What are Our Needs? is that the same as Our Rights?


Bill of Rights, 09/25/1789
Bill of Rights, 09/25/1789 (Photo credit: The U.S. National Archives)

 

 

 

As we debate the issue of what the 2nd Amendment really means, and who it really applies to, we are also debating the rights associated with 9 other amendments that also form th Bill of Rights.

 

Here is a nice link to the Bill of Rights Institute, which not only give a text of the Bill of Rights but, some information about the rational for the Bill itself..

 

Here is a portion that has given so many people a lot of confusion…

 

Amendment II

 

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.

 

Now, this is where some of the confusion came from…  For years the militia part was interpreted to mean the amendment applied to the federal government, and not the individual citizen.  They took the “well regulated militia” to mean the Military, even though most of our founding fathers did not seem to envision a standing army.

 

So, what is a militia?  Look here for a good definition of a Militia.  The courts have held, recently, that the 2nd amendment really did apply to the states, and the people.  It would be kind of hard to explain how one amendment would only apply to the federal government while the other nine applied to the “the people” mentioned in the 2nd…

 

We are really lucky that the Federalist did not get their way.  They were sure that our rights were obvious and that we did not need to delineate them in the Constitution.  We have a Bill of Rights written into the Constitution and we are still arguing about what they mean…  So what do you think would have happened if we did NOT have the Bill of Rights?  The Antifederalist wanted a list of rights, the federalist did not, they compromised and gave us a short list, with the understanding that any close decisions was to be decided on behalf of the Citizen.

 

Ok.. Most people will tell you that we have the right to bear arms, some reluctantly.  Some people will tell you that we do not need high capacity magazines, or semi-automatic weapons (for the liberal news people who might be reading this the semi-automatic means that it only fires one shot each time you pull the trigger, and the name is not interchangeable with automatic weapon), or even the right to carry (again for you liberal news people that means to carry).

 

No, I don’t need a 30 round magazine.  Most of the time I don’t even need a firearm but, needing and having are two different things…  I don’t normally need a fire extinguisher, but sometime I might, so it would be nice to have one on hand.  The question, which so many of the rabbit want to ignore, is not about if we need to bear arms the fact is ” the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed”.

 

in·fringe from reference.com

 

/ɪnˈfrɪndʒ/ Show Spelled [in-frinj] Show IPA verb, in·fringed, in·fring·ing.

 

verb (used with object)

1.

to commit a breach or infraction of; violate or transgress: to infringe a copyright; to infringe a rule.verb (used without object)
2.to encroach or trespass (usually followed by on or upon ): Don’t infringe on his privacy.

 

Origin:
1525–35; < Latin infringere to break, weaken, equivalent to in- in-2  + -fringere, combining form of frangere to break

 

If you, or anyone, wants to limit our rights to what we need then you will have to see the constitution as just another piece of papers….  which can be ignored at will..

 

Without people who believe in it the U.S. Constitution it is just an old piece of parchment  to be thrown out when it becomes inconvenient. such as when it is no longer NEEDED..

 

We have choices..  We always have choices.  One is that we can abide by the Constitution, another is we can ignore it, kind of like the “gun” control people seem to want, or we can change it..

 

The first two do not seem like viable options, since a number of people are determined to ignore it, so that leaves us with the idea of change..  Yes, the constitution has been changed in the past.  We have added more amendments, and done away with at least one, remember prohibition?

 

Then again, does anyone remember the Articles of Confederation?  It brought the states together but, did not give the central government the power to make the states behave.  So they decided to “revise” the Articles of Confederation to give the central government more power, and to make bills easier to pass.

 

Thus it was, in just a few years” replaced.  Never voted out, the new Constitution was just voted in..  Would we really want to risk that?

 

Lets go back to the idea of NEEDS..  What do we really need..  and if we don’t need something who will decide if we need it..  I know we already have people who will infringe on the 2nd Amendment by saying you can’t have more than a certain number of rounds in a magazine, it is NOT A CLIP,

 

We have been told that you don’t need to tell lies about other people(slander or libel), unless you are a politician, or yell “fire” in a crowed theater unless there really is a fire.

 

Just think of the “Bill of Rights” and consider how many of them you really “NEED” on a given day..  For those of you who don’t get arrested, for example, you won’t “NEED” the right to have a lawyer present, or the “right to remain silent”.  There are a number of “rights” that we have and yet don’t need on a daily basis so, who is going to decide which of the “rights” you “need” and when you need them….  Will there be a secret court, such as the now famous FISA court, where they will decide if you even “need” a trial by your peers, or will they just pronounce you guilty, and the first thing you hear about it is when they take you to serve your sentence?

