The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Conference Center > Law and Civil Rights

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old September 29, 2012, 02:19 AM   #26
Apom
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 12, 2007
Posts: 165
I'm wondering if the men who wrote the Constitution would be proud of where we are heading today. I'm sure they would shake their heads at us.
Apom is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 05:39 AM   #27
BlueTrain
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 26, 2005
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 5,825
That's a good question, though not one that anyone can answer. It can't be inferred from what they wrote because they were unaware of where we are today (and who knows where we're headed). However, they were not all of one mind. Some were much more liberal than others, particularly Jefferson.

As to people thinking they were citizens of their state before the United States, I'm not so sure. They may have but I don't think it made all the difference on which side they were on during the Civil War. It's just not that simple for some people. For instance, Samuel Cooper, who was married to one of George Mason's granddaughters, was Adjutant General of the Confederate Army. He was from New York. In his case, I suspect that he went with the South because he had previously been Adjutant General of the US Army under Secretary of War Davis and partly, perhaps, because he married a Southern Belle. In any event, they are my wife's great-great grandparents (on her mother's side).

In another twist on the funny things people do, Davis's widow, Varina, moved to New York for a while but then so did General Santa Anna of Mexico. These days they'd probably move to McLean, Virginia.

Apparently there is much interest in what exactly the militia is, still, partly I suppose of the inconvenient use of the term in the amendment. But the militia was a well established institution at the time, both here and elsewhere, and I imagine it was seen as a given. Never heard of the naval militia.
__________________
Shoot low, sheriff. They're riding Shetlands!
Underneath the starry flag, civilize 'em with a Krag,
and return us to our own beloved homes!
Buy War Bonds.
BlueTrain is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 07:31 AM   #28
BGutzman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 4, 2009
Location: Frozen Tundra
Posts: 2,414
Quote:
I'm wondering if the men who wrote the Constitution would be proud of where we are heading today. I'm sure they would shake their heads at us.
For myself I am sure they would in general be horrified. They might not understand our technology or living conditions but they would understand things like limits on free speech, arms are virtually banned in some places and would probably start with burning our 100,000's of pages of unnecessary federal laws and regulations.

I do not think they would call us the same free nation they created. The federal governement was never intended to be so strong.. I think they Federal government was really suppose to be responsible for defense and fair trade with not a lot of other powers added to that..

As for the 2A, the fact is there was little if any debate in its passing which to me shows that arms were considered essential and above being banned overall.
__________________
Molon Labe
BGutzman is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 07:38 AM   #29
BlueTrain
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 26, 2005
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 5,825
There was not agreement even in the beginning as to how strong the federal government should be. Odd there is so little discussion as to how strong the state governments should be.
__________________
Shoot low, sheriff. They're riding Shetlands!
Underneath the starry flag, civilize 'em with a Krag,
and return us to our own beloved homes!
Buy War Bonds.
BlueTrain is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 07:55 AM   #30
Pilot
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 21, 2000
Posts: 3,622
Quote:
I'm wondering if the men who wrote the Constitution would be proud of where we are heading today. I'm sure they would shake their heads at us.

Maybe I am reading too much into this, but if you put it together with your OP, I have to ask the question. Are you insinuating we are headed in a poor direction due to the availibility of guns to the unqualified, un-tested, and un-checked?
__________________
Pilot
Pilot is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 07:56 AM   #31
mayosligo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 16, 2006
Location: Baton Rouge, LA
Posts: 301
Yes, militia is any abled body person. If you read history you would know what a militia was. Many have provided the definition already. Just because a word looks like military does not mean it is the same word. It also says the right of the people. Why do people have such a bad habit of partial reading to prove a point. The entire amendment is there for all too read and take in in it entirety. The second amendment is designed for citizens to protect themselves from invading forces and their own government. It truly is a simple issue but to many people would rather be subjects instead of citizens.
mayosligo is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 08:20 AM   #32
Chuckusaret
Junior member
 
Join Date: December 5, 2008
Location: Florida
Posts: 708
I know what the definition of the word militia is but, IMO, the following are militias within the US; Black Panthers, organized Gangs, the TSA, ATF, ICE and a few other government agencies that are presently being upgraded.

