebellion because the people have grown dissatisfied with the Constitution and Declaration; rather, I am saying that the Second grants us the right to forcibly remove those in the seats of power should they not adhear to the Constitution. In fact, the Constitution not only grants us the right to do so, it also states that we have a duty to do so, should the need arise.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security....


I am NOT advocating such actions, merely pointing out that such a responsibility rests with the people, and can only be pursued as long as the Second stays intact and un-regulated. In fact, the United States recognizes two kinds of Militia: an Organized and Unorganized. The Organized Militia consists of State National Guard units, and the Naval Militia; the Unorganized consists of every male citizen from the age of 17 to 45 who is not a member of the military. These statutes exist to safeguard our country...we should not fail to make use of them, should the need ever arise. Once again, I am NOT advocating rebellion, simply pointing out that the ability is granted to us.

eye5600
January 26, 2010, 04:46 PM
As a practical matter, the right to vote is tops. Whenever you read about the "power of the NRA", you are reading about the voting power of NRA members and those who agree. The biggest brake on gun control is legislator's fear of pissing off 40% of the electorate.

The Bill of Rights has to be enforced by the courts, and the courts , especially the Supreme Court, has been reluctant to declare bills passed by Congress and signed by the President to be unconstitutional. The actions of Congress are presumed to reflect the wishes of the electorate. When the courts do stick their nose in, there is a lot of complaint about "legislating from the bench."

Shadow Man
January 26, 2010, 04:52 PM
the Supreme Court, has been reluctant to declare bills passed by Congress and signed by the President to be unconstitutional.

Isn't the job of the Supreme Court to decide whether laws and bills are Constitutional? If that is their job, and they are reluctant to do it, they should be replaced, as I see it.

jakemccoy
January 26, 2010, 05:12 PM
the Supreme Court, has been reluctant to declare bills passed by Congress and signed by the President to be unconstitutional

This document lists 158 Acts of Congress that the Supreme Court declared to be unconstitutional.

http://www.gpoaccess.gov/constitution/pdf2002/046.pdf

The cases span from 1789 to 2002. (There may be more cases since 2002.) On average, that's about one Act per year declared to be unconstitutional, being that it appears the SCOTUS didn't start getting busy with their declarations until about 1860.

Further, keep in mind that those are only Acts of Congress in the document I linked. The SCOTUS also declares other important federal "doctrines" unconstitutional. Perhaps the most famous case of this happening is Brown v. The Board of Education, which overturned Plessy v. Ferguson. In Brown, the SCOTUS declared the federal doctrine of "separate but equal" to be unconstitutional.

eye5600
January 26, 2010, 05:17 PM
Isn't the job of the Supreme Court to decide whether laws and bills are Constitutional?

That's what they teach is civics class (if there is a civics class, but don't lets get started on that) but it's not in the Constitution. It's a power that the Supreme Court seized for itself in a case called Marbury vs. Madison.

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marbury_v._Madison)

Yes, the SG has declared many laws unconstitutional, most recently parts of the campaign finance laws. But it treads rather gingerly in this area.

Werewolf
January 26, 2010, 07:01 PM
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.

Once a state turns to tyranny the security of what was previously a free state has been compromised. Thus the framers wrote the 2nd to insure that the government cannot infringe the right to keep and bear arms.

They failed it seems.

The problem then becomes definining the point at which a state has devolved into tyranny. That's the trip point. Get enough people to agree that the wire has been tripped and that's the time the 2nd comes into play.

Keep in mind though that if you lose you'll go down in history as a criminal. Win and you're a hero. You throws the dice and takes your chances.

Tully M. Pick
January 26, 2010, 07:36 PM
When you get angry enough, grab your rifle and run outside. If you're the only one there, it's not time yet.

I just spit soda all over my keyboard. Well done, sir.

12131
January 26, 2010, 07:42 PM
When do we use the 2nd Amendment?
Everyday.

FROGO207
January 26, 2010, 08:30 PM
A little wake-up for you all.

While in the local hospital waiting for an ultrasound on my heart recently I was called out by a woman because I was wearing my NRA hat. She stated in a 15 minute diatribe that among other things I was representing the scum of the earth and she was protesting against all the NRA and I stood for down in Washington the whole previous week. Her voice rose to a feverish pitch and she almost started to yell. After she stopped to catch her breath I asked if I could say something. She grudgingly said yes. I said " I and others like myself that are willing to stand with my weapon and stop the government from prohibiting you and the others with you from saying what you wanted to without fear of reprisal. Furthermore that in other countries such as say, China the protesters were dealt with in a severe manner. Remember Tienanmen Square for one. So if you find that you need to bite the hand that feeds you please think about this as I am willing to do this for you even if your beliefs happen to be the polar opposite of mine." All I got was the fish mouth and no words as her response as she processed what I had said, then she cursed and walked away rapidly. In this respect we all stand united to stop the government from removing the "OF the people BY the people" from our citizens as a nation on a daily basis. We literally invoke the 2nd every day by our role as armed citizens in the checks and balances of the government in our nation.

Read the constitution and all the amendments, then think a while, then reread them once again. It really makes sense.:cool:

12131
January 26, 2010, 08:43 PM
FROGO207, I know what you mean. See my my post right above you (not as many words as yours, but the meaning is the same), and my sigline.:)

ConstitutionCowboy
January 26, 2010, 08:59 PM
When this becomes relevant ...

Look at your rights and freedoms as what would be required to survive and be free as if there were no government. Governments come and go, but your rights live on. If you wish to survive government, you must protect with jealous resolve all the powers that come with your rights - especially with the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. Without the power of those arms, you will perish with that government - or at its hand. B.E. Wood

... It's time.

Woody

FROGO207
January 26, 2010, 09:04 PM
Some do need it spelled out in small easy to understand words.:D

Shadow Man
January 26, 2010, 09:06 PM
When this becomes relevant ...

Look at your rights and freedoms as what would be required to survive and be free as if there were no government. Governments come and go, but your rights live on. If you wish to survive government, you must protect with jealous resolve all the powers that come with your rights - especially with the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. Without the power of those arms, you will perish with that government - or at its hand. B.E. Wood
... It's time.

Woody

Whoa there... "It's time"? I hope you realize the gravity of what you are suggesting. In and of itself, action towards that end is treason, and if that weren't bad enough, do some research upon what happens in modern developed countries when they undergo revolution or the inevitable economic instability or collapse. It isn't pretty.

I'd like to counter your statement with one of my own, from the Declaration:
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

Have we exhausted all alternate methods at our disposal? I hardly think so. Tread lightly, for you are standing on some dangerous ground...

Gryffydd
January 26, 2010, 09:09 PM
Sorry I have a strong distain for PAC's, lobbyists ... I'm a NRA member
You do realize what the NRA is and what it does, right?
Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America...

ConstitutionCowboy
January 26, 2010, 10:41 PM
Whoa there... "It's time"?

Relax. "It's time" when what I spelled out in brown becomes relevant, or actionable. When it becomes actionable, it isn't treason. It's self defense and the defense of freedom from tyranny. At that point, if you can only wish to survive government, you didn't protect with jealous resolve all the powers that came with your rights - especially with that Right to Keep and Bear Arms. At that point, it'll be well beyond light and transient causes. Right now we suffer evils that are sufferable; sufferable in that we can still do the political arena thing. We are not forced to join the evil on the battlefield until the political arena fails and tyranny marches to the head of the table. My sentiment is nothing more than common sense that all of us should be aware of and heed.

Let no one put you and your rights asunder.

Woody

Our government was designed by our Founding Fathers to fit within the framework of our rights and not vise versa. Any other "interpretation" of the Constitution is either through ignorance or is deliberately subversive. B.E. Wood

Shadow Man
January 26, 2010, 10:47 PM
Okay, I misread your post ConstitutionCowboy, my apologies. I didn't mean to come off so strong, but with the number of "SHTF", "TEOTWAWKI", and other threads that are so common here, and seem to fulfill some fantasy, I felt I had to be a little harsh.

Sometimes it seems to me that too many get a thrill up their leg when they think of rebellion, instead of a chill down their spine.

paintballdude902
January 26, 2010, 10:49 PM
when its time to ask it should have already happened

Shadow Man
January 26, 2010, 11:00 PM
when its time to ask it should have already happened

I have been called headstrong a few times, and been accused of not looking before I lept, but I would never think anything along the lines of this quote...I don't know if the true gravity of the situation is evading you, or if you really have that thin of a grasp of reality. I hope for everyones sake that the post was merely internet bravado...

ConstitutionCowboy
January 27, 2010, 01:01 AM
Okay, I misread your post ConstitutionCowboy, my apologies. I didn't mean to come off so strong, but with the number of "SHTF", "TEOTWAWKI", and other threads that are so common here, and seem to fulfill some fantasy, I felt I had to be a little harsh.

No problem. No offense taken.

Sometimes it seems to me that too many get a thrill up their leg when they think of rebellion, instead of a chill down their spine.

:D I get kind of a combination. What I get runs down my leg. My "SHTF/TEOTWAWKI" kit comes with a box of "Depends".:what:

Woody

StarDust1
January 27, 2010, 01:05 AM
Whoa there... "It's time"? I hope you realize the gravity of what you are suggesting. In and of itself, action towards that end is treason, and if that weren't bad enough, do some research upon what happens in modern developed countries when they undergo revolution or the inevitable economic instability or collapse. It isn't pretty.

I'd like to counter your statement with one of my own, from the Declaration:


Have we exhausted all alternate methods at our disposal? I hardly think so. Tread lightly, for you are standing on some dangerous ground...
You've read his words completely out of context...

paintballdude902
January 27, 2010, 01:24 AM
I have been called headstrong a few times, and been accused of not looking before I lept, but I would never think anything along the lines of this quote...I don't know if the true gravity of the situation is evading you, or if you really have that thin of a grasp of reality. I hope for everyones sake that the post was merely internet bravado...

not to the extent of full on militia revolution but we should emphasized our right a long time ago if we had done that we probably never would have had an assault weapon ban or the NFA


sure the OP may or may not have ment a full on april 19, 1775 but if we started off smaller by pushing how much we want out rights then we wouldnt be in the position now where many feel that "the NRA is the only reason we still have our guns", quote courtesy of my ex's father and everyone in the room agreed, a total of 75 people at a hunting club.

but no matter how you took my post or this one i still have no faith in our government and haven't for along time and in my experience not a whole lot of people do. we should be able to trust the people we elect but i guess that turns more into an election debate than 2A

jhco50
January 27, 2010, 01:36 AM
This is a good question. I have thought about it a lot. I think one of the major things that will bring people together enough to take up arms is when food starts disappearing off the grocery shelves and peoples families start starving.

