America’s Second Amendment is Under Fire
Few things in the U.S. are more hotly contested today than the Second Amendment to the Constitution for the United States of America.
The definition of “the people” is best exemplified by how the phrase is used in the immediately preceding Amendment. As both were edited, finalized, voted upon and ratified on December 15, 1791 along with the remainder of our Bill of Rights, I present them both together, as was our Founding Fathers’ original intent as they evidenced by grouping them together in our Bill of Rights:
“Amendment I: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
“Amendment II: 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.”
Clearly, the First Amendment’s “right of the people peaceably to assemble” isn’t limited to the militia. Ergo, the Second Amendment’s use of “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed” may reasonably be assumed to be referring to the same body of “the people” as the First Amendment’s “right of the people peaceably to assemble.”
Naturally, the “it only applies to Militias!” crowd will undoubtedly raise their heads, regardless of the fact the United States Supreme Court has repeatedly affirmed the right to keep and bear arms is not limited to militias or the militia, as well as the fact the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right, both in Heller and McDonald.
In District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008), the Supreme Court of the United States of America ruled the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right unconnected with military or militia service.
In McDonald v. City of Chicago, 561 U.S. 742 (2010), the Supreme Court of the United States of America ruled the right of an individual to “keep and bear arms”, as protected under the Second Amendment, is incorporated by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and is therefore enforceable against the states, thereby protecting those rights from infringement by state and local governments.
Some of the “no other countries allow individual ownership of firearms!” crowd may rear their heads, as well, despite the fact that most of the 196 countries around the world allow for individual ownership of firearms
In light of the above, why do people continue to rail against the Constitution for the United States of America and it’s Second Amendment which secures the right of the people to keep and bear arms?
- Money and Power Hungry Politicians with intentions of ignoring if not trampling upon the Constitutional rights and freedoms of we the people: First off, such individuals should never be elected to office. If they’re unwilling to respect rights clearly delineated and protected in our Bill of Rights, there’s no telling how much further they’re willing to go to get what they want. Unlawful searches and seizures? That’s happening. Denial of firearms “permits?” That’s happening. Proposing and enacting un-Constitutional legislation i.e., one law after another which directly violates the Constitution for the United States of America? That, too, is happening. In fact, it’s been happening for a very long time, almost exclusively perpetrated against the people of the United States of America by those belonging to the Democratic Party. This includes everyone who campaigns on a platform of gun control. They cannot honestly take their Oath of Office to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic” and “bear true faith and allegiance to the same” on Day 1, much less throughout the remainder of their term. The best defense against people like this is to never, ever, ever, ever, EVER elect them into office in the first place.
- Irrationally Psychotic Persons for whom firearms represent fearful or worrisome objects: Yes, owners should secure their firearms. For those who live alone or with other responsible adults, locking all exterior doors and windows meets all rational requirements for securing firearms. If you disagree, you’re not rational, are probably and anti-gunner, and would require twelve levels of safes, if not an outright, un-Constitutional ban. I would remind such people I not only have a Constitutional right to keep (own/possess) and bear (carry) arms undifferentiated with respect to type of arm, location, or time, but I also have a Constitutional right “to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects.” I keep my firearm at the ready. Your insistence that I, a single individual living in my own home, keep it locked up at all times is not only highly irrational, but it’s also a violation of my Fourth Amendment rights. Seriously — get lost. Seek professional psychiatric help. Systematic desensitization is a standard form of psychotherapy in these situations. Insisting that you’re not the one with the problem is highly irrational. You need help. Please get it.
- Ignorant People who erringly believe they’d be safer without firearms: While the vast majority of anti-gunners fall into this category, they’re often fanned into flame by money and power hungry politicians (Category 1). Ignorant people raise all manner of irrational objections, far too numerous to list herein. Debunking them is simple via SWOT analysis involving strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Even a simple pros and cons tables is sufficient to uncover most of their irrational and groundless arguments. The only valid arguments I’ve heard from this category fall into three groups:
- Those under age of majority (18) should not be allowed to handle firearms without adult supervision unless in cases of self defense in the preservation of life and limb.
- Those who have been convicted of a felony and are either incarcerated, out on probation, or on parole should not be allowed access to or to handle firearms at all, unless in cases of self defense in the preservation of life and limb.
- Those who have been deemed mentally unfit to handle firearms should not be allowed access to or to handle firearms at all, unless in cases of self defense in the preservation of life and limb.
Bottom line, contrary to popular misconception, firearms are inanimate objects, tools used at least 20 times more often to stop violent crime — including murder — than to commit murder. In fact, when the United Kingdom banned handguns and most private ownership of firearms, violent crime — including murder — more than tripled. Thanks to subsequent improvements in policing, violent crime — including murder — is now “only” 2.54 times higher than it was back when the general populace could protect themselves with firearms.
Lesson: When criminals have access to rocks, bats, clubs, tire irons, knives, spears, and illegal firearms, disarming the law-abiding general populace is an horrendous irresponsible thing to do. Even if you somehow managed to eradicate all firearms, criminals would still have access to rocks, bats, clubs, tire irons, knives, and spears, and the increase in violent crime resulting from disarming the law-abiding general populace would remain with us forever.
The right of the people to keep and bear arms, both as individuals absent participation in a militia, as well as outside their homes and without permission from any state, has indeed been very well established in courts of law from the United States Supreme Court on down.