Second Amendment Absolutism is Fun, Entertaining and Entirely Irrelevant

Gun rights absolutists may want to take a new approach to the militia clause.

Reader Sam I Am writes:

If people who read and contribute commentary to TTAG are representative of gun owners who are “pro-2A”, then the battle cry “shall not be infringed” pretty much starts and ends any discussion of “gun rights”. That means 2A supporters are as fossilized in their thinking as opponents of private gun ownership.

Where exactly does that get us? National reciprocity, the castle doctrine, shall-issue, Heller, McDonald…none of this gets us anywhere near the Second Amendment absolutism we says we want. The only possible path toward absolute gun rights would be to create a new nation and a new government.

But we don’t see anything emerging like the Sons of Liberty or other organized group of radicals to lead us to a new nation and aren’t likely to any time soon.

So, what?

One of the most frequent lines of attack taken by opponents of civilian firearm ownership is to pound the argument that the Second Amendment restricts the keeping and bearing of arms to only those who are members of “the militia.” Now, the Constitution fairly well describes who are conscripted members of “the militia”. I say “conscripted” because the constitution allows for no refusal to be a member of the militia. Isn’t that interesting?

To understand “the militia” one must understand the mindset of the Founders, and the social constructs of the late 1700s. But doing that takes more brain work than slinging insults on a blog. Understanding the Founders’ intent requires an understanding of the Constitution that many here ignore, dislike, or find irrelevant. That way lies madness.

So we live in a era where the Constitution is no longer a protection of the states (and “the people”) from the central government. Instead, it’s evolved into a bludgeon used to coerce states into lining up with and acquiesing to federal power. It wasn’t always thus. Think about that for a moment…I’ll wait.

When the Constitution was ratified, states considered themselves sovereign, superior to the federal government. After all, it was the soveriegn states that ceded limited powers to the federal government, not the other way around.

Under the compact of states (the US Constitution), the states jealously guarded their perogatives regarding laws and regulations within the state. The states did not conform all of their individual constitutions to the federal Constitution. Thus, states decided upon matters that today would make your head spin at the degree of individualism they exercised.

That included the maintenance of militias under state control, unless called up to support the federal government (including enforcing the laws of the nation…posse comitatus, anyone?). The states retained the right to control ownership and use of firearms within state borders.

Today, listening to the nattering nabobs of negativism regarding the individual right of the people to keep and bear firearms, the term “militia” is used as proof that an individual right doesn’t exist. They believe the Supreme Court ruling otherwise was erroneous on numerous grounds, waiting only to be overturned by a later case. “The militia!” “The militia!”

Are we beginning to see a possible path forward, here? What if, rather than try to overpower our opponents regarding whether the Second Amendment applies only to “the militia,”, we agree with them? What if we begin to agitate within the states for the creation of militias. Militias that include every person capable of firing a gun. Militias that are organized on paper such that they can be used where the National Guard presently intervenes.

The opponents of private gun ownership want us to believe that state militias no longer exist, and we don’t actually debate that point very well. One way to prove militias are still relevant is to reconstitute them as recognizable entities.

Maybe we need to seriously discuss using “the militia” argument from a pro-gun rights perspective. Let the anti-gun crowd spend their political capital arguing that state militias, which they say are authorized by the Second Amendment to possess firearms, are a danger because…guns.”

comments

  1. avatar Klaus Von Schmitto says:

    Some State Governor then should have the courage to institute a voluntary state militia for all persons of age not prohibited by the state to bear arms. Then the state could declare that all persons in the state militia could openly bear any arms they wish, NFA be damned.

    You Texans seem like good candidates for the test.

    1. avatar jwtaylor says:

      Tje Texas state guard, separate from the National Guard, has existed for decades. They drill regularly, have appointments made by the governor, laws and regulations surrounding them, everything.

    2. avatar Joe R.j says:

      Hmmm….

      But then they will cork-screw up your anus with the “well-regulated” part.

      All Bill of Rights are protections FROM government – Thereby being only “Protected” by an Armed Society. As not even broken logic would say that government would be what you were compelled to use to protect yourself from government.

      Keep your guns for the end of America. No one knows when it’ll happen but it’ll get thrown on the trash heap an infinite time before your RTKABA ever sunsets. And you want to ensure that you have a chance in a vote in what comes next.

      1. avatar Sian says:

        Regardless of the definition of “well-regulated”, or what precisely a militia is, nowhere does the 2A state that the existence of a militia is required or that it is necessary for it to be well-regulated.

        The 2A states that SINCE a well-regulated militia is necessary, THAT the RKBA shall not be infringed.

        It’s much the same that stating that since a well-balanced diet is necessary for health, the right to fresh food shall not be infringed. It doesn’t require that a well-balanced diet be maintained, just that it shouldn’t be prevented.

        1. avatar Joe R. says:

          Do you mean that they would then interpret THAT with originalist logic ????

    3. avatar Ragnar says:

      Klaus Von Schmitto says:
      Some State Governor then should have the courage to institute a voluntary state militia for all persons of age not prohibited by the state to bear arms.

      In many states, this has already been done and there is no need for a governor to institute anything. What is needed is the formal recognition and perhaps state funding to help these militias to become “well regulated”‘ i.e., well trained.

      Colorado’s constitution for example:
      Article 17: Militia

      Section 1. Persons subject to service. The militia of the state shall consist of all able-bodied male residents of the state between the ages of eighteen and forty-five years; except, such persons as may be exempted by the laws of the United States, or of the state.

      1. avatar KBonLI says:

        SO if I am 46 I’m not eligible for Militia duty and therefore can’t “bear arms” ?

        1. avatar Ragnar says:

          That is not what it means.

          Males, 18 – 45 y/o is compulsory service in the militia. This is an inclusive statement, not exclusive. It does not prevent able-bodied females or men over the age 45 from serving in the militia. As for those under the age of 18; I am unsure of what the law would require. Most likely they are excluded as minors.

          So keep and bear your arms, like the rest of us old farts.

        2. avatar MamaLiberty says:

          Compulsory? And whom, pray tell, did you have in mind to enforce that? Who is going to compel anyone to join a militia? And if they have that power, just what do you think will prevent them from assuming any others they might wish to have?

          When some people are given power over others, against their will, tyranny is the inevitable result.

        3. avatar Mercury says:

          No, by definition a citizen militia is whomever will bear arms in the defense of his or her country. What that clause in the Colorado constitution (and the similar clause in the 1792 federal Militia Act) means is that able-bodied men between the ages of 18 and 45 are required to keep arms of the type currently in use by modern armies, as they may be called on by the governor or President to use said arms in the defense of the country (as part of the militia. Conscription into the standing army is still unconstitutional, though the Supreme Court said otherwise in an illogical travesty of an opinion.) Anyone else can answer the call (and historically many have), and the fact that your state constitution and or federal law does not require you to keep an infantry rifle does not retroactively change the meaning of the second amendment to the constitution of the United States in such a way to prohibit you from doing so.

        4. avatar Sam I Am says:

          Federal law establishes a range, but does not exclude the states from expanding the range. The law is permissive, not restrictive. The states can determine different ages. Besides, on its face, 32 US Code 313 is age discriminatory and by default unconstitutional.

  2. avatar Justsomeguy says:

    I believe that the Militia and the Posse Comitatus should be more widely used. They are the cousins of the Volunteer Fire Department and Search and Rescue organizations, and even of ad hoc groups such as those that just showed up with a boat in Houston recently. All of these are elements of a successful Republic. You could start a lively conversation on how to use people under the Guise of the Militia or PC. Say additional security at concerts in Las Vegas?

    Have I mentioned just how bad this comment system really is?

  3. avatar UpinVT says:

    TL:DR

    1. avatar Jonathan-Houston says:

      Too bad for you. You missed out on an interesting strategy. I haven’t formed an opinion on it as yet beyond that, and I may ultimately disagree with the author. Still, it was an interesting read and an idea I’ll enjoy pondering.

    2. avatar DavoMoto says:

      Skip to the last paragraph.

    3. avatar Ragnar says:

      UpinVT says: “TL:DR”

      But still has the time and expends the effort to show everyone he/she is lazy.

  4. avatar Esoteric Inanity says:

    Big picture: Are the Constitution and BOR living documents to be interpreted and change with the times? Or do they provide a framework applicable across generations and can only be altered by a select criteria of processes?

    If the former, then not only the constitution, but the entire BOR is at risk. However, if the latter, then one may rest a bit easier in such certainty.

    What many fail to see, is that the Second Amendment isn’t the only enumerated right at stake in this cultural strife. For if it can fall and be mutilated by such mundane legislative and judicial machinations, then every other liberty enjoyed by the citizens of this country is at risk to the very same schemes.

    1. avatar Mad Max says:

      I’m with you on this…a Bill of Rights absolutist.

      1. avatar Jonathan-Houston says:

        I choose to exercise my right to bear arms by walking around with my rifle shoulder mounted and muzzle sweeping everyone. As long as I don’t actually shoot anyone, are you cool with that?