That aside, I'm not positive that even that will stir men to action. I don't think there are enough men willing to put their lives on the line for our freedom and way of life. Soldiers excepted. This includes the members of gun forums. I have read a lot of the banter on forums and the majority would rather talk, and when the subject of actually putting the 2nd Amendment to the test there is a lot of crawfishing. I don't mean to cause hard feelings, but we must be willing to protect our Constitution by any means.

I am old enough to remember more freedoms than we have today. We as a society let a lot of them slip away, as we are doing now. Our schools are teaching our kids lies about our countries history, but we allow it to continue. Everyone is afraid to say anything that might offend someone else because we are now Politically Correct. It goes on but these are two good examples. If we wait too long to excersize our right it will be too late. It would be interesting to see where our cutoff really is.

paintballdude902
January 27, 2010, 01:42 AM
^^^^ doesnt makign schools politically correct defeat the purpose of free speech?


as society evolves our rights are at risk

jhco50
January 27, 2010, 02:17 AM
Yes, it does defeat the purpose of free speech. They should teach the true history of our country and not a PC history. You are right about the evolution of our society. I am not a fan of some of the things we now allow, but say nothing unless it affects my family.

Mike91A
January 27, 2010, 04:30 AM
Imagine in 1776 . Poeple having this discussion. Thing is they had the guts to act on what was happening to them. The coloniststs took years of British opression . It took the actions of the British at Lexington and Concord to spure the colonists into open armed rebellion. Thats right . Dead Americans. We already had a Lexington and Concord with the Clinton gun ban . What did we as gun owners do ? Comply. As we always do. As for when is it time ? The time is not now . It has passed with each infringemant. Each law. Every form 4 ,NIC's check, purchase form. Carry permits and the finger printing and photographs. All infringemants. Yet we do nothing. When are the citizens going to quit playing by polititans rules, verbal sword play . This is not a game and not a chess match of wits . This is life and our right to live it . Not be a slave to to a socialist/globalist regime. Nuf said . Thats right. I do not know how to do paragraphs yet.

huntsman
January 27, 2010, 09:54 AM
You do realize what the NRA is and what it does, right?
yes I know and it's a compromise on my part I want my membership to count numbers wise, but I only give money for yearly dues.

It makes me sick that we have to play the game that Washington plays just to hang onto something we shouldn't be losing in the first place.

It seems we (gun owners) are content to payoff .gov (with contributions) instead of taking a stand.

Shadow Man
January 27, 2010, 12:30 PM
You've read his words completely out of context...

StarDust1, yes sir, I realize that I did. ConstitutionCowboy and I have resolved the matter, though. I was in error for reading his post too quickly, and becoming distracted by the brown lettering. (Being computer illiterate, anything fancy like that distracts me :p)

Mike91A, you are correct with your reasoning that we have allowed ourselves to merely accept each new infringement without (much of) a fight. However, the Founders made something very clear when they wrote:
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
Now, your defenition of "light and transient causes" will most assuredly differ from mine, but I hardly see how CCW's, Number 4 forms, background checks and the like are reason enough for armed rebellion. That is, after all, what is being discussed, is it not? (In a very high-road manner, I might add. Well done Gentlemen.) The Amendment states "Shall not be Infringed" not "Shall not be Infringed or Restricted." CCW's, background checks, etc, are "inconvienances" not "infringements." At least, as I see it.

ConstitutionCowboy:
My "SHTF/TEOTWAWKI" kit comes with a box of "Depends".
As it should sir, as it should.

but no matter how you took my post or this one i still have no faith in our government and haven't for along time and in my experience not a whole lot of people do. we should be able to trust the people we elect but i guess that turns more into an election debate than 2A

I cannot, for reasons I choose not to disclose, comment upon my faith (or lack therof) in the Government. I cannot argue with your point though; not many people seem to have much faith in the Government, or in those they elect. A sad state of affairs, and one that needs to be remedied post-haste.

Freedom Fighter 78
January 27, 2010, 02:50 PM
You have hit the nail right on the head. I agree with some of what others here have said, but, I believe I would repeat word for word what you just said and it would express my very own feelings. The time has passed for action to have been taken. Just like the snake (enemy) in the bible, the enemy of this country has been working to undermine the very foundations of our country. I'm waiting...........:fire:

LeontheProfessional
January 27, 2010, 03:12 PM
First they will take our "assault weapons" and we will comply.
Than they will take our handguns and we will comply.
Than everything that is not a single shot and we will comply.
And when they come for our single shots we will be left with nothing to resist with.

ConstitutionCowboy
January 27, 2010, 05:57 PM
The Amendment states "Shall not be Infringed" not "Shall not be Infringed or Restricted." CCW's, background checks, etc, are "inconvienances" not "infringements." At least, as I see it.

I'm glad you included the "... as I see it." In truth, you cannot restrict something without infringing upon it.

Woody

Shadow Man
January 27, 2010, 06:21 PM
I'm glad you included the "... as I see it." In truth, you cannot restrict something without infringing upon it.

ConstitutionCowboy, I did include the "as I see it" for a reason. I am not closed to changing my mind, or admitting that I am wrong. In this case, I pondered what you wrote for almost half an hour, and I have to agree. You are correct. Any restriction upon a right is, in fact, an infringement upon your freedom to excercise that right...I take back what I said. Thank you.

ConstitutionCowboy
January 27, 2010, 09:03 PM
Shadow Man,

You're welcome, and welcome to the club!

All words mean things. Some have several meanings, some subject to nuance, some meanings subject to context, and some words are absolute(one meaning and one meaning only, not subject to context or any nuance). "Infringe" is one of those absolute words. Words like "infringe" SET the context and prevent nuance.

Woody

I see it clearly as fact. Words mean things. Just as numbers have value, you can add, subtract, multiply and divide them. I just do the math. B.E. Wood

Shadow Man
January 27, 2010, 09:55 PM
welcome to the club!

Many thanks, sir! You are right, all words do have meanings...I think we all too often forget what those meanings are, and words loose their impact.

Ed Ames
January 27, 2010, 10:06 PM
The question isn't about the absoluteness of 'infringed'.

Earlier today I read someone's take on the 1st amendment. This was a well educated and widely cited person of much influence. They, offhandedly, asserted that freedom of speech was a right because it strengthened democracy.

Now I, uneducated and lout that I am, would've shot back with, "Yeah right...that's why non-infringement of that right is lumped along with freedom of religion... because free religion and free speech both strengthen democracy." I would've rolled my eyes too. To me it is obvious that the right to speak my mind to anyone who chooses to associate with me has nothing to do with government, any more than my right to go to whatever church I want (or no church at all). But to them the right to free speech was associated with furthering democracy and it was not an untenable argument, given the ", and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances" tacked onto the end of the 1st.

Why am I bringing that up? If the Right to Free Speech is the right to participate in the democratic process, then speech not related to the democratic process (such as talk about target shooting) is not protected. If my broader definition is used, then all speech (including everything from sex talk to politi..well, that's redundant but you know what I mean) is protected.

It all comes down to grammar. Did they declare no laws regarding {religion, speech, press, assemble} to petition the government to redress grievances? Or did they declare no laws regarding {religion}, {speech}, {press}, {assemble}, and {petition the government}? Or no laws regarding {religion}, {speech}, {press}, {assemble and petition the government}?

The 1st bars a completely different set of laws depending on which of those interpretations you follow.

Same sort of questions hold with the 2nd. "The Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms" is a noun, describing some known concept, and whether a given law (such as against concealed carry) infringes that concept depends entirely on what "The Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms" is. You and I think the right is for us, private citizens, to do pretty much anything related to keeping, carrying, and using guns. Others think "The People" is intended in the "The People v. Larry Flynt" sense and the 2nd was to prevent what happened in Tijuana Mexico in 2007, when the Federal Government of Mexico confiscated all the guns from the city police force.

You can read "infringed" as absolutely as you want, but unless you own the definition of the right, our opponents can turn around and argue that a particular law doesn't infringe on the right at all even as it clearly does to us.

A lot of the current progress in building up good pro-gun 2A case law started with establishing our conception of that named right (RotPtKBA) as the right conception. Finding historical citations (Such as a Senate journal entry showing that the Senate rejected "the wording bear arms for the common defense" as part of the original 2A) and shaping an academic understanding of what, exactly, the people who wrote the 2A thought they were naming when they named that right. Only once "The Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms" is universally understood to mean what we think it means does the absoluteness of "infringed" become an issue.

ConstitutionCowboy
January 27, 2010, 10:40 PM
Ed,

The problem is that there is no right to free speech. There is freedom of speech, and it's protected from abridgment, but not protected from infringement.

Another difference is that freedom of speech relates to the use of a language whereas the keeping and bearing of arms has nothing to do with with the use of those arms.

Woody

Ed Ames
January 27, 2010, 10:54 PM
I think you missed the point. And you are factually incorrect.

The 1st states: "Congress shall make no law respecting ..." In other words, congress shall make no laws either pro or con that issue. No Law.

The second, on the other hand, says "shall not infringe". The 2nd allows laws, so long as those laws do not infringe on a particular named right. Which means you have to understand what that named right, The Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms, is so you can judge whether a particular law infringes.

Infringement is a judgment call. Does a law requiring you to own a gun infringe on your right to keep and bear arms? Depends on whether your right includes the right to NOT own a gun. Does it?

GunsBeerFreedom
January 27, 2010, 11:04 PM
I haven't read much of this thread (lazy). However, to me there are two aspects to the 'use' of the 2A. I use it ever day, in that I am a open and honest gun owner and advocate it to everyone who is responsible. I use the 2A as practically as I can in every aspect of my life.

The other aspect, one which we could call 'original intent' is another subject matter. One for which there is not a definitive answer, and likely never will be. The most honest answer I can give is when you have weighed all the consequences and possible outcomes from your inaction and still believe that to act is better. Many will disagree with me, but in the end, that will always be true. There are those who can suffer evil far greater than I and those who can suffer far less. I can only speak for myself and my family. I do not enjoy the prospect of fighting, but if there is no reasonable alternative, then I would gladly march for what I believe in. History will either vindicate me or condemn me, but by the time that happens, I won't be around to read it.