 

One last thought for the day:  for those of you who say that our founding father’s did not anticipate high capacity magazine, or even weapon that could fire more than one shot, I say, look at how the world has changed, since then and understand that they did not anticipate the internet, the phone system, telegrams, and many other wonders we have.  Wonders that the Supreme Court has been called upon to apply our rights to.  What if it had been decided that, since they had only envisioned the mail, that he telegraph, your phone, your cell phone, or the internet did not come under those items protected by the Constitution.  Any of those things could then be open without probable cause, and you would have no electronic privacy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Our Rights, and what are they?


First Floor at the Statute of John Marshall, q...
First Floor at the Statute of John Marshall, quotation from Marbury v. Madison (written by Marshall) engraved into the wall. United States Supreme Court Building. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I think I have been pretty consistent about our right to “bear arms“.

I refute that our rights are limited to what people, or some of them, think we “need” to have.  The “Bill of Rights” says noting about these right being applied “only in time of need” but says, our right, what our rights are…  and they are not based on current need.

Who would be the one to say which rights we “NEED”?  Nobody.  Our rights are what they are, and this is not based on someone thoughts about what we need.  That includes rights other than the right to “bear arms”.

Most recently, in just the last couple of days, I have started to hear people say that our founding fathers did not intend us to have the kind of weapons that are available..  They rationalized that since the founding father did not know about modern weapons the could not have intended us to have the rights to them…

To this I have several things to say.  First, they did intend that we have a militia, which is basically a citizen army, which means we would have to be able to obtain weapons that could be used by the Military.  At one point in time the Supreme Court upheld the laws against short barreled weapons, say a shotgun that had the barrel cut down, with the reasoning that by cutting down the barrel it would render that same shotgun useable by a military and thus it was not in keeping with use by a Militia.

The second thing this persons statement brings to mind is that the founding fathers also did not envision T.V., Telephones, Telegraph, Electric typewriters, computers, the Internet and a whole bunch of things that have been invented since then..  Does this mean that we only have rights in relation to things they knew about?  Would our free speech NOT include the Internet?

Over the years we have gotten these answers from the Supreme Court each time they have adapted their ruling to changes in technology.  The rights against unreasonable search have been applied to things like our mail, the phone,and to some degree our vehicles.  The courts have applied the concepts to things that our founding fathers probably did not see coming.  What if they had said that there was no need for privacy rights to cover a wire going out of your house, and so anybody could tap your phone without a warrant?  They did not do this, as they reasoned that there were situations where a person had a certain “expectation of privacy” in which case a warrant was needed.

The “Bill of Right” says what they are, and the Supreme Court interprets what the “Bill of Rights” says…  Recent decisions by the court have dismantled some of the most repressive firearms law in the country.  Law that violated, or infringed on, our right to bear arms.

So, to those of you who feel that we, the law abiding citizen, have not rights to bear arms you would have to change the constitution so that we only have the rights that YOU think we should have…

On the other hand you should keep in mind that idea that we got the present constitution, and government, when they decided that changes must be made to the “Articles of Confederation” that formed the framework of our first national government.  They were just supposed to make changes to it.  Instead that gave us a completely different organization.

 

The Price of Freedom…


Bill of Rights, 09/25/1789
Bill of Rights, 09/25/1789 (Photo credit: The U.S. National Archives)

I am sure you have heard the old cliché about the “Price of Freedom” being “Eternal Vigilance”.  You might have even wondered why people keep saying it.  After-all it is a cliché,  and probably has no meaning in our modern world…  If you do think this, then you are missing the point of a cliché..  It got to be a cliché because it had enough meaning to be repeated many times over the years…

Lets look at this particular saying.. “The Price of Freedom is Eternal Vigilance” and what it means which is that we must continually watch for the erosion of our freedoms and rights.

You might say “we don’t have to worry about that, we are protected by the United States Constitution and our Bill of Rights”.  Yes, we have one of the best Constitutions in the world, and it is a remarkable document but, that is all it really is unless the people who are supposed to administer it believe in it.   If the people in charge do not believe in the principles set forth in that document then all it is is a piece of paper…

Years ago, in the 60s, one of my teachers explained that the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics had one of the best constitutions in the world…  Yes, the USSR, or Russia, had one that was supposed to safeguard the people rights.  The problem there was that, to the people in charge, it was just a piece of paper, and so they did just what they wanted.  They had to build an Iron Curtain to keep people in their area of influence.  This country has to try to keep people OUT.

This country, the United States of America, recognizes that the people have many rights, which are spelled out in the Bill of Rights, and we also have many responsibilities.  You have the right of free speech, so you have the responsibility to tell the truth.  We have the right to bear arms in order to protect ourselves from enemies, both domestic and foreign, so you could say we have a responsibility to protect the weak.  We have the right to remain silent when charged with a crime, it is afterall their responsibility to prove the charges NOT YOURS.