The Second Amendment does not make mention of any special qualifications to have a weapon, it states the "Right of" to bear arms.
Chuckusaret is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 08:33 AM   #33
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 6,197
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Schell
I dislike framing the debate over 2A as "gun rights" as it IMO is the right to self-defense (by any "arm" necessary and proper for that task). An individual, to have access to arms, has to be able to "keep" them, and to have arms available when trouble finds the person, must be able to "bear" them.

Hence"...the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.".
You are correct, the 2A refers to "arms," not "firearms." Those who don't understand that should read the statement of Tench Coxe, who wrote at the time the Constitution was being debated, "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.)
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 09:02 AM   #34
Nathan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 1, 2001
Posts: 1,882
Instead of dumbing down the second amendment, we could offer free reading classes for lawyers, judges and politicians. Based on my understanding of the English language, I fail to see how any obstacles, limits or restrictions on gun ownership are remotely constitutional.

Only when you base your argument on previous failures to understand the wording, do attacks on the second amendment make any sense. For example, often "the people" is interpreted as the "people in the militia", but since that wasn't said and people is not a pronoun, it needs no reference and therefore means all people in the USA. The phrase "the people" would be used to point to a group of all US citizens instead of the phrase all people or a people's.....

I also see the word infringed being exceptionally hard for judges to understand... Maybe examples of infringement would help:
NFA
FFL licensing
ATF establishment
GOPA
CCW licensing
Everything in DC
States imposing their own gun laws
Purchase permits
Background checks
Ordering mass quantities of ammo to throw the ammo & primer markets out of balance
Using tax money to destroy safe guns
Imposing excessive penalties on crimes using guns

Even gun owners often buy into some of this. That is where the problem. If you don't like the constitution, renounce your citizenship and move out. Don't dedicate your life to curbing freedom.

How do we change this patern of purposefully poor reading? Get 5 political parties or more in the process. There is no way that you can fairly split all Americans into 2 lines of thought. Any political argument which starts there is derailed. It wouldn't be a bad idea to make each candidate shoot a 10 shot in 10 sec 25 yard group either with a military grade 1911 and post the results online!
Nathan is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 09:52 AM   #35
KMAX
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 20, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,053
Define infringement. Also "right of the people". Who does that extend to? Minors? Convicted felons? There are many in either of the two aforementioned groups that I would rather see with firearms than some citizens that are legally allowed to carry guns, but that is a different story. There is much in the Constitution that is questionable and much that I think has been picked to pieces. I do agree with Brian P's post. The nation has become thought of too much as one entity rather than a group of individual states or republics. I believe I read somewhere that there was a guarantee of a republican form of government (not to be confused with Republican Party).
__________________
This is my gun. There are many like her, but this one is mine.

I'm not old. I'm CLASSIC!
KMAX is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 09:57 AM   #36
Brian Pfleuger
Staff
 
Join Date: June 25, 2008
Location: Central, Southern NY, USA
Posts: 18,350
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueTrain
There was not agreement even in the beginning as to how strong the federal government should be. Odd there is so little discussion as to how strong the state governments should be.
You'd be hard pressed to argue that ANY of the founders thought it should be anything like what we have now.

"Stronger" or "weaker" is one thing. Over-arching, ever growing, with powers, regulations and restrictions on every manner of day to day activities of the average citizen? No way. They expressly opposed such things. That's WHY they fought the revolution. Over-bearing, over-taxing, over-reaching government with no power to change it.

Their opinions were more along the lines of should the national government have a navy or not, not if they should be able to dictate and control every aspect of daily life. It's like if there is disagreement if taxes should be 5% or 10%, you can't come in 10 years later and say must be 90% would have been acceptable because we couldn't even agree what level they should be... we CERTAINLY agreed they shouldn't be 90.

As to the state governments, I did mention that in my previous post. I don't believe the founders foresaw that we would ever so completely lose control of our governments. They considered the state and local governments to be well handled by the people. First we lost control of the locals, then the states and now the national government.

They feared that the national government would be distant and large and we could lose control. I don't think they ever saw us losing control of the states and they CERTAINLY never intended the constitution that they were writing to be applied to the states. If it were, there would be no need for state constitutions and there would be no need for redundant declarations of right in those state constitutions.
__________________
Still happily answering to the call-sign Peetza.
---
The problem, as you so eloquently put it, is choice.
-The Architect
-----
He is no fool who gives what he can not keep to gain what he can not lose.
-Jim Eliott, paraphrasing Philip Henry.