Lou McGopher
January 27, 2010, 11:07 PM
The problem is that there is no right to free speech. There is freedom of speech, and it's protected from abridgment, but not protected from infringement.

How could one's speech be abridged by the state without being infringed upon?

luigi
January 27, 2010, 11:12 PM
We use the second amendment every day. We're using the second amendment now
Do you not think the gun grabbers in Washington noticed the great gun run of '09? they're not stupid. Do you not think we sent a message when we went out and got God only knows how many hit on NICS right after Chairman maO got elected?

ConstitutionCowboy
January 27, 2010, 11:53 PM
And out of the woodwork they come. I'll 'splain things tomorrow, ladies and gents.

Woody

Ed Ames
January 28, 2010, 01:50 AM
LOL ... yeah, 'splain ... but before you do, maybe you should address the substance of what is being said.

You assert that "infringed" is absolute. Yeah, I get it, and I don't disagree. But it isn't relevant. Unless everyone agrees about what the right is, what is being named when we say, "The Right of the People to ______________", there can be no consensus on whether a particular act is infringement or not.

There has been a substantive argument going on, in high circles and low, regarding what is being named when we use that phrase. People here on THR tend to agree with my perspective, which is that the people means everyone. That would be as opposed to "citizens" (e.g. "The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States.") which would mean people with citizenship, or states (e.g. "Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state."), etc. I think the weight of evidence supports my view...but a lot of influential people have yet to come around. I'll skip over keeping, bearing I think is a tricky one because IMO it includes a lot more of the "take up arms" than people today would credit. I think the people who wrote that amendment were more concerned about limiting the influence of the Southern Poverty Law Center than they were about the Branch Davidians.

Further, and this is where my view becomes the minority on THR, my take is that the right includes everything that would be considered arms... cannon, rockets, guns, bombs... and the things that make those arms functional, like ammunition, ships, airplanes, and so forth. I base my belief on the knowledge that, especially early on, private citizens often owned and used the material of war in the defense of self, hearth, and country. I don't place limits because I think most of the "nightmare scenarios" of private nukes and the like are simply false problems. A nuclear weapon costs tens, perhaps hundreds, of millions of dollars to actually manufacture and maintain, and private individuals who would own them would be unlikely to use them casually...and, perhaps more to the point, those with the resources to afford them are unlikely to be stopped by any laws and there are probably a few in private collections today. But that's just me.

What's left to 'splain?

jhco50
January 28, 2010, 02:10 AM
One more thing to consider. Ms. Hillary has told the UN that the Obama administration would support unilateral bans of small arms. Is this worth the effort to "take up arms"? We shall see, because this administration is willing to give the UN free reign to change our laws and trample the Constitution. This is ok for this bunch in Washington, as they don't use it anyway. :evil:

huntsman
January 28, 2010, 10:19 AM
I base my belief on the knowledge that, especially early on, private citizens often owned and used the material of war in the defense of self, hearth, and country.

+1 Thompson used to market their gun to ranchers and farmers as a HD tool. I resent the fact that I can't go down to the hardware store and buy one off the rack.

eye5600
January 28, 2010, 10:48 AM
Ms. Hillary has told the UN that the Obama administration would support unilateral bans of small arms.

Ms. Hillary can say anything she wants, but any agreement has to pass the Senate.

defjon
January 28, 2010, 11:33 AM
Of note to me is Lemmy's posts.

The same people that get their knickers in a twist over the current state of things were passively silent a few years ago, getting swept up in post 9/11 sentiments and happily signing away the rest of their bill of rights to get them 'dern terrorists.

If you're going to be hardline for the constitution then you can't pick and choose.

mack
January 28, 2010, 02:02 PM
As has been previously posted, I think there is a pretty good guide to finding the answer to that question in the Declaration of Independence which says in part:

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."

So, Government is granted power by the people to protect the free exercise of their inalienable rights. When that government after a long history of seriously abusing the rights of its citizens, becomes insufferable, and shows evidence of unalterably pursuing a plan to enslave the people under absolute despotism, then it is the peoples right and their duty to rebell against that government and insitute a new government.

The argument may then be examined on a number of points.

1. Have peoples rights been seriously abused over a long period of time?
2. Have the abuses become insufferable?
3. Is the government unalterably pursuing a path towards absolute despotism?

Of course each of us will have different opinions, the key is when enough people agree that the answer to all three questions is yes - then it is time.

My answer to the first question is: yes - government has seriously overstepped it bounds - not just the federal government, but most state and local governemnts.

My answer to the second question is: no, not yet, many of our rights are protected and we still do have a lot of freedom.

My answer to the third question is: no, it does not look good, but that there is still reason to hope - perhaps I delude myself because I dread the consequences of the alternative. I should add that for me, should the answer to this third question become yes, then the answer to the second question will also be yes, since without hope for change, abuses that were once sufferable become insufferable.

When would I lose hope? The old cliche is the analogy of the four boxes of freedom: the soapbox, the ballot box, the jury box, and the cartridge box.

When those are taken away or made null by the government then for me it would be time. Is the government insensitive to public opinion and/or does it act in a coordinated effort to gag or to effectively marginalize its critics? Are elections fair and is there a real choice or are they corrupt and/or are the options limited and controlled by those in power, also do elected officials act in good faith to follow the constitution as servants and not rulers? Is the judiciary upholding the constitution and protecting rights and is there a right to trial by a jury of ones peers, and does that jury have the right to practice nullification. Do the people retain the right to keep and bear arms?

Right now I think that people can still be heard and can still get the word out. I think such movements as the teaparty movement are evidence of this along with the internet. I think that the ballot box is in serious trouble, and has been, and I personally believe that often we are offered a choice of tweedle dum and tweetle dee and that paperless voting opens the door for huge abuses, and that there have been instances of serious voter fraud related to mutiple voting and non-citizen voting. The courts are a mixed bag, but there have been some victories there and despite jury stacking and a hostilty to jury nullification from the bench, I think that it is still viable. And the cartiridge box is still working, the politicains have noticed gun sales, and it is still a deterence, and the RKBA has made some gains - from the recent past.

Werewolf
January 28, 2010, 03:34 PM
The Amendment states "Shall not be Infringed" not "Shall not be Infringed or Restricted." CCW's, background checks, etc, are "inconvienances" not "infringements." At least, as I see it.Hmmmph...

It may be an inconvenience for you or me who get permission but it is hardly an infringement for those refused.

Now - if we could be sure that only felons and the mad were the only folks being refused you might have a point - might.

BUT we both know that isn't the case.

And besides one man's inconvenience is another man's infringement.

Edited to Add:Seems I should have read the rest of the thread before posting. The last 20 or so posts pretty much prove that one man's inconvenience is another man's infringement. Considering that we here on THR cannot agree it seems highly unlikely that society as a whole ever will. That doesn't bode well for the future IMO.

Shadow Man
January 28, 2010, 06:33 PM
Werewolf, I think if you had continued to read the thread, you would have seen that I recanted in a later post what I said in your quoted section. Post #71, to be exact.
Originally posted by ConstitutionCowboy
I'm glad you included the "... as I see it." In truth, you cannot restrict something without infringing upon it.

ConstitutionCowboy, I did include the "as I see it" for a reason. I am not closed to changing my mind, or admitting that I am wrong. In this case, I pondered what you wrote for almost half an hour, and I have to agree. You are correct. Any restriction upon a right is, in fact, an infringement upon your freedom to excercise that right...I take back what I said. Thank you.

mack, I think that was an excellent rundown of A: when we can excercise the right, and B: the fact that we have not yet reached that point.

mlr1m
January 28, 2010, 06:44 PM
Many people believe that infringement and prohibition are the same. That to do anything less than total prohibition is not an infringement. Therefor huge taxes and or stopping all future manufacturing or importation of firearms would not be an infringement because if you can follow the rules enacted you are still free to own one.

Michael

Gungnir
January 28, 2010, 07:26 PM
I actually think the problem is two fold

We have no real accepted definition of what Arms are in the context of the 2nd amendment as Ed pointed out

We have no real accepted definition of what infringed means in the context of the 2nd amendment.

On the first point I'm with Ed, arms are arms, be that a 2" folding knife, or a Czar Bomba. I think the fear of privately owned nukes is overrated, and those private individuals who can afford the cost and pay offs and want a nuke most likely already have a nuke, I don't think deregulating arms controls will have any proliferation consequences since the market will regulate itself anyone got 5 Mil+ to drop on an Abrams M1A2 you also got the maintenance budget? However as shown many believe that the Founding Fathers implicitly limited this to arms of the time, as shown by the Brady Bunch and a whole bunch of legislators who trot out the "the Founding Fathers couldn't possibly have envisioned these weapons of war". Remember it's about everyone, not just those of us with an interest in firearms

On the second point even we can't agree, is a CCW/CPL/CHL pick your TLA an infringement some believe it is others don't. Similarly on another thread, taking your gun into a bar, infringement or not, some believe yes others no. So that's another problem. Add in the unwashed masses, and you have a huge sea of confusion as to what should be allowed or not, and what is a sensible restriction, and what is an unconstitutional infringement.

Until we can define and have accepted terms of what the real legal semantics of arms and infringement are then people are going to always have mixed opinions on whether certain restrictions or legislation is contrary to the 2nd amendment or not. Unfortunately some of those mixed opinions include the Legislative, Executive and Legal branches of the Federal and State Governments.

Shadow Man
January 28, 2010, 07:33 PM
However as shown many believe that the Founding Fathers implicitly limited this to arms of the time, as shown by the Brady Bunch and a whole bunch of legislators who trot out the "the Founding Fathers couldn't possibly have envisioned these weapons of war". Remember it's about everyone, not just those of us with an interest in firearms


Just point out that the Founding Fathers could not have possibly envisioned 24 hour cable news, telephones, telegraph, airplanes, trains, automobiles, cellphones, the internet, etc, and that according to their logic, the First Amendment should only pertain to those forms of communication and travel (for gatherings and such) that were available to them at the time. It has worked for me on a number of occasions.