        1. avatar brian says:

          Are you an idiot in real life, or are you just playing one on the Internet?

        2. avatar Desert Dave says:

          I believe that would be considered brandishing, which is generally frowned upon not to mention that would go against several of the rules of safe gun handling. Such actions would also prove your ignorance.

        3. I am cool with that as long as you don’t mind me shooting you because of the perceived threat you caused.

        4. avatar Jonathan-Houston says:

          Brian, F off, jackass. I’m employing absurdity to illustrate absurdity, that being “2A absolutism.” Please continue to play the Internet tough guy role. It’s ohhh sooo novel, forceful, and original. It’s provides a convincing cover for your failure to advance a relevant argument. Nobody even noticed.

          As for the rest of you, you’re making up excuses and moving the goal post. Either you believe in your 2A absolutism and would agree to my carrying as I see fit, or you don’t really believe in it. Of course, it’s the latter.

          The proof? You characterize that type of carry as illegal (brandishing) or threatening (can I shoot you for threatening me?), implying legal sanction against it.

          So none of you actually believes in 2A absolutism. It’s just a fake principle you trot out to justify your own preferred infringement demarcation line. A style of carry you consider brandishing and threatening, could just as plausibly be considered ready and prepared by someone else. Ok, so how about something other than a raised and aimed rifle?

          How about just an openly held handgun, not holstered, at one’s side? Brandishing? Threatening? It doesn’t matter: you each can argue all day, but at the end of said day, you’ve each acknowledged that infringenent is OK, i.e., 2A absolutism is a fraud, and all that’s left is where to draw the line.

          Alas, most draw the line at an openly carried, holstered sidearm. Well guess what? Many antis draw the line there, too! Only they’re on *just* the other side of it from you. Curious, that. A whisker wide line separates alleged rock-ribbed 2A absolutists from their anti-gun brethren.

          The take away here, gents, is that rights are not absolute. Individual sovereignty is philosophical sophistry. Rights in contact eventuate rights in conflict. Absolutism is a phony construct. Some of you have adopted it as coincidentally congruent with the outer ambits of your own personal preferences. Basically, you planted your flag where you would draw the line, then proclaimed that to be the almighty, sanctified 2A absolutist stance. It’s really just the degree to which you’re pleased with infringing someome else’s firearm rights.

          Here endeth the lesson.

        5. avatar MamaLiberty says:

          Right church, wrong pew, Jonathan. The “second amendment” is most certainly not a hill to die on. Unless one is willing to accept all of the rest of the infringement inherent in the “constitution,” it is also meaningless.

          People who agree not to harm each other, are willing to negotiate differences, work together in voluntary association for mutual goals, have all the tools they need to live in peace and prosperity. Self defense against those who refuse to live in peace is inherent in being a human being, regardless of any other consideration.

          So, if someone wants to walk around muzzling the people around him, or carry his handgun unholstered, he’ll have to deal with everyone else around him somehow, and that will vary in each incident. And negotiation would be the logical first step.

          The only thing that is not negotiable for me is individual liberty, subject to a very strict non-aggression principle. I don’t know anyone who would argue that they wanted me to harm them… so rational people should have no problem with that being the bottom line.

          For the irrational who take it to the edge of the cliff… I carry a 9mm. Take the silly “2A” out of the discussion and it’s really pretty simple.

        6. avatar JK says:

          Yes, you are illustrating a point, a ridiculous point. I don’t care about brandishing or proper gun safety rules for the point of this conversation. If you are shoulder mounting a gun and waving it toward a crowd that becomes a perceived threat so my right to protect myself from your threat trumps your right to bear the arm. Absolutist or not, at that point I won’t care what the law is because I have a gun pointed at me. On the other hand if you shoulder mount it and wave it over the countryside I don’t give a rat’s ass. It’s basically the same as lunging at someone with a knife. You may not have been able to reach them but you had the capability and it is threatening enough to warrant an armed response.

        7. avatar LarryinTX says:

          J-H, the absolutism is that you have the RKBA which shall not be infringed. Laws requiring safe gun handling do not interfere with RKBA. Thus you have the absolute right to carry a loaded select-fire M4 but you do not have any right to point it at people, nor to fire at random signs and street lights for practice. Don’t be silly, you know better than that. If 2A were simply a restriction on the federal government, it would be included in 1A “Congress shall make no law” territory.

        8. avatar Roymond says:

          You’re stretching the concept of bearing arms to the mangling point.

          Let’s look at a parallel: branding irons for slaves. Bearing a branding iron in public was fine — but if you carried it around red hot, it was considered brandishing, and punishable, thus establishing that the right to carry a branding iron does not include having it hot. The parallel with arms is obvious: you can carry them safely, but if you carry them “hot”, i.e. ready to fire as you described, you’ve stepped outside of the reach of the right.

  5. avatar Setnakhte says:

    It’s “the right of the people”, not the “the right of the militia”.

    Why involve the state government? Neither the Rooftop Koreans nor the Cajun Navy needed to.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      I am surprised that it took about a dozen comments before someone mentioned this.

      Whenever a gun grabber claims that only the militia (and they really mean the National Guard) should be armed, I respond with two simple situations:

      (1) Mexican drug runners got heavy handed in southern Arizona a few years ago. They were so heavy handed that Sheriff Babeu publicly declared that his department was quite literally “out manned and outgunned”.

      (2) A family on vacation drove past an army base and an air force base. One of their children (in 6th grade) noticed how neatly the bases were fenced-in and organized. I asked the child, “If you were a foreign country and wanted to attack the United States, what is the first thing you would do?” The child thought about it for a moment and responded, “I guess I would blow-up the military bases in the United States. Then there would be no troops and no equipment to fight back.”

      Situation number 1 above actually happened and Arizona’s governor never called out the National Guard (or even appealed to any form of militia) to save the day. People who lived, visited, and passed through southern Arizona truly needed the best firearms available to defend themselves.

      The question and answer in situation number 2 above actually happened, although no foreign country actually blew-up our nation’s military bases of course. Even a child in 6th grade recognized how relatively easy it would be for a foreign nation to render our military (including our National Guard) ineffective. With no National Guard or military to defend our nation, every able-bodied person would truly need the best firearms available to defend themselves and our nation.

      Those two simple situations illustrate the core purpose of the Second Amendment and why they apply to THE PEOPLE, as opposed to the argument that only the organized militia has a right to keep and bear arms.

      1. avatar Sam I Am says:

        Ah, rats ! You completely missed my point (which is my fault).

        I am not proposing a discussion of the utility of militia, or history of militia, or even who makes up “the militia”. My intent is to take the idea that only recognizable militia may keep and bear arms, and slam it back into the gun-grabbers. Present them with universal service in the militia (in all 57 states), universal keeping and bearing arms as members of the militia. Then let the “common sense” anti-gun crowd argue both that bearing arms is only for the militia, but reconstituting traditional militia is too dangerous because it means people get to keep and bear arms.

        1. avatar Blkojo says:

          Trying to focus on a militia angle, with the right of the PEOPLE to keep and bear arms, does nothing but divisively undermine the Second and its supporters.

        2. avatar Sam I Am says:

          “Trying to focus on a militia angle, with the right of the PEOPLE to keep and bear arms, does nothing but divisively undermine the Second and its supporters.”

          Not the first time the observation has been made, but I do not see how making everyone “militia”, thereby destroying the argument that 2A applies only to militia, undermines anything. We are not winning (a near even split on opinion of the second amendment cannot be considered winning anything) with our three-monkey approach (absolutism). What I am asking for is some thinking, not repetitive and useless mantra.

        3. avatar ORCON says:

          Militia? I AM the militia. 😀

        4. avatar Sam I Am says:

          “Militia? I AM the militia. 😀”

          Of course you are. I am asking that we mate the militia and gun owners in such a way that we force the anti-gun crowd to argue that even being a member of the militia does not permit “the people” a non-infringeable right to gun ownership. Let them choke on simultaneously shouting that the second amendment applies only to “the militia”, but does not protect the right of the militia (comprised of individuals) to keep and bear arms.

        5. avatar Jason says:

          “Militias that are organized on paper…”

          Umm…, so your suggesting universal gun registration, the abolishment of the 14th amendment, and the abandoning of the coastal states to the tyranny of the leftists that presently run them?

          Is that about right?

        6. avatar Sam I Am says:

          How do some of you get so de-railed?

          Nothing I posted had anything to do with “universal gun registration, the abolishment of the 14th amendment, and the abandoning of the coastal states to the tyranny of the leftists that presently run them?” (however, abolishing the 14th is something to work on; restores the 10th)

          An organized, unorganized, uniformed, non-uniformed, militia is not tantamount to gun registration, on any level. I am talking about using the anti-gun stance against them. It is the thoughtless, hair-trigger, ill-tempered shriek of gun-owners that our only defense (someone pointed out that Patton snoted fixed defensive positions are the result of a closed mind). Our lack of agility in thinking how to attack and defeat the anti-gun bleeding heart keeps us reliant upon, and blindly hunkered in, our Maginot Line.

