We don't have to blindly accept the Constitution as it is. After all, unlike religious texts, it's amendable, which is how the Second Amendment got there in the first place. So we're allowed to consider whether any particular provision serves the public interest, and whether it should be removed, weakened, left alone or strengthened.

I believe that the populace should have some privilege to possess weaponry, but I can't consider personal possession of guns to be a right. First, there are types of people that must be prevented from having weapons--children, criminals and the insane. And there are types of weaponry that should not be available--fusion bombs being the extreme.

So if we need limits on which people can have which weapons, how can possession of weapons by people logically be anything more than a privilege? It's possible to preserve it as a right, however, by making it communal, rather than personal. And once you make it communal, it's also possible to allow different communities to set different limits.

The best rewrite of the Second Amendment I've been able to come up with is this: "The populace of each community shall have the right to keep appropriate means available for its defense."

Catablog

Comments

lifesize's picture
lifesize 4 years 35 weeks ago
#1

we don't need to rewrite the second amendment; we need supremes who can read, who won't insert their own macho idiocy into the document while decry "activist liberal judges' and THEIR supposedly self-indulgent reading of the constitution.

that "well ordered" part seems too much for scalia to understand, just as he finds it unnecessary to continue voting rights monitoring of some southern districts, ignoring abundant news of vote-rigging shenanigans in those districts.

"strict construction is great, except, apparently, when it doesn't fit one's biases.

so the lesson is: vote in every election, so sane folks (liberals and moderates) have enough power to assure non-rabid supreme court majorities.

Nancy M Weaver's picture
Nancy M Weaver 4 years 35 weeks ago
#2

The Second Amendment is OK the way it is. A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state.... The Constitution with its militia clauses and the Second Amendment supporting a well regulated militia for the states were in response to Shays's Rebellion across Massachusetts. A state required a militia to maintain security and domestic tranquility. Shays and other former revolutionary soldiers and heros were struggling farmers after the war. Predatory banks and courthouses favoring banks were causing a lot of grief, financial and otherwise. Rebellions were ongoing after the Revolution. A militia would be well regulated by the state officers.Secure. All was clear. Until the NRA said otherwise late in the 20th century on behalf of the bottom line for gun manufacturers. The drama began -- a gun became a so-called 'right'. That's a lie. Now 32,000 Americans die; every year. Anyone who says guns are right are mistaken -- for whatever reason. A gun is not a right. No inanimate object is a right according the Constitution of the United States. To say a lethal weapon could possibly be an individual right is to support reckless insanity. Stop it!

When the rogue Supreme Court is wrong about money is political speech, or wrong about corporations are people, the rogue 5 is wrong when they attempt to say guns are OK for individuals. Guns are not OK. Guns kill.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 4 years 35 weeks ago
#3

Reply to #1: WOO-HOO lifesize! Well stated!

I’ve a copy of the constitution at my fingertips, by the way, and “well regulated” is the catch phrase these yahoos routinely ignore. And you’re right, lifesize, Scalia and his ilk can’t seem to comprehend the “regulated” part either. So inconvenient for them!

Reply to #2: Wow Nancy, it seems that unregulated, predatory banks have been causing people grief for an awfully long time; even longer than I realized! Whuddia know, deja vu! At any rate, the real mccoy is light years from the NRA hacks’ interpretation of the Second Amendment. I agree; all this crap about individual gun rights is a big-ass, bloody lie. 32,000 deaths per year is mighty bloody, all right. And comparing our statistics to other countries’ statistics on gun deaths (excluding war zones of course) would be laughable were it not so fucking tragic.

Whenever the Extreme Court is right about anything, it’s a rare event.

“Guns don’t kill people; people kill people!” if I hear that stale slogan one more time I think I’ll SCREAM.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 4 years 35 weeks ago
#4

P.S. Even driving a car isn't a right; its an earned privilege.

Penny Rewis 4 years 35 weeks ago
#5
Quote mathboy:

We don't have to blindly accept the Constitution as it is. After all, unlike religious texts, it's amendable, which is how the Second Amendment got there in the first place. So we're allowed to consider whether any particular provision serves the public interest, and whether it should be removed, weakened, left alone or strengthened.

I believe that the populace should have some privilege to possess weaponry, but I can't consider personal possession of guns to be a right. First, there are types of people that must be prevented from having weapons--children, criminals and the insane. And there are types of weaponry that should not be available--fusion bombs being the extreme.

So if we need limits on which people can have which weapons, how can possession of weapons by people logically be anything more than a privilege? It's possible to preserve it as a right, however, by making it communal, rather than personal. And once you make it communal, it's also possible to allow different communities to set different limits.

