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I get a lot of grief for stating that I don't believe in the 2nd amendment, or more accurately, that I don't believe it means what it is widely believed to mean.  Could it just be mass ignorance of English grammar, willful or otherwise, at the root cause for all of the gun related injury and death in the U.S.? 

I say this because when I read the 2nd amendment it seems painfully obvious to me, and I mean so plainly obvious you'd need be an idiot not to see it, that the amendment is guaranteeing a well regulated militia and not guns specifically.  Though the two were nearly synonymous at the time in which it was written, the distinction is very clear.  

So what do the grammarians on G+ think?  Is this just a case of nearly everyone knowing the true intent and just feigning ignorance to secure their political goals, or is there a real case to be made for it actually intending to secure the right to bear arms? If so, does that mean all arms?  Why not?

If the amendment was intended to secure the right to bear arms then hasn't it already failed?  Couldn't it also be argued that this could never be considered wisdom on the part of our Founding Fathers since they had to have known that this would be doomed to fail from the start.  Think about it, if you allow any and all arms to everyone then you are arming your future conquerors, ensuring continued strife and eventual chaos, it is only a matter of time.

If you only view the part of the amendment that says "...the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." then you'd have to concede that it already is infringed, every day that you are denied your own tank or surface to air missile.  To argue that we can't restrict ownership of firearms is absurd since we already do so on a daily basis, thankfully.

I think the 2nd amendment is actually an unnecessary anachronism these days since it is satisfied (at least) three-fold by a local police force, national guard, and the U.S.military forces.

A question to ponder:  I'm surely not the only one that believes this, probably quite a lot of people do.  So why not attempt to promote this view and educate people who may have never taken the time to think about it?  I never hear any politician or T.V. personality state this clearly.  Why not?  I think the country is ready for an honest grammatical interpretation of the 2nd amendment.

At the very least, why isn't there a bigger discussion on the internet?  This argument is at heart a grammar argument, and so seems almost designed to be grist for the Internet argument mill. 

 --

I had a hard time tracking down a freely available version of this article so please forgive the forum link.  The page that I intended to link to is here but the link to the article is dead or perhaps behind a pay wall ( I can't tell):

http://www.law.gmu.edu/news/2007/859

#guncontrol   #secondamendment   #grammar   #GunAppreciationDay  
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Lorne Thomas's profile photoKathi Browne's profile photoMark Faine's profile photoJuan Carlos Bagnell's profile photo
14 comments
 
I don't disagree. I really do think people should be allowed to own firearms, but I wish we could change our relationship with guns. All to often, the most staunch supporters start to sound like they want too be tough, not that there's a rationale behind their support. That "from my cold dead hands" mentality. 
I used to be a shooting sports instructor for the Boy Scouts. From my experiences there, I would LOVE to see graduated licensing like we use for cars. To start, a person may go to a gun range for lots of instruction and limited gun handling. After doing that for a year, that person may own a gun, but it must stay at a gun range or similar facility with the most basic of license. After that point, different degrees of license must be applied for owning a gun at home, then carrying a gun in public, and just like driving a car, yearly demonstrations of handling safety must be conducted. 
Each of those license "levels" would also be an opportunity to observe people, to see if they might be disturbed or violent.
After a couple generations of this kind of behavior modification, hopefully guns would slowly stop being "cool" things which make folks feel tough, and would better resemble the tools they actually are. 
Just my two cents.
 
First we have to get past the question of  whether the government can limit guns (of course, I think it can), after that matter is settled, it should do so.

I'm advocating something along the lines of what Australia has done.  Then we can talk about bringing them back into society in a very regulated manner as you have indicated.

I'd like to see every single gun have a tracking number that indicates who owns it and where it is located and if it shows up anywhere else without being reported stolen or transferred through official channels, there should be fines or jail time (some sort consequences).

If someone is shot with the gun the consequences would be even more severe.  This of course would be implemented some time down the road after the reforms that get most of the guns off the street.

http://andrewleigh.org/pdf/GunBuyback_Panel.pdf
 
Completely agree. It would make gun use extremely unfashionable, especially in the event of a death. 
 
The SCOTHUS's 2008, 5-4 ruling in District of Columbia vs. Heller, Justice Antonin Scalia said the 2nd Amendment "protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home."

"Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose ..." Scalia wrote that the opinion was not in conflict with bans on gun ownership for convicted felons or the mentally ill. He also did not argue against restrictions on gun-carrying in places like schools and government buildings.

But Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. said: "It is clear that the Framers . . . counted the right to keep and bear arms among those fundamental rights necessary to our system of ordered liberty."

This subject has been heard in the high court with in the last 5 years so it is not a antiquated or out dated definition of a core freedom of the US citizen and has been clearly decided so. 
 
First, Supreme Court rulings aren't about objective truths but about societal norms and what societies will abide.  Second, you make my point for me; there are two kinds of positions on this argument.  Those that understand the original intent of the law, and basic grammar, and those that either do not or have some sort of political agenda or ideology that causes them to feign ignorance, hence intellectual dishonesty.  

Scalia and Alito are certainly a part of the latter group, as are you judging by your comment.  In fact, it is absurd that you think you can trot those two out to justify anything.  They would surely vote to uphold slavery, segregation, misogynistic laws against women, including the taking away of their reproductive rights, if they thought they could get away with it.

Which brings us back to my first point, when enough people learn the true spirit and intent of the amendment, which may still happen in light of the increasing public shootings that seem to always be on the news these days, and also due to what MLK called the arc of the moral universe and its tendency to move toward justice, we will see a shift in what is deemed acceptable to society and justices like Scalia and Alito will have no place in that great society and neither will guns.
 
