Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Our Second Amendment Rights

After earlier discussing my views on abortion and gay marriage that don't necessarily follow lockstep with conservative orthodoxy, I figured I should complete the trifecta and talk a little about the Second Amendment. Until yesterday, I thought I was a pretty strong 2nd Amendment stalwart, in that I knew that the right to keep and bear arms was a personal right, and I couldn't imagine voting for someone who I thought would actually take away the guns that someone owned (other than those who had committed a felony). Yesterday, however, my wife and I went to a Town Hall Meeting with my Congressman, Rep. Walt Minnick, where our 2nd Amendment rights were discussed -- and I learned that there are a lot of people whose interpretation of the 2nd Amendment is a lot more radical than I would have thought likely outside an actual militia headquarters.

There were about 45 people at the meeting, including fellow Idaho blogger Clayton Cramer (who still doesn't allow comments on his site for some reason). The meeting started with one person from outside the Congressional District reading a long-winded statement wondering why they couldn't get copies of Rep. Minnick's NRA questionnaire that got him a "D+" rating from the NRA -- despite the fact that copies of this questionnaire were available on the back table to all attendees. Most of the rest of the attendees held forth on their belief that the real purpose of the 2nd Amendment is to (paraphrasing here) allow them to shoot military and/or law enforcement personnel if they feel the need to rebel against the government. Based on this reasoning, I'm assuming that they also believe that all laws against sedition should be unconstitutional. One woman demanded that Minnick say that using guns to defend herself against government tyranny wasn't terrorism; Walt didn't seem to see what she was getting at, so I helpfully translated that "she wants you to say that shooting U.S. military personnel isn't terrorism". She immediately backed off and said that, no, all she wanted to do was "civil disobedience" -- why she needed an AK-47 for that was left unanswered. This led to lots of other people saying that they supported the the military and law enforcement personnel; only Clayton Cramer seemed honest enough to at least imply that, yes, he would regretfully attempt to gun down my old shipmates and my sons (if they join the military) if he felt the need to rise up against "tyranny". I can respect that honesty -- and I was surprised that the rest of the people there couldn't be as honest. Maybe they aren't as committed to their Second Amendment rights as they think they are if they don't admit that their beliefs could involve them in shooting down young American servicepeople. (My personal beliefs? I believe that the right to keep and bear arms should not be infringed, and that the government should be able to protect itself against armed insurrection, and that law enforcement officers serving warrants issued by the judicial branch of government shouldn't be shot down in cold blood, and that anyone who shoots at U.S. military personnel should expect that the entire weight of the U.S. military will come down on them. I also believe I'd also take a 20 year old Ranger in a gunfight against Clayton Cramer or the guys at the meeting with really long ponytails.)

There were some fun conspiracy theorists there. The woman mentioned above talked about how the standing up of NORTHCOM in 2002 was proof that the government was going to take all our liberties. (If you're not familiar with this particular conspiracy theory -- which all of us with actual military experience know is just a routine re-alignment -- you should Google "NORTHCOM NAU". It's a hoot.) Another person mentioned this YouTube video of soldiers from an Army Reserve unit doing a march on some drill day that took them through town as apparent proof that martial law is coming. I notice that Clayton Cramer, in his report on the meeting, didn't mention these rather embarrassing anecdotes.

[As a quick aside, my Congressman has now been in office for just over 100 days representing what is arguably the most conservative district to have elected a Democrat in 2008. He's been impressing a lot of people, voting against the bailouts and most of the other most liberal legislation; if fact, he's the Democrat who has voted least often with his party's leadership. This has lost him some "progressive" support, but I have a feeling that for every vote he loses in the extreme left, he's picking up ten from the middle, so I think he's doing a good job.]

Update 0554 20 April: Here's an article in today's Idaho Statesman talking about the shortage of ammunition, primers, and pellets, that also explains why any new restrictions on gun ownership won't pass during this Congress.

Update 1648 23 April: Clayton Cramer responds to my post here. He was also kind enough to provide me a link to an essay he wrote about when he thinks it's OK to take up arms against the government; one example he gives is if there's another Waco. He seems to not like the FBI very much. I think the fact that he hasn't been hassled by the FBI proves to me that we still have quite a bit of freedom here in the good ol' U. S. of A.

Of course, Clayton's theory that a Right to Armed Revolution exists in the 2nd Amendment doesn't go on to say that people can only rebel if they follow Clayton Cramer's precepts. I'm wondering if the people who believe in this right would support a group of Muslim-Americans who decided that the U.S. government was being tyrannical in not implementing sharia law throughout the land. Would these people be justified in waging righteous jihad against the government (especially if the FBI were investigating people who shared their religion and culture)? If they were engaging in constitutionally-protected actions in shooting down policemen and servicepeople, could they even be arrested, let alone prosecuted, for such actions?

101 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nutjobs exist in all places on this Earth, Idaho included.

4/18/2009 9:39 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some people seem to always have the need to call names. Perhaps it makes them feel better in a medicinal sort of way.

But I live in a very liberal town, and even here people are collecting guns and ammo...and not because it's their new-found hobby.

The government itself keeps speaking of 'system risk.' Are they, including the president, nutjobs as well?

Why are so many Americans now acquiring guns and ammunition to the point that shortages exist? They're all nutjobs? Mystery solved, I suppose.

4/18/2009 10:02 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know that this will come as a shock to many, especially younger, readers who have been lectured to all their lives about the sins of drug abuse and big government, but it is not the size of government that affects social welfare, but rather the content of its taxation, expenditure¸ and regulatory policies. The simple fact is that there is no advanced economy without a large state sector, and traditional economic theory tells us exactly why: market failures and unintended outcome must be corrected by social intervention, in the absence of which a high level of wealth cannot be sustained.

4/18/2009 10:17 AM

 
Blogger Bubblehead said...

2nd Anonymous: I think there are lots of well-meaning people who are reading lots of alarmist literature, much of it put out by people who profit if people buy lots of guns and ammunition or are scared of their government. The fact is that with 65 Blue Dog Democrats, including Rep. Minnick, serving notice that they won't be voting for any gun control legislation, there won't be any significant new restrictions put on gun ownership during the next two years, after which we can vote to put more conservatives into office if we so choose. We'll end up with people who have spent lots of money for new guns and ammunition at inflated prices who aren't having them being taken away.

4/18/2009 10:29 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are gun nutjobs.

There are anti-gun nutjobs.

There are environment nutjobs.

Then there are the global-warming-denying nutjobs.

There are religious nutjobs of every flavor.

There are anti-government nutjobs.

There are democrat nutjobs.

There are republican nutjobs.

Anyone who collects guns because they think they will need them to protect themselves against the government, or the police, or the military, is, in fact, a nutjob.

Sorry if you don't agree. Maybe you are one.

4/18/2009 10:43 AM

 
Blogger The Boise Picayune said...

"The constitutions of most of our States assert that all power is inherent in the people; that... it is their right and duty to be at all times armed."
--Thomas Jefferson to John Cartwright, 1824.

"One loves to possess arms, though they hope never to have occasion for them."
--Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, 1796. ME 9:341

"A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives a moderate exercise to the Body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind . . . Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks."
--Thomas Jefferson, Letter to his nephew Peter Carr, August 19, 1785.