Last edited by Brian Pfleuger; September 29, 2012 at 10:03 AM.
Brian Pfleuger is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 11:52 AM   #37
BlueTrain
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 26, 2005
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 5,825
I don't feel particulary controlled in my daily life. And I certainly don't necessarily want government now to be what someone wanted 230 years ago. What exactly do you mean by having lost control of government? Or do you just mean that your party has lost control of government?
__________________
Shoot low, sheriff. They're riding Shetlands!
Underneath the starry flag, civilize 'em with a Krag,
and return us to our own beloved homes!
Buy War Bonds.
BlueTrain is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 12:18 PM   #38
Gunnut17
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 21, 2012
Location: Earth
Posts: 394
Quote:
Define infringement. Also "right of the people". Who does that extend to? Minors? Convicted felons?
I never really got how any of the bill of rights could apply only to adults, it says, 'the right of the people' , not, 'the right of the people who are eighteen or more years of age'.

I do agree with convicts not getting guns, or other basic rights, but never got how the Bill of Rights didn't apply to minors
__________________
________(====()_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-,
I_iiiii__/'''''''''[{]''''''''{_)_)_)_)_)_}========

"|Pistol calibers| all suck, so pick the one you shoot best."
Gunnut17 is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 12:44 PM   #39
Spats McGee
Staff
 
Join Date: July 28, 2010
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 4,957
Gunnut17, most (if not all) of the rights in the BoR have been limited in their application, and always have been. For example, 4-year-olds do not have a right to vote, and (AFAIK), never have had. Why? For one, because they cannot utilize that right in any meaningful way. I would also say that the RKBA has a similar logical limit as to the earliest point at which a person can exercise the right. Is 18 the right point? Certainly, there are 17-year-olds who could be trusted with a gun. 14-year-olds? Yeah, probably a few. The question becomes, then, "Where do we draw the line?"
__________________
A gunfight is not the time to learn new skills.

If you ever have a real need for more than a couple of magazines, your problem is not a shortage of magazines. It's a shortage of people on your side of the argument. -- Art Eatman
Spats McGee is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 12:59 PM   #40
Gunnut17
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 21, 2012
Location: Earth
Posts: 394
I know that handing a 4-year-old a pistol and a ballot isn't going to end well, but how about the first and fourth amendments, almost all of the rights promised by them are subject to possible forfeiture on the behalf of a minor, 'Oh, don't worry, Tommy won't mind a pat-down.' If the founding fathers didn't think that kids and adolescents deserved to be able to speak freely, act freely,(within reason) or refuse searches of their persons or property, they should have said so in the Bill of rights.
__________________
________(====()_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-,
I_iiiii__/'''''''''[{]''''''''{_)_)_)_)_)_}========

"|Pistol calibers| all suck, so pick the one you shoot best."
Gunnut17 is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 03:23 PM   #41
HiBC
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 13, 2006
Posts: 3,521
Except for somewhere along the way it was deemed necessary to write a Constitutional Ammendment to give women the right to vote.
HiBC is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 03:29 PM   #42
BGutzman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 4, 2009
Location: Frozen Tundra
Posts: 2,414
Quote:
I don't feel particulary controlled in my daily life.
That’s because you have come to accept the laws and regulations as being normal.. I won’t go off into the weeds but few aspects of your life do not have some legislation covering them even if it isn’t actively enforced or isn’t at this time being actively enforced against you individually.

3,000,000 people a year hurt in auto accidents and yet no one’s hollering for car control and outlawing of cars and yet vehicles have no constitutional standing... Maybe felons shouldn’t be able to drive cars either.

Under the Patriot Act you can be subject to wiretaps without judicial order and lets not forget the National Security letters, you cant even see a lawyer without violating the law, nor complain to anyone else...

My point isnt to put on the tin hat or even debate these items, far be it.... My point known to you or unknown to you lots of laws are effecting you in negative ways everyday... Can you even go and buy milk direct from the farmer? not so much anymore... Its not that all laws are bad but we as a nation have driven over some cliff...

Certainly government is bigger and more powerful than ever intended, maybe its time to add some new amendments to the bill of rights and create safeguards against the tidal waves of new law passing.... Its all up to us with our votes...
__________________
Molon Labe

Last edited by BGutzman; September 29, 2012 at 11:09 PM.
BGutzman is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 04:45 PM   #43
BlueTrain
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 26, 2005
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 5,825
Well, actually there has been a lot of legislation concerning the safety of cars, you know. It is a pity the constitution failed to address cars.