Gungnir
January 28, 2010, 07:40 PM
Just point out that the Founding Fathers could not have possibly envisioned 24 hour cable news, telephones, telegraph, airplanes, trains, automobiles, cellphones, the internet, etc, and that according to their logic, the First Amendment should only pertain to those forms of communication and travel (for gatherings and such) that were available to them at the time. It has worked for me on a number of occasions.
Doesn't help the situation, unfortunately, remember unwashed masses getting told by a "gun nut" that this is the case has been shown by the repeat appearance of the statement to be an unsuccessful argument.

Admittedly the argument is valid, since these have been integrated into legislation and constitutional rights associated with each. However until we as a whole can have a legally accepted definition of what arms are the argument will continue for ever, or until (if ever) firearm ownership is as pervasive as TV, Cellphones, air travel, etc.

mack
January 28, 2010, 09:52 PM
I know this is a gun forum and I know the topic is the 2nd amendment, but I think some in this thread are getting too myopic or too focused on just the infringement of the RKBA. We have many rights and our RKBA, while certainly a fundamental right in my eyes, is not the only right that the infringement or abridgement of could trigger the awful prospect of making it necessary to "throw off such Government," and use the RKBA to do so.

Also I disagree somewhat on the necessity to come to legally defined agreement about what each term exactly means or what the exact legal definition and parameters are for each right.

Again, I would suggest that we look back to our history - the American revolution did not spring forth one day in April fully formed. It was a slow process that happened over a period of years. It began with people getting together to discuss their grievances over the actions of their government. From that discussion people began to develop shared beliefs about what was wrong and about steps that needed to be taken. At no point did everyone agree - look at the debate over the Declaration of Independence - and we were already well into organized armed conflict when that happened.

Consider a few nascent developments; the tea party movement, the home schooling movement, peoples identification with the terms red state and blue state (recreating in a way a sense of state identity), the active concealed carry movement that has swept much of the nation, the recent emergence of the state sovereignty push in the form of legislation on guns that is really a push back on the commerce clause. Most of these are relatively recent developments. The gun rights examiners and the libertarian cant of much of the internet forums and blogs. All these may be part of a movement towards real change, (as opposed to the established political parties that always advertise change like a breakfast cereal but of course just really want to perpetuate more and more of the same). We are living in interesting times, and I feel that the future is up for grabs.

The question is a Franklin asked all those years ago - is it a rising sun or a setting sun. There is no knowable hard fast line in the sand that we can foresee - the founding fathers did not see Lexington and Concord. What we must do if we believe that there is a problem is to get active sharing our views with others - get busy with finding some points of consensus - get organized to act upon some common goals to seek a redress of grievances - and start to put things into motion to effect change in the government and the powers that be - some of the above movements are trying to do that.

Because, I really believe that the same road may lead to either peaceful change or violent revolution. The determining factor is not the initial course that is steered but the governments response to it. The founders sought first to work with the king and with parliament, they were denied redress, they argued and discussed, they had a tea party, they argued some more, they organized amongst themselves, eventually the king reached out his hand to take away their arms and they resisted and violent resistance began.

Remember that history - there was no hard line in the sand it was a gradual loose consensus that evolved over time and that only coalesced when the government reached out to attack a part of that consensus - in a sense it was the British that drew and then crossed the line. Today we look back and we say, ah there was the line, but out founding fathers had no such luxury. I think that today we are in that process - hopefully it results in a peaceful revolution and not a violent one. YMMV

ConstitutionCowboy
January 28, 2010, 10:39 PM
The 1st states: "Congress shall make no law respecting ..." In other words, congress shall make no laws either pro or con that issue. No Law.

You've omitted "...an establishment of religion, etc. ...". from your dissertation. That pretty much delineates a rather narrow band of restriction forbidding Congress to pass law establish a national religion and forbidden to pass law to prohibit you to freely exercise your religion. Congress can make laws prescribing the manner in which public acts - such as marriages performed in churches - are recognized throughout the United States. Congress can pass a law to prohibit violent assembly, and the several states can make law to punish slander and libel.

Infringement is a judgment call. Does a law requiring you to own a gun infringe on your right to keep and bear arms? Depends on whether your right includes the right to NOT own a gun. Does it?

No. When the Constitution and Amendments were crafted, "to infringe" meant to violate; to break laws or contracts. That couldn't be more plain. Whether you have a right NOT to keep and bear arms is immaterial. The Second Amendment only protects your right TO keep and bear arms.

How could one's speech be abridged by the state without being infringed upon?

Simple. While government cannot alter what you say(abridge it), you can be held accountable for what you say. If speech were uninfringeable, there could be no laws to punish perjury, or libel, or slander, or child pornography.

You assert that "infringed" is absolute. Yeah, I get it, and I don't disagree. But it isn't relevant. Unless everyone agrees about what the right is, what is being named when we say, "The Right of the People to ______________", there can be no consensus on whether a particular act is infringement or not.

What is not clear about the words "keep" and "bear" and "arms"? And, "consensus" has nothing to do with it. These are "is" or "isn't" things.

... bearing I think is a tricky one because IMO it includes a lot more of the "take up arms" than people today would credit.

Going back to the definition of "bear" when the amendments were crafted, Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language, 1755, has something like 36 definitions of the word "bear", but only two fit the context of the Second Amendment: "To carry as a burden", and "To convey or carry". These definitions fit the modern dictionary definition that says, "to carry; to endure; to support, to sustain; to conduct (oneself); to produce or bring forth." (I placed the relevant definitions in bold.) "Take up" was not included back then nor now. "Take up arms" implies to go to arms, same as to take up a business or a hobby. It isn't synonymous to "bear".

Further, and this is where my view becomes the minority on THR, my take is that the right includes everything that would be considered arms... cannon, rockets, guns, bombs... and the things that make those arms functional, like ammunition, ships, airplanes, and so forth. I base my belief on the knowledge that, especially early on, private citizens often owned and used the material of war in the defense of self, hearth, and country. I don't place limits because I think most of the "nightmare scenarios" of private nukes and the like are simply false problems. A nuclear weapon costs tens, perhaps hundreds, of millions of dollars to actually manufacture and maintain, and private individuals who would own them would be unlikely to use them casually...and, perhaps more to the point, those with the resources to afford them are unlikely to be stopped by any laws and there are probably a few in private collections today. But that's just me.

Thats me as well. It appears you understand precisely what the Second Amendment is and does. Why are we even arguing?

We have no real accepted definition of what Arms are in the context of the 2nd amendment as Ed pointed out

We have no real accepted definition of what infringed means in the context of the 2nd amendment.

Ah, that "accepted" thing. We don't need to know what is "accepted" or what the "consensus" is. It is what the written word is, and it is as it was when it was written. That removes all doubt. If there are some among us who don't like what the Second Amendment protects, and the absolute terms in which the Second Amendment does the protecting, they have the option to propose an amendment to change or even abolish the Second Amendment.



So, to answer the OP, we don't use the Second Amendment to respond to the scenarios listed, we use the Second Amendment in court to stop disarmament or anything leading up to disarmament. We would use the TOOLS protected by the Second Amendment in some of those scenarios, and the time is not now.
I would say the actions of law enforcement and those in command who participated in the confiscations after Katrina fit the requirements. Each and every one of those people should be in court right now defending their actions since they survived their wrong doing. Shakespeare had a great line in Measure for Measure that goes like this:

"Those many had not dar'd to do that evil, if the first man that did th' edict infringe, had answer'd for his deed."

The evil was to confiscate arms, and the edict is the Second Amendment.

Woody

the iron horse
January 28, 2010, 10:45 PM
The Second Amendment of our Bill of Rights is my concealed weapons permit, period!

~Ted Nugent


I vote Libertarian. The quote by the Nuge expresses my view well.

shenandoah
January 28, 2010, 10:52 PM
Frogo, how'd the ultrasound come out? OK I hope, I'm due for one, myself. After the woman lost it did you go to the nurses station and tell them somebody forgot to lock the nut ward? The antigunners don't realize that cellphones and concealed carriers have done more to ward off street crime than anything else.

Ed Ames
January 28, 2010, 11:49 PM
Going back to the definition of "bear" when the amendments were crafted, Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language, 1755, has something like 36 definitions of the word "bear", but only two fit the context of the Second Amendment: "To carry as a burden", and "To convey or carry".

"He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands."
-- Declaration of Independence.

So you are trying to say that they meant "...taken Captive...to carry or convey Arms...", as in it was a complaint against slavery???? Or "...taken Captive...to carry as a burden Arms..."

No, that's laughable. If they are just carrying Arms around why is the choice between, "become the executioners of their friends and Brethren," or, "to fall themselves by their (the friends and Brethren's or the captors, I'm not sure which was intended) Hands."

"Bear Arms" means taking up arms, as in to fight. We were declaring independence in part because the King was conscripting our citizens and forcing them to fight and kill (or be killed by) other citizens, brother and friend against one another.

Why are we even arguing?

Pretty simple.

"The" is a definite article. Definite articles are used in one of a few ways.
1) To refer to something all parties know and understand. ("The Constitution")
2) To refer to something already mentioned in the conversation. ("the argument")
3) When defining a particular person or object ("the original poster")
4) Objects which are unique ("the moon")
on and on...

When I read "The Right of The People to Keep and Bear Arms" I hit that first "The" and say "this is something that has already been mentioned, is understood by everyone, is unique, is....", in other words, I see that it is a The ____________ sort of thing.

The people who wrote that amendment referenced a thing they figured everyone would know so well that there was no need to define it. "Keep and Bear Arms" wasn't the definition, it was the NAME. It was shorthand for all sorts of assumptions that the authors considered so obvious you wouldn't need to list them all.

We've lost consensus on that definition. We've had so many generations of cultural drift, so many waves of immigrants (and I'm a descendant of immigrants myself), we've gone in so many directions socially, that even here on THR there are a thousand conceptions of TRotPtKBA.

Any dictionary thumping on "infringe" is irrelevant until you define The Thing.

Contrast the wording of the 2nd with the other amendments. The 1st is direct... "congress shall make no law _________", the 3rd is equally direct, "No Soldier shall _________"

The 4th is like the 2nd... it names a thing that everyone knows and understands. <The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures>, shall _______"

The 5th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th are all like the 1st and 3rd.