"No freeman shall be debarred the use of arms (within his own lands or tenements)."
--Thomas Jefferson: Draft Virginia Constitution with (his note added), 1776. Papers, 1:353

"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms . . . disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes . . . Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man."
--Thomas Jefferson, quoting Cesare Beccaria in On Crimes and Punishment (1764).

"[The] governor [is] constitutionally the commander of the militia of the State, that is to say, of every man in it able to bear arms." --Thomas Jefferson to A. L. C. Destutt de Tracy, 1811.

4/18/2009 10:45 AM

 
Blogger Rubber Ducky said...

No discussion of the 2nd Amendment can be complete without noting the role of gun and ammunition makers in lobbying, in fanning public sentiment, and in sustaining the NRA. The only honest position for rabid gun-rights advocates is as shareholders in these corporations or at least as their open advocates. Those who don't know they're being used so others can make money should see themselves as dupes.

4/18/2009 10:46 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seems like a lot of folks forget the the idea of the militia was to fight FOR the government, not AGAINST it!

4/18/2009 11:07 AM

 
Blogger The Boise Picayune said...

As this debate rages, let us not forget that it is still very illegal and just downright stupid to Keep and Arm Bears!

4/18/2009 11:20 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find it odd that the libertarian-leaning republicans are OK with the provisions of the Patriot act but demand the Govt stay away from the rights of all Americans to have unfettered access to the automatic weapons.

4/18/2009 12:33 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@B-P

Exercising the right to bear arms makes one a framer's fan

Exercising the right to bare arms gives one a farmer's tan.

4/18/2009 12:49 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Patriot Act is disliked by non-Patriots! Love it or leave it! These colors don't run!

4/18/2009 1:17 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Patriot act keeps the terrorists from crossing the boarders and destroying our freedom!

4/18/2009 1:22 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is Toby Keith in the room?

4/18/2009 1:26 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yikes! Boy that must have been an interesting shouting match. Yup, "Our Second Amendment Rights." Nuthin said there about bearing arms for sporting events, deer, bear, bird, etc. hunting. Nuthin said there about arms for sticking up grocery stores or banks. That said, just what might those arms that are addressed in the "Second" be used for (aside from shooting robbers who are in your bedroom at 2:00 a.m.?

You may have already read a document that is said to be a recently released Homeland Security report. If you haven't, here's a link to it: http://wnd.com/images/dhs-rightwing-extremism.pdf .

Hope you don't mind me posting a link Bubblehead.

YNC(SS), USN, Retired

4/18/2009 1:42 PM

 
Blogger Steve Harkonnen said...

Anyone who hosts a view of the 2nd amendment's purpose is being part of rebelling against the government is nuts. Regardless of who is in office.

The only time I would break out my firearm is if I am protecting my home, family, and property, but my intent would be to kill, not to maim or scare them off.

4/18/2009 2:08 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@Bubblehead from Anon #2:

Coming fresh from your nutjob-attended meeting in Idaho, I can see you you might find it reasonable to think that people are being scared by the fear of gun control to acquire guns. But that doesn't explain -- at all -- what I'm seeing in a VERY liberal town in the way of people stocking up on guns and ammo. These are the people who are PRO gun control who are buying guns and ammo.

I think the Dune man is closer to the reason: people's concern over societal breakdown. You (the collective 'you') might not believe that, and you might not want to even discuss that, but there it is. I don't see any other plausible reason for liberals (alike) to be stocking up on guns and ammo.

I'm not arguing here for or against the case to be made for societal/system-risk concerns. No offense, but I don't think it'd be a particularly enlightening discussion. But gun control alone doesn't in any way explain what I'm seeing first-hand.

4/18/2009 2:37 PM

 
Anonymous Xenocles said...

"Most of the rest of the attendees held forth on their belief that the real purpose of the 2nd Amendment is to (paraphrasing here) allow them to shoot military and/or law enforcement personnel if they feel the need to rebel against the government."

Sorry, Joel, but there's good reason to believe that the major purpose for RKBA was in fact to ensure that violent insurrection would be available as a last resort against a government that had grossly overextended its power. You know, kind of the way we originally obtained our independence from Britain? What do you think the battle of Lexington was over? History has shown and continues to show that when the people are disarmed they are easier to abuse.

Does this mean I plan to start shooting politicians? No. Would I do that in a sufficiently extreme situation? Yes, just as I would execute the order to launch nuclear weapons in retaliation against a first strike. Both situations would be terrible, but the credible threat of their happening is an integral part of maintaining the liberty and peace we all love.

Would insurrection be terrorism? Almost certainly at first, but terrorism can be a legitimate strategy. Ever hear of the Maquis? The 1943 Warsaw uprising? Terrorism isn't always evil; it's a neutral term used to describe operations to disrupt your enemy and gain strength. You do it when it's all you have. There are terrorist tactics that are despicable, and our current enemies practice many of them, but not all of them are.

You folks can call me names if you want, but I'm sane enough to be in the PRP and to hold a TS/SCI clearance. I've never hurt anyone outside of childhood playground scuffles, and I have no plans to do so in the future. That said, I reserve the right to use violence against those who would harm my person, my family, and my liberty.

4/18/2009 3:02 PM

 
Blogger Srvd_SSN_CO said...

In the US, guns=freedom. There are, contrary to 2nd amendment extremist belief, plenty of countries out there do not allow private gun ownership and have not fallen into dictatorship.

Red Dawn! Red Dawn! Grow up.

The 2nd amendment does not prohibit registration requirements.

4/18/2009 6:27 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Red Dawn was Patrick Swayzee's finest hour. Charlie Sheen and Jennifer Grey were also great in that film.

Gun registration will just make it easier to confiscate guns one day in the future. We should not start down that slippery slope. After all you never know when the American public may start taking it's political cues from clueless actors and ratings based (vice journalistic integrity based) news media. Then once the actors think guns aren't in fashion anymore...well you see what I mean.

If the individual states decide to register guns within their borders - then fine...that's the tenth amendment at work.

If it ever becomes a Federal madate we will all be one step closer to shaking a chain linked fence and screaming AVENGE ME! at our teenage sons. :)

4/18/2009 7:58 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Xenocles said it succinctly. There are many of us out here who agree completely, if not more forcefully, with his stated position. If you can't see what's headed our way, you have blinders on.

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants." And it will . . .

4/18/2009 11:36 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A few thoughts:

a) The conspiracy theories about NORTHCOM and the YouTube video are stupid, ridiculous, and amusing, like any good conspiracy theory. The people promoting those theories are idiots.

b) It is absolutely correct that one of the reasons that the right to bear arms must be protected is for citizens to have the capability to resist government tyranny. Does that mean that I support or condone shooting law enforcement and military personnel? Of course not, because the present U.S. government is not a tyranny. In fact, I don't think that the U.S. government will become a tyranny anywhere near my lifetime, if ever. However, as long as the possibility of a government tyranny over the American people remains (however slim the chances are), it is entirely justifiable, if not vital, that citizens retain the capability to resist their government.

c) Note that what I have described above is only a secondary reason that I support the right to bear arms. Other reasons, such as personal protection from criminals, are more important in this debate. In other words, believing in an armed populace does not make you a black helicopter whackjob.

4/19/2009 1:52 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are two types of nutjobs in this debate: Those that see conspiracies theories everywhere and those that see them nowhere.

Define Tyranny. When does the government cross the line from governing to oppressing?