These rights can also be abused.  Free speech might be turned into libel and slander, just look at any of the recent elections.  The right to bear arms can be abused by the murder of innocents.  The right of a free press can be abused when reporters slant the way the story is told, or if they don’t bother to verify facts….  Not long after the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting, when the fact were still coming in, one station stated  that he was carrying an “AK-47 automatic assault weapon”.  It has since come out that he was carrying an M-16 knockoff AR-15 Bushmaster which was not an automatic weapon.  Some reporters like to use “trigger words” such as “assault weapon” to describe anything that might look like it could be used by the Military.  So, is the average pump action shotgun and assault weapon if it is the same type used by the Armed Services?  NO.

In the days since Dec. 14th, the day of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, there has been talk, mostly from the left, about a renewal of the dialogue about “Gun Control”.  After President Ronald Reagan was shot, by John Hinkley with his .22 cal revolver/assault weapon, we had the start of the Brady Bunch trying to disarm the American public. The problem with the Brady Bill was that, as pointed out by a member of congress, NONE of the provisions of the Brady Bill would have effected Hinkley’s ability to get a firearm.

If the left is really interested in controlling the flow of firearms they might like to let THEIR Attorney General, Eric Holder, know that we do not appreciate that programs   such as Fast and Furious were helping to arm Narcoterrorist gangs in Mexico, or that Mr. Holder seemed to think that this was a good way to push for more “Gun Control”.

So, where am I going with this?  Think of it this way.  As people talk about what kind of firearms we don’t need, they should look at the fact that our constitution give us the “right” to have them when it says that the “right to bear arms shall not be infringed”.  Maybe the solution would be to preface the “Bill of Rights” with the words “as needed”, and they could make up a panel of experts who would choose which of those rights we “need”.

The National Rifle Association is often accused of pushing an agenda on its members but, in reality, not something the left understand, the NRA is made up of people who have an interest in seeing that their rights are protected from people who would try to take them away.  This is part of what that “eternal vigilance” refers to..

The American Civil Liberties Union and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People are groups that aim to protect the rights of their own groups but, few people have ever said we should control them…or what they say..  Freedom of Speech you know..

O.K. so maybe I don’t really NEED a drum magazine, with enough ammo to blast an intruder back out to the curb, all with out having to reload.  Maybe I don’t really have a need to feel safe in my home, though it is nice.  After some event, such as the Sandy Hook shootings, you will see stories, in the news, about people buying weapons for their own protection, and the firearms ranges do a brisk business.  These are all indicators that people do NOT really feel safe in their homes.

Here is another thought that might, or might not, make you feel safer.. I just read a timeline on CNN.com.  It says the first 911 calls came in at about 9:30am, and the first responders arrived on scene about 20 minutes later.  Maybe this timeline refers to when both the Police and Fire personnel got there, maybe it has to do with when a large contingent of responders got on scene, or maybe the Sandy Hook PD sent someone around to see what was going on before they launched a panic response.  It might be nice to know why they took 20 minutes to get there..  Did they have t look the school up on the GPS?  Were they all in the doughnut shop?  Did they do like the Police at Columbine did and wait for the shots to stop?  If I called the Sarasota County Sheriff’s office and thought that it would take 20 minutes for a Deputy to respond, on a “shots fired”, call I would be really worried.  Especially if the left is able to take away my home defence.

So the question might be “how many of our rights do we REALLY NEED, and who will decide which they are.   Right now the legal ownership of firearms, of any type, is not regulated by need but, by constitutional rights granted by the “Bill of Right”.  If they want to disarm the public, in order to make the criminals feel safer, they would have to change the Constitution, or get more liberal Judges in to say “we will pick which of your rights you need”.

Then again, if there ever comes a time when no longer have the “right to bear arms”, just remember the news reports about Police weapons being stolen out of their cars.  Does that make you feel safe?

Thanks,

That Joe Guy.

P.S.  The next time you hear about an accident involving large numbers of vehicles and multiple deaths, think about this, we could also make the roads safe by banning cars.  Who cares that you might be punishing the carefull drives, he can alway call a cab.

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What Rights do we REALLY Need?


English: The Bill of Rights, the first ten ame...

We have rights!  These right are laid out in the Bill of Rights as listed in the United States Constitution.  This means that while there might be some restrictions on these rights, such as no bang bang for felons, these rights can not be outlawed by one of the very groups that these laws protect us from i.e. the government.

