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Old November 9, 2013, 01:54 PM   #101
maestro pistolero
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The right to "keep" and "bear" arms includes the implied right to use those arms. And the right to use arms is necessarily limited when it endangers others. Indeed, endangering others could arguably be the litmus test for determining whether laws infringe on the RKBA.
Well, that depends on who is being endangered, and why, does it not? The very force equalization derived from the right is facially the endangering it enables.
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Old November 9, 2013, 02:36 PM   #102
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Aguila,

How can you infringe that right while someone is incarcerated?
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Old November 9, 2013, 02:56 PM   #103
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al Norris
Since no ones linked to it yet...

Dick Metcalf has his Second Amendment beliefs; I have mine. They're not the same. | Second Amendment, Political Action, Personal opinions | GrantCunningham.com

Grant Cunningham makes the argument that should have been made by Dick Metcalf.
Thanks, Al.

Mr. Cunningham's views and approach seem very close to my own, but he expresses the concept better than it appears I have been able to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cunningham
This idea of net zero is not compromise! Compromise occurs when two entities have incompatible positions, and agree to modify their positions in order to reach a mutually desired goal. When we’re dealing with gun prohibitionists, their goal is to restrict or eliminate legal gun ownership; that’s certainly not a goal I share with them! My position is simple: the Second Amendment says certain things, and I want that to be respected today even if it wasn’t yesterday.

That doesn’t mean we should happily accept equilibrium with the prohibitionists, of course! If we have a position of strength, if we’re in a position to get something without any bargaining, we should use that opportunity to use incrementalism in our favor. The great thing is that when we make a gain, we have a new, better baseline for those times when we can only achieve net zero. Over time, using both gain when we can and net zero when we can’t, we’ll make positive progress.
The highlighted part says pretty much what I have in mind when I advocate continuing to push the notion that ANY regulation is an unconstitutional infringement. I certainly don't believe that we'll ever eliminate all gun regulations, but (here comes LawDog's cake again) I certainly don't think we should allow the opposition to start each new push on their side with the current status quo as an established baseline. As the metaphor of LawDog's cake shows us, we have already given up (whether through compromise or just plain loss) significant rights. It's time to start pushing back, time to make the opposition WORK for everything they get. Let's see some "compromise" on their side. "You guys want a new law? What are you going to give back to us in exchange?" If they aren't willing to give anything back, then they aren't really talking about "compromise," are they?
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Old November 9, 2013, 02:58 PM   #104
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Originally Posted by RX-79G
Aguila,

How can you infringe that right while someone is incarcerated?
You're right. I can't justify that. Obviously, then, we must eschew incarceration as punishment for crimes. Henceforth, all crimes will be punished by execution.
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Old November 9, 2013, 03:11 PM   #105
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C'mon. I'm making a simple point that you seem to be okay with some types of infringement, while using the phrase "shall not infringe" like it is limitless.

Either 2a can be infringed for very good reason, or it cannot and creates situations where people accused, incarcerated, but not convicted should be able keep their arms on them.

Do you support that infringement or not? Why or why not? How do you write a law the prevents certain people (or any people, for that matter) from being armed if there is such a thing as a truly uninfringeable, universal right?
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Old November 9, 2013, 03:52 PM   #106
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Originally Posted by RX-79G
C'mon. I'm making a simple point that you seem to be okay with some types of infringement, while using the phrase "shall not infringe" like it is limitless.

Either 2a can be infringed for very good reason, or it cannot and creates situations where people accused, incarcerated, but not convicted should be able keep their arms on them.

Do you support that infringement or not? Why or why not? How do you write a law the prevents certain people (or any people, for that matter) from being armed if there is such a thing as a truly uninfringeable, universal right?
Okay, even though I believe you are intentionally trying to bait me, I'll try to explain it to you. Can we begin by agreeing that words have meaning?