        7. avatar Big Bill says:

          Aaaaand then you go off on the wrong track.
          As I wrote above, the RTKBA is not embodied in the militia, on purpose.
          Therefore, any talk of re-establishing the militia to fix the problem is way off base, no matter the outcome. The militia is not the people, and the people are not the militia. That’s why the two different words are used in the 2A, and why the word “people” is used as the protected class of those to whom the RTKBA refers, and not the militia.

        8. avatar Sam I Am says:

          Again, we end up talking to our navels. What has it gotten us? We remain on the defensive, trapped in our love of our own words. Maybe too many have grown comfortable in the laziness of throwing up worn-out phrases, rather than contemplate a pro-active attack against the gun-grabbers. It matters not what we “think”, it matters only what the opposition thinks, and how we defeat it.

          I read a wonderful thesis years ago, about asynchronous warfare. The idea that one combatant is fighting for its existence, and the other merely to prove a point, or impose a grinding stalemate in hopes of wearing the enemy down. The upshot was that an nation needs to fight the war the enemy is fighting, not the war that is comforting to the other side. Vietnam is an example of that failing, Iraq and Afghanistan are others. In all cases, the enemy is fighting for its very existence, while the US if fighting for some vague principle of “Jeffersonian democracy everywhere”. The ROE for US forces has been pretty much the same since 1945: fight to convince the other side they should adopt the goals of the US. The “other side”, in each case was fighting to win. The US no longer fights to win, the country employs the “prevent” defense.

          If we fail to be innovative enough to actually defeat enemies of individual rights, all we do is condemn ourselves to eternal and inconclusive warfare. Have we fallen to that level in opposing effective loss of rights?

    2. avatar Big Bill says:

      “It’s “the right of the people”, not the “the right of the militia”.”
      And it’s written that way for a very good reason.
      Even back in the late 18th century, the “militia” and the “people” were different groups.
      Understanding that, Madison wrote “people” where he could have easily written “militia”, if that was his intention. Instead, a conscious decision was made to choose “people” over “militia.”
      During the ensuing debates over the BOR, the word “people” was kept, because that was what was wanted and what was meant.

  6. avatar PeterK says:

    They have, do, and will stigmatize ANY militia not under federal control. Sucks.

    And sort of insane. But it is where we is.

    1. avatar Esoteric Inanity says:

      “They have, do, and will stigmatize ANY militia not under federal control. Sucks.”

      Precisely, if such ideology is ceded, then the statist minded will seize on the caveat of “well-regulated” and seek to impose their regulations upon the militia. Language has meaning, and conforming to the definitions of anti-rights politicians, and their supporters, is a sure way to lose.

      1. avatar Sam I Am says:

        You identified a conundrum. States may have and “regulate” (as in set standards, see to efficiency, establish drill requirements, check condition of armaments) militia. The constitution directly states the central government has responsibility for the state militias.

        “Clause 16. The Congress shall have Power *** To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress.”

        This would be a tricky thing to navigate, but turning the militia term back on gun grabbers is designed to get them to make idiot statements, in public, about how one moment they claim only militia may bear arms, but if the militia bears arms, that is too dangerous for the safety of the public. Might never actually get to traditional militia in every state.

        1. avatar Esoteric Inanity says:

          Thanks for the insight, it is most appreciated.

          No disagreement, since the founding of this country, the militia has been at the beck and call of the state that its members reside in, and by extension, the Federal Government. Such states were then, to varying degrees during times of conflict/need, beholden to the Fed to provide conscripts for a continental army. After such conflicts were resolved, said army would disband back into the individual militiamen and return to their state “duties” if actively involved in such things. This due to the Founders fear of a standing army.

          All this Esoteric Inanity assumes that Sam I Am is not only vastly aware, but probably to an extent beyond this one’s(self reference) familiarity. As such it is not Esoteric Inanity’s intention to lecture, but rather allude to such archaic methods in the nations founding so as to juxtapose to current practices.

          The whisky rebellion was perhaps a turning point in prior philosophies, in which several state militias were brought in to quell an uprising that included other militiamen. This event arguably lead to a sort of supremacy mindset of the federal government over the states, especially amongst members of the Federalist Party. Even more disturbingly, it was the first major incident in which the Federal Government’s wrath was brought to bear upon one of its own state’s citizens. Arguably it was the state’s jurisdiction to settle this dispute, either peaceably or by force if necessary. Granted that this is an oversimplified and likely somewhat errant summary of the incident (Esoteric Inanity is relying heavily upon recollection and hasn’t reviewed said event in some time).

          Prior to, and during the onset of the American Civil War, it was still common belief amongst many that each state was an autonomous unit and only part of the Union due to the consent of its populace. Now, there is no need to bring up the various nuances of what happened next as most here already know. However, events that transpired between 1861-1865 pretty much made clear that the Federal government reigned supreme so long as a majority of its states desired it. This (combined with various lessons learned from the War of 1812) could be viewed as the catalyst for a standing army to be formed. The new incarnation of the U.S.A. would keep a full time and professional force ever present for not only national defense, but also to keep rebel intentions in check.

          Eventually the US had a go at sending its forces abroad and when the need arose for more troops, a draft was implemented. Now, while all this may not seem to far removed from the original duties of the state militias, it is in effect, a bastardization of the original premise(In this one’s humble opinion). The state militias were never intended to be a full time standing army, go abroad/occupy/interfere in other countries, but rather to aid in the keeping of peace and, should the need arise, become/support a temporary army. Conscripts in such armies had (To this one’s knowledge) more rights than a draftee did in the 1950s-1970s, such as a clearly defined term of service.

          With all this in mind, Esoteric Inanity would posit the question: How can the traditional roles of the militia be brought to bear in an America that has changed so drastically?

          As to using the “antis” own arguments to reveal their sophistry, Esoteric Inanity is skeptical as such fallacies are fluid and prone to change in order to fit the agenda. Most statists aren’t interested in logic or truth, but rather are solely focused upon attaining their goals of power consolidation. Perhaps such a strategy might work, but putting the “unorganized militia” under the purview of the U.S.A.’s modern Federal Government, would seem to be playing right into their hands to this one.

          Another concern that Esoteric Inanity has is tying the people’s right to bear arms too closely with service in the militia. Such a thing could prove to be a malignant means of denying said people of their right to keep and bear arms.

          Apologies in advance for any errors (Both factual and grammatical), fallacies, cryptic nonsense, perceived transgressions and causations of boredom. This one is quite tired at the moment and lacks the motivation or desire to thoroughly fact check/proof read.

          Please edify this one if necessary as he always enjoys an informative discourse. Also, if appropriate, encomiums are not only welcomed, but highly desired lol (Esoteric Inanity merely jests).

        2. avatar Sam I Am says:

          “Another concern that Esoteric Inanity has is tying the people’s right to bear arms too closely with service in the militia. Such a thing could prove to be a malignant means of denying said people of their right to keep and bear arms.”

          To use the “militia” phrase to deny people arms would mean going beyond more than the second amendment. It would mean interpreting the 16th clause as permitting the federal government to disarm the militia, despite plain wording that Congress is charged to provide for equipping the militia, and interpreting the second amendment to mean absolutely nothing, after multiple cases determining that the question is not one of confisctaion, but who in the nation is meant by “the people”. Thus, government ends up arguing out of both sides of the mouth, simultaneously. Which is the point of the posting. I do not believe there are any anti-gun aficionados (including the federal courts) who will be persuaded by anything we say, including the rant “absolute, absolute”. There may be (as yet unproven) a significant number of unaligned/curious/uninterested who would see the idiocy of anti-gunners arguing that individuals may only possess weapons if they are militia, but being militia they cannot possess individual weapons because that is not what the second amendment means.

          UPDATE: I tried the argument on an anti-gun family member. A rabid anti-gunner. I received the reward anticipated; sputtering, stammering, and “No guns for people, no guns ever, the constitution doesn’t matter when safety is concerned”. I would have loved to have had an audience of unaligned to survey.

        3. avatar Esoteric Inanity says:

          “To use the “militia” phrase to deny people arms would mean going beyond more than the second amendment. It would mean interpreting the 16th clause as permitting the federal government to disarm the militia, despite plain wording that Congress is charged to provide for equipping the militia, and interpreting the second amendment to mean absolutely nothing, after multiple cases determining that the question is not one of confisctaion, but who in the nation is meant by “the people”.”

          It isn’t so much the prospect of the Fed disarming the militia that Esoteric Inanity finds disconcerting, but rather the potential regulation that would be put upon it and its members. Something akin to present day “may issue” laws, for instance regulation of when and where members of the militia can be armed, what arms are considered to be appropriate, who is qualified to join the militia and for what length of time.