That line will be different for everyone. No matter how oppressive the government gets there will always be a segment (a fairly large segment) of society that is OK with it and won't resist (As long as they have TV, Internet, Starbucks' Chai Tea Latte, McDonalds, and an an iphone [or other suitable apple product]). Others see a call for gun registration as crossing the line and evidence that a 3000 year old Vampire named Giggles McGee is setting up a New World Order. Giggles wants to take our guns away so that we can't fight the Sleestacks. But don't worry because the Thunder Cats will help us.

The submariner in me says to question everything -- The reason those cooler outlet temps are going up may be due to seawater temp increasing (perfectly normal) or Seaweed CONSPIRING to clog an inlet strainer (not perfectly normal).

What's wrong with doing a log review on our freedoms. Are we more free now than in 1986? Is there a trend? What might be the cause of the trend? What PMS/Corrective maintenance is required to adjust the reading.

Maybe we should use a little watchstander anticipation.

Maybe we should resist gun registration just in case it could be used for gun confiscation later. Let's just prevent that whole situation from ever occuring.

Maybe we should bring in a little watch team backup.

Help the Giggles McGee camp understand that what they are doing and how they are doing it is not helping. Give them ideas for ways to make them look less crazy to the public in general. Instead of just calling them nutjobs and dismissing their POV.

Help the Chai Tea Latte camp understand that defending our freedoms takes just as much vigilance as the war against cosmetic testing on kittens.

Or maybe we should just let the general population and the government do what ever they want. After all, the Thunder Cats will always be there if we need them.

4/19/2009 7:40 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gun registration will just make it easier to confiscate guns one day in the future. We should not start down that slippery slope.Nutjob.

4/19/2009 8:13 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

People who use the word 'nutjob' are projecting their own self-image.

Try to keep it to yourselves, so-encumbered ones.

4/19/2009 8:24 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone willing to disregard the Constitution to "follow orders" deserves to be on the business end of a Barrett. Those NG troops and local LE post Katrina who ILLEGALLY and unconstitutionally confiscated firearms were a prime example. Anyone willing to confiscate firearms following passage of a new "assault weapons" ban also meets the criteria.

4/19/2009 8:54 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know about some of these comments. Where I live, I don't exactly see people lining up to get the guns and ammo while they still can. It's just not a serious worry out here.

I do find it ironic though, that perhaps the most obvious case of an Imperial Attitude from the government arises in DC, where the residents vote overwhelmingly for strict gun bans, only to see congress repeatedly big-step all over them.

But really, this is all about irony. People talk about fear of the government taking guns away... and yet most gun control legislation is promoted by nervous suburbanites and city dwellers after one of those periodic events where a guy goes nuts and mows people down on the subway, or a kid shoots up a school.

It's really about one set of citizen fears vs. another set of citizen fears. And where I sit, for the most part, the Government machinery (the bureacracy, not the people mining one side or another for campaign material) would rather just stay out of it.

4/19/2009 11:52 AM

 
OpenID xbradtc said...

The 2nd amendment does not prohibit registration requirements.I guess you'd be perfectly cool with registration requirements for newspapers, magazines, and blogs as well. Registration is the handmaiden of regulation. And regulation is to freedoms what strangulation is to respiration.

I'm not a gun nut, despite enjoying shooting. But I'd feel a lot better if the same 1st Amendment stance on prior restraint was applied to the 2nd Amendment.

As to shooting the troops, there was a reason the states kept control of the militia- to serve as a balance against the power of the federal government. So a slightly more nuanced take would be, would I shoot a young soldier? Depends, did my state call me out to serve against the usurpation of the states sovereignty?

4/19/2009 12:03 PM

 
Blogger Gaige said...

Would I fire at an American soldier or Federal/State/local LEO? It depends entirely on circumstances.

Is that LEO serving a legal warrant written out by a judge, in accordance with Constitutional procedure? Then Hell no I wouldn't fire on him. He's doing his job. I'll be his back-up from here to Satan's throne if he needs me.

But is that LEO confiscating weapons, ammo, food, water, fuel, equipment from law abiding citizens? Is he forcibly removing them from their homes? Is his behavior indistinguishable from that of a Third World thug, like it was in... oh, New Orleans after Katrina?

Then he ceases to be a police officer. He ceases to be an agent of legitimate authority. He ceases to be good, and in fact, becomes evil. And can and should be killed for it.

Same goes for military. An American soldier is only an American soldier as long as they support and defend the Constitution. But if he imposes martial law, confiscates property or detains citizens illegally, invades or subjugates a sovereign state, he ceases to be an American soldier and becomes a thug in a stolen uniform.

4/19/2009 2:09 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Personally, I thank the fuck Christ we have the Posse Comitatus Act firmly in place.

As prior Security Police USAF, I would not at all have felt comfortable or safe in serving or executing a warrant in a civilian jurisdiction. I would be ashamed to have to march in to your home even if (Martial law was declared in the area) in order to detain/arrest you and compromise your resources to live and survive.

You will find that most SPs, MPs and MAs are perfectly happy to operate solely in an exclusive military jurisdiction. Most of us have no desire to walk into the privacy of your living room with an M16 or M9 at the ready to deal with you. Even if Martial Law is declared in a your area of town, I would hope to hell we atleast have the local police department or county sheriff's office still intact in order to help us out. I would hope we could follow their lead. That would be the best bet. Most Americans have a low tolerance to being told what they can and cannot do in their own home that they're paying for.

That is another reason why declaring Martial law in any area of the USA is the very last resort. Some civilians will see our presence as thugs if it were to happen. That very thought scares the hell out of most us who have served or do serve in any branch of Military Law Enforcement. Why is it so scary to us?...because we would be aware that civilians are not accustomed to having their lives and rights compromised. Plus, some of them know how to fight back as well.

Thanks, J.

4/19/2009 3:34 PM

 
Anonymous Xenocles said...

J, as long as we in the profession of arms think that way we will be a long way off from needing the "reset button" the 2A was designed to be. I think that mentality will hold for the foreseeable future.

4/19/2009 4:17 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is absolutely crazy.

So a slightly more nuanced take would be, would I shoot a young soldier? Depends, did my state call me out to serve against the usurpation of the states sovereignty?

You really think your state is going to "call you out to serve against the usurpation of the states sovereignty?" You need to get back on your medication.

And, so is this:

Then he ceases to be a police officer. He ceases to be an agent of legitimate authority. He ceases to be good, and in fact, becomes evil. And can and should be killed for it.

You need to be in jail already, plain and simple. As a citizen, you get to redress your grievances in a court of law regarding illegal search and seizure. You don't get to shoot people who are conducting what you believe to be an illegal search/seizure while they are doing it, to protect your stuff.

Tell me where you guys live, so I can make sure I stay the f&%k away from wherever that is.

4/19/2009 5:54 PM

 
Blogger Gaige said...

As a citizen, you get to redress your grievances in a court of law regarding illegal search and seizure.What makes you think that the courts would even be functioning in that context? Or, if they are functioning, that they haven't been suborned and made illegitimate themselves?

You don't get to shoot people who are conducting what you believe to be an illegal search/seizure while they are doing it, to protect your stuff.Mmm... yes, yes I do. All thugs in my home get a warning, then a double-ought game-load in the chest. The only way someone breaking into my home isn't cut down in a hail of gunfire is if they're shouting "Police, search warrant" at the top of their lungs. Though it would be best if they knock and ask/serve the warrant politely.

