reply to post by vor78
While the amendment is grounded deep in English common law history, and despite its heavy romanticization, there was a clear lack of policy making
when deciding to allow civilians to own mechanized arms at the time of the amendment's authoring. Simply put, guns are too discreet and they kill too
English Protestants were granted the right to bear arms. They had weapons, which could be used in the case of tyranny and oppression by an
illegitimate ruling power, or if society were to collapse due to famine, pestilence, etc. You have to remember that these laws were implemented only a
century or two after the English Civil War. The country's rulers were always in a state of change at the time. A Catholic King gets in power, there
were mass killings of Protestants, and the same vice-versa. There was still a vivid memory of the English Civil War during the 17th and 18th
centuries. While the memory wasn't a living one, it had great implications in all of English society, most importantly in law.
I understand how the Founding Fathers viewed natural liberties. I'm very well read in that area. However, you have mistaken the term I provided,
"society", with something along the lines of "groupthink" or "mobocracy", whereby the group or the hierarchy decides what rights an individual
may have. The Founding Fathers were well aware of that, and their resentment for such thinking is clear in their writings, especially in their
rejection of the democratic methods of the ancient Greeks. However, I still don't believe gun ownership has anything to do with "natural
The rights of socialized individuals are very different than natural individuals. You essentially must give up behavior that you might have benefited
to engage in before you were subject to the moral conduct inherent in society and the law. One's rights only go so far as to include those, which
cannot pose any harm on another individual, or those which must be restricted in order for the proper, benevolent functioning of society under God.
Consensus between members of society, and members of society alone, provide the basis for which morality is founded, and the structure for which
behavior is modeled around.
While you are born with the right to defend your own life at all costs, using a gun to do so gives you certain advantages over others. Adding a
provision for the right to bear mechanized arms is implicit in the authors' inability to form policy, which might be relevant in the future.
Anyway, historically speaking, the amendment provided an anticipatory measure in the face of the great secession of the Civil War. Its history was
heavily romanticized by the militia movement in the 1960's. Whether the Founding Fathers ever held the view that gun ownership was pivotal for "the
rightful insurrection of men against tyrants" are highly disputed in the American History academia. It could very well be entirely propagandized
Regarding the psych test. I'm pretty sure it would stop middle class teenagers living in the suburbs from finding a way to purchase a firearm without
having to go downtown or see some shady underground dealer. That might elicit the attention of their parents... not to mention they wouldn't last a
minute in those neighborhoods without being jumped themselves. I realize that if you want to go on a rampage across school, if that is truly your
ultimate desire, your demand for acquiring a means to inflict harm on your schoolmates is highly inelastic, meaning you will pay whatever cost, or go
to any length to acquire that end. Unfortunately for them, policy measures such as these might inhibit their ability to pursue their aims as easily as
picking up a gun from Walmart.
Anyway, I understand policy isn't really a good idea. It can't solve many issues without infringing upon the freedoms of a large subset of
respsonsible, healthy individuals. However, if the gun-toting libertarians had any concern for society then you would expect that they advocate some
kind of solution. If the root of the problem is bad people, why not provide the social and educational institutions, as well as the welfare provisions
to ensure that individuals aren't allowed to grow up into "bad people". What's even more hypocritical is how those same libertarians go "up in
arms" as soon as the government decides to raise taxes.
The very same taxes that go to schools and social programs, which benefit society at its
most basic foundations.
By admitting that there will always be bad people, and by not even attempting to provide positive policy solutions, they are damning 14,000 children
to death from gun related injuries or assault every year.
The Libertarian Party of America doesn't even address the problem. They blame "bad people", yet they themselves have produced nothing to address
gun proliferation into the hands of those "bad people". I just can't respect a party or even a general belief system that doesn't take a stab at
both sides of the problem.
[edit on 10-1-2009 by cognoscente]