Our founders original intent when writing the Constitution was that we were free to do anything that did not infringe on others’ rights. It was built on the personal responsibility of both the people and their leaders. On October 11, 1798, John Adams stated: “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” The founders didn’t see a need for a “Bill of Rights” because government was so restricted by the Constitution.
The Bill of Rights was added to secure the ratification of the document. Federalists argued that the Constitution did not need a bill of rights because the people and the states kept any powers not given to the federal government. Anti-Federalists held that a bill of rights was necessary to safeguard individual liberty.
I have often wondered if certain rights were not singled out if attacks would be the same. On one hand, we can see the authors as very prescient, understanding the threats to liberty that lie ahead. Or, are these rights picked on because they were singled out?
In the end, it does not matter. I for one am not content to allow the slow erosion of any rights, and I will work tirelessly to roll back the losses we have experienced.
Tyranny can take many forms; it is not solely reserved for kings or even government for that matter. The First Amendment enumerates five things which “Congress shall make no law…” The problem is that while maybe Congress has made no law, some judge or court has made rulings and Congress has not acted. Allowing a judge to infringe on rights is de facto approval of Congress. Society itself has “ruled” that certain words and phrases are not to be used.
Perhaps we need to return to teaching the old “Sticks and stones” phrase. Thomas Jefferson said, “The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.”
Why do men seek liberty? They want to be free, free to succeed or fail. Free to choose their destiny. Anything government does controls and restricts liberty and freedom. Tax laws are written to control our behavior as much as they are to raise revenue. All laws restrict our freedoms in some way. However, since our founders knew we needed to be self-disciplined and personally responsible, I like to see things more like the Apostle Paul. “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.” 1 Cor 6:12 KJV In other words, just because something is legal does not mean it’s a good idea. We need to exercise self-restraint.
But some don’t and never will. Some are self-absorbed and care only about themselves. These criminals do not all live in the slums and inner cities. Some live in Washington DC and our state capitals.
The founders referred to “Natural Rights” as they did to God given rights. They believed whether you believe there is a God or not, you have “certain” unalienable rights. Certain does not mean enumerated or listed; it means they are guaranteed without any thought or consideration. It is self-evident.
My belief is since they were compelled to name some rights and protections from government, they picked the ones that historically had been the ones most frequently infringed by government.
The 3rd Amendment, of course, forbids the quartering of troops in people’s homes. It was common then for the military to take over homes and coerce the owners to become their staff. Of course, the soldiers would dig through any papers, take any arms and ammo, listen in to any conversations and more. Tell me, today with the NSA, NDAA and Patriot Act, do we not essentially have soldiers in our homes?
So, who really needs the 2nd Amendment?
Don’t own or want to own a gun? You still need the 2nd Amendment.
Think guns are dangerous? You still need the 2nd Amendment.
The 2nd Amendment was not created so that we could enjoy shooting sports and hunting. The 2nd Amendment was enumerated because the natural right of self-protection is so important. Whether it was a bear, cougar, or wolf threatening our family, no one would say we are not to protect ourselves. No one would suggest we call our Wildlife and Parks agency to deal with the situation. No! It is our responsibility to protect ourselves.
Times have changed and in most cases, the predators only have two legs. As with a bear attack, if a sexual predator or mugger is an immediate threat, calling the police is a futile effort. They will show up to file a report and draw a chalk line around your body and those of your family. While many of these predators live and operate at a distance in our state and national capitals, our founders were quite specific that not only is our state supposed to be a sovereign entity, but our personal liberties are, as well.
It has been said that with over 300 million guns in America and likely over two trillion rounds of ammo, if the typical law-abiding gun owner was a problem, you’d know it. The right to keep and bear arms is specifically insulated from government intrusion as a linchpin against tyranny. The progressives use of government to interfere with this natural right is an abuse of the power of government whose sole purpose is to protect rights. If a right is natural or given us by God, behavior such as thought, speech, worship, travel, privacy, self-defense, property ownership and use do NOT require government permission nor can government prohibit these and more.
The heart of the matter is that humanity is free. Whether government is thrust upon us by force or voted into power, government is the negation of liberty. People have sought freedom throughout history- from Rome, to the Magna Carta, to the English Civil War, to WWII, to the fall of communism. However, in most of these cases, the peoples’ demands for freedom were grudgingly met and whatever freedoms there were, were at the behest of the government. What government gives, government can take.
Thus our republic was founded on natural rights, not rights allowed by the government.
Our revolution was successful for many reasons beyond the patriots who fought so hard. The British did not know who had guns nor where the guns were…there was no registration. The patriots had weapons equal to those of the British. All oppressive governments throughout time have either limited or taken weapons from the people. Had the British limited the colonists to crossbows and spears while they had muskets and rifles, we certainly would never have prevailed.
“The historical reality of the Second Amendment’s protection of the right to keep and bear arms is not that it protects the right to shoot deer. It protects the right to shoot tyrants, and it protects the right to shoot at them effectively, with the same instruments they would use upon us. If the Jews in the Warsaw ghetto had had the firepower and ammunition that the Nazis had, some of Poland might have stayed free and more persons would have survived the Holocaust.” -Judge Andrew Napolitano
I am amazed how many progressive thinkers believe an inanimate object is dangerous. A car in a driveway is not dangerous. A bottle of whiskey on a shelf is not dangerous. A knife in a drawer is not dangerous. All of these, and many more, are only dangerous in the hands of the irresponsible. More people are beaten to death each year than are killed by rifles, yet the semi-automatic rifle is seen as a terrifying object. The majority of gun related deaths are suicide, roughly one-third are homicide (11,000-12,000). Tobacco related deaths are nearly half a million. Preventable medical malpractice is nearly 100,000.
In the 20th century alone, over 260 million people were killed by their own governments. You can bet the people were disarmed and unable to defend themselves.
Should we empower the government to restrict the freedom of us all simply because of a few who are paranoid? Are they paranoid or are they controlling your ability to respond to threats?
You may not think the protection of the 2nd Amendment important, but if I am near when you are attacked, and I use my gun to save you, the fact I did not have a badge and you didn’t have to wait 5-10 extra minutes to arrive will not matter anymore.
Who needs the 2nd Amendment? We all do!
Most people in government reject natural rights and personal sovereignty. Most people in government believe that the exercise of everyone’s rights is subject to the will of those in the government. Most people in government believe that they can write any law and regulate any behavior, not subject to the natural law, not subject to the sovereignty of individuals, not cognizant of history’s tyrants, but subject only to what they can get away with.
Do we empower the government to impair the freedom of us all because of the mania and terror of a few?