Their concern for our country, these opponents of gun control legislation, is awe-inspiring and commanding of respect. They are such ardent supporters of our Constitution that, in its defense, they can overcome any feelings of compassion for children (other than their own, of course) mowed down by demented people armed with military weapons. They are willing to sacrifice the anguish of these children’s parents and other loved ones in the name of protecting the Second Amendment.
Wow! Such dedication, such patriotism.
There’s only one problem. The United States Constitution is a lot like the Holy Bible: It can be manipulated and interpreted to suit one’s own predilections. Here is that Amendment, titled Right to bear arms: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
Webster’s New World College Dictionary provides two current definitions for militia: “any army composed of citizens rather than professional soldiers, called up in time of emergency”; and “all able-bodied male citizens between 18 and 45 years old who are not already members of the regular armed forces … constitute the organized militia (italics mine).”
If you choose the first meaning, the right to bear arms is restricted to members of a citizens army activated only in an emergency. If you choose the second, you have to define “organized,” because “unorganized militia” is defined in Webster’s as any group “organized” like an army to “oppose the authority of the federal government.” So is “organized,” in the second meaning, equivalent to “well-regulated,” the term in the Constitution? Seems to me they’re synonymous.
Another problem is that said militia is composed of “all able-bodied male citizens … .” Does that mean women can’t be members? Legislation in recent years has given women the right to engage in battle alongside men in the armed forces. Wouldn’t barring membership by them in a militia be contradictory?
Then there’s this problem of the definition of “arms.” Does the Amendment authorize use of artillery, or bazookas, or tanks, or drones? No – because such weapons weren’t in existence when the Constitution was approved.
President Trump; er, Sen. Marco Rubio; er, Fla. State Rep. Jay Fant; er, Neanderthal man
Guess what: Neither were assault weapons or any other automatic or semiautomatic weapons. So banning them from civilian ownership does not violate the Second Amendment, as proclaimed by the Neanderthals who, in effect, advocate anarchy. We haven’t yet heard them call for the right to own artillery, bazookas, tanks and drones, but if national organizations existed for those weapons, you can bet these wild-eyed lovers of violence and anything-goes business interests would shout that they’re protected by the Constitution.
Back in 1996, an attack in Australia by someone brandishing a semiautomatic weapon caused carnage on the scale of the Parkland, Florida, school shooting rampage a couple of weeks ago. Australia has nothing in its constitution like the right to bear arms as specious fodder for gun nuts, and it came up with a simple solution: ban ownership of semiautomatics and offer to buy back high-powered weapons already in circulation. Other comprehensive gun control measures also were enacted. Problem solved. No mass attack has occurred since then.
Florida State Rep. Jay Fant
“We Australians have a profoundly different relationship with weapons,” A. Odysseus Patrick of the Australian Financial Review wrote for the New York Times. “Americans love guns. We’re scared of them. This difference explains why a conservative prime minister was able to confiscate some 650,000 privately owned firearms and ban semiautomatic weapons without a single reported act of violence. That wasn’t all. Twenty-eight-day waiting times were introduced for firearm purchases. All gun buyers were required to have a genuine reason to qualify for a license (self-protection didn’t count). A national gun registry was created. Australians, on the whole, were happy to give up their guns and accept the new restrictions. They understood that semiautomatic guns, which reload themselves each time fired, increase exponentially the lethality of a firearm.”
A. Odysseus Patrick
Kevin Rudd, a former Australian prime minister, noted on MSNBC this week that the rural, frontier country has some of “the most dangerous, poisonous” animals on the planet, but protection against those varmints does not require semiautomatic weapons.
In a terse, well articulated letter to the Palm Beach Post, David Gettig of Tequesta noted that the National Rifle Association has donated $3.3 million to Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who opposes banning assault weapons, and $30 million to President Trump, who – as in everything he does – fulminated about the need for gun control and then did nothing. “The NRA has oceans of American blood on its hands,” Gettig wrote. “Since 1968, over 1.5 million Americans have died from domestic gunfire. That’s sick.”
Throw the bums out!
Sen. Marco Rubio
As sick as the knee-jerk, meaningless “thoughts and prayers” uttered after every one of these attacks. And they’ll continue as long as voters elect politicians such as Rubio, Trump and Florida State Rep. Jay Fant, who solemnly intoned on national television the critical important of protecting the Second Amendment as reason to enact no gun control legislation. The despicably callous Republican Florida Legislature ignored the pleas of a horde of students from Parkland and other South Florida schools who took buses to the Capitol in Tallahassee to plead for a ban on assault weapons. The money these politicians get from the NRA to help finance their elections is more important to them than the lives of their constituents, even the children.
Nean… er, President Trump
Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner
Because money is what it’s all about. An egregious violation of the U.S. Constitution has been underway for the last 13-plus months as Donald Trump and his family, i.e., his daughter Ivanka and her husband Gerald Kushner, continue to hold federal positions in gross violation of the Constitution’s emoluments clause with their ownership of business interests that conflict with their government responsibilities and pose dangers to the nation’s security. Are these Republican politicians bothered by that? If they are, they’ve been remarkably taciturn.
The hypocrisy is stinking up the place so bad it’s become almost uninhabitable.
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