Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Real Purpose of the Second Amendment--Chapter 6

Chapter 6: Founders Intended the States to form Militias

Much evidence exists in the histories of the original colonies, and in the writings of the founders of the U.S. Constitution, that they fully intended that the sovereign states of the United States form their own militias, so much, that they made provision in the Constitution in support of militias.
Article 1, Section 8, of the U.S. Constitution, “The Congress shall have Power To . . . To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions; To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress. . . .”
As we can see by the wording in the last half of the above paragraph in section 8 of Article 1, that this is referring to state militias, organized, and officers appointed by the said states.
The Second Amendment: “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.” Not only must the states, according to the constitution, have their own militias, but also have the obligation of creating a disciplinary structure to maintain the efficient organization of the militia, and knowing how to contact in emergency every able-bodied man (and women) for immediate service.
What is a militia? Who constitutes the militia? “The United States Code (the laws of Congress) states in 10 USC 311(a) that, "The Militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age..." The US Supreme Court ruled in US v. Miller that when called into action the militia was to show up "bearing arms supplied by themselves..." Black's Law Dictionary defines militia as, "The body of citizens in a state (read jural society), enrolled for discipline as a military force, but not engaged in actual service except in emergencies, as distinguished from regular troops or a standing army.", "The body of citizens in a state" and not the "regular troops of a standing army." The militia is distinctly different from the National Guard or the US military forces. Source.

How did the founding fathers describe the militia? Source.
"Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man against his own bosom. Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright 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." – Tenche Coxe, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788.

Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts: "Whenever governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins." (spoken during floor debate over the Second Amendment, I Annals of Congress at 750, August 17, 1789.) “What, sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty." Rep. of Massachusetts, I Annals of Congress at 750 (August 17, 1789).

Alexander Hamilton: "Little more can be aimed at with respect to the people at large than to have them properly armed and equipped." (Id) {responding to the claim that the militia itself could threaten liberty}" There is something so far-fetched, and so extravagant in the idea of danger of liberty from the militia that one is at a loss whether to treat it with gravity or raillery (mockery). (Id)

Patrick Henry: "The people have a right to keep and bear arms." (Elliott, Debates at 185). "Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in our possession and under our own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?, 3 Elliot Debates 168-169. "The great object is that every man be armed. Everyone who is able might have a gun." 3 Elliot, Debates at 386.

Thomas Jefferson In his Commonplace Book, Jefferson quotes Cesare Beccaria from his seminal work, On Crimes and Punishment: “Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks." Encyclopedia of T. Jefferson, 318 (Foley, Ed., 1967). "No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.", Proposal for a Virginia Constitution, 1 T. Jefferson Papers, 334 (C.J. Boyd, Ed. 1950)

James Madison: "A well regulated militia, composed of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country." (1st Annals of Congress, at 434, June 8th 1789, emphasis added. "As the greatest danger to liberty is from large standing armies, it is best to prevent them by an effectual provision for a good militia." (notes of debates in the 1787 Federal Convention).

George Washington: "A free people ought not only to be armhttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifed and disciplined but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government." Source.
"Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the people's liberty teeth keystone... the rifle and the pistol are equally indispensable... more than 99% of them by their silence indicate that they are in safe and sane hands. The very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil intehttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifrference. When firearms go, all goes, we need them every hour." (Address to 1st session of Congress). Source.
In conclusion, we can easily see that it was the intention of our founders that each state develop a militia of every able-bodied citizen, owning his own firearm, and being closely regulated by the state of his residence. I submit, that many of the gun-grabbers know this, and they do not care, as their goal is for government to maintain control over society, and to provide a state sponsored military, i.e., National Guard–never the constitutionally designated militia–and county and city sherif and police forces.
The police very seldom ever save lives except in the case of hostage taking, but show up after a crime to write it up and investigate it. But, thousands each year defend and protect themselves through use of their own firearms. It is imperative that we do all we can in our power to protect our Second Amendment.

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