          Obviously it is legally well defined as to who composes the unorganized militia, but the 2A, even by modern standards, is fairly straightforward. Yet there are many abridgments to it that are accepted as being constitutional.

          “Thus, government ends up arguing out of both sides of the mouth, simultaneously. Which is the point of the posting.”

          The premise of Sam I Am’s argument is no doubt an invaluable thought experiment in concept. However, such a thing in practice could potentially be either a blessing or a curse. All depending upon the specifics of its implementation, which this one fears that there would be far too many opportunities for it to go wrong rather than right.

          “I do not believe there are any anti-gun aficionados (including the federal courts) who will be persuaded by anything we say, including the rant “absolute, absolute”. There may be (as yet unproven) a significant number of unaligned/curious/uninterested who would see the idiocy of anti-gunners arguing that individuals may only possess weapons if they are militia, but being militia they cannot possess individual weapons because that is not what the second amendment means.”

          On this there is near total agreement. The statists won’t ever be convinced and are disinterested in accuracy, logic and truth. No doubt that many people out there are open to persuasion as many have no opinion either way. The question then is how best to convince them. The answer is potentially that no lone strategy will be efficient for everyone, various methods must be utilized, including such arguments as the one that Sam I Am has posited. Unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately, many people are entirely apathetic towards issues involving the Second Amendment.

          Yes the argument that an individual in a militia having access to arms is fine, yet that same member cannot possess while not in the militia highlights the fallacy of such logic by “antis”.

          “UPDATE: I tried the argument on an anti-gun family member. A rabid anti-gunner. I received the reward anticipated; sputtering, stammering, and “No guns for people, no guns ever, the constitution doesn’t matter when safety is concerned”. I would have loved to have had an audience of unaligned to survey.”

          All too common sadly, logic isn’t kryptonite to an “anti”, but rather completely alien to the point of being unrecognizable. Still a noble endeavor, keep the conversation going though, as it is much easier to hate/fear what one is ignorant of.

        4. avatar Sam I Am says:

          “but rather the potential regulation that would be put upon it and its members.”

          This threat exists at this very moment, whether the pro-gun supporters say a word, or not.

        5. avatar Esoteric Inanity says:

          “This threat exists at this very moment, whether the pro-gun supporters say a word, or not.”

          Granted that it does, arguably though, not to the same extent that it could provided that all citizens were nicely bundle wrapped for blanket regulation.

          As the saying goes: The Devil is in the details & The Devil that is known is oft preferable to the Devil that is not. As it stands now, Sam I Am’s idea is little more than a proposition, details of what the final product would look like once it was enacted would either make or break it. Uncertainty is disconcerting and warrants much caution and planning.

          After such discussion(And reading further elaborations), Esoteric Inanity is much more intrigued regarding Sam I Am’s idea, but still very apprehensive as many others of a similar mindset here are. This one would encourage Sam I Am to keep the conversation going and further elaborate upon the concept and potential issues so as to assuage concern.

    2. avatar Vhyrus says:

      I recently had to fill out a top secret clearance application. On the application itself it asks you if you have ever been a member of a militia. This question comes in the same section and immediately following the question of if you have ever been a part of a known terrorist element. In other words, being a member of a militia is already equivalent to being a terrorist according to our government.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        Which is hilarious. The folks who wrote the SF86 clearly are unaware of codified US law that makes every able bodied male 17-45 an automatic member of “the militia” (certain exceptions apply) as well as defining every female in the National Guard as a member of the militia.

        That law was last revised by Congress last year, in 2016 and it’s not ancient either, it became law 10 August, 1956.

        So, technically speaking, whether they want to be or not, everyone who fills out an SF86 for the military, and most of those who fill it out for a civvie position, already are a member of the militia according to the law which means that saying “no” on the SF86 is technically a crime because whether you know/like it or not, you’re lying on a federal form when you say that.

        1. avatar Serpent_Vision says:

          I’m pretty sure the gun grabbers would interpret that as “The 2nd Amendment doesn’t apply to anyone 46 or older!”

        2. avatar Sam I Am says:

          “I’m pretty sure the gun grabbers would interpret that as “The 2nd Amendment doesn’t apply to anyone 46 or older!” ”

          They may, but would have to concede that every person between 17-45 have an
          uninfringible RTKBA.

          I wrote the posting mostly to get us to think about how to trap anti-gunners in their own idiocy. Repeating what hasn’t worked seems to avail us nothing.

        3. avatar strych9 says:

          I am. Certain they would try to make that argument.

          Now, technically the law doesn’t say that other people can’t be members of the Militia. Effectively what the law defines is who can be drafted into mandatory Militia service and that’s it.

          I just don’t see the point in opening up that particular can of worms since the 2A says “…the right of the people…”. Therefore I don’t see how introducing a law into the argument, one which has a much more narrow definition than “the people”, advances our position.

          Just my 2% of a dollar.

        4. avatar Serpent_Vision says:

          SamIAm- I guess I would put exposing the idiocy and illogic of the gun grabbers’ positions in the category of what we’ve been trying to do all along. Logic and reason are small chisels to chip away at the mountain of emotion they hold that “guns are evil”.

        5. avatar Sam I Am says:

          We have been unproductively using OUR logic and reason (which the anti-gunners reject out of hand). I am proposing using their own logic against them. Haven’t been everywhere, seen everything, but in my small life, I have not seen anyone try to use the militia argument against the natural enemy. It is called “a trap”.

      2. avatar jwtaylor says:

        I had to do this as well to have my clearance bumped up another notch. I answered in the affirmative, that I was a member of the militia. And then on what I believe was section 16 where it asked me to detail my answer I included the militia clause from the Constitution. I also noted that, because of my age, my term of service demanded by the law would be ending soon.I had no issues with my clearance.

      3. avatar GS650G says:

        Being a member of a militia is not equated to being a terrorist unless the militia you joined advocated overthrowing the government. Not many do and would not.

        1. avatar FedUp says:

          Tell that to members of Michigan’s Huttaree Militia, who were lucky to be sprung by a judge, over prosecutors’ strident objections, after only spending about a month being held without bail on total bullshit treason charges.

          Their crime? Listening to a FBI informant talk about attacking the government.
          As it turns out, saying something like “you do that, we’ll watch from here” is not actively engaging in a criminal conspiracy, no matter how many US Attorneys claim it is.
          When that fell apart in the face of an actual honest federal judge, they went with the David Olofson approach and got three of them on weapons possession charges.
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hutaree

        2. avatar Vhyrus says:

          It doesn’t say that. Read it yourself.

          https://www.opm.gov/forms/pdf_fill/sf86-non508.pdf

        3. avatar Klaus Von Schmitto says:

          It only asks you to list any Foreign Countries militia you have belonged to. Not any domestic militia.

  7. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

    mandatory enlistment, either fed or state.

    1. avatar GunDoc says:

      Boy, the retardism is getting strong.

      NO.

      Enlistment in the regulars is the opposite of the concept of the militia, which was considered to be the whole of the male population aged 17-65. No enlistment necessary. Words mean things.

      The National Guard is not the militia. The standing army, not the militia. The armed populace…is the militia. Same same. Already exists. It’s not LARPers running around in the woods playing army. It is simply the armed populace (which includes the Progs). Want to make their heads explode? Propose a tax on NOT owning a gun, since they are not in compliance with the regulations. Hmmmm, well regulated…it does not mean what they think/wish it means.

      The author continues to make the mistake of thinking that the arguments of those that would remove basic human rights are relevant, and need to be addressed.

      They don’t. Y

      ou don’t try to correct the witless, spittle-flinging ramblings of the transient down on the corner, so it should be with these lunatics. Let them keep displaying their utter lack of intelligence and relevance, hold “scream ins” to publicly demonstrate their impotence and immaturity.

      In fact, the whole article smacks of apologism.

  8. avatar strych9 says:

    On the one hand the argument is tempting due to 10 U.S. Code § 246.

    On the other hand that code “defines” the militia in a way we might not want in future arguments. While the language of the law is not exclusionary it would certainly be argued to be exclusionary by the antis. I do sort of wonder if they’d call the classification system misogynist though.

    1. avatar MeRp says:

      I would say that the definition of militia is only useful as an “even if” argument; the primary argument WRT the 2nd amendment is in the amendment itself: it is a right of the people (not the states, not the militiamen, etc) and it “shall not be infringed.” When taken together, that means that the States ALSO do not have the right to infringe; only non-enumerated rights or rights specifically granted fall to the state and its people, not anything specifically called out.

      By its very wording, the 2nd amendment applied as a limit to the States as well as the Fed; it protects an individual right from any infringement, not just infringement by Congress (as the first does); and if that is not enough, then “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” is part of our constitution as well.