You can say you don't need a single definition for The Right, and that's true, but you do need a general consensus. If 14% think it's an individual right to any and all weapons, 40% think it's an individual right to firearms, 30% think it's a state right to small arms (but not WMDs), 10% think it's a collective (state) right to all weapons, and 6% think it's an individual right to the sorts of weapons available during the revolution... then your best consensus is that 54% agree that it's at least an individual right to firearms.

Gungnir
January 29, 2010, 01:34 AM
CC I think we're arguing not on the goal, but on the path to the goal. Just saying something is so doesn't necessarily make it so. Saying the 2nd means for instance "all chickens lay eggs" doesn't actually mean that the reality is reflecting the statement (some chickens lay eggs, but some are also Roosters).

No. When the Constitution and Amendments were crafted, "to infringe" meant to violate; to break laws or contracts. That couldn't be more plain. Whether you have a right NOT to keep and bear arms is immaterial. The Second Amendment only protects your right TO keep and bear arms.

Here's something I picked up, on this. We argue that at the time the constitution and Bill of Rights was written this "word" meant this "concept" for instance regulated, infringed, etc.. However we also argue that the meaning of the 2nd amendment also means that semiautomatic rifles are covered by the 2nd amendment. Now at the time arms could not possibly include semiautomatic rifles, since they did not exist. So we're playing both sides of the word game, at the time infringed meant as you say to violate, or break promise or oath, to trespass etc. However at the time arms meant Muzzleloaders, swords, spears/poleaxes, cannon. Admittedly arms is more open ended than infringe, however you can see where I'm going with this. So when we pull the at the time routine, then it's no wonder that those opposing the 2nd do the same.

Ah, that "accepted" thing. We don't need to know what is "accepted" or what the "consensus" is. It is what the written word is, and it is as it was when it was written. That removes all doubt. If there are some among us who don't like what the Second Amendment protects, and the absolute terms in which the Second Amendment does the protecting, they have the option to propose an amendment to change or even abolish the Second Amendment.

Yes we do, the statement that "the right of the people to keep and bear arms" is the same as my example "all chickens lay eggs". If we did not need acceptance, then Heller would have been a landslide, back in '34 the GCA could not have been passed, 38 FFA nor the 68 GCA, nor the 86 LEOPA, nor the Hughes amendment, nor the Brady laws.

It comes down to what do the people believe...? I think we all here believe that there is significant inroads to infringing the 2nd. What about the rest of America, does it believe that? Does everyone in California, NY, Chicago, or DC believe that the government (State or local) is acting against the constitution? If you think that the people do believe as we do, then why do these governments keep getting re-elected?

So in reality acceptance and consensus is critically important, because as Ed stated in post #97 we've lost the understanding of the facts and beliefs that makes "the right of the people to keep and bear arms" definite and a no-brainer, most people don't get what Madison and company meant in the 2nd amendment, and these people are voters, as well as Congressmen, Senators, Governors, Presidents, and Supreme Court judges. We know that people don't understand this because we interact with people daily who don't understand the 2nd like we do, who believe that "sensible restrictions" make sense, that certain firearms shouldn't be available to the public, and that needing to undergo training and background checks before being "allowed" to concealed carry is perfectly legitimate.

Unless we can draw a line from where we are to where we want to be, then saying we want to be where we want to be (and we're constitutionally guaranteed to be free of restrictions there) isn't much use.

medmo
January 29, 2010, 06:25 AM
Wow, that took a lot to read through this one. I agree with the simple response "every day". The Good Lord created me a free man, (just like everyone else).

ConstitutionCowboy
January 29, 2010, 12:32 PM
Ed,

If your interpretation is true, everyone has the right to kill whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want. We bear arms in peace as well as in war. "Bear" takes you right up to the point you pull the trigger. Even after you pull the trigger, you are still bearing, but now you are using the arms you bear to kill. We don't keep and bear harm and death. We keep and bear the tool capable of harm and death.

It can be said that we can bear up arms against our government and never pull the triggers. The police and national Guard bore arms against some of the citizens of New Orleans but never pulled a trigger. "Bear" has the same meaning whether the trigger is pulled or not. The act of pulling the trigger is something else entirely.

I do believe the Founding Fathers fully understood all the implications of both "keep" and "bear" when they considered that the right to keep and bear arms should not be infringed. Your interpretation implies the Founding Fathers meant for there to be unfettered use of arms. If that were so, it wouldn't have been necessary for the Founding Fathers to require an act of Congress to call forth the Militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections, and even to repel invasions!

Woody

Officers'Wife
January 29, 2010, 12:49 PM
It is not the right of an angry, barely literate rabble to run amok over the unexamined hearsay spoonfed them by a group of billionaires who have a vested interest in making sure no one can work toward the common good

Does that mean the Declaration of Independence is null & void?

oldpuppymax
January 29, 2010, 12:59 PM
The 2nd amendment recognizes the God given right to keep and bear arms. And YES, it is God given, as are the rights of freedom of speech, of religion, of assembly, etc. No God given right can be GRANTED by government/men OR taken away. The left has worked for decades to disarm the American people because it is both very difficult AND very dangerous to attempt to enslave and armed citizenry. The amendment was specifically included in our Constitution for the purpose of making sure the PEOPLE had the means to defend the nation from attack AND defend their rights against a criminal/tyrannical state. The left will eventually overturn our right to keep and bear arms, probably by indirect means. These are people who cannot help themselves. On that day, we'll know if the US is meant to continue on by the number of actual Americans who take up arms and march on DC.

Ed Ames
January 29, 2010, 01:12 PM
everyone has the right to kill whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want

LOL...no, that's as laughable a stretch as thinking that "bear arms" means to carry them.

You keep trying to read a description from the name. It's like trying to deconstruct "Alfred Spangler" into, "A Red span". Yeah, the words are there, but a name is representation, a symbol, not definition, and what a name represents often has little connection to the words that make up the name.

Why would the same people use "bear arms" in one document to mean what everyone since Aristotle has meant by the phrase, but in another mean, "it means you can carry them, but not actually pull the trigger"? The founding fathers had, in living memory, personally exercised their individual right to bear arms in the common sense of the phrase. Not, "to carry them but not pull the trigger", not, "to transport them", but, "to take them up and use them, killing and wounding people in the process", and they did it against the rightful government of their lands. They KNEW exactly what that right was. They had lived it, exercised it, and were only writing a constitution because they had done so.

The founding fathers would have been deeply offended to hear you describe their exercise of that right, their revolution, as, "kill[ing] whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want." I'm a bit offended that you think of them in those terms myself.

The right, as they saw it, was integral to the natural rights of free men. Which means it was something akin to (but more extensive than) our current conception of the right to self defense. They were within their rights to bear arms against the king because the king was doing them identifiable harm. They were not within their rights to bear arms against a farmer with better land because the farmer wasn't harming them, even if the farmer had it better than they did.

And they knew that the people, in other words you and me, is kept in check by different forces than a government. They required an act of congress for the GOVERNMENT to call forth the Militia. Given their general trust of government exercise of power, why is that surprising to you? The government always requires extra checks and oversight because government concentrates power. It takes an act of congress for the government to do things you are fully in your right to do this very minute with no oversight whatsoever, because the government can coerce where you and I can only discuss and trade.

I won't claim to know the full breadth of whatever the founding fathers were naming when they named that right. I suspect, based on alternate wordings and arguments from the day that there was a fair amount of disagreement at the time and they named the right instead of using the sort of wording found in most of the BoR very specifically to punt the issue on to succeeding generations. I'm not even sure it's relevant what they thought, except that they were smart people and their views certainly carry weight even today. The important thing today is to define what we mean, a consensus of what that right is today, that is as broad and generally beneficial as possible.

But, to be somewhat fair to your point of view... the founding fathers were known to duel...pistols at dawn sort of duel. So yeah, they saw themselves as having a certain right to commit what, if it happened today, would be considered murder, within very clear and well known limits.

RC45
January 29, 2010, 02:47 PM
I stumbled upon your fine board this afternoon and felt compelled to join up to offer my humble opinion on this topic.

The thread topic is "When do we use the 2nd Amendment" - as an immigrant to the USA (been here 14, no 15 years this January) I have noticed quite a change over the last 15 years, and I am sure those that others in their middle age whom where born here have seen evenmore change.

I have seen changes that have both furthered and changes that have restricted the RKBA - but one thing is certain, if you don't collectively fight by way of legislation and protest to maintain your RKBA then by the time you might feel compelled to excercise that right in practice (not to overthrow the government, but "recall" it) it will be too late.

I think many times those that are born and raised in the USA do not always understand how important and valued the RKBA is, and they (some, not all obviously) often forget that a complacent citizenry can lose that right in a blink of an eye.

In summation, my opinion is that the day you are compelled by law to turn over your guns that is the day you excercise your 2nd Amendment right.

I don't know about the rest of you, but "they" will face resistance when they come calling at this Texas address... ;)

ConstitutionCowboy
January 29, 2010, 03:40 PM
Aha! Now I've got you!

In the Constitution the Founding Fathers capitalized all nouns, and all proper nouns in the first ten amendments to it called the Bill of Rights. "... (t)he right of the people to keep and bear..." is not capitalized, ergo, "keep" and "bear" are not the name of the right as scribed in the Second Amendment but the names of the functions that government is prohibited to infringe upon. As words are a means to meaning, it is clear what the prohibition in the Second Amendment is.

It is true that the accepted name of the right is the Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms, and in its case the name fits to a "T". What you describe are things like the Patriot Act. Just as a rose by any other name will smell as sweet, so will Pepe LePew stink under the name of Peter Chanel the Fifth.

I can see by the rest of your post that you believe the Constitution is a living, breathing document that changes with the times.

The founding fathers would have been deeply offended to hear you describe their exercise of that right, their revolution, as, "kill[ing] whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want." I'm a bit offended that you think of them in those terms myself.

I'm offended that you take me out of context and that you insult the intelligence of anyone who reads what you've written with your out of context implications. The Founding generation went far beyond their right to keep and bear arms. They exercised their right to throw off a despotic government. That's the right that should be discussed when talking of the issues being brought up here. The uninfringed Right to Keep and Bear Arms makes it possible for us to exercise that right to throw off a despotic government.

Woody

Ed Ames
January 29, 2010, 04:18 PM
I can see by the rest of your post that you believe the Constitution is a iving, breathing document that changes with the times

But are you seeing what is there? You have misunderstood (misrepresented?) my positions pretty consistently so far. What do you think has changed?

