Saturday, December 25, 2010

The Misunderstood and Deliberately Misinterpreted Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights

Part 3

Apologies to my regular blog followers. Sometime back, I began a series on the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Originally in searching information on the Second Amendment, I came across the following article: If you wish to copy or repost any parts of this article, please go to the original source, and be sure to credit Rich Mason and his web site: Tennesseefirearms dot com. He grants that it may be reprinted, retransmitted, and broadcast on a not-for-profit basis. I continue with Point 4 of his lengthy article.
Why the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is Important to You
Point 4
By Rich Mason, Bartlett, TN
Copyright © 1999, 2000 - All Rights Reserved.
Point 4: The Arms of a Free People. The arms referred to by the Second Amendment and the founders of this country are the arms necessary for the free people of America to be able to hold their governments unbridled appetite for power in check and to resist invaders when called upon to serve in the militia in defense of our country, state or community. If the arms of the soldiers of this era are automatic rifles, machine guns and sub-machine guns then it is the right, in fact the obligation, for the citizens of this country to possess such arms themselves. It is laughable on its face, as some have stated, that the Second Amendment would grant to us the right to only have flintlocks or muskets, such weapons as were in use at the time of our countries founding, to defend ourselves against an armed force raised by the government to oppress us, or to defend against an invading enemy. This would be the same as saying, concerning the First Amendment, that the press could only use the printing technology that existed at the time of the Revolution while the government could use movies, television, radio, modern printing presses, the Internet and any other means of communications that it desired. A ridiculous thought isn't it? If it's ridiculous for the First Amendment, why is it any less ridiculous for the Second Amendment? Our rights are not "frozen in a moment of time", they are eternal rights and we are free to use our ingenuity to advance the technology to ensure those rights. If anything, we have the rights to limit the governments use of technology, not the other way around.

Surely, our founding fathers meant for us to have arms that would allow us to meaningfully resist, better yet, deter the government from any attempt at tyranny. No doubt this is a shocking position to the ignorant masses that have been lied to by their government, the press and the educational institutions of this country that our Second Amendment right exists only so we can have single shot sporting arms for such purposes as hunting, target shooting, etc., or that the Second Amendment is a right of the states to maintain armed militias. The following quotes ably put to rest both of these specious arguments:

"The whole of that Bill [of Rights] is a declaration of the right of the people at large or considered as individuals...[I]t establishes some rights of the individual as unalienable and which consequently, no majority has a right to deprive them of." -- Albert Gallatin to Alexander Addison, Oct 7, 1789, MS. in N.Y. Hist. Soc.-A.G. Papers, 2

"Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birth-right of an American... The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." -- Tench Coxe, Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788

"...What country can preserve its liberties, if its rulers are not warned from time to time, that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify if a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure...." -- Thomas Jefferson: Letter to Colonel Smith, Nov. 13, 1787

" disarm the people is the best and most effective way to enslave them..." -- George Mason, 3 Elliot, Debates at 380

Second and First Amendment Paralleled

If you are in doubt about whether the Second Amendment is still valid and important to you, even if you choose not to own a gun, consider this:

If the government were to pass legislation to limit your First Amendment right to criticize the government in any form, would you be upset? Would you consider your rights had been unconstitutionally infringed? Would you still feel free? Of course you would be upset and, no, you wouldn’t still be free, because one of the bedrock's of our freedom is the ability to freely speak our minds on any subject, particularly criticizing those we have elected to govern us. It is the basis upon which this country was founded, and when we lose that right, we stop being citizens and become subjects.

While you may not have considered it in the same light, the Second Amendment is just as important as the First Amendment. We must support the Second Amendment, with the same fervor that we support the First Amendment. Why? Because our liberties were won at the point of a gun, and the sad reality of this world is that ultimately they can only be maintained at the point of a gun.

Let me ask you this? When the government outlaws free speech, what will you do to oppose it? Write letters of protest? No, that's now against the law. Protest in the streets? No, that's now against the law too. When speech is suppressed and tyranny reigns, only the sound of the gun will be heard. This seems extreme to today's pampered, cowed society, but in the end it will be the only means left to protect the First Amendment when the government finds it inconvenient for us to exercise our right of free speech and religion. However, if our guns have been confiscated, or simply limited to weapons ineffective against an oppressing government, then how will we restore our liberties? The answer, of course, is we won't be able to.

If you think that such a situation can’t happen then you have failed to learn the lessons of history. We must all guard jealously the rights we are endowed with by our Creator…ALL of them, not just the ones we like, from the tyranny of government control.

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