Any other behavior gets them classified as "thug" and killed immediately.

Tell me where you guys live, so I can make sure I stay the f&%k away from wherever that is.Various places in the State of Iowa. The feeling is mutual. Stay the f$%k out.

4/19/2009 10:33 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Observation: according to Bin Laden, it was the lack of imagination on the American people's part that enabled 9/11.

Similarly, I don't think it's unwarranted to imagine where this might all be going in a cool-headed, bearing-history-in-mind fashion. Anyone who's inclined to claim that 'it can't happen here' can hold onto that thought for as long as it works for them, but might want to read some tea leaves once in a while to stay calibrated.

4/20/2009 5:46 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So let me get this right about absolutely no gun control

Mentally ill people buying guns? Must be okay since there is no way to check currently.

No restrictions means felons get a pass as well

Need to get rid of waiting periods too that way more upset people can go off their relatives and children...wouldn't want to restrict anyone's rights

Trying to envision the scenario where a court is not legitimate anymore.

Trying to cite Jefferson to support unlimited gun rights is taking Jefferson out of context. Look at the U.S. Jefferson lived in and how much of the continent was not settled or at least not settled by the U.S.

Looking at the many countries with strict gun control I am seeing an overwhelming preponderance of democracies. But there is no such thing as a rational discussion about guns in U.S., information is distorted and bent to support whatever point of view needed.

4/20/2009 6:44 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Above anon: From what I've read, there is no one here that is advocating 'absolutely no gun control.' Strawman arguments are pure monkey-spank.

Those who are for gun registration need to make a better case as to why it's needed if not only to lay tracks for the ability to confiscate. BTW, I wouldn't lean too hard on the argument that it helps to catch criminals, as they aren't much likely to be first in line to register their weapons.

4/20/2009 7:02 AM

 
Anonymous Xenocles said...

Anon @ 6:44:

Feel free to cite where anyone here advocated absolutely no restrictions on firearms ownership. That's not even a good strawman you've built. I'm going to go out on a limb and assume that you advocate a lot more restrictions than the ones you mentioned. If so, it's hardly surprising that you'd default to lies since so many on your side do anyway.

4/20/2009 7:04 AM

 
Blogger Rubber Ducky said...

This is a fantasy land. Seems to have a lot of residents...

4/20/2009 7:11 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Really no one is advocating no restrictions?

Assault weapons ring a bell? What restrictions are being advocated? Must have missed that.

But you prove my point, i am a liar for bringing up discussion points///yep that certainly promotes coherent discussion.

Guns are such an emotional issue that there is little to no ability to held rational discourse.

And btw, even though I am a liar, even i know the NRAs strategy is to fight any control/restrictions because once you start down that "slippery sloope" they will take all the guns.

Currently there is no ability to access mental health records for any checks and the both the mental health lobby and the gun lobby want to keep it that way

4/20/2009 7:37 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looking above, it seems that Mikey isn't signing his posts again.

4/20/2009 7:47 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Joel has posted an update this morning by way of an Idaho newspaper article. Here's another one: "Shortages of ammo and gun accessories cropping up nationwide"

4/20/2009 8:01 AM

 
Blogger phw said...

I have never understood the argument that people have the constitutional right to an armed insurrection, but that's the argument people are making here.

Also the idea that people are prepared for gunfights in their houses to protect their property seems damn silly as well. What is in their house that is worth sacrificing a life over? The only way that threat is credible is if you saying that you are more ruthless than the person breaking into your home.

I just hope you guys are not my neighbors.

4/20/2009 8:19 AM

 
Blogger phw said...

You guys who tout "Red Dawn" should also watch the "Ox Bow Incident" for a perspective.

4/20/2009 8:23 AM

 
Blogger tennvol said...

@phw: "What is in their house that is worth sacrificing a life over?"

My family

4/20/2009 9:10 AM

 
Blogger phw said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4/20/2009 9:14 AM

 
Blogger phw said...

And who is going to get shot in a gunbattle? Your family.

4/20/2009 9:15 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Massachusetts, where phw apparently lives in fear of his neighbor being armed, is the worst in the nation when it comes to gun control laws.

You can't even carry pepper spray there for self-protection without a license.

Truly a backward state, the inconvenient truth is that Massachusetts gun control is just another failed social experiment.

Stay in Massachusetts, phw...you'll be 'safe' there.

4/20/2009 9:30 AM

 
Anonymous Underwateribs said...

To phw: I am a citizen, and I expect citizens to follow the law. Felons are no longer invited to be citizens. Someone who breaks into my house is a felon and not a citizen, and does not merit the same treatment. Additionally, I have worked my ass off in the engine room of a submarine to achieve the level of prosperity that I enjoy. I'll be damned if you expect me to stand by idly while evil tries to take the fruits of my labor. My answer to felons is "if you don't want to get shot, don't break the law," and I really don't think this idea is too much to expect or terribly difficult to comply with.
I've been a shooter and hunter for 25 years. I like it. It's fun. I believe all you guys have a right to your opinions, and so do I, so don't take away my fun. Too many of my fellow americans have tried to take away my fun, so don't be surprised when we fight back against that. I believe the main reason that gun control has such opposition now, is because "if you give 'em an inch, they'll take a mile." I can tell that the NRA has learned this the hard way.
I also believe that as citizens, we must support the government. Our government is set up so that the majority citizen opinion is represented. If you are not in the majority, too bad and keep trying. "Love it or Leave it."

Anyone who calls another a nutjob for expressing their opinion isn't very American. If you want your voice, you must give others their voices, too or the system won't make it.

4/20/2009 10:37 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ah so being a liar also makes me Mike Mulligan, got it must have missed that memo. Mot Mike Mulligan put evidently expressing contrary opinions in this thread constitutes being Mike Mulligan because that is an easy brush to paint with.

Any of you ever looked up where the most deaths and injuries due to firearms per capita happen? Take away DC and the results are interesting. Let's not use facts in trying to discuss an issue...better to stick with emotion and testosterone.

4/20/2009 10:52 AM

 
Blogger phw said...

@Tennvol

One on the other side of the argument could use those same statistics to state that Massachusetts gun laws do not go far enough and need to be applied in a widespread manner to be more effective. Regardless, 1998 appears to be a significant low point in a period between 1994 and 2007, with 1994 the worst year.

@Underwateribs
A felon is someone who is convicted of a felony.

I have lived in Idaho, I have lived in Maine, I have lived in New Mexico and I have known a lot of people who own and carry guns (yes, even in Massachusetts today). My grandfather almost aways carried a handgun on his property to shoot porcuipines that were destroying his trees, but he was adament that he would never threaten a person with that gun under any circumstances. What is disturbing here is that some of the people here seem entirely too comfortable with the idea of shooting someone. Killing someone is not something you can take back.

4/20/2009 11:23 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@ gaige:

I said: You don't get to shoot people who are conducting what you believe to be an illegal search/seizure while they are doing it, to protect your stuff.

And then you said: Mmm... yes, yes I do.

So, you're going to shoot and kill a police officer in your home if you feel that he is conducting an illegal search and seizure.

I hope you get a cellmate who understands your needs.

4/20/2009 2:48 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

phw said...
And who is going to get shot in a gunbattle? Your family.

4/20/2009 9:15 AM

How far do you run and when do you stop? Where do you draw the line and stand?