      Note that neither of those is a great argument for absolutism, but they are arguments against States having any more right to infringe upon the individual right to keep and bear arms than the Fed does. The grey area, though, still lies in private property and those denied their rights as punishment (both are allowed, at least to some extent, by the constitution). Shall not be infringed, however, is stronger wording than any other amendment; it doesn’t allow much wiggle room.

      1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        MeRp,

        I have brought forth the exact same argument with respect to the Second Amendment. Some people (even big Second Amendment supporters) claim that the entire Bill of Rights only applies to the federal government, since the individual states established the U.S. Constitution as the charter which defines, authorizes, and limits the federal government. (For what it is worth, I actually see a lot of merit in that characterization.)

        I do not yet have a counter-argument. If you have a counter-argument, please share it!

        Interesting observation: if the Second Amendment is universal (applies beyond the federal government), then even the courts cannot infringe on our right to keep and bear arms short of imprisoning us through due process. In other words a judge has no legitimate authority to enforce the firearm provision of personal protection orders.

        1. avatar Sam I Am says:

          Interesting observations.

          First, the original constitution did not constrain the states beyond specific words within the clauses. After the Civil War, the federal constitution was, by constitutional amendment, forced onto (applied to) the states. That act ended the nation of the founders, and created a nation where the states are mere provinces of the central government. (except at such times as the central government finds it convenient to allow a state to exercise state sovereignty)

          To your second observation, the Supreme Court, long, long ago, established that it (the court) was the final arbiter of what the constitution meant and intended. If, on the first day after the constitution was ratified, an 11th amendment were ratified stating that states were obligated and bound to adhere to the provisions of the national constitution, then, indeed, states would have been prohibited from infringing the individual right to bear arms. However, once a case determining the meaning of the second amendment was brought before the Supreme Court, and the court decided that government has something called “compelling interests that permit or require constraint on individual rights to bear arms, the game would have been over. Under the idea that states are “covered” by the constitution, all case law and federal court decisions would accompany the declaration that states were/are bound…except for all the exceptions already made by federal courts. Even if there had been no “compelling interest” constraints on the federal government, once the states were dragooned into giving up their sovereignty, all subsequent federal exceptions to “shall not be infringed” would devolve to the states.

        2. avatar Danny338 says:

          “Some people (even big Second Amendment supporters) claim that the entire Bill of Rights only applies to the federal government, since the individual states established the U.S. Constitution as the charter which defines, authorizes, and limits the federal government. (For what it is worth, I actually see a lot of merit in that characterization.)”

          There is no merit in that characterization. It is based on the contention that the Constitution only applies to the Federal government. Read Article 1, Section 10. It is three paragraphs and they each start out as “No State shall.” Then read Article 4, Sections 1 and 2. Section 2 is particularly important as it states “The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States.” Which is very similar to part of the 14th amendment. Some people point to the 14th and say that it applies the Bill of Rights to the States, but that simply isn’t true. The Bill of Rights, except the first amendment, already applied to the States. Also, each State has had to ratify the Constitution, by either Legislature or convention, before Congress has accepted them as part of The United States. Each State is as bound by that contract as the party created by it (Federal government).

          The problem lies in that the majority of people don’t know the Constitution. How can the people hold their governments (local, State, and Federal) accountable, if they don’t know the rules those governments are supposed to abide by.

        3. avatar strych9 says:

          “There is no merit in that characterization…”

          Nonsense. Were that the case then there would be no reason for the 10th Amendment to have been spelled out, which it was.

          Further, there is no evidence to be found in the Founding Era to support the notion that the Constitution, as a whole, was to apply to the states. In fact, to apply it to the states would be completely at odds with the entire purpose of the Constitution and the Articles of Confederation which were to constrain the Federal Government. If the purpose of the document we’re discussing is to constrain the Federal Government why would said document include what amounts to a veto over state power on a fuckton of fronts? It wouldn’t. That argument makes as much sense as the antis that suggest that the 2A applies only to the military without ever answering the question “Why would a government need to authorize itself to have arms?”. On top of that, why would the states have constitutions of their own? Is that not, at best, redundant?

          The similarity in language between the body of the Constitution and the 14A… seriously? You don’t suppose that maybe they used that language because it was already in the Constitution, easy and readily understandable in the context of the document they were modifying, do you?

          I’d suggest you read the preamble to the Bill of Rights. Or you could read what James Madison suggested for the 5A which he suggested apply specifically to the states using the same language as the body of the Constitution. His attempt to make that Amendment apply to the states was roundly rejected.

          Parts of the Constitution, which are spelled out clearly, apply to the several states. At the time of the Founding the rest wasn’t intended to apply to the states and the evidence for this is clear as an unmuddied stream. It is those who say otherwise who need to spend some time studying.

          Arguments over the 2A hinge, as they should, on the wording of the 2A itself. The rest does matter.

        4. avatar Danny338 says:

          @ strych9

          So it is “nonsense” to say “there is no merit in the characterization…that the Constitution (and Amendments) only apply to the Federal government?”

          Then you say, “Parts of the Constitution, which are spelled out clearly, apply to the several states.”
          Didn’t you just say that was “nonsense.”

          If the Amendments only apply to the Federal government, then why does the First Amendment start with “Congress shall make no law…”? “Is that not, at best, redundant?”

          Are the Rights “retained by the people” in the other Amendments, only Rights when the Federal government seeks to violate them? Are they not Rights when the States make laws?

          Why does the 10th Amendment say “…nor prohibited by it to the States…”?

          Why does the Constitution say in Article 6, paragraph 2:
          “This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; ***and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.”****?

        5. avatar Sam I Am says:

          If the intention of the wording, the intention of the founders was to allow mere legislation to nullify the constitution (there being no restriction on laws that can be passed by Congress), there would be no need for a constitution. Of what authority would be the enumerated powers? Taking a single phrase and declaring it means the constitution is essentially null and void is quite the mental stretch. To declare that a single phrase in the constitution nullifies the entire sovereignty of the states is the controlling provision of the entire document means the founders were just flapping their jaws to write the rest of the document. To satisfy your logic, the founders should have issued a compact consisting of a single paragraph, Article 6, paragraph 2. With that paragraph being the sum total of the compact, the states would cease to exist as separate governing bodies and been simple precincts.

          According to your understanding/declaration, no act of the US congress (government) could be “unconstitutional”, as the central government has absolute power in every way. There would be no way to challenge a law as usurping the rights of the states, or the people. According to your understanding/declaration, the colonies waged a seven year war in order to create a government more tyrannical government than that of England. The founders fought a bitter war in order to replace one master with another; one absolute ruler with another.

          The complaint of the colonies was that the king had exceeded his authority as guardian of the human rights of Englishmen. No matter the wording you cite, the founders would never have given a central government power to do the same thing.

        6. avatar Danny338 says:

          @ Sam I Am

          /facepalm

          You’re still not listening. You’re still deliberately misconstruing what I have said.

        7. avatar Sam I Am says:

          My misconstruing is not intentional. I may have lost the string here. Let’s start over.

          My position:
          – The US constitution was not oritionally intended to apply to the states other than as detailed delegated powers.
          – The states considered themselves sovereign, even after delegating certain powers. Laws are not constitutional amendments.
          – The “laws” referenced in Article 6 relate only to laws passed IAW provisions of the constitution and BOR.
          – The term “Congress shall….” cannot be interpreted to mean “Congress and the states shall”.

          Are we in agreement, or still crossways?

      2. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        MeRp,

        I really like your 14th Amendment approach to prohibiting individual states from infringing on our right to keep and bear arms. The relevant verbage from the 14th is, “… nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law …”.

        Clearly, someone can argue that a state which deprives them of the means to effectively defend their life is depriving them of their life. Therefore, state laws which prohibit effective self-defense (e.g. laws which prohibit keeping and bearing firearms) would be in violation of the 14th Amendment. Another clear argument: keeping and bearing arms (without any demonstrable intention to attack someone) is a liberty. Therefore, state laws which prohibit the liberty of keeping and bearing arms would be in violation of the 14th Amendment.

        1. avatar Sam I Am says:

          We already live in the circumstance where “compelling interest” of the federal government permits/requires constraints on gun ownership at the federal level. With the application of the constitution to the states, so also are all the exceptions/constraints established by the central government. Essentially, the privilege of the central government to establish infringements on the second amendment also falls to the states. The entire intent of the 14th amendment was to destroy federalism, and establish an all powerful central government with the states (and their citizens) assigned the position of minion.

  9. avatar Andrew M. says:

    Like a State Defense Force (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_defense_force ? I have a real problem with the National Guard and the National Defense Act of 1916. It federalized the “Militias” and allowed the states to “Control”. When they dont. State Defense forces are more like what the “Militia” was supposed to be. But even those are subject to federal control. We need something that is totally separated from the Federal Government. and able to purchase Military Grade Equipment. If that was the goal I would fight for that. That would be a goal worthy of pursuing.

  10. avatar Joe R. says:

    I don’t have to fight them all. I just have to find and kill you.