The problem, of course, it people. There are a lot of them and most have little self control. But read the Bible if you want some old rules. Perhaps you could begin by listing specific laws you would like eliminated.
__________________
Shoot low, sheriff. They're riding Shetlands!
Underneath the starry flag, civilize 'em with a Krag,
and return us to our own beloved homes!
Buy War Bonds.
BlueTrain is offline  
Old September 29, 2012, 04:51 PM   #44
Brian Pfleuger
Staff
 
Join Date: June 25, 2008
Location: Central, Southern NY, USA
Posts: 18,350
BlueTrain,

You should read "3 Felonies a Day".

http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/159403..._d_detail?pd=1
Brian Pfleuger is offline  
Old September 30, 2012, 09:43 PM   #45
Crankgrinder
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 24, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 642
Ill throw this in for you, according to the militia act of 1903, which to my understanding is still on the books and legal. Every able bodied male age 17 on up is militia whether he signs up or not. This is my understanding of it as it sits now, please correct me if im wrong.
Crankgrinder is offline  
Old October 1, 2012, 03:57 AM   #46
HiBC
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 13, 2006
Posts: 3,521
This is about a woman who was armed.I have no idea what training she may have had,but this has everything to do with the 2nd ammendment,and nothing to do with militia.
http://youtu.be/s1-Kz3vU5DY

Here is another:http://youtu.be/l7ZMlxNSx-Q

Last edited by HiBC; October 1, 2012 at 04:17 AM.
HiBC is offline  
Old October 1, 2012, 05:28 AM   #47
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 6,197
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crankgrinder
Ill throw this in for you, according to the militia act of 1903, which to my understanding is still on the books and legal. Every able bodied male age 17 on up is militia whether he signs up or not. This is my understanding of it as it sits now, please correct me if im wrong.
You're close, but not correct. The Milita Act is still on the books. The definition of who is in the militia is at 10 USC 311:

Quote:
10 USC § 311 - Militia: composition and classes

(a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.

(b) The classes of the militia are—

(1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and

(2) the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old October 1, 2012, 06:17 AM   #48
BlueTrain
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 26, 2005
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 5,825
It bothers me a little to think that most of us are probably too old. At least it bothers me to know that I'm too old.

I was once a member of a military unit that was descended from a militia unit that fought (badly) in the War of 1812 at the Battle of Bladensburg. After that the White House was burned.
__________________
Shoot low, sheriff. They're riding Shetlands!
Underneath the starry flag, civilize 'em with a Krag,
and return us to our own beloved homes!
Buy War Bonds.
BlueTrain is offline  
Old October 1, 2012, 07:30 AM   #49
Qtiphky
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 11, 2008
Location: Upper Michigan, above the Mackinac Bridge
Posts: 553
I believe, that while there have been many arguments going in all kinds of directions, that the most simple and straight forward answers are often the best and most accurate. When they wrote the Constitution they couldn't have envisioned very many of the things that have happened within our Federal Government and the restrictions that they have placed on our every day lives. Won't go into them as they have mostly been covered.

Republican/Democrat/Tea Party/Libertarian - doesn't matter, the Federal Government has way overstepped their bounds because "We the People" have allowed it too! The 2A was designed to allow the people to protect themselves FROM the governement! When it got too radical and the elected officials stopped listening to "We the People", it was time to change the people representing us. Nowadays we do it in a "civilized" manner through elections, but back in those days, maybe not so much. They gave "We the People" the power to use whatever means necessary to take control of the government back, to the people. That is the part that our elected officials have forgotten, they are there for "all the people" and not themselves or their special interest groups!
Qtiphky is offline  
Old October 1, 2012, 08:11 AM   #50
drail
Junior member
 
Join Date: February 2, 2008
Posts: 3,150
Firstly, the 2nd ammendment does not need any modification. People need enough education to understand what words mean without having a judge or lawyer "translate" it for them. Secondly, any "modification" of the Bill of Rights will require a Constitutional Convention to be convened. The problem with that is our current idiot politicians could completely rewrite the entire Constitution. If that doesn't scare the crap out of you then I don't know what to tell you. The Bill Of Rights are just fine as written. Interpretation is our problem today. I am personally sick and tired of the Justice Dept. telling us what the Founding Fathers "meant" when they wrote it. It's written in plain English.
drail is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:36 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.13251 seconds with 7 queries