One of my lines is at the door to my house.

YNC(SS), USN, Retired

4/20/2009 2:53 PM

 
Blogger tennvol said...

@phw: I made no reference to statistics in Massachusetts. I simply answered your pathetically stupid question. I am just thankful that I am not one of your family members since they are not worth protecting.

4/20/2009 3:05 PM

 
Anonymous Xenocles said...

@7:37:

"Really no one is advocating no restrictions?

Assault weapons ring a bell? What restrictions are being advocated? Must have missed that."

Opposition to one restriction != opposition to any restriction. You need a logic upgrade.

"Currently there is no ability to access mental health records for any checks and the both the mental health lobby and the gun lobby want to keep it that way"

If someone is disabled in such a way that he is unable to properly exercise his citizenship duties, he should be committed into protective custody. This would normally preclude weapons ownership...

As to the rest of you all, the basis behind the 2A is well documented. All you have to do is look. But consider this: don't you think the same group of people who just spent eight+ years overthrowing their previously lawful government would have at least some idea that it might be necessary again someday? And if so, don't you think they would have wanted to ensure the people had the ability to make it happen?

4/20/2009 3:50 PM

 
Blogger phw said...

@tennvol

I'm sorry, but I thought you thoroughly read the stuff you post links to. I'll make it simpler.

We don't like shooting each other because it's not nice. We also realize that 3:00AM is not the time to make life and death decisions because we think we see a prowler in the dark. We back east think that you guys must be really sure of yourselves blasting away at every shadow in the house. And we worry.

4/20/2009 3:57 PM

 
Anonymous Xenocles said...

"We also realize that 3:00AM is not the time to make life and death decisions because we think we see a prowler in the dark."

If only the prowlers felt the same way...

4/20/2009 5:58 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really don't want to shoot anyone. But I really, really, really don't want to get shot/raped/stabbed/beaten to death.

I think the chances of those things happening to me are pretty low (2% of the population of Memphis victims of aggravated assault every year). But I think it is reasonable to prepare myself for the time when I may have to meet the imminent threat of deadly force with deadly force.

I agree that 3 AM isn't the right time to blast away at shadows and that one of those shadows could be a family member. So, I have an alarm system set to alarm if any entrance to my house is opened after I go to sleep and every exterior and many of the interior doors are locked at night. I am confident that if my alarm is going off at night and there is a person in my home who is not my wife then they probably mean me harm. Why would they break in at night instead of during the day when I am at work if they only wanted my stuff? I have strategically located night lights set up in every room of my house to prevent blind spots. I use ammo that should stop an attacker but will not penetrate through the walls of my house. If the attacker keeps coming I'll use heavier stuff.

I practice with my firearms and I regularly seek further training.

I don't live in fear and it didn't take much effort or money to setup all of these precautions.

I spend time and energy to take those reasonable precautions to safeguard my life. Some people think that make me a nut job.

I spend way more time in a given week working out to prevent a heart attack. But that doesn't make me a nut job.

I see both acts as being exactly the same thing. Taking logical, reasonable, easy precautions to postpone my inevitable death.

I understand that those who want more gun control are really just trying to do the same thing. They want to postpone their inevitable death by reducing the number of weapons available to others.

I don't think their methods will work. I think their methods will give them the illusion of safety but it will not make them safe.

My methods don't make me safe either. But if I'm confronted by a person hell bent on using deadly force against me I can respond in kind. I don't want to. I pray that I never will.

I think the argument is also about who is responsible for our safety. I believe that each individual is ultimately responsible for their own life and well being.

I think that proponents of gun control believe that the responsibility for their well being belongs in the hands of another (Cops/military/gov't/etc).

Don't get me wrong. The gov't/cops/military are all very important for the overall security of our country. But they can't be everywhere all of the time. When large catastrophies happen (like Katrina) those that remain will be overwhelmed and unable to respond on the scale required. Most of the time we are all pretty much on our own.

I also oppose gun registration. Statistics show that it doesn't help police solve crimes. It doesn't prevent gun crimes. All it does is make an inventory of guns and the people who own them. A list that could be used for later confiscation. I don't think that will be the initial intention but initial intents can change and it's easier to prevent the list from being made than it will be to destroy the list if it is misused.

I support the current laws and regulations associated with firearms. They make sense, make it illegal for people to have guns that shouldn't, and don't overly encumber responsible citizen's ability to access firearms.

I won't fire at a Sworn LEO or US Soldier performing a search of my house. I don't think that forced confiscation will happen in the United States on a large scale. If it does happen it won't be the United States for long after. At least not the United States we know.

We shouldn't just prepare for likely scenerios and we'll wish that we spent more time preparing for the unlikely scenerios when they do occur.

I'm not crazy. I'm not violent. I'm not revolutionary. I know proponents of gun control aren't either. I respect their opinions and their right to argue them. I applaud their efforts to fight for their rights and beliefs but they shouldn't villainize me for fighting for mine.

4/20/2009 7:05 PM

 
Anonymous Uncle Buck said...

I draw the line at crew served weapons.

Machine guns, RPGs, M203s and flame throwers should be legal for folks to purchase.

If felons have served their time, they should be allowed to have weapons.

Sheesh.

4/20/2009 8:26 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Though, again, in the more populated areas, people are worried a lot less about home invasions than they are thinking about things like the kid who shot up Virginia Tech, or the Sniper that was gunning folks down in Home Depot Parking lots.

Or they're living in the southwest, and worried about the flood of arms going from Gun shows to the mexican gangsters.

One of the thing that makes 2A absolutists seem unsympathetic is when they rail about an oppressive government (that isn't actually oppressing) while actual law-abiding citizens are getting shot up by the Sun We Chos or Colin Fergusons of the world - who shouldn't have had guns in the first place.

4/20/2009 8:43 PM

 
Anonymous Xenocles said...

One last shot:

Even today we have bastions of right-wing extremism like the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals putting out opinions including language like this:
"Second, the right to bear arms is a protection against the possibility that even our own government could degenerate into tyranny, and though this may seem unlikely, this possibility should be guarded against with individual diligence." (Nordyke v. King)

4/20/2009 9:53 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

phw wrote: "We back east think that you guys must be really sure of yourselves blasting away at every shadow in the house. And we worry."

You worry, I'm armed with night vis, so I have no need to worry. And really, it doesn't bother me in the least that you don't want a weapon. After all, it's your RIGHT to exercise or not. But I'll be damned if you or some jack-booted thug will remove from me a RIGHT antecedent to the gubmint.

Make no mistake about, some of us who took the oath to uphold and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic, actually understood what we were doing. It wasn't some quaint indoctrination ceremony - it had meaning. And just because some pin head gunning (pun intended) for the 2nd Amendment issues orders to confiscate, ex post facto register, etc., does NOT a lawful order make. I will do ALL within my power to prevent such acts - and I mean ALL. Take that for what you will.

4/20/2009 10:15 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The world is a dangerous place. So, I don't mind giving away my freedoms because that will make me feel safer. Do it for the children.

4/20/2009 10:23 PM

 
Blogger tennvol said...

@phw: Your reading comprehension is seriously lacking. I never posted a link to anything. You're confused. Additionally, I live in the Eastern time zone, and I do not own a hand gun. My only firearm is a .22 rifle I have had since I was a teenager.

4/21/2009 8:03 AM

 
Blogger phw said...