    Most of the worst infringement HAPPENS IN YOUR MIND ! ! ! And it does so when your Gov’t (your ahole neighbors who needed a job) or the MSM tries to tell you that you are a lone wolf, or of a very small or insignificant contingency of people who can’t muster “absolutist” defense.

    WELL I GOT NEWS FOR YOU MARTHA FOKKER.

    GUN LAWS IN THE U.S. ARE ON

    T H E _ H O N O R _ S Y S T E M

    SHALL NOT BE “INFRINGED” IS IN FULL EFFECT TO THE PEOPLE THAT TAKE IT UPON THEMSELVES TO
    NOT
    BE
    INFRINGED

    WANT A FULL-AUTO FIREARM ??? – YOU HAVE IT IN YOUR HEAD AND HANDS TO BE ABLE TO MAKE ONE (people [“civilians”] are making some really nice examples every day IN BRAZIL (Bing search a gaggle of nice designs). You could even just get lazy and convert a semi-auto one – no one will laugh at you)
    WANT A SUPPRESSOR ??? – YOU HAVE IT IN YOUR HEAD AND HANDS TO BE ABLE TO MAKE ONE
    WANT EXPLOSIVES ??? – YOU HAVE IT IN YOUR HEAD AND HANDS [AND LIKELY YOUR KITCHEN OR BATHROOM] TO MAKE SOME OF THE MOST INEXPENSIVE, BUT HUGELY DANGEROUS / VOLATILE / AND DESTRUCTIVE EXPLOSIVES KNOWN TO MAN. (The FV<K1NG Iranians are doing it in their kitchen as I type this)

    That's why I say, and will forever repeat, "EYE FV<K ALL WHO CLAIM THAT THEY ARE PROTECTING YOU BY REGULATING THESE ITEMS, BECAUSE THEY CAN'T." WHICH ONLY MEANS THAT
    THEY
    ARE
    NOT
    DOING
    IT
    TO
    PROTECT
    YOU

    THEY ARE ONLY DOING IT TO PROTECT THEMSELVES, SO THEY CAN DO TYRANNY WITH IMPUNITY.

    F THEM ALL.
    AND DON'T BE INFRINGED.

  11. avatar Mike in KC says:

    “We says we want”

    Fail.

    Also why engage on their terms? When it comes to the second amendment there is literally no conversation to be had. It’s settled. I wish the current infringements were gone. That is worth explaining, how we are being infringed upon. Trying to justify the reasoning for having the amendment isn’t worthwhile when talking to a gun grabber (their mind is made up).

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      I believe a majority of gun grabbers really believe there are currently *NO* gun control laws, the argument is about accomplishing passage of the FIRST one.

  12. avatar Baldwin says:

    Nope. Not one inch.

  13. avatar Noishkel says:

    So the solution to the problem of government is… more government. Right.

    Listen, the ‘The Militia’ argument over gun rights and private gun ownership has been completely resolved. Yes, it was via Heller. But more to the point: the entire argument of trying to limit arms to any single group was always a crap idea from any logical and constitutional angle. The ‘Bill of Rights’ is not a list of rights the state gives you. It is a list of rights that the government can’t take away without the due course of the law. That’s the way it works with every single amendment, as well as all legal cases referencing it. The hyper-focus on the preamble half of the 2nd amendment is just stateist scum bags playing word games in an attempt to build a case for the redefinition of the 2A.

  14. avatar MarkPA says:

    I wholeheartedly agree with the OP’s proposal.

    Of least importance is any attempt to define – with any specificity – what a 21st Century unorganized (i.e., not “select”) militia might look like. We can think and talk about such things, but what might be decided will be largely shaped by Congress and the 50 legislatures.

    Of greatest importance is to compel the Antis – and the uncommitted voters – to begin to think about the role of the armed citizen in today’s society. What have the Antis to say? Nothing? Something? What?

    We, the PotG can point out that the Congress has neglected to “prescribe the discipline for the militia” to say nothing of having neglected to “arm the militia”. What did these powers mean in the 18’th Century? What do they mean today?

    To “arm” the militia soon took on the meaning of prescribing what arms a militiaman was required to bring to muster. (That the Federal government would actually supply such arms was discounted – even dismissed – early on. Congress did not want to absorb the expense; and, it was argued, that if Congress did supply militiamen’s arms then they could require that those arms be returned to Federal arsenals, disarming the militia.) Would Congress – today – prescribe militiamen to arm themselves with: 1) .22 Rimfire bolt-actions; 2) 12-gage shotguns; or, 3) AR-15s? We PotG need to know what Congress expects of us.

    What “discipline” does Congress “prescribe” for us, it’s militiamen? Nothing whatsoever; is that enough for it’s purposes? Or, how about (merely for illustration) NRA’s First Steps Rifle or First Steps Pistol? The Antis argue that civilians ought not to be “allowed” to carry across State lines with no training whatsoever. Fair enough, now, here, we have a perfectly Constitutional basis for a national solution. Congress is empowered to prescribe whatever training it sees fit to qualify a militiaman. What is Congress’s prescription? Is it more/less than that prescribed for basic-training in the armed forces? Are we, the law-abiding responsible citizens, up to the task of training to the discipline required of our military’s basic-training for rifle or pistol qualification?

    Would our Senators and Representatives from the 40 Right-to-Carry States prescribe an appropriate level of training (“discipline”)?

    The definition of militiamen ought to be reconsidered in the 21’st century. Ought our daughters/sisters/wives to be incorporated into the unorganized militia? Ought they – too – to be trained just as our sons/brothers/husbands? Should training begin at age 16 – or perhaps a bit earlier? Inasmuch as several commentators wrote of “rearing up” succeeding generations of youth in the martial arts, should training in gun safety begin at a tender age earlier than the age for live-fire exercise?

    The Constitution empowers the several States to “train” the militia according to the “discipline prescribed by Congress”. Is this empowerment a mere authorization or aspiration? Or, is it a duty imposed upon the several States? Should Congress support this training with a subsidy? Or, withhold other Federal subsidies for education or policing from States that fail to do their duty?

    If nothing more is accomplished but a public demonstration of the unwillingness of the Antis (especially those in Congress) to address the foregoing questions then our objectives will be achieved.

  15. avatar former water walker says:

    Meh…and quoting Spiro Agnew gets you zero points. I am a 2nd Amendment originalist. Absolutist not so much. With the current NRA kerfuffle I see so many throwing the baby out with the bath water. Unless you start your own country you just AIN’T getting everything you want-but you can TRY!!!

  16. avatar Cliff H says:

    When you enter any negotiation you must come with an idea of the minimum point below which you will NOT go.

    When you enter a debate you must state your position and defend it.

    When you enter a fight you must know how much damage you are willing to endure before crying “Uncle”.

    L. Neil Smith: “The freedom to own and carry the weapon of your choice is a natural, fundamental, and inalienable human, individual, civil and Constitutionally protected right — subject neither to the democratic process nor to arguments grounded in social utility.”

    The rights protected by the Bill of Rights belong to the people, or to the States. They are protections FROM the government.

    Article VI, paragraph 2, of the Constitution:

    “This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof…shall be the Supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.”

    Minimum point below which I will not go: My personal self-defense is my natural right, and responsibility. I alone must determine the tools I will use to protect myself and that right. It shall not be infringed.

    In the debate: The Second Amendment states unequivocally: “…the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” It does NOT say “…the right of the militia…”

    This is a fight of citizens for freedom and liberty, which if lost will make us subjects to the will of the government, the very sort of tyranny the Second Amendment is intended to allow us to fight against. Losing this fight and living as a subject rather than a free man is a level of damage I will not accept, therefore, ANY compromise on the terms of the Second Amendment is unacceptable. I would rather die on my feet fighting tyranny than live on my knees.

    MOLON LABE!

    1. avatar Darkman says:

      Got your 6. Anyone willing to compromise on any of the Bill of Rights. Is no better than the Torres of our Founding Fathers days. Willing to live on the scrapes of Oppression rather than fight for their freedom. The Jews made the same choice in Nazi Germany. Guess that worked out pretty well for them (sic).

    2. avatar TrappedInCommiefornia says:

      “…the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” It does NOT say “…the right of the militia…”

      This is the point that the OP missed. The militia clause is simply the justification for the right, that in order for the people to remain free from a tyrranical government the people must be able to form militias. What good is a militia with no arms? Also note that the 2A does not specify which tyrranical government. It merely says “the security of a free State”. We are at risk just as much from tyrants in our individual states (some more than others) than as a nation. So why would we want our state governments in charge of our militias, deciding what we can or can’t have? No thanks, not one inch.

      1. avatar Sam I Am says:

        “This is the point that the OP missed.”