If we can agree that words have meaning, look up the definition of "forfeit." As a general rule, ALL constitutional rights are afforded to what might be termed "citizens (or 'people') in good standing." When a person engages in criminal activity and is apprehended, tried, and convicted, that person forfeits most of his/her constitutional rights for (at least) the duration of his/her incarceration. The right to keep and bear arms is neither "regulated" nor "infringed" -- it is forfeit. The same holds true for many of the other rights enshrined in the Bill or Rights:
  • Freedom of speech? Not really -- letters are subject to censorship, and prisoners can't just call a press conference to expound on their latest anti-societal rants.
  • Freedom from warrantless search and seizure? Nope -- the guards can search your cell or your person any time they want, with no warrant and no showing of justification or probable cause.
  • Freedom of association? Nope.
  • Voting? Last I knew, most prisoners couldn't vote (although I believe that's changing as of very recently).
So the answer is that the forfeiture of the RKBA for convicted criminals is not inconsistent with the Constitution, or with the language of the Second Amendment itself. The RKBA is not "infringed," it is forfeit.

Where I DO have a philosophical problem is the extension of the prohibition on the keeping and bearing of arms past the term of punishment. Once a person has served his/her term of incarceration and completed his/her parole, I think it is inconsistent with the 2A to not allow the person to have guns for self defense (or any other lawful purpose). At the same time, I don't like the idea of rabid killers wandering around with guns. But the reality is, a huge percentage of felons have bought a gun illegally within 48 hours of being released from prison anyway, so what good does the law do? It doesn't prevent that which it is supposed to prevent -- it just provides another charge to tack on if the felon goes recidivist and commits more crimes. I know the U.S. already has one of the highest percentages of incarceration in the world, but I nonetheless think that felons whom we don't trust to have a gun out in society simply should not BE out in society.

Last edited by Aguila Blanca; November 9, 2013 at 04:01 PM.
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Old November 9, 2013, 04:34 PM   #107
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I'm not trying to bait you. I'm trying to understand you.

You didn't read my example accurately:
Accused, incarcerated, not (yet) convicted. In other words, arrested and in jail. Not yet a felon.

This person, in our system, is "innocent until proven guilty". How can this person's uninfringeable right be removed for the unprotected purposes of officer or jail safety?


That aside, the word "forfeit" only appears once in the Constitution and Amendments under the treason section. Where do I find the Constitutional mechanism for the forfeiture of rights? I have a hard time seeing how you could have legal regulations that function to take away rights that can't be infringed when the Constitution doesn't specifically allow for it. That's your argument against regulation of 2a - that we can't just pass a law that takes the basic right away. Forfeiture of rights would be a regulation that would infringe on the 2a, since it is outside the Constitution.


These aren't dumb questions. If SCOTUS agreed with you, a suit would eventually show up in their court, and they'd have to decide how it is possible to disarm a suspect without infringing the uninfringeable.
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Old November 9, 2013, 05:04 PM   #108
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No discussion of Dick Metcalf's article on gun regulations?

Interesting that after all this discussion, apparently nobody is defending WHAT and HOW Metcalf wrote. That is, despite whatever intention he had, the content of his article was ineffectual and detrimental to their editorial standards. A few here may not see anything wrong with his article but there is no strong defense of the writing itself. Only of his proclaimed intention. Whether you agree with his intention or not it appears as a writer he failed to communicate well with his readers. And that is what a writer is paid to do.
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Old November 9, 2013, 05:11 PM   #109
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I think more than a couple people have agreed with what he wrote about too many people thinking that "not infringe" is not the same as "cannot regulate". Lots of us agree with that premise, and agree that this misunderstanding is a detriment to all of us.

And I think that it was about time someone said so from our ranks.