@tennvol

Oops, you are right. It was Anon@20Apr09 0930 who posted the stats. I have got to keep you guys straight. Sorry for the confusion.

4/21/2009 8:13 AM

 
Blogger Rubber Ducky said...

"I don't mind giving away my freedoms because that will make me feel safer."

"Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." Benjamin Franklin

4/21/2009 8:29 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For anonymous at 4/20/2009 8:43 PM

RE: Or they're living in the southwest, and worried about the flood of arms going from Gun shows to the mexican gangsters.See this link http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/04/02/myth-percent-guns-mexico-fraction-number-claimed/

4/21/2009 11:38 AM

 
Blogger clark said...

"why she needed an AK-47 for that was left unanswered"

When I say AK-47 I mean a particular collectible and terribly expensive in the United States variety of the Kalashnikov design with among other a milled dust cover long superseded by stamped dust covers and so the AKM and many other varieties. There have been countless bull sessions about the virtues of direct gas systems such as the AR and the Kalashnikov operating rod designs and many others.

Many people say AK-47 to mean a symbol a boogie man's weapon that inspires some emotional response maybe fear or panic in them.

When you, our host here, say AK-47 what do you mean?

4/21/2009 12:26 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Young English service people were once attacking other English citizens in Lexington and Concord and across America. Each of the soldiers was some mother's son. Each was loved.

And those young servicemen in bright red uniforms shot and killed Americans to maintain the power of the crown.

Those young English soldiers were not the good guys.

So it is with all tyranny, some people will fight for the tyrant.
Pol Pot had an army. Hugo Chavez has real supporters, willing to suppress any who oppose. So did Stalin. So does Castro. The supporters may believe in the dear leader, they may act in fear of the leader. But they are the ones in the wrong.

The point is tyranny vs the rule of law. If and when the Constitutionally restricted government is no more, the authoritarians in command and those who support them (even those wearing the uniform of the then former USA) would not be the good guys. They are not the ones supporting the Constitution. They would be the murderers of the Constitution and opposing them would be the duty of all who love liberty.

Insurrection against the rule of law is a crime and an evil, insurrection to restore the rule of law is a noble civil act. And the law in question is not that which restrains the people to the will of the government, but that which restrains the government to the will of the people.

This is why it is very important to maintain a government constrained by law and Constitutional restriction on power. It's why the military swears allegiance to uphold the Constitution, not the government.

The citizenry must think, vote, participate in government at all levels. Elected representatives must support the law, not seek clever ways to subvert it. Judges must apply the principles of restraint upon a limited government as the foundation of all rulings, not their own politics to unconstitutionally expand governmental powers "for a good cause".

The alternative means to uphold a free nation via arms is bloody - but necessary to maintain in reserve.

Just in case.

4/21/2009 5:37 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Franklin quotes are the bedrock of the absolutist case for no gun regulation at all...

But the Constitution speaks of safeguarding 'life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness' - which simply cannot be possible without policing and armed forces. And the mere existence of policing and armed forces contains the barest shred needed to elicit fears of Authoritarian control.

So that 'liberty/safety' trade train left the station a long time ago. Like, say, Sept. 1787.

The fact of the matter is that a modern state is a facilitator of both safety and liberty. The State needs to have a monopoly on the regulation of violence within its borders. Otherwise you have Somalia and the war of All Against All. Where the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.

The Brady Bill is hardly going to turn us into Stalinist Russia. No one is going to take your gun. You can defend your house from prowlers just fine.

But it might make it harder for the next John Hinckley to get a gun - which I'm okay with because I don't want my President (any of them) getting shot.

Beyond which, given the state of our military - if you are worried about an oppressive state - a bunker full of assault weaponry isn't going to be sufficient.

What you'd really need, is a Fifth column.

4/21/2009 8:36 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live in South Texas where all the Mexican drug violence spills into the US.

There's an interesting fact being circulated about the Mexican drug violence, in that 90% of all weapons used by Mexican drug cartels are US made and smuggled into Mexico. And 90% of drugs in the South are Mexican made and smuggled into the US. Its a black market feedback loop. Our guns go south and their drugs come north.

What's shocking is the quality, firepower, type, and quantity of weapons that are showing up in drug raids on cartel storehouses. M-2 browning machine guns! 50cal sniper rifles! Assault rifles all US made and available in the US for sale (under gun convention loop holes that are open if one knows how to use them).

Its because of this that I wish that the 2nd amendement rights be restricted to and *only* to handguns, rifles, and shotguns. The assault rifle, machine gun, and sniper rifle loop holes that exist are ridiculous and have to go.

*heck* on the the news not too long ago a women whose home had been gotten robbed told a reporter that the next time she would be ready and pulled an m-16 and oozie 9mm from under her bed... you've got to be kidding me.

4/21/2009 9:02 PM

 
Blogger Clayton said...

Joel put scare quotes around "tyranny"--and didn't mention that what I said at the meeting started out with explaining that I used to get my ice cream cones from a woman with a tattoo on her arm: a letter and a series of numbers. It wasn't very fashionable. (Joel: these were used by the Nazis. I forgot that you aren't from California or New York, and may not know about this.)

I don't disagree that some of the statements made at the meeting were poorly thought out--although "civil disobedience" with an AK-47 might simply be refusal to register or turn it over for confiscation.

What I do object to is Joel's apparent assumption that concern about tyranny makes you some sort of wacko. Even the Idaho Statesman article he references quotes Rep. Minnick as recognizing that a concern about tyranny drives much of this--and without scare quotes.

Let me also point out that one of the wackos concerned about tyranny and disarmament is a Clinton appointee to the Ninth Circuit, Judge Gould, whose concurring opinion Monday applied the Second Amendment to the states http://volokh.com/archives/archive_2009_04_19-2009_04_25.shtml#1240249775:

"First, as Judge O’Scannlain has aptly explained, the rights secured by the Second Amendment are “deeply rooted in this Nation’s history and tradition,” and “necessary to the Anglo-American regime of ordered liberty.” ...

"Second, the right to bear arms is a protection against the possibility that even our own government could degenerate into tyranny, and though this may seem unlikely, this possibility should be guarded against with individual diligence."

I'm not sure why Joel is so confident that our government could never abuse its authority. It has done so in the past on a small scale, with National Guardsmen opening up with machine guns on a tent city of women and children in 1913 Colorado during a strike. There are many similar examples.

And yes, Joel is right: any battle between regular forces and us ordinary civilians on an equal basis will end with regular troops winning immediately. Even outnumbering the military 10:1, the military still wins. But at 100:1 or more (which was typical through the American Revolution)--it's far from certain.

Finally, if things reach this horrible of a state (which I think unlikely but possible), I expect that large numbers of regular military and National Guard troops will change sides. That happened in the 1877 railway strikes, when National Guardsmen ignored illegal orders, or actively armed the strikers.

4/21/2009 9:16 PM

 
Blogger Clayton said...

"There's an interesting fact being circulated about the Mexican drug violence, in that 90% of all weapons used by Mexican drug cartels are US made and smuggled into Mexico."

Not true, as even this Los Angeles Times article admits. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-mexico-arms-race15-2009mar15,0,229992.story Most of the weapons that Mexico seizes aren't traced because they didn't come from the U.S.--and many can't have come from gun stores. Hand grenades? Nope. Antitank weapons? Nope. Machine guns are purchasable in the U.S., but heavily regulated and incredibly expensive.