        Disagree. I didn’t miss it, I bypassed it. We bang our heads against the wall of “the militia” uselessly. Claiming absolutism isn’t changing minds. The purpose, utility or make-up of “the militia” isn’t even the point. My suggestion is that we restore the traditional militias, meaning every member meets the requirement set by the anti-gun crowd (only the militia is authorized to keep and bear arms). Since every member of the militia is also a member of “the people”, we would close the door on the militia argument. As a bonus, we would get to see the gun-grabbers try to attack the very thing they clamor for…”arms restricted to the militia. “

        1. avatar Big Bill says:

          Restoring traditional militias is a lost cause, and not worth arguing over at all. It just isn’t going to happen.
          Even if it were to happen, the antis would simply claim they aren’t the militia enshrined in the 2A.
          The “people” vs “militia” argument is extremely valid, though. A choice was available, and the word “people” was chosen (and kept through the debates over the BOR), because the people and the militia were different groups, the militia being a subset of the people.

        2. avatar Sam I Am says:

          We continue to claim that because we are “right”, there is no need to do anything more, because being virtuous is its own reward. Then, when the other side comes finally for the guns, we can cry, “Unfair. I was on the side of righteousness: “shall not be infringed ! You cannot do this to me !”

        3. avatar Big Bill says:

          Sam, maybe I’m not saying it right.
          I’m not an absolutist at all, what I’m trying to do is explain, instead of simply saying something to end a debate.
          Explaining why something is done is not the same as saying it’s done, and that’s the end of it. It’s education.
          The 2A says something. It says it the way it does for a reason (several reasons, actually). Educating the grabbers can go a long way to changing their minds, or at least letting them see that their current tack is wrong.
          Or am I getting your tack wrong?

        4. avatar Sam I Am says:

          Maybe we are simply running different, but parallel, paths to similar endpoints?

    3. avatar Troubled Soul says:

      While you can make your argument on any basis you want, if you relinquish the fact that the 2A is a an absolute right that applies to everyone you will have completely lost.
      Rights are not given to you by the Federal gov or the State or the Militias.
      It is a natural human right.
      The rights in the constitution is about principles.
      Laws are made around those principals. Courts are supposed to determine if laws follow the principles.
      If you give up on the point that you have that natural right, all you will have is an argument about what some law says.
      Stick with the principle behind “Shall not be infringed “.
      Plus if you argue the whole Militias thing, you just left some of the most vulnerable people defenseless because they are over 65.

      1. avatar Sam I Am says:

        Knee-jerk “RTKBA”, “absolute” is not winning us anything. It also points out that too many gun owners cannot comprehend the written word.

        So, please, educate me where I mentioned yielding anything about the second amendment. I am proposing we change tactics from slogans to a more subtle attack on anti-gunners. Pleas come out of your bunker and blink away the fear. How does presenting the anti-gun asylum with just what they ask for (armed militia made up of individuals with guns) surrender any “natural, civil and human” right to have a gun? We keep running “hididdle, right up the middle”, and scoring nothing. Once you hand a complainer what they are complaining about (a militia with the constitutionally protected RTKBA), where do they go next? They end up complaining that satisfying their complaint is complaint-worthy itself.

        Are we really so intellectually limited that we are bereft of any new ideas on tactics?

        1. avatar Big Bill says:

          “Knee-jerk “RTKBA”, “absolute” is not winning us anything. It also points out that too many gun owners cannot comprehend the written word.”

          While knee-jerk absolutism doesn’t work, it’s certainly a starting point, simply because of the wording of the 2A itself: “…shall not be infringed” is some of the most strong wordage in the entire constitution, and obviously for a reason.
          That should be a jumping off point for arguments on why “people” is used instead of the word “militia” in the RTKBA, and why the right itself is not about being in a militia or even for hunting or sporting purposes. In fact, the word “arms”, neither then or now, is used exclusively to mean guns, but rather it included weapons in general.

        2. avatar Sam I Am says:

          While I agree with you, it remains a purely defensive tactic. The anti-gunners claim, “militia rights”, not “individual rights”. “Is not, is so, is not, is so…” Our public stance is always defensive, responding to accusations. I am calling for going on the attack. One approach is to shove the anti-gun argument down their own throats. It is a thrust, but not the battle, not the ultimate weapon. We are proudly polishing our Maginot Line, while the enemy attacks everywhere, everyday, all along the line.

          There is an old driving safety slogan that declares, “Speed Kills”. Speed doesn’t kill, it is the sudden stop that kills. But we always went along with the accusation, and tried to argue sometimes speed is an attribute, that speed has usefulness, that speed misused is really the issue. All the while conceding the original claim. It is the same with our right to arms. Over the last three years, reading and commenting on this blog, one thing is clear…we do not have any notion of “beating them at their own game”. It is always our preference to throw up shields after the attack. (laughing at the foolishness of the anti-gunners is not an effective maneuver)

        3. avatar Troubled Soul says:

          “Pleas come out of your bunker and blink away the fear.”
          What’s the matter Sam, did I triggered you?
          Less screeching and a little more respectful conversation.
          I said you can argue this from any point you want and there is benefits in showing multiple reasons to validate the second A.
          I have found that even people who do not like guns, will acknowledge that everyone has a right to defend themselves.
          That’s something to build on.
          The idea of having to be part of a militia is just creating more obstacles to gun ownership.
          Just like having to have a background check or a FOID card or training before you can get your concealed carry permit or having to get that permit.
          Here’s the reality.
          The need to be part of a militia is a fallacy.
          You can’t win on an untruth.
          And trying to tie this to the idea of a militia is going to be a PR failure.
          Right or wrong, most people do not see militia’s in a favorable light.

        4. avatar Sam I Am says:

          There is not “untruth” in flinging “the militia” at the anti-gun coalition. Federal Law establishes who is militia, and does not provide for opting out. Thus, “the militia” exists, whether anyone likes it or not. Federal Law effectively conscripts everyone between 17 and 45 (states are not prohibited from increasing the age range) into “the militia”. What we do not have is much history anchored on “the militia”.

          Now, the second amendment clearly and plainly states that a well regulated militia is required (necessary). The second amendment states that “the people” (those who would be part of a militia organized by the state – which would be everyone) cannot be denied the right to arms. The militia is where anti-gunners hang their argument that keeping arms is not an individual right. Since the militia is made up of “the people”, the people have the individual right to arms. Facing the anti-gunners with fait acomplli is not building anything upon an “untruth”. Being a member of “the militia” knocks almost the entirety of the anti-gun argument off its feet. None of this is antagonistic to the Heller decision that RTKBA is an individual right. What it does is present the anti-gun gang with their wet dream of “militia only”, while at the same time pushing them to argue that “the militia” is not afforded protection of the second amendment.

          The first step toward working out the details of any proposal is to achieve agreement that the time has come for a new approach, and that a particular approach bears exploring so as to work out the details for moving forward. So far, only a few have given any serious thought, many just remain in traditional shells. It is always the anti-gun mafia demanding a perfect plan before they will discuss an idea. Are we mirroring the other side?

          2A is an individual right because “the people” are the individuals who make up “the militia”. Individuals, who are the militia, cannot be denied the arms to fulfill their responsibility. Let’s make the gun-grabbers choke on that.

        5. avatar Big Bill says:

          “While I agree with you, it remains a purely defensive tactic. The anti-gunners claim, “militia rights”, not “individual rights”. “Is not, is so, is not, is so…” Our public stance is always defensive, responding to accusations. I am calling for going on the attack. One approach is to shove the anti-gun argument down their own throats. It is a thrust, but not the battle, not the ultimate weapon. We are proudly polishing our Maginot Line, while the enemy attacks everywhere, everyday, all along the line.”

          Obviously, I am not getting my message across.
          What I am trying to do is show the grabbers that their idea (that the 2A is for the militia) is wrong on its face. The 2A doesn’t say that at all. Anyone with a fourth grade english education can see that, once it’s pointed out. It’s called education.
          It’s definitely not a case of “Yes it is, not it’s not.” Instead, it’s education. It’s pointing out the 2A is written a certain way, even after debates, for a reason, and that reason is not what they think it is.

        6. avatar Sam I Am says:

          I understand your approach. It is the path of tradition. There is no indication (or encouragement) that the anti-2A people can be educated. It requires letting go of too much of their group and individual concept of self. “Education” may garner a few of the mystical “undecided”, but no one knows who they are, or how many.

          My thought is that we need to play smashmouth football with the anti-2A crowd. Shove their own standards up their noses.

          We have been trying to “educate” for how many decades? Any sign of retreat, or pause in the efforts to continue watering down “gun rights”? Any sign at all that the gun-grabbers are retreating?

          All our “education” efforts are responsive, defensive.

          I have had some “fun” with liberals and anti-gun drones, doesn’t change their mind, but it faces them with truth they would rather ignore. I make them stand up to the fact that attempts to “reduce gun violence” by restricting gun ownership makes the anti-gun mafia accomplices in the deaths of people killed by armed criminals. I tell people from the other side, “There were successful defensive gun uses last year. How many do you think there were? One? OK. Let’s go with that. One person saved their life by shooting an armed attacker. By your own standard, the victim should rightfully be dead. The victim had a moral obligation to sacrifice their life so that the attacker could proceed without risk of grievous bodily harm. You would condemn that victim to death in order to fulfill your wish to disarm the law abiding populace. Your preference for a just society is that victims do their duty to be victims, to be terribly injured, or dead, all because you do not like guns. You are responsible for the death of someone you don’t even know. One successful defensive gun use in a year, to save one life? Is it worth it? Of course, if it saves only one life….”

