Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Because it is my right.

"the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed"

The right.

I fell into a bit of a Liberal think trap yesterday with my post about Joe Biden.

For the record, I want you to know that it doesn't matter if the argument is made for AR-15 or not, it is our RIGHT to own them.  Rights do not have to be justified; they simply are.  And before I forget to post this, the second amendment does not give me that right, the second amendment recognizes that right pre-exists and protects that right from the government.

But don't take my word for it, take the word of those who were there.  

We can start with St. George Tucker.  Tucker was a Revolutionary War veteran, attorney, and later a U.S. District Court judge who wrote of the second amendment:

"The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, and this without any qualification as to their condition or degree, as is the case in the British government." 1

He further elaborated:

"This may be considered as the true palladium of liberty... The right of self-defense is the first law of nature; in most governments it has been the study of rulers to confine this right within the narrowest limits possible. Whenever standing armies are kept up, and the right of the people to keep and bear arms is, under any color or pretext whatsoever, prohibited, liberty, if not already annihilated, is on the brink of destruction." 1

In a letter to John Cartwright Thomas Jefferson writes:

"The constitutions of most of our States assert, that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves, in all cases to which they think themselves competent, (as in electing their functionaries executive and legislative, and deciding by a jury of themselves, in all judiciary cases in which any fact is involved,) or they may act by representatives, freely and equally chosen; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed; " 2

Noah Webster

"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretence, raised in the United States. A military force, at the command of Congress, can execute no laws, but such as the people perceive to be just and constitutional; for they will possess the power, and jealousy will instantly inspire the inclination, to resist the execution of a law which appears to them unjust and oppressive." 3

Tench Coxe 

"As civil rulers, not having their duty to the people duly before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as the military forces which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow-citizens, the people are confirmed by the next article in their right to keep and bear their private arms." 4
For those who would argue that arms are only for Militia, Tench writes:

"Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man gainst 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." 5

The militias were not intended solely to defend America against foreign enemies, but against the tyranny of their own government!


The argument that the second amendment no longer applies because our forefathers couldn't have imagined the changes in technology that produced modern firearms is absolute balderdash in the face of Tench's statement above where he says that "Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of the American." 

 "But wait!" you cry, "Our Forefathers never thought something like a machine gun would exist!"

The founders of our nation never could have imagined the invention of the radio or television or the advent of cults that call for cutting your testicles off while waiting for a spaceship to carry you from the earth, but we afford these the freedoms of press and religion.  If the constitution can grow and change as needed to guarantee rights to all in some areas, why not all areas?

Stop asking me why I need an assault weapon.  I deny the existence of such an object.  I will, however, use DEFENSE weapons as it is my RIGHT to do so.

We don't NEED a lot of things yet we have them.  We don't NEED much more than a sharpened flint and a dry cave, so why do we have nice homes? The fastest posted speed limit (that I know of) in the US is 85 MPH, so why do we NEED vehicles capable of travelling faster than 85?  Rosa Parks didn't NEED to sit in the front of the bus.


1) St. George Tucker's Blackstone's Commentaries: With Notes of Reference, to the Constitution and Laws, of the Federal Government of the United States; and of the Commonwealth of Virginia (1803)

2) Thomas Jefferson's letter to John Cartwright. From Monticello 5 June 1824 

3) An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution (Philadelphia 1787)

4) Tench Coxe (1755–1824), writing as "A Pennsylvanian," in "Remarks On The First Part Of The Amendments To The Federal Constitution," in the Philadelphia Federal Gazette, June 18, 1789, p. 2 col. 1

5) Tenche Coxe, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788.

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