4/21/2009 9:19 PM

 
Blogger Clayton said...

"Also the idea that people are prepared for gunfights in their houses to protect their property seems damn silly as well. What is in their house that is worth sacrificing a life over? The only way that threat is credible is if you saying that you are more ruthless than the person breaking into your home."

It's not the property. It's the people. I've lost count of the number of people that I know who have been victims of rape, murder, and mutilation. (Of course, I'm from gun control heaven California.)

Now, I know that you are arguing that you shouldn't be willing to kill someone who breaking into your home to steal your stuff. But if they are breaking in when you are home, you really don't know that they are coming for your stuff. Sometimes they are coming in to torture and rape. I've had too many friends who have been through this in California to find it acceptable.

4/21/2009 9:23 PM

 
Blogger Clayton said...

"You need to be in jail already, plain and simple. As a citizen, you get to redress your grievances in a court of law regarding illegal search and seizure. You don't get to shoot people who are conducting what you believe to be an illegal search/seizure while they are doing it, to protect your stuff."

You seem to ignoring that police, when serving no-knock warrants, sometimes get a bit carried away, failing to identify themselves, shooting and killing people, and sometimes at the WRONG ADDRESS!

It's a hard job, but there are simple too many no-knock warrants issued. Some years ago, near San Diego, Customs and DEA served a no-knock warrant on an electronics company executive based on an obviously false statement from an informant seeking a deal on an arrest. He told them that the guy had a 1/4 ton of cocaine in his garage. When they were waiting to serve the warrant, they saw this guy come home, and drive into the garage. Where was the 1/4 ton of cocaine?

They kicked in his door, failed to announce themselves as police, and shot this guy, putting him in the hospital for almost a year. No drugs found. None.

I read newspaper coverage of it, and I talked to a Treasury Department Internal Affairs agent who had investigated what happened. As he explained it to me, "The vast majority of Treasury agents are doing their jobs professionally. But the cowboys are out of control and not punished."

There are many other examples of the misuse of no-knock warrants getting people killed where the warrant was obtained under obviously bogus affidavits, and sometimes at the wrong address.

4/21/2009 9:30 PM

 
Blogger Clayton said...

"The simple fact is that there is no advanced economy without a large state sector, and traditional economic theory tells us exactly why: market failures and unintended outcome must be corrected by social intervention, in the absence of which a high level of wealth cannot be sustained."

You are assuming that a large state sector creates an advanced economy, not the other way around. There are certainly cases where big government can advance an economy (the development of integrated circuits for military and NSA applications, for example). But a STUPID big economy, one that concentrates on redistributing wealth to the unproductive, won't create an advanced economy.

4/21/2009 9:52 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Its because of this that I wish that the 2nd amendement rights be restricted to and *only* to handguns, rifles, and shotguns. The assault rifle, machine gun, and sniper rifle loop holes that exist are ridiculous and have to go."

You, and many others in this discussion, have completely missed the point of the Second Amendment. It does NOTHING to restrict the RIGHTs of the people - a right antecedent to the government. It restricts the government's attempts to restrict the people's rights. And let's be clear, the amendment has zero to do with protecting one's home from a burglar or shooting deer - it's sole purpose is to ensure an armed populace that can, should the time be right, eject the modern Red Coats from power. And the Red Coats may be wearing NWUs in the future.

Ditto Anon @ 17:37!

4/22/2009 6:25 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

clayton said:

You seem to ignoring that police, when serving no-knock warrants, sometimes get a bit carried away, failing to identify themselves, shooting and killing people, and sometimes at the WRONG ADDRESS!

So what does this have to do with the 2nd Amendment? Are you saying that you have your closet full of guns so that you can defend yourself against the police who (legally or illegally, correctly or incorrectly) kick in your door at 3 AM to serve a warrant? If you are stupid enough to start shooting at cops raiding your house, you deserve whatever you get.

4/22/2009 7:41 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"If you are stupid enough to start shooting at cops raiding your house, you deserve whatever you get."

If the police are incorrectly/illegally raiding my residence at 3 a.m. without announcing themselves as law enforcement, how do you expect me to react? By offering them a cup of coffee? If I didn't know they were cops, my first reaction to someone being in my house at that hour would be that they deserve whatever THEY get. And I'm hardly as extreme a 2nd Amendment activist as some people here.

4/22/2009 10:50 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oops. Number agreement in my comment. I should really proofread before I hit "post."

4/22/2009 10:52 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess if the police serve a no-knock warrant on your house at 3 AM, and they don't identify themselves as police officers, you should go ahead and shoot them.

And then, whether or not you kill that one guy, you will yourself be shot dead by the other police officers in attendance. End result, you're dead. Great plan.

Let's just completely forget that the scenario where the police don't identify themselves properly when serving a warrant happens, oh, let's say, once per thousand no-knock warrants served. We can use that one-in-a-thousand chance to then justify any completely crazy actions that we ourselves then take.

4/22/2009 11:50 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I personally have followed Obama on the gun rights issue, and one every one of his websites, including whitehouse dot gov, he has stated he plans to ban certain guns. The guns he seeks to ban include the most popular olympic target rifle, the most popular varmint rifle, and the most popular sporting rifle, as well as physical features that make these guns useable and safe for women and people with disabilities. So, when Obama was elected, I went shopping for a gun I had wanted but planned to get in a year or two for recreational shooting. I also bought ammo for this and my other gun, because I knew there would be a shortage if any of the anti-gun policy being floated gets passed. No conspiracy theory--no fear. Just reasoned action.

memestryker

4/22/2009 1:45 PM

 
Anonymous Jay said...

Some rather strong opinions here...geez, Joel, any *other* hot button topics left?

:-)

I think that a reasonable case can be made for responsible gun ownership (sport shooting, hunting, or protection). I own a single .45 pistol, which I keep at home, loaded, but with a trigger lock engaged.

I think the historical context of the constitution is important here. Without context -- people seem overly willing to cherry pick just a small point that they want to make (or harp on) -- whether in the constitution, the bible, etc. All the emotion-magnet topics.

Weapons were needed (not just for amusement) at the beginning of this country for survival -- hunting & for the survival of a fledgling government that did not forsee (nor did it image it could afford, nor would ever need) a large, regular, standing army.

The National Guards of each state, I think, have rightly evolved from the old state militias.

(Their use as "reserve" federal troops -- or more realistically and recently -- as an "International Guard" is a separate discussion)

Some restrictions on gun ownership are right & proper. No one "needs" an fully-automatic weapon for home defense.

Society has a duty to try to keep weapons out of the hands of those who shouldn't have them (small children, the mentally ill, criminals, gangs, etc.). I say try, because some state gun laws are so sadly lax, there is no real enforcement.

I think the "gun show loophole" ought to be closed. I think an assault weapon ban is fine, I worry that our police forces can be out-gunned. I think there should be no "rapid" background checks -- over the phone or otherwise, a full, 5-day waiting period is fine. I also believe that registering a gun is a good idea. I neither belong to, nor support the NRA -- as I think their "all or nothing" views and lobbying is over-the-top.

The recent Supreme Court overturning of DC's gun ban was proper, not because a ban (on some weapons) is a bad idea, but because it was an "all or nothing" ban.

There is here, as there is in most complex issues -- some reasonable common "middle ground".

