Submitted by Charles Knighton
Obviously what the framers of this amendment intended was that the people…could be constituted as a militia and would be called TO DEFEND THE STATE. Michael Rudder, January 8 Letter to the editor, both sections of the press.
Obviously? When we consider that the Framers of the US Constitution and their supporters had recently taken up arms AGAINST THE STATE?
Last year Dr. Ben Carson performed a valuable public service. When the good doctor likened gun control to Nazi Germany’s confiscation of weapons, he cut to the heart of America’s debate over guns. Advocates of “commonsense” regulations, such as bans on assault rifles, 30-round magazines and armor- piercing bullets, are dumbfounded that these restrictions cannot make it through Congress.
But as Carson made clear, Second Amendment absolutists are not only concerned with their ability to shoot burglars or deer. They insist on their right to buy—indeed, to stockpile— military-grade weaponry because they believe that someday, they may need to wage a guerrilla war against a tyrannical president and the US military, just as their forefathers did in the time of George III.
This is no fringe view. The “insurrectionist” theory of the Second Amendment, as historians call it, is deeply embedded in America’s gun culture. It holds that the Founders expressly built an escape clause into the Constitution, giving citizens “the right to bear arms” so they could violently overthrow the government should it defy the people’s will. A 2013 Fairleigh Dickinson University poll found that 29 percent of Americans agreed with the statement, “In the next few years, an armed revolution might be necessary to protect our liberties.”
As Carson put it in his guileless way, no pile of bullet-riddled bodies can be “more devastating than taking the right to arm ourselves away,” since liberty itself is at stake. This belief animates the adamant opposition to gun laws, and until gun control advocates engage it directly and effectively, nothing will change.