reply to post by Alfie1
I really don't see how you read all that into the 2nd amendment. The obvious meaning of the words is that well regulated militias could be useful in
protecting newly won independence.
There's some discussion of this in the federalist papers.
In any case, it still elicits interest that after the 1st amendment, the one which insures citizens to basic civil rights, the very next topic of
concern was the right to bear arms. Regardless of the founding fathers take on this amendment, it can be readily seen how the right to bear arms
defends the individual
from the encroachments of an ambitious government. So long as 60 million Americans possess firearms, the government is
curtailed in what legislation they are able to pass without provoking serious civil public backlash.
There are far too many examples from history of this. Further, there are no governments in historical memory which ennoble the individual as the US
constitution does. One could say it's the metaphysical subtext of the entire document. Hence, in normal history, only governments possessed the right
to bear arms, but in America, the authors of the constitution sought to diffuse the power of firearms by spreading them amongst the citizenry, which
in effect dilutes the power of the central authority.
Time hasn't changed this. Types of weaponry only somewhat modifies it (For example, proscribing private ownership of grenade launchers and other high
explosives). The US constitution is the only document I know of that addresses man as man. It takes an extremely cautious and skeptical attitude
towards him. He isn't to be trusted with too much political power lest the social and cultural aims of one group (say, highly liberal atheists) be
imposed on the majority.
The constitution is a BRILLIANT document. It's central interest is to protect the individual from the tyranny of the majority. The 2nd amendment
assists in this.
Now, as for the newtown shooting. Heres some suggestions I have. Adam Lanza had serious mental problems. His mother, an apparent gun enthusiast, was
Adam's main guardian. It seems to me that not only should the mentally ill be prevented from owning guns, but those people who live with people who
are mentally ill should be limited not only in the types of guns they can own, but should also be forced to take extra precaution in the safekeeping
of their guns.. How did Adam access his mothers guns? Did his mother share her interest with him? These are the underlying issues which led to the
shootings. If his mother had inculcated her interest in private, had not allowed Adam to become "enamoured" with guns and the military, and had
properly safeguarded her guns, this wouldn't have happened. So, I don't think stricter gun laws or putting armed guards in schools is the answer.
Rather, stricter screening processes, not only on the purchasers individual history, but in their current relationships; if they happen to be closely
connected with someone with a history of mental illness, they should be admonished as to what extra precautions they should take with these
Additionally, games like GTA, etc, certainly serve to desensitize and glorify violence. How this can be ignored, while the issue of physical guns is
targeted, is a bit like blaming the car for hydroplaning and not the icy roads.