The rest of the article was poorly written, but the point of the article and the bravery it took in writing it are not to be overlooked. I doubt Metcalf didn't understand the risks, and yet he felt it was important enough for all of us to read that he wrote it anyway. That's the unwritten part of his message that I appreciate.
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Old November 9, 2013, 06:28 PM   #110
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RX79-G
I think more than a couple people have agreed with what he wrote about too many people thinking that "not infringe" is not the same as "cannot regulate". Lots of us agree with that premise, and agree that this misunderstanding is a detriment to all of us.
  1. What is your statistical basis for asserting that "Lots of us" agree with the premise that "regulate" does not equate to "infringe"? Metcalf wrote that, and it appears you agree with him, but I can't think of anyone else who has put forward that argument.
  2. I respectfully submit that the misunderstanding is on your part. Somewhere -- I believe early in this thread -- I have posted the definitions of the two words, clearly showing that they are functionally synonymous. Given that, what is the basis of your assertion that equating them is a misunderstanding?
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Old November 9, 2013, 06:42 PM   #111
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Maybe I was unclear because I used those contested words.

I simply meant that some of us agree with the idea that 2a is subject to some sorts of legal limits. Not Metcalf's specific use of "regulation" to make his argument, but the premise that there is an argument to be made.

Like the argument you yourself might make about those in jail, or nukes.
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Old November 9, 2013, 09:08 PM   #112
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Please explain how someone not convicted of a crime can "forfeit" their inalienable rights.

I think if SCOTUS said anyone can have a WMD 95% of Americans would appeal 2a.
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Old November 9, 2013, 11:14 PM   #113
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No discussion of Dick Metcalf's article on gun regulations?

And somehow we as a nation survived just fine without heavy handed federal regulation of guns prior to 1934. I would be happy to sit at the table if that was the point of discussion: let's revert to gun laws as of 1933 and then talk.

What were the federal gun laws of 1933?

Also, let's recall that many 19th century gun laws were about keeping guns out of the hands if blacks, not intended as reasonable laws for EVERYONE. So they were poor laws from the outset.
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Old November 10, 2013, 07:27 PM   #114
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Re comment in post # 42 and the quote from Metcalf, the term "well regulated", at the time of writing and in the 19th century was accepted to mean Properly Adjusted, as with the "regulation" of the barrels of a double rifle or Well Maintained, the meaning of which should be obvious.

I submit that "well regulated", did not then mean, nor does it now mean, "all bound up in/with red tape", or anything similar to that sad state of affairs.

Additionally, I had written earlier the following, should anyone be interested. I was informed that the topic had been closed.


I reference an article in 10 November edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, main section, page A-6, likely covered in other venues too. If this matter has already been discussed, pardon me.

I have not read this particular article, not do I regularly read Guns & Ammo, so I will make only a general comment.

The newspaper account states that Mr. Metcalf's article was, according to Mr. Jim Bequette, intended to "generate a healthy exchange of ideas on gun rights", which might well be the case. Seems however that the effort was poorly done, especially regarding reference to the fact that constitutional rights are subject to regulation. True enough, however one really important point seems to have gone missing.

The often repeated, ultimate goals of The Anti Gun Lobby are, from their own mouths, the Total Proscription of Privately Owned Firearms. Nothing here about "regulation of a right", what is here to be seen is the elimination of that right. End of story, in-so-far as I can tell.

How Mr. Metcalf could have missed the above mentioned, or why he seemingly ignores it is beyond me, but it looks like he has failed to notice the above mentioned, I wonder how and why, as perhaps others do too.

Last edited by alan; November 10, 2013 at 07:37 PM.
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Old November 10, 2013, 09:58 PM   #115
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Alan,

Your last paragraph and others seem to suppose that gun control is a binary debate in the US. Just because there is extremism on both ends doesn't mean that every voter concerned with violence wants to ban everything or that every 2a defender supports personally owned nukes.

It doesn't make sense to do everything as if the extremists are the only people you have to worry about. In fact, it's pointless and damaging to us to have to include the crazies on either side as the ones who own the debate. They don't - most voters across the board find extremists distasteful.

An awful lot of people understand the real pont of 2a, they just don't want to see dead kids on the news so much. Those are the people that would love to side with a gun rights law that at least addresses their fear instead of pretending the Constitution is a suicide pact championed by nut jobs.