So it is kind of odd that while one section of the Constitution declares the Constitution to be the “supreme law of the land” some judges have held that the Bill of Rights does not apply to the states.  So I guess it is a good thing that most states have included, in their individual Constitutions their own version of the Bill of Rights and the Right to Bear Arms

The problem here is that some of these Judges have taken the mention of the “militia” to mean the state, or federal government, will the Constitution says “the rights of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed”.  We are the “people” not the government, who is supposed to get their authority from us, the people.

Recent Supreme Court opinions have even affirmed that the 2nd amendment applies to “the people” and that decision has been used to strike down a number of state, and city, law that banned people from owning hand firearms.

The Gun Control crowd may have the right motives, like trying to cut down on the number of criminals who have access to weapons but, the question come up : how would they do this without violating the Constitution?  It would be hard to, for example, ban the so called assault rifle when the supreme court in, I think it was the Miller case, had said that a ban against sawed off shotguns would invalidate its use by a ” well regulated militia”:.  So it is actually the right of the people that makes it possible to arm the military, and that barring the people from owning firearms would also ban the military from the same, as the military/militia is made up of citizen soldiers.

Even if the various “Gun Control” people were to ignore this fact and attempt to pass laws based on what they perceive to be our need, the constitution says this is our right, and since this is one of a number of enumerated rights the question come up : who will decide which rights we really need?

Which other rights will they decide we DON”T NEED?  The freedom of speech?  Religious Freedom, or others.

I hate that criminals can get access to firearms but, I also hate the idea that some bureaucrat could decide which of my rights I don’t need.

I don’t believe that the law abiding citizens of this country should be punished for the crimes of others, and see this as a start down the road to tyranny.

“Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety” so said Benjamin Franklin, and he was right.

To close this off I will repeat the old saying “the price of freedom, is eternal vigilance”. 

Our right to Endanger other people


While most people may not be able to quote the precise   wording of the Bill of Rights, they will still be able to tell you what rights they have..

Some of these rights have been limited, for reasons of safety, such as the Supreme Court having ruled that you may NOT yell “FIRE” in a crowded theater if there is NO FIRE.  You may have the right, with permit, to carry a concealed weapon, though most states will prohibit the carrying of weapons in certain locations…  and example is if I have a Concealed Weapons Permit that does not mean that I can carry it through the Airport.

Some people seem to think that their rights are more valuable than yours.  An example of this would be the guy who complained to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune that, while he was sitting on his Harley and listening to his music, he was given a ticket for a noise violation.  I can almost sympathize with the man…    Imagine how loud your music would have to be, if you were sitting on a Harley, for you to hear it over the engine noise.  So what if those people in their cars can not hear their radios over the sound of your radio, you have YOUR rights!

Some years ago, when I was still working Security I had a young co-worker tell me about an experience he had.  He was driving his Camero on US-41 when he happened to notice a white colored vehicle behind him with rotating red and blue lights.  Once he noticed the lights he started to pay attention, and heard the faint sound of a siren.   It wasn’t even a patrol vehicle, it was one of those support, or supervisor units.   Once the kid was pulled over   the Deputy explained that the sound from his speakers was drowning out the sound of the officers radio INSIDE his vehicle.  The Deputy had planned to just pull him over and give him a warning.  But once it became clear that the kid could not hear the siren blast the Deputy turned on the whole shebang and then had to follow the kid for at least a mile with lights and siren before the kid noticed him there…  He got a ticket.    There are plenty of times when, as your are driving, you must be able to hear what is going on around you in traffic.  Times when sounds from outside your vehicle could warn you of danger, such as a siren of an emergency vehicle trying to pass through an intersection.   Who wants their first warning sign to be when they look up to see that big red truck getting ready to T-bone their car?

There are too many danger in life as it is.  Lets look at people who text on the phones while driving.  Think about how quickly traffic conditions can change, and then think about looking at your phone as you punch in you text message.  Consider how much of you concentration is focused on that text message rather then where you are going, and you can understand why pedestrians have walked out in front of traffic and become roadkill.  One of the laws that Nancy Detert, of Florida, has been trying to get passed for several years is a ban on textting while behind the wheel.  In the 1970s, when the Sarasota Country Sheriffs Department was getting the computer units installed the their patrol units, the state had to exempt Law Enforcement vehicles from a law that said a video monitor, or TV, would not be positioned in a vehicle so that it could be seen by the driver.  This was so that the driver would not divert his attention away from what he was doing, which was driving.

Most people will willingly refrain from activities that lessen their concentration, but others will insist their rights are more important and so will continue with this unsafe conduct.  These are the people for which we write laws.  Some people can use common sense, and others must follow laws.

So we need to be behind Nancy Detert and Senate Bill 416 to let out legislator know that if they can not do the right thing, then they should go home for good.

Thank you,

That Joe Guy.