I think the constitution was written by a bunch of intelligent and careful people who were not afraid to speak in absolutes. "Congress shall make no law..." type absolutes. They did so in many areas... but they refrained in this case. In doing so, they pushed the burden of carrying that argument to each succeeding generation and made that portion of their document subject to interpretation. Did they mean to? Who knows? They did it, and whether you want to call the constition living or not we've got to live with the results.

That doesn't mean the constitution is a living document (or not)...it means that we are compelled to argue definitions because of how they wrote the 2nd. Play the hand you are dealt.

As for you taking offense...I don't see where you have grounds. Bearing arms has the same meaning in the constitution as the declaration of independence. You, in attempting to twist the meaning of that term to suit your politics, took it to a place you didn't want to go. Don't act as though that's somehow my fault or I'm taking you out of context. I lack the power to delete or change your posts so I can't take away the context, and you said what you said.


Now, to address the substance of your noun counter... "the man with a gun" is not a noun, but it is an identification of something rather than a description. The right to ______ is likewise not a noun (though it may contain nouns) but an identifier of some understood externally defined thing.

LemmyCaution
January 29, 2010, 06:14 PM
Does that mean the Declaration of Independence is null & void?

The Declaration of Independence does not grant nor guarantee any rights in any known legal sense. It is an interesting historical document, but it is not the basis of law in the United States, much as one might wish it so. Let's not disingenuously conflate it with the 2nd Amendment.

LemmyCaution
January 29, 2010, 06:30 PM
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. It's instructive to me that not one person in this thread, thus far, has made any mention of the notion that a 'well regulated militia' might have any use for defending against external enemies. The entire tenor of the thread suggests that the sole purpose of the 2A is to root out what the correspondents here believe to be the oppression of the very government defined by the founding documents- in other words an internal enemy. We've become obsessed with definitions of 'real Americans' and purity tests. There is a perpetually aggrieved and fearful minority in this country that defines itself not by what it believes, positively, but rather in distinction from what it doesn't believe. It has no identity other than how it defines its enemies and is always looking under every rock for another chance to project its paranoia and insecurity on some perceived outsider that is a threat to the tribe.

It is for this reason that this group cares only for the 2A and none of the others. They belittle the other amendments in the Bill of Rights, or see them only as a means of reinforcing 2A. Some actually lament the 1A. They were nowhere to be seen as the unitary executive eviscerated the 4A by authorizing wholesale surveillance of all domestic communication. When others protested, this group was the first to declare that the protesters were 'on the terrorists' side' and crowed 'If you've nothing to hide, you've nothing to fear.' Likewise with torture and detention without trial- things that should be anathema to anyone who would carry the name 'American.' These people whine about the use of the word 'alleged' in news reports, as if due process were the last refuge of cheese eating surrender monkeys, as if the republic would fall if we presumed that a moron with explosives in his shorts was innocent until proven guilty beyond all reasonable doubt by a jury of his peers. Exactly who are the cowards in this narrative?

Why would one privilege the 2A over all others? It certainly has done nothing to defend the others against the relentless assaults they've been under for the last ten years, regardless of the aphoristic pretensions in that regard. I suspect that certain of us value the 2A simply as the guarantee that we will have the tools we need to do violence to our fellow countrymen someday, and are salivating at the thought of gaining the excuse, with their constant coy questioning of whether or not 'it's time.'

When it does become 'time,' I hope you all realize that it's also the end of the American experiment.

I'm very afraid of what comes after that.

Ed Ames
January 29, 2010, 06:43 PM
It is for this reason that this group cares only for the 2A and none of the others.

Lemmy, what on earth are you talking about? You can't possibly defend that assertion, and it's such a glaring and ignorant error that it diminishes the value of anything else you could write.

Shadow Man
January 29, 2010, 06:56 PM
The Declaration of Independence does not grant nor guarantee any rights in any known legal sense. It is an interesting historical document, but it is not the basis of law in the United States, much as one might wish it so. Let's not disingenuously conflate it with the 2nd Amendment.

This country was founded upon three principles; that of a Declaration of Independance, an Alliance with Foreign Powers, and a Confederation of Law (Constitution). Each is equally important, and, like a three legged stool, the United States cannot stand without all three.

LemmyCaution
January 29, 2010, 07:10 PM
This country was founded upon three principles; that of a Declaration of Independance, an Alliance with Foreign Powers, and a Confederation of Law (Constitution). Each is equally important, and, like a three legged stool, the United States cannot stand without all three.

Very possibly. However, the subject is 'Use of the 2A,' not cobbling together an excuse for sedition from cherry picked excerpts of the founding documents.

Shadow Man
January 29, 2010, 07:24 PM
I was in no way using it to cobble together an excuse for anything. Stop jumping to conclusions, or putting words in my posts. I was merely pointing out to you that it was not simply an "interesting historical document".

As for "cherry picking" parts of the documents, how else are we to use them? Look at them as a whole? That really works...if you cannot look at individual parts of the documents that pertain to your specific question, then what is the point of referring to the documents at all? No, they are not meant to be looked at as a whole, thats why there are subsets, sections, clauses, etc.

Go back and re-read (assuming you read them at all) some of my previous posts. I think I made it very clear that I was in no way suggesting rebellion, or looking for an excuse. Don't put the blasted cart before the horse.

Gungnir
January 29, 2010, 07:59 PM
It is for this reason that this group cares only for the 2A and none of the others.

Au Contraire mon Frere, we care about the 2nd because it is the teeth behind the other 9.

I care about the 1st because it lets me write things like here, and petition my senator, and protest peaceably.

I care about the 3rd because I used to be a squaddie and I don't want a bunch of them hanging out at my place without some form of compensation.

I care about they 4th because I want to keep my stuff, and don't want any government official digging through it without cause.

I care about the 5th because I don't know what the police know if I'm arrested, so I'd like to keep my own counsel until I do.

I care about the 6th because if I exercise the 5th, I can have someone come and help me out.

I care about the 7th because it is better to be quickly judged by 12 of my peers than some magistrate who couldn't care less about me, and just wants to get home to his wife and kids.

I care about the 8th because when I'm exercising the 5th I don't want someone to waterboard me or use thumbscrews, nor demand $20 million bail for a traffic ticket.

I care about the 9th just because something isn't written down in the others it doesn't mean that I don't have a right to it.

I care about the 10th, because I believe that minimal federal government is a good thing, and that states have unique issues and problems that cannot be dealt with on a federal level.

Mostly I care about the 2nd because without some form of physical defense the other 9 are easily taken, and I cannot do anything beyond martyrdom to prevent it. If I choose martyrdom I want to make sure those taking those rights have a few martyrs of their own before I become one.

jakemccoy
January 29, 2010, 08:01 PM
As long there's at least one state that will have "shall issue" CCW permits, American citizens will not be utilizing the Second Amendment to revolt against the powers that be. I say this because every time somebody has an issue with the laws in their state, the standard response to that person is "move to [such-in-such] state". People who make such a recommendation are usually the same people who want to know "when do we use the 2nd Amendment?"

If you're itching for the opportunity, then get your boys and move to a state like New York, Illinois or California and have at it. No, you're not going to do it. Quick, think of some clever rationale why you're not going to do it. You're just not going to do it - not now, not in the future.

So, keep going to the range, pay your NRA membership, write your lawmakers, dress nicely, practice gun safety, abide by laws, educate people about lawful gun ownership and recruit one anti-gun person to become a gun owner. If ALL gun owners did these simple things, the answer to the original question is we'll never have to fire a single shot to fight the powers that be in America.

LemmyCaution
January 29, 2010, 08:52 PM
Amen, Jake McCoy.

ConstitutionCowboy
January 29, 2010, 09:19 PM
I think the constitution was written by a bunch of intelligent and careful people who were not afraid to speak in absolutes. "Congress shall make no law..." type absolutes. They did so in many areas... but they refrained in this case.


"Shall not be infringed" is as absolute as it gets. "... to keep and bear arms, ..." is just as absolute. The only wiggle room you're going to find in the Second Amendment is what gets interpolated into it or through malapropism of its words. You may dissemble all you wish, but it won't change what the second Amendment clearly dictates in plain English.

They did so in many areas... but they refrained in this case. In doing so, they pushed the burden of carrying that argument to each succeeding generation and made that portion of their document subject to interpretation. Did they mean to? Who knows?

I know. I know they didn't make it subject to interpretation. If they had, they would have written it in vague terms and left instructions telling succeeding generations to interpret it as they see fit. In the second place, they wouldn't have left it up to interpretation due to their mistrust of government. And, I've found nothing in the Founding Father's writings that would indicate any desire to leave the Second Amendment up to interpretation.


They were not within their rights to bear arms against a farmer with better land because the farmer wasn't harming them, even if the farmer had it better than they did.

That is without question. But if your interpretation of "bear Arms" includes using those arms, and consequently using those arms cannot be infringed, what is to stop anyone from shooting the farmer for his land? The only reason people try to include using arms as part of "bear" in the Second Amendment is so they can claim the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is not without limit and thereby justify placing "reasonable restrictions" on the right to keep and bear arms. Without "use" involved, just as the Second Amendment stands, there is no "excuse" to infringe the right. Reasonable restrictions can be placed on the USE of arms, and that would not infringe the RKBA.

As I said in an earlier post, you can bear arms in peace and in war. When you go beyond keep and bear, you enter whole new realms such as criminal activity; self defense; defense of the nation; defense against or throwing off tyranny, despots, and dictators; sports; hunting; etc. etc.


Taking me out of context is when you extract this ...

everyone has the right to kill whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want

...out of this ...

If your interpretation is true, everyone has the right to kill whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want. We bear arms in peace as well as in war. "Bear" takes you right up to the point you pull the trigger. Even after you pull the trigger, you are still bearing, but now you are using the arms you bear to kill. We don't keep and bear harm and death. We keep and bear the tool capable of harm and death.

... and make it sound like it's my idea when it's something concluded from what you have proposed.

LOL...no, that's as laughable a stretch as thinking that "bear arms" means to carry them.

"Bear arms" DOES include carrying them, but not using them. It's like I said, the only reason people try to include using arms as part of "bear" in the Second Amendment is so they can claim the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is not without limit and thereby place "reasonable restrictions" on the right to keep and bear arms in defiance of the Second Amendment.