So can we talk to that huge group of voters in the center, or do we have to continue to fight a war against the 1% on the extreme left to make the 1% on the extreme right happy, while losing all of the important votes?
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Old November 10, 2013, 10:52 PM   #116
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RX-79G:

Interesting response. I suppose that you might refer to me as "2a defender". That having been said, this business about "personally owned nukes" is hogwash, as the equally ridiculous stuff one hears about "your own anti tank rocket" or similar foolishness. By the way, I DO NOT discount the fact that likely the vast majority of people/voters perhaps, are as you put it, in the middle, and that we on the pro gun rights, pro Second Amendment side need to speak to them.

As to "seeing dead kids on the news", in fact, there aren't all that many so situated. How do you overcome media predilections, for instance that old, tried and true "If It Bleeds, It Leads" business.

When I referenced the ultimate goals of The Anti Gun Lobby, I didn't say, or infer that their goals were the goals of many voters, that middle group you mentioned, I simply mentioned the stated goals of that Anti Gun Lobby, about which little seems to be heard, though one hears a lot about the Gun Lobby, usually adverse comment from media. I'm all for talking to the center, the question of how to do this seemingly remains an open question.

Last edited by alan; November 10, 2013 at 11:00 PM.
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Old November 11, 2013, 12:07 AM   #117
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Some of the last posts, particularly the one from Aguila Blanca sort of remind me of a political novel I read years ago. The author was Eugene Burdick, the title was The 9th Wave.

The crux of the novel revolved about the following postulation. The electorate was about equally divided, elections being swung by which way about 10% of the vote went. Obtaining a majority or all of that 10% was the key to victory.
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Old November 11, 2013, 01:13 AM   #118
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There is no huge group of voters in the center. If anything, it's 49 percent hard-core pro-gun, 49 percent hard-core anti-gun, and a couple of percent on the fence. The fact that the antis don't have any understanding of the facts or of what they are arguing does not reduce the size of their group.
If that's what you believe, then it certainly explains why you think this is cut and dried.

I imagine some people think other debates, like abortion, are also completely composed of people who would line up in one picket line or the other. The fact of the matter is that the majority of people probably don't even have an opinion, let alone a strong enough one to go stand out in the cold holding a sign. Most people don't form strong opinions on political issues until they have to. They don't worry about banking practices until they get laid off in a recession.

Most citizens form or change opinions about being armed when their neighborhood is targeted by criminals, they are mentored into a shooting sport or when they see a couple massacres on the news. The rest of the time they think about paying bills, football and World of Warcraft.


I had a funny experience two years ago on Facebook. A friend of a friend posted a "homosexuality is a sin" so they shouldn't be allowed to do _____ type comment. I challenged his thinking on the grounds that we're all sinners, and casting first stone. We went back and forth a few times, and then to my amazement this conservative Christian publicly changed his views on how homosexuals should be treated in society. I was floored. It totally changed my point of view on regular people's ability to think critically and change their minds when offered more ideas. I don't think gun control is any different. (I relate the above story to illustrate something about human nature, not to discuss gay rights or any other verboten topic on TFL.)


Aguila, I'd still like to hear how your Constitutional views work with the idea of disarming someone when they are arrested and incarcerated. Throughout this thread you state the absoluteness of 2A's uninfringability, while offering exceptions based on non-Constitutional concepts like "forfeiture". Would you care to explain how that's supposed to work?

Last edited by RX-79G; November 11, 2013 at 01:24 AM.
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Old November 11, 2013, 01:34 AM   #119
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RX-79G
Aguila, I'd still like to hear how your Constitutional views work with the idea of disarming someone when they are arrested and incarcerated. Throughout this thread you state the absoluteness of 2A's uninfringability, while offering exceptions based on non-Constitutional concepts like "forfeiture". Would you care to explain how that's supposed to work?
I already did so twice, just in this thread. I ain't a gonna do it no more. Figure it out for yourself.

Hint: "infringe" =/= "forfeit"
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Old November 11, 2013, 01:50 AM   #120
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I already did so twice, just in this thread. I ain't a gonna do it no more. Figure it out for yourself.

Hint: "infringe" =/= "forfeit"
Actually, you didn't.

You twice referred to convicted felons, not those arrested but not convicted. (Which is what I asked about, three times now.)