The best rewrite of the Second Amendment I've been able to come up with is this: "The populace of each community shall have the right to keep appropriate means available for its defense."

Your whole text is in support of firearms for ONLY communal law enforcement (community=police, sheriff) or armed forces (state militia or national guard).

Here is an anecdote from my community, which is small and semi-rural, &in a very nice area--- four men between 3:00 and 4:00 PM attempted to force entry into two seperate homes, each with a single teenager (male of 15 yrs, female of 16 yrs) home from school. Their doors were locked but the men were bludgeoning the doors until they heard in each instance the kid pumping a shell into an automatic shotgun. They quickly left each premises. That's a happy ending resulting from keeping firearms appropriate for their defense.

A criminal who attempts entry into a home at a time of day when someone probably is home, has no qualms about killing or at the very least beating the occupant(s) senseless.

We do need better gun screening to keep guns out of the hands of the irresponsible, incompetent, and criminal. But some areas are 45 minutes or more from local law enforcement response and people need firearms to stay alive until help arrives. All of this country does not live where law enforcement response is 15 minutes after the 9ll call.

In the suburbs, discouraging felony assault is a big reason for the success of gated communities. They have private security until the "po-po" arrives (private firearms too, I bet). Keeping firearms appropriate for their defense.

Dexterous's picture
Dexterous 4 years 35 weeks ago
#6

“Guns don’t kill people; people kill people!”

Kilosqrd's picture
Kilosqrd 4 years 35 weeks ago
#7
Quote Dexterous:

“Guns don’t kill people; people kill people!”

I'm still waiting for the first arrest warrant to be issued to a firearm. I'm still waiting for the first time a firearm is arrested, booked, hauled into court, convicted, sent to prison or given the death penalty. Or am I just a dreamer?

Roland de Brabant's picture
Roland de Brabant 4 years 35 weeks ago
#8

The Second Amendment was a compromise, an incomplete compromise, which is why the language lacks precision. That said, "well regulated" clearly gives states the right to regulate the bearing of arms. If one takes the Second Amendment to be a public right, then we should all have the right to own and operate M-1A tanks and F-18s.

John Roberts and his claque are the most activist Justices ever. Hands down. His Citizens United decision exceeded the matter before the court. It was the first instance of legislation from the bench ever.

Scalia does not understand "no anchovies" much less "well regulated"

Justices are prohibited from engaging in political activity. Justice Holmes, a man about town before his appointment, became a hermit on the bench. But Roberts, Scalia, Alito and Thomas are very active in the Right Wing of the Republican party.

Roland

lifesize's picture
lifesize 4 years 35 weeks ago
#9

as i said elsewhere "guns don't kill people; gun nuts do!"

Kilosqrd's picture
Kilosqrd 4 years 35 weeks ago
#10
Quote Roland de Brabant:

That said, "well regulated" clearly gives states the right to regulate the bearing of arms.

Wrong Roland. Wow. "A well regulated militia" Roland is about people, not firearms. The "militia" is an ARMED CITIZENRY. Look it up. The 2nd Amendment clearly states what the "right" is. The right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

So, who are "the people", Roland, that the framers are speaking of? The first three words of the Constitution are "We the People". The 1st Amendment says "the right of the people to assemble....". The Fourth Amendment starts with the phrase "The right of the people". Is it your contention that the framers of the Constitution were talking about different groups of people in all these instances? The "Bill of Rights" was placed in the Constitution as a check against the power of government. They don't grant anything. They affirm what is already a God-given human right. The right to think and speak freely. The right to assemble peacefully with whoever you want and the right to petition the government for a redress of grievences. The right to criticize the government without fear of reprisal. The right to defend yourself, your loved ones, and your property. The right against self-incrimination.

So Roland, the right to bear arms is an individual right, along with all the others.

Legend 4 years 35 weeks ago
#11

The constitution was written more than 200 years ago with Feather Quills. They could not have conceived what life would be like today. The constitution needs to be re-written in todays language. Printed on todays Printers. Then voted on. When passed it should be distributed as a PDF file to all.

mathboy's picture
mathboy 4 years 8 weeks ago
#12

I've intentionally left some vagueness to the language, Penny, so that communities can set standards according to their needs. A rural community can decide that the best defense consists of individual ownership and possession at home. An urban community can decide that the best defense consists of restricting gun ownership to professionals that are trained, licensed and uniformed.

The point is that someone that has been legally disarmed but lives where that's a problem can sue to raise the ceiling on gun control, but the government can balance that by showing that individual ownership is a public danger, if that's the case.

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