Woody

Ed Ames
January 29, 2010, 09:47 PM
Cowboy, I see the problem.

You seem to think that rights only exist if they cannot come into conflict with other rights...that if ANY exercise of my right would conflict with someone else's rights then it can't be a right. That's absurd. I have a right to a speedy trial even if my getting a quick trial slows down someone else's trial.

That, and you think you are playing a game and people are trying to trap you.


...the only reason people try to include using arms as part of "bear" in the Second Amendment is so they can claim the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is not without limit and thereby place "reasonable restrictions" on the right to keep and bear arms in defiance of the Second Amendment.

Categorically false. I use the standard meaning of "bear arms" (which is primarily use) because I have that right. I'm not trying to trap you or claim the right is not without limit. Quite the opposite, I'm saying that YOU are limiting the definition of the right for your own political reasons.

I have a right to be part of a militia. I have a right to join a private mercenary force. I have a right to go to central America as a soldier of fortune. I have a right to offer my services to the US military. I have, in short, a RIGHT to bear arms. Not limited to carrying them, not some twisted out of context "we'll only look at bear instead of bear arms" right to bearing as a burden. A right to take up arms.

That's the right every American (male) had in 1800, and I don't care for your attempt to take it away from me through some narrow and twisted interpretation of "bear" that is completely out of context.

The fact that I have a right doesn't mean my right trumps everyone else's rights. It doesn't mean I can't be prosecuted for the consequences of exercising my rights if those consequences result in a wrongful homicide or even property damage. I can be, just like a soldier in the USMC can be, because the presence of a right doesn't remove other rights, even if both rights can come into conflict.

Re: out of context quoting. You seem to like it, given your fixation on the single word "bear" instead of "bear arms", but the words are "bear arms". "Bear arms" means take up arms. It was used by the authors of the declaration of independence, and the bill of rights, and you are saying that to take up arms means, "to kill whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want". That's your statement, and not some twisting by me. And, given that the founding fathers took up (bore) arms, that's what you are saying they did.

mack
January 29, 2010, 10:45 PM
I didn't read any posts in this thread that suggested that people start engaging in armed rebellion, nor did I read any posts in which the author seemed to be itching to engage in said conflict.

I highly doubt that should such a situation occur that the citizens would be the first to resort to arms, history seems to suggest that governments that become oppressive resort to armed violence against the people first.

Since this is a firearms forum, people do tend to focus on guns and on the second amendment as it does concern the keeping and bearing of arms.

However, that does not imply that individuals do not care equally if not more about other rights. The topic of this thread is about the second amendment so that too could explain the focus?

Yes, the second amendment does serve the function of providing for an militia force, by protecting the individuals right to keep and bear arms, and that force can be used in defense of foreign assaults. And in fact it could well be argued that the unorganized militia has played a huge role in defending this country from terrorist attack - as after the fourth plane went down short of its target due to the unorganized militia it was obvious to the terrorists that such an attack would not work again. Maybe blow a plane up, but they weren't going to be able to take one over and fly it into a high value target.

Still, given the power of the existent standing armed forces and the organized militia - no conventional armed invasion of the US is feasible at this time or in the foreseeable future - and the Continental US has not faced a serious or even plausible threat for real invasion since WWII. Even then the chances were remote.

Therefore people tend at this juncture in our history to be more concerned with the possibility of domestic enemies as a threat to their liberty. And the only armed defense against that is the unorganized militia. But I addressed that in more detail in prior posts to this thread, including a mention of the importance of guarding all our rights.

If one honestly looks at the number of people deprived of their liberty and killed this past century - the vast majority were not the victims of war or foreign invasion - they were victims of their own governments.

As the old saying goes, freedom is not free and it is the duty of each of us to work to ensure that we retain or expand that freedom for our posterity. Doing nothing is a sure way to lose it. We do something by using the soapbox, the ballot box, the jury box, and if need be the cartridge box.

"As nightfall does not come all at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged. And it is in such a twilight that we all must be aware of change in the air—however slight—lest we become unwilling victims of the darkness." Justice William O. Douglas

Lastly, I agree that the Declaration of Independence has no standing in law. It is more important than that, it is the foundational document of our nation. It is the spiritual foundation that set the structure upon which our Constitution and the Bill of Rights rest.

the iron horse
January 29, 2010, 10:55 PM
"If one honestly looks at the number of people deprived of their liberty and killed this past century - the vast majority were not the victims of war or foreign invasion - they were victims of their own governments."


That is why I have voted Libertarian since the early 90s.

mack
January 29, 2010, 11:27 PM
RC45 - thank you for your perspective - and welcome to THR.

ConstitutionCowboy
January 30, 2010, 12:02 AM
Alright Ed. Give me some back-up to your claim that "bear arms" equals "take up arms" beyond your personal definition of the word "bear" or the phrase "bear arms".

I'm saying that YOU are limiting the definition of the right for your own political reasons.

I'm using the definitions of the words as defined in Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language, 1755. I can find no definition in that dictionary or any others commonly used in that period that would include "use" or "take up" in any definition of "bear" or "to bear".

You seem to think that rights only exist if they cannot come into conflict with other rights...that if ANY exercise of my right would conflict with someone else's rights then it can't be a right. That's absurd. I have a right to a speedy trial even if my getting a quick trial slows down someone else's trial.

Poor example. Even if your trial slows mine down, both might still be considered speedy. And besides, what does this have to do with the topic at hand? It's bad enough that you move goal posts, must you also kick the ball to another field as well?

Categorically false. I use the standard meaning of "bear arms" (which is primarily use) because I have that right.

As I asked, please show me where you get that definition.

Re: out of context quoting. You seem to like it, given your fixation on the single word "bear" instead of "bear arms", but the words are "bear arms". "Bear arms" means take up arms. It was used by the authors of the declaration of independence, and the bill of rights, and you are saying that to take up arms means, "to kill whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want". That's your statement, and not some twisting by me. And, given that the founding fathers took up (bore) arms, that's what you are saying they did.

"to kill whomever they wish or think is a threat or has something they want". I've never claimed that. It's what you imply by including the use of arms in the RKBA that cannot be infringed. If the use of arms cannot be infringed, there is nothing government can do to stop any use or consequence of the use of arms. It's just plain silly.

Know why a law that says you cannot fire your guns in the middle of town except in self defense is not unconstitutional? Because the Second Amendment doesn't cover the use of arms.

We've drifted fairly far off topic. So, just to repeat my answer to the OP's question: You use the Second Amendment in court when your right to keep and bear arms has been infringed.

Woody

gunsandreligion
January 30, 2010, 12:32 AM
But, hso, that's no fun! Why, when I'm prepping for the revolution, it means I can go out in the woods and wear camouflage and run around with my Mosin Nagant and pretend to be a hero! LOL:D

Ed Ames
January 30, 2010, 12:56 AM
Alright Ed. Give me some back-up to your claim that "bear arms" equals "take up arms" beyond your personal definition of the word "bear" or the phrase "bear arms".

"Bear Arms"

Merriam Webster: "to serve as a soldier"

Collins: "to serve in the armed forces"

American Biographical dictionary (1857): "In 1781 he was required by the British commander to bear arms or to return to Charleston; ... "

American Declaration of Independence: "He has constrained our fellow citizens taken captive on the high seas to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands. "

Oxford English Dictionary: ""to serve as a soldier, do military service, fight," Circa 1330

A Dictionary of Christian Antiquities... Vol 2 (1880): "...in answering the question of Celsus why Christians do not bear arms and bring help to the emperor, admits the fact that they were unwilling to take up arms and slay men..."

World Book Dictionary, Volume 1 (2003): "to serve as a soldier; fight"

Founding Faith: "The Virginia ratifying convention proposed a Bill of Rights; the nineteenth clause stated: 'That any person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms ought to be exempted, upon payment of an equivalent to employ another to bear arms in his stead.'"

Etc ad nausium.

Note that the phrase was also used outside of a military context during that period. There are many references to bearing arms in a civilian context, but those retain a similar flavor: To take up arms FOR USE. To capture the flavor: you are not bearing arms when you place an unloaded pistol in your rucksack and walk into the woods, you are bearing arms when you go into the woods with a loaded weapon intending to shoot a deer.

tasco 74
January 30, 2010, 03:19 AM
i use my 2nd amendment rights every day................

LIFE IS SHORT.....

mb419
January 30, 2010, 08:19 AM
I can't believe that this thread has nearly a 100 posts since we've heard from Justin, our incredible moderator. I guess that it has evolved into too much of an intellectual discussion for his sarcastic crap.

ConstitutionCowboy
January 30, 2010, 09:40 PM
Mirriam Webster: "bear arms" (under the heading of bear

4 a. BEAR ARMS

1: to carry or possess arms

2: to serve as a soldier


Interesting. None of these definitions say to actually fight, kill, maim, destroy, engage in war, or whatever.


Collins English Dictionary: "bear arms"(under the heading of arms

4.BEAR ARMS

a. to carry weapons

b. to serve in the armed forces

c. to have a coat of arms

5. IN OR UNDER ARMS armed and prepared for war

8. TAKE (UP) ARMS to prepare to fight

9. TO ARMS! arm yourselves!

Interesting. None of these definitions say to actually fight, kill, maim, destroy, engage in war, or whatever.




American Declaration of Independence: "He has constrained our fellow citizens taken captive on the high seas to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands."

If these conscripts were ordered to bear arms against their country, why was it necessary for it to be mentioned that they "become the executioners of their friends and brethren" if it was understood that to bear arms meant to actually engage in war and use those arms? Simple answer: "bear arms" doesn't mean to actually use them. You bring them to bear, then you use them.

A Dictionary of Christian Antiquities... Vol 2 (1880): "...in answering the question of Celsus why Christians do not bear arms and bring help to the emperor, admits the fact that they were unwilling to take up arms and slay men..."

Again, we either have redundancy or "take up arms" and "slay men" don't mean the same thing.