And you have resisted every request to explain what Constitutional mechanism makes "forfeiture" possible for the felons. Just throwing the word forfeit around a lot does not explain anything.
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Old November 11, 2013, 02:53 PM   #121
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Poor choice of links on my part. This might be a better source of references to official, state-sanctioned militias: http://www.heritage.org/research/rep...eland-security

The ones with which I am familiar function as a sort of "junior varsity National Guard," which is to say that they supplement the NG, but since they are not the NG they cannot be federalized and called up in the same manner that the NG can. However, the Constitution does give the President the right to call up the militia, so it's probably a good thing our "constitutional scholar" president doesn't seem to be aware that there is a militia act, or that there are genuine militias in 23 states.

Here's one, is this official enough for you? http://www.ct.gov/mil/cwp/view.asp?a...57236&milNav=|

How about this one? http://www.vermontstateguard.org/
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Old November 11, 2013, 02:54 PM   #122
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I just deleted 10 posts for being off topic.

All of them dealt with a very peripheral issue, the militia. Metcalf's opinion piece was not about the militia, per se. While it did reference the militia, it was not the context of his article.

Let. It. Go.
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Old November 11, 2013, 03:25 PM   #123
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Sorry Al for being off topic,

Back to Mr. Cunningham which you graciously posted I wanted to go back to a question I asked earlier which no one (I think) answered.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Grant Cunningham
Compromise occurs when two entities have incompatible positions, and agree to modify their positions in order to reach a mutually desired goal.
Would we call it true compromise to agree to universal background checks in exchange for national CCW reciprocity?

Magazine limits of 30 rounds in exchange for the repeal of the Hughes Amendment?

One gun a month in exchange for Constitutional Carry?

Would using such a tactic be in line with the "pragmatism" of Mr. Grant's Constitutional framework and get us past the net zero problem?
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Old November 11, 2013, 03:36 PM   #124
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Let. It. Go.
The Metcalf piece argued that "well regulated" cannot be disregarded in interpreting the described right simply because the phrase "shall not be infringed" appears later in the amendment.

If what is ideally "well regulated" is a population the existence of which does not narrow or define the right described, noting that it does not narrow or define the right described would appear to be on topic. I do not note that to be gratuitously argumentative; I do not understand how that is not directly responsive to Metcalf's rationale.


As was noted above, we do have laws that pertain to our rights, so the right need not be unlimited or absolute. We have laws about how and when we vote, and who may vote; that does not suggest that we have infringed the right to vote.

However, Metcalf's in for a penny in for a pound surrender to the concept of regulation in the modern sense is what does, and what should, raise our civil rights hackles. While we have laws that pertain to voting, we would not stand for a law that allowed voting only if a fellow were wearing a blue tie on the basis that once we have laws regulating voting, an objection to the concept of regulating voting is baseless. We would object to that law as a substantial interference with one's right to vote.

Similarly, the objection to Metcalf's conceptual surrender is that it retains no bright line protection against substantial interference with the right. Why is that a conceptual surrender? Because something that can be exercised only when it has the kind of widespread social acceptance that permits it to be exercised in the shadow of balancing tests and political consensus is no real right at all.

Last edited by zukiphile; November 11, 2013 at 04:28 PM.
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Old November 11, 2013, 03:58 PM   #125
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Servo
Out of all the online rants, I saw very few attempts at rebuttal, and even fewer at argument. This whole situation shows a very disturbing facet to the gun culture. Rather than open a debate, we stormed the town square and demanded he be burned at the stake for articulating an unorthodox viewpoint.

The gun culture has become a dogmatic mob. Yay for us.
I would say that there is a lot of overlap between "the gun culture" and a group you might describe as "firearms consumers and hobbyists". Metcalf appears to have alienated the consumers of the magazine for which he works.

We might see a similar reaction if a writer for Town&Country were to extol the virtues of rap music, or if a columnist for Car&Driver were to admonish the drivers of gasoline powered vehicles for killing the planet. People do not purchase enthusiast magazines to be chided about their enthusiasm.
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