4/22/2009 3:06 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No Jay, there is no reasonable "middle ground." The Constitutional protection of my 2nd Amendment rights is to allow me to resist government when it exceeds its Constitutional mandate. I will not be relegated to owning a "hunting" rifle because BO or some other jackboot thinks it would be good for me not to be armed with a weapon more suited for the purposes that the 2nd Amendment addresses. And in that regard, I find it utterly stupefying that so many in here have the "it can't happen here" mentality. Look at history - it's pretty simple to see that where people are not armed, they are victims of both common criminals and political tyrants.

4/22/2009 4:27 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm afraid...if we don't outlaw every single gun and confiscate every gun on the streets my babies will probably be gunned down and killed.

I don't want to bury my children because document that's over 200 years old says people have the "right" to own guns.

The European countries are much more progressive and the people are much happier. Many of them have outlawed guns for years. We should stop trying to be so individualistic and realize that we are a part of a larger world community. We should try to fit in with that community. I don't like the fact that the rest of the world does not like/respect this country.

You republicans need to realize that you lost the election. Obama is doing a great job and his popularity will only grow. The democrats won the election, now we get to run the country. Our support and numbers will only grow now...we are now empowered.

In a few years we'll have the strength it takes to change the constitution. Guns will be outlawed, EVERYONE will be able to get married, everyone will be able to access health care, even the less fortunate will be able to own homes, and things will be a lot better. Just like Canada and Europe. So, buy your guns. Buy your bullets. We'll get them someday...we'll take this country from you and we'll make it better. You had your turn. Now it's ours.

4/22/2009 5:49 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some nutjob said:

The Constitutional protection of my 2nd Amendment rights is to allow me to resist government when it exceeds its Constitutional mandate.

Good luck with that. Maybe you should try "resisting" the cops who have come to search your home, like the other geniuses on here. I hope you like prison.

4/22/2009 6:10 PM

 
OpenID bublehead10mm said...

I am happy that we, that is me and others who advocate against gun bans, for the time being have a fair chance of holding off the other side in the congress. The bad news is that the executive branch is not on our side. President Oboma said during the campaign that he's "not going to take away your guns." Also that he didn't have the votes anyhow. That sure made me feel O.K., about like I suppose my wife would feel if I said I'm not cheating. I can't find anyone to do it with.

This last week Oboma said he's not abandoning the Assault Weapons Ban. Just not able to do it now.

It's a bad idea to focus on guns use in crime or, more often, ones rarely used in crime. Focus on criminals.

4/22/2009 6:18 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous 05:49 --

I agree. We have the power now and there is no way they are going to get it back. Republicans will never get power again because we have youth and creativity on our side. Half of Hollywood agrees with us...we have all of the cool people. They may have Rush Limpbaugh but we have Bono!

The constitution was written by a bunch of radicals. Soon we'll have to chance to change it and fill it with more modern and progressive ideals.

Enjoy the remaining time you have with your guns because it will be short!

4/22/2009 6:27 PM

 
OpenID bublehead10mm said...

I don't know what to make of the Anonymous before last. I almost think it's a caricature and the writer just wants it to look ridiculous. "if we don't outlaw every single gun and confiscate every gun on the streets my babies will probably be gunned down and killed"
"The European countries are much more progressive and the people are much happier."
Just as an example the rate of assaults with guns in great Briton where guns are effectively banned is on the rise. http://www.nraila.org/issues/FactSheets/Read.aspx?ID=78

That 200 year old document is held as holy rit by the left if it has to do with freedom of the press or freedom from religion.

4/22/2009 6:31 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bubblehead10mm -

It was a caricature. I forgot to put just kidding comments at the end.

anonymous 627 -

Your kidding right. Seriously you are going to use BONO as a positive for the democrat party.

Seriously, Bono.

Come on...Hollywood types have the right to their opinions but they are far from the gold standard for sage advice and accurate information. I know most American understand that...at least I hope so.

Really, Bono. Maybe Meatloaf but not Bono.

You like U2? Really?

4/22/2009 6:55 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmmm,

U2 Bono

ORCongresswoman Mary Bono Mack (R - CA)

Inquiring minds want to know?

Jerry

4/22/2009 7:19 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Enjoy the remaining time you have with your guns because it will be short!"

Ummm, only of those of your ilk are prepared to die attempting to take them. I can assure you that I'm prepared to die to prevent it - and I'm not alone.

4/22/2009 10:12 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=95770

4/23/2009 6:36 AM

 
Anonymous Jay said...

Actually, there is always a middle ground. Comprise, while not always the best choice for each interest, works well.

That being said -- it is an overgeneralization that only Republicans are pro-gun and Democrats are anti-gun.

Also -- it is enormously hard to change the Constitution, probably rightly so. (See ERA amendment) I doubt you'll ever see 2nd Amendment repealed. NRA (even if I don't agree with them on much) has been successful in its lobbying efforts.

Before anyone gets big on thumping their chest "we are in charge now, so you all can eat a sh*t sandwich and like it..." -- political winds blow fast in *both* directions. A "permanent" majority is a laughable idea, whether postulated by Karl Rove, or someone on the other side of the aisle.

You may eat those words one day.

4/23/2009 8:40 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To all you geniuses who laugh at those crazy nutjobs who want to resist government "tyranny":

"The right to bear arms is a protection against the possibility that even our own government could degenerate into tyranny, and though this may seem unlikely, this possibility should be guarded against with individual diligence."

Which extremist right-wing nutjobs came up with that?

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The quotation is from a unanimous opinion by Judge Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain, a Reagan appointee, Judge Arthur L. Alarcón, a Carter appointee, and Judge Ronald M. Gould, a Clinton appointee.

Right-wing nutjobs all, of course.

4/24/2009 2:56 PM

 
Blogger Gaige said...

4/22/2009 5:49 PM

I hope you understand that I and my compatriots will kill you and your compatriots should you try and achieve these things.

And to be honest? I'll enjoy it.

4/24/2009 4:34 PM

 
Blogger Gaige said...

Aw, crap... you were a caricature... should've kept reading...

4/24/2009 4:38 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A simple mistake. No offense taken.

4/24/2009 4:50 PM

 
Blogger Gaige said...

Kind of difficult to keep track of who is who when you're all posting as "anonymous."

4/24/2009 9:59 PM

 
Blogger BigDaddy said...

For every nutjob trying to make the news there are thousands of us sitting calmly at home, guns loaded; either in our pocket, or behind the safe door.............

9/11/2009 8:43 PM

 
Anonymous tablet pc 10 pulgadas said...

Very helpful info, thank you for your article.

1/17/2012 3:34 PM

 
Blogger Tiberius Gracchus said...

Late to the party, but devil's advocate:

If we literally interpret EXACTLY what the amendment says, then it's unconstitutional to deny a US citizen the right to own ANY kind of armament.

That would include nuclear weapons.

Oh sure you could regulate the ownership of yellowcake or enriched uranium and basically preclude a law abiding citizen from making one, BUT if I were to go over to Uncle Vlady Putin and say "Here's a billion dollars I'd like a 20 megaton MIRV warhead please." Can't stop me.

It would be illegal to USE it, it'd probably be illegal to transport it into the country or over state lines, but once it is in my possession in the US, by the literal interpretation of the 2nd amendment, you can't deny me the right to just have it.

2 cents.

3/23/2012 9:34 PM

 

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