The objective truth of the constitution is that it is part of the checks and balances that the founding fathers penned that defined the freedoms of the citizens of the nation, empowering them so that they would a counter for the government. The constitution is not a law, it is the document that defines the inherent freedoms, and the intent is very clear, that the people are empowered and part of the checks and balances of the governmental system that was envisioned.

To understand the highly debated context of the second amendment the militia is as defined as "The entire able-bodied population of a community, town, county, or state, available to be called to arms." and that is clearly separate from a police, national guard, or reserve unit of the armed services. It is every able bodied person of the nation. Every part of the constitution defines the rights of the people and not the rights of the government. 

Your assessment of both of the vocal justices who weighed in on the decision is with out basis and an obvious fabrication to throw opinion against those who have differing opinions from your self by using such inflammatory accusations of racism and bigotry . 

So when enough people learn that the Constitution is what empowers the people, as has been upheld by the SCOTUS recently, some how insanity will dissolve and crazy people and criminals will cease to exist?

I am sorry and morn for the loss of so many innocent lives have been lost at the hand of some one who was both crazy and a criminal.
I have given money to the Sandy Hook United Way fund.
I am a liberal democrat and I do not own a gun.
I do how ever understand the nation that I live in and respect the rights of others, that is what being liberal is all about.
 
The amendment was intended to keep government feom disarming its people and becoming a bully.
 
+Lorne Thomas Calling yourself a Liberal Democrat makes you come off like a concern troll, or perhaps just a troll.  No self-respecting liberal Democrat is ever going to quote Scalia or Alito, except, perhaps as an example of what not to say.

A Liberal Democrat would also never take the conservative party line opinion on gun control.  I judge these "judges" by what they have said and by their actions (votes) and according to both, my statement stands.  Any Liberal Democrat would already know this.  Google it, plenty of results, check for yourself.

Again you make my argument for me.  At the time the militia was the people, today that is not the case, that is the source of the confusion, if there is any case for confusion, I think there isn't.

"Every part of the constitution defines the rights of the people and not the rights of the government."  

I hear this lame non-sequitur repeated often, usually verbatim, indicating it is probably a talking point being copied and pasted from the same source.  It simply doesn't follow.  First, I haven't even verified that this is factual, because it doesn't matter, there is no rule stating that the language must be consistent.

Also, the Second Amendment is actually a part of The Bill of Rights and ratified a few years later, so it doesn't follow that the amendments would necessarily uphold this supposed consistency of the original document, even if such language consistency did exist in the original document.

Basic understanding of grammar, as well as context, is all that anyone needs to understand the second amendment.  Again, that is why I say to state otherwise is intellectual dishonesty.  I have still not seen any evidence to the contrary.

I'm am hopeful that this is being discussed honestly at least in some media outlets:
Bill Maher on Gun Control: You Can Do All This Sh*t It's Not Going To Change Anything! - 1/18/13
 
+Kathi Browne I have now, I try to avoid airports but if I did have to fly I'd opt out.  If only to slow down the entire works. In fact, I wonder what would happen if you could convince everyone to opt out?
 
I've been called over for a couple of pat-downs and that isn't a good alternative to scanning. I don't think these steps are doing any good anyway when the only "random" pat-downs seem to be the most unlikely threats (children, elderly, and women wearing skin-tight clothing).
 
+Kathi Browne I guess we have strayed a little off topic but in response I'd say that it isn't meant to be actual security, only security theater, it is designed to appear as though they are doing something, as opposed to what they can really do, which isn't much really.

Most of us are oblivious to this, so you end up with some officials who, for  political reasons, use this threat as a means to restrict our liberties even more, in the name of increased security.

What is really needed, both in terms of policy and in level of understanding from the populace, is that we can never entirely eliminate the threat, we should do what we can to mitigate it, but only within the legal limit (and the spirit) of our rights (as much as they still exist), and that the only truly effective way to reduce terrorism is to not incite radicals against us by making them victims of our foreign policy.
 
Sir, you imply that I am a troll when I post facts that are contrary to what you believe? 

Here are another little set of facts.

When one examines the prefatory clause comports with the Court’s interpretation of the operative clause. The “militia” comprised all males physically capable of acting in concert for the common defense. The Antifederalists feared that the Federal Government would disarm the people in order to disable this citizens’ militia, enabling a politicized standing army or a select militia to rule. The response was to deny Congress power to abridge the ancient right of individuals to keep and bear arms, so that the ideal of a citizens’ militia would be preserved. 

So Clark Neily, an attorney for Dick Heller in this case, has said regarding Heller:
America went over 200 years without knowing whether a key provision of the Bill of Rights actually meant anything. We came within one vote of being told that it did not, notwithstanding what amounts to a national consensus that the Second Amendment means what it says: The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. Taking rights seriously, including rights we might not favor personally, is good medicine for the body politic, and Heller was an excellent dose.

I am afraid that you do not understand what you are talking about and what makes it worse is that I have posted facts about the second amendment and the freedoms it defines as upheld by the SCOTUS and are proving your own assertion about blissful ignorance.

If you want to call my political standing in to question I am a  registered Democrat who donates to the party on regular basis. I am a member of organized labor in good standing and have walked precincts and done phone banks for the officials that I support. I donate on average $650 to $1000 to charity (I am a middle class working man and this is not always a trivial or easy task) and on Thanks Giving and Christmas you can usually find me at a food bank. As I said, I understand that being liberal is to respect the rights of others as you apparently don't. 
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