Sorry, Ed. I'm not buying your bent interpretations, because there is this:

Oxford English Dictionary: ""to serve as a soldier, do military service, fight," Circa 1330

Hmm, that's curious. The printing press wasn't invented for over a hundred years. And the first Oxford English Dictionary didn't come to be until 1928. In my searching, I can't find where it says what you've posted here: "to serve as a soldier, do military service, fight," in any dictionary - least ways one easy to find on the Internet. When I google it, I do find that one line on Wikipedia, and I've found where it is referenced in DC v. Heller. And it seems that that is supposed to be some form of idiomatic definition of the phrase "bear arms". Maybe so. But when you take the ENTIRE phrase in the Second Amendment into context, it includes "Keep". There is no way you can make "keep" mean anything like going to war, fighting, to serve as a soldier, or do military service. The entire phrase taken into context negates any idiomatic definition of "bear arms" to mean, "to serve as a soldier, do military service, or fight".

When you take "keep" into account, you can both keep arms at home and keep arms with you - yes, Virginia, "bear arms".

Now I know right where you stand. It's not with the people, it's with folks like Justices Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer.

Conversation terminated.

Woody

Ed Ames
January 30, 2010, 09:46 PM
The printing press wasn't invented for over a hundred years. And the first Oxford English Dictionary didn't come to be until 1928.

:rolleyes:

Circa 1330 as in that's the first known references, not "that's when the dictionary was written". Yikes! Read up on etymology to see why that's important.

You are very much mistaken as to where I stand...and about a lot of other things. I think I've made it clear that I believe in, and stand for, a total view of the 2nd. In other words, that it acknowledges that we, me, you, and everybody has a named right to keep and bear arms of all types (military and recreational). Where you and I part is that you, for political reasons, think that the 2nd does not also include the right for you to form a militia, where I think the founders would find that bizarre. Of course you have the right to bear arms in the military sense. So do I. It's an individual right protected by the 2nd. You just don't like it because you want to justify Ruby Ridge/Branch Davidian style applications of force by government against "private militias".

I think it's telling that you, when presented with someone who wants true freedom, instantly start looking for loopholes and throwing insults.

ConstitutionCowboy
January 30, 2010, 10:48 PM
If your arguments matched your claimed stand, I'd believe you.

I'll take no more bait.

Woody

Ed Ames
January 30, 2010, 10:58 PM
You dislike my argument because you have trapped yourself into thinking that you must break "bear arms" into "bear" in order to be pro-individual-RKBA. You were suckered into thinking that by people who wanted to be able to attack private (civilian) militia groups despite their clear protection under the 2nd. You bought into their arguments so hard that you can't accept that others can parse things differently and reach similar, but in fact broader (acknowledging more personal rights), conclusions.

That would be fine. However, you then make the mistake of claiming that, because you don't agree with how I get to my conclusions, I must in fact be your enemy.

That's just stupid. Sorry.

stroked250
January 30, 2010, 11:31 PM
I know I use the Second Amendment every day when I put my 1911 into my IWB before I go about my day!

Ohio Gun Guy
January 30, 2010, 11:32 PM
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=501873

When these people do something.......:fire:

jhco50
January 31, 2010, 12:03 AM
The 2nd amendment recognizes the God given right to keep and bear arms. And YES, it is God given, as are the rights of freedom of speech, of religion, of assembly, etc. No God given right can be GRANTED by government/men OR taken away. The left has worked for decades to disarm the American people because it is both very difficult AND very dangerous to attempt to enslave and armed citizenry. The amendment was specifically included in our Constitution for the purpose of making sure the PEOPLE had the means to defend the nation from attack AND defend their rights against a criminal/tyrannical state. The left will eventually overturn our right to keep and bear arms, probably by indirect means. These are people who cannot help themselves. On that day, we'll know if the US is meant to continue on by the number of actual Americans who take up arms and march on DC.

Oldpuppymax is absolutely correct. You fellas are disecting the 2A just like the Liberals like to do. We haven't lost the original intent and if you guys will read the letters the original founders wrote back and forth, you would see their intent for yourselves. When it is time for us to stand up to tyrany, you will still be discussing the meaning of bear arms.

stroked250
January 31, 2010, 01:08 PM
scary vid...

RC45
February 3, 2010, 03:12 AM
If the framers of the constitution did not intend for people to have keep their arms and be permitted to use them, why even mention them at all?

If all they meant was you could keep your arms and carry them to your cousins farm, why not just say "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear plowshares shall not be infringed" rather than "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"?

After all. what good are arms if you may not use them? There is no more security in arms that may not be used than there is in carting a plowshare around.

I believe, that to think the 2nd Amendment means anything less than, the people may keep weapons that they might at times need to bring to bear against a tyrannical government and recall the legislature, is nothing short of a dismissal of the very core founding principals of this nation.

It seems the common misconception is that if, we the people, have to resort to an armed recall of the government it is an indicator that the Great American Experiment has failed, but I believe that will be the very proof that the Great American Experiment has worked as it was designed to.

Remember, such an action would not be a "revolution that overturns the government and replaces it", but rather an excercise in returning the government to the correct path as envisioned by the founding fathers.

And chances are, the simple act of bringing arms to bear may cause the misguided government of that time to back down and return to the founding principals with nary a shot fired.

Bufford t. Justice
February 3, 2010, 03:20 AM
Except our government would see us all as traitors and make war on us. A war we could never win at this point. Unless NFA is ever over turned and folks are allowed to own tanks and blackhawks we will never again have the might or the will to change any course this government sets for itself. Sad but true. The firearms we now own are the last resort between our freedom to live as we choose and obama and his ilk coming in to our homes and doing as they please.

WinchesterAA
February 3, 2010, 03:39 AM
I have and do things because I can, not because a piece of paper says I should be able to have and do things.

In this regard, I'd find it more accurate to say the constitution serves as a template for .govs insanity, but then again.. It doesn't mean as much today as it did yesterday, and grows ever nearer to being a useful as a taco bell wrapper in a drain somewhere.

Regardless of what the future holds, there are certain aspects of my lifestyle that are constant.


@Bufford - What, you don't know how to steal a tank?
Also, Steve lee is a bunghole. http://karendecoster.com/steve-lee-like-guns-and-government-gun-control.html

Bufford t. Justice
February 3, 2010, 04:19 AM
I have and do things because I can, not because a piece of paper says I should be able to have and do things.

In this regard, I'd find it more accurate to say the constitution serves as a template for .govs insanity, but then again.. It doesn't mean as much today as it did yesterday, and grows ever nearer to being a useful as a taco bell wrapper in a drain somewhere.

Regardless of what the future holds, there are certain aspects of my lifestyle that are constant.


@Bufford - What, you don't know how to steal a tank?
Also, Steve lee is a bunghole. http://karendecoster.com/steve-lee-like-guns-and-government-gun-control.html
You're right. He is a bunghole. Thanks for the link. Too bad too I liked the song.

trol79
February 3, 2010, 12:09 PM
I think many countrys in europe need a 2nd Amandment too! ;)

Steven Youngblood
February 3, 2010, 05:29 PM
All day, everyday.

zombieoutfitters
February 4, 2010, 11:55 AM
Except our government would see us all as traitors and make war on us. A war we could never win at this point. Unless NFA is ever over turned and folks are allowed to own tanks and blackhawks we will never again have the might or the will to change any course this government sets for itself. Sad but true. The firearms we now own are the last resort between our freedom to live as we choose and obama and his ilk coming in to our homes and doing as they please.
That is one of my biggest bones of contention regarding the ownership of arms for rebellion against the government. We're not talking men against men with muskets and cannons. We're talking semi-automatic rifles, shotguns and pistols against laser guided smart bombs and drones. If the SHTF and it's the "free man" against "big government" we've all seen the movies to imagine all the plausible scenarios.

We're silly to think that our gun collections will count for anything if all the powers and resources of this nation were brought to bear upon us. Even in and of that scenario there are problems for both sides. We would in effect be powerless against the might that is our military...BUT...what would big government do? Wipe out everyone? Then who is left to pay taxes and push around? As has been shown in history...the government would need to control the majority some how. Whether through threat of force, financial motivation OR put us in a position as a society where we are dependent upon them for the most basic life-needs. Then they could control the masses, single out the "rebellious" and wage war against them. Sounds like a REALLY good argument AGAINST socialism to me.

Don't get me wrong, my spirit never waivers and I stand for protecting our rights and liberties as intended by the founders...but it's an ugly, long and drawn out picture one must paint to think of "free men" alone against the current military machine.

Personally, I'm pulling for RC45's scenario...

Great thread by the way!

ConstitutionCowboy
February 4, 2010, 12:46 PM
zombieoutfitters

Don't forget that all those mighty weapons our government could wield against us require someone at the controls, or someone to push the button. Those planes have to land some time, the tanks need fuel and ammo, and all our mighty navy can do is repel any outsiders hoping to muscle in on the action. France had a resistance of how many hundreds or thousands? We'd be a resistance of how many millions?

No, if they dared, it would certainly be their end not ours.

I would prefer to be equally or better armed, and in fact I insist! We are not supposed to be cannon fodder, sacrificing our lives to the end of forcing the enemy to use up their ammo before we might prevail. I like the mutually assured destruction doctrine that might keep us on the brink of nuclear disaster but no one will breech. Any time a government believes it can win - yes, even over its own people - will, sooner or later, attempt it.

After all. what good are arms if you may not use them? There is no more security in arms that may not be used than there is in carting a plowshare around.

I believe, that to think the 2nd Amendment means anything less than, the people may keep weapons that they might at times need to bring to bear against a tyrannical government and recall the legislature, is nothing short of a dismissal of the very core founding principals of this nation.

It seems the common misconception is that if, we the people, have to resort to an armed recall of the government it is an indicator that the Great American Experiment has failed, but I believe that will be the very proof that the Great American Experiment has worked as it was designed to.

Remember, such an action would not be a "revolution that overturns the government and replaces it", but rather an excercise in returning the government to the correct path as envisioned by the founding fathers.

And chances are, the simple act of bringing arms to bear may cause the misguided government of that time to back down and return to the founding principals with nary a shot fired.

You're spot on. While local governments may be able to prohibit discharging firearms in the middle of downtown except in cases of self defense, no law would long stand - nor those who would pass and enforce such a law - that would prohibit or in effect prohibit the use of our arms in casting off tyranny, despotism, enslavement, dictatorship, or any other form of government We the People do not choose for ourselves or attempt to cast off at the ballot box.

Woody

"I pledge allegiance to the rights that made and keep me free. I will preserve and defend those rights for all who live in this Union, founded on the belief and principles that those rights are inalienable and essential to the pursuit and preservation of life, liberty, property, and happiness." B.E.Wood

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