          The above is “going on the offensive”, “shaming”. Maybe it is also education, but it is not sitting around waiting to defend against the next attack of the gun-grabbing undead.

        7. avatar Big Bill says:

          Sam, you are the one bolstering the anti’s idea that the KTKBA is embodied in the militia…
          “The second amendment states that “the people” (those who would be part of a militia organized by the state – which would be everyone) cannot be denied the right to arms.”
          “…those who would be part of a militia…”
          That’s wrong, and it’s obvious you haven’t been reading what I write.
          The defined militia is not everyone. The militia is actually defined by age, gender (though now that’s been removed), and ability to serve.
          I don’t know why; maybe you’re just trying to see how you can rebut me, but you’ve just not been reading.
          The RTKBA is not for “those who would be part of a militia.” Instead, it is for the “people.” The “people” consists not just those in a militia, but everyone. That’s what the 2A actually says: “the people.” Not those within a certain age range, not those who aren’t infirm, but everyone.
          There is absolutely NOTHING in the 2A that says one must be in, or even eligible to be in, any militia.

        8. avatar Sam I Am says:

          To begin, the constitution does not define “militia”, that is done in federal law. Second, the states can define their militias to be whomever they choose. Third, “the people” constitute the militia insofar as no one knew/knows how many “people” will be needed for any instance where “the militia” will be called upon for state purposes.

          The federal distinction of age group identifies those members of “the people” who the federal government will consider “calling up” for federal purposes. Neither federal law, nor the US constitution prohibits states from defining their own age groups. Thus, “the people” are the militia whenever a state designates.

          The point of all this is really that we remain in bunkers, shouting at the wind. Time to figure out how to bring the fight out of the trenches, and onto ground occupied by the anti-gun crowd. Many here have commented that if we move a millimeter from our current stalemate tactics, the other side will use it to somehow create laws that further restrict our “gun rights”. Are we that fearful? Do we really think that the oppo will not figure out things on their own? That they will not hurt us, if we do not tell them how? What is the problem here? The problem is that the pro-2A cotillion has failed to convince an overwhelming majority of the public that “gun rights” are not to be restricted. Polls (for whatever they are worth) over the last five years tell us we have not moved public opinion much; an approximate even split is all we managed by refusing “to give even one inch”. Maybe, if we do not have the brain power, and a compelling case for “shall not be infringed”, we are bolstering the case for the “common sense” exponents.

          If we keep doing what we have been doing, we surely will get a different result, won’t we?

  17. avatar Danny338 says:

    “The states retained the right to control ownership and use of firearms within state borders.”

    This statement is wrong. The 2nd amendment says “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” The States, if they are abiding by the Constitution, can no more control ownership and use than the Federal government.

    My main point is this:

    If you as an individual don’t have a Right, then a group of individuals doesn’t have that Right. Rights start at an individual, at a person. Groups of people have no more Rights than any of the individuals.

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      “The States, if they are abiding by the Constitution, can no more control ownership and use than the Federal government.”

      Your are making the common mistake of not realizing that the condition/relationship between central government and the individual states AT THE FOUNDING was completely different from your experience of the nation today. At the founding, the states were completely sovereign, separate and independent from one another AND the central government. At the time of the founding, the states were not bound internally by the federal constitution (except as specifically detailed in the text). The intent was to maintain state control over the government, not state control by the central government.

      If you would read the Federalist Papers, and a compendium of the letters between the founders after the ratification of the constitution, and histories of the thirteen original states, you would find rules and regulations in the states that would make your head spin compared to what you think today is the proper order of things between central and state governments.

      1. avatar Danny338 says:

        “At the founding, the states were completely sovereign, separate and independent from one another AND the central government.”

        That is incorrect. Not even under the Continental Congress and the Articles of Confederation was such a claim accurate. The States were bound to abide by the terms in the Articles, and the States are bound by the terms of the Constitution. If your contention is that the authors of the Constitution failed to articulate what they meant in how they wrote it, then that is very flawed.

        1. avatar Sam I Am says:

          Wrong sir. Only sovereign, separate and independent states could delegate state power to the central government. Yes, they agreed to the terms of the compact, but they did not agree that the compact was superior to state law entirely. That was the reason for amendments nine and ten. To eliminate any notion by the central government that the states surrendered any sovereign rights beyond those specifically stated. The state constitutions remained in effect, and were conformed only later (not en masse), and not by force of the federal constitution.

          Surrendering only specifically delegated rights meant simply that the states believed themselves completely sovereign in all other matters. However, if you can point me to a provision in the constitution (and first ten amendments) where it is clearly stated that once the constitution was ratified, states yielded their sovereignty entirely, I am happy to learn new lessons.

        2. avatar Danny338 says:

          @ Sam I Am

          You tell me I an wrong and then you agree with what I said.
          e.g. “Yes, they agreed to the terms of the compact”

          Then you imply that I said something I didn’t.
          e.g. “However, if you can point me to a provision in the constitution (and first ten amendments) where it is clearly stated that once the constitution was ratified, states yielded their sovereignty entirely, I am happy to learn new lessons.”

          After all, as you pointed out, the 10th amendment is quite clear when it say, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

          The first ten amendments were an “enumeration…of certain rights…retained by the people.” Since the States ratified those amendments to be a part of the Constitution, then “they agreed to the terms of the compact”. The States cannot violate the Rights retained by the people without also violating the “terms of the compact.”

          Article 6, second paragraph:
          This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

        3. avatar Sam I Am says:

          The constitution is more rich than you describe. Not only does it enumerate the states’ rights delegated to the central government, the constitution also details limits on the central government that are not a delegation of state powers and rights. By ratifying the constitution, the states did not agree to conform all their state constitutions to the “compact”. The states did not agree to be bound individually by the federal constitution in every detail. The constitution was a check on the central government, not the states.

          I invite you to review the Massachusetts state constitution. Please review and identify any statement granting superiority in all things to the central government due to ratification of the US Constitution. The Massachusetts state constitution was established in 1780, never repealed and replaced.

          To save you some time, here is the fourth article of the Massachusetts constitution:
          “Art. IV. The people of this commonwealth have the sole and exclusive right of governing themselves as a free, sovereign, and independent State, and do, and forever hereafter shall, exercise and enjoy every power, jurisdiction, and right which is not, or may not hereafter be, by them expressly delegated to the United States of America in Congress assembled.”

          The above is not evidence of state sovereignty abandoned to the central government. It is the statement of a sovereign and independent people. Soveriegn means no political edifice is superior. The delegation of specific powers to the central government does not eradicate the sovereignty of the state. The states ratifying the US Constitution were separate, sovereign, independent states joining a compact, not to become servants of the central government, but agreeing to permit the central government authority is specific incidents and cases…and no more. What do you think was at the heart of the Great Secession? States’ Rights. The right of a sovereign and independent to voluntarily join in union inherently included the sovereign right to withdraw from the agreement of union.

          Prior to the 14th amendment, the States were wholly sovereign except those powers voluntarily delegated (not surrendered) to the central government. In short, the federal government was to be the agent of the states (else nothing could be delegated from the states). Today, when you contract with another entity to perform certain functions, you engage that entity as agent, with specified authorities…and no more. The agent you employ does not have legal authority to perform or obligate beyond the scope of the established agency. You do not agree to allow the agent to dictate to you how the charter of agency will be ordered, not do you surrender your rights to sovereignly act in any other endeavor. Only after the 14th amendment did states become mere vassals of the central government.

          Do I really need to explain all this to POTG who demand “absolutism” in the issue of gun possession? How could a simple citizen demand “absolutism” of anything from a superior legal entity? Either the people rule, through the states, (sovereignty), or the central government rules. If the central government rules, no one can demand that their individual rights are sovereign, are superior to the central government.

        4. avatar Sam I Am says:

          The clause declares the laws established within the delegated authorities, are the law of the land. Where delegated authority does not exist, the central government has no permission to intrude. Extending your logic, the constitution can be negated, in its entirety, through simple legislation of Congress and signature of the President. Your logic would turn the constitution on its head, no longer being a check on the central government, but being the vehicle by which the central government wrests all power from the states.

        5. avatar Danny338 says:

          @ Sam I Am

          You don’t seem to have understood what I wrote, and seem to be twisting it to mean something else. So I will leave you with this:

          If the Amendments only apply to the Federal government, then why does the First Amendment start with “Congress shall make no law…”? “Is that not, at best, redundant?”

          Are the Rights “retained by the people” in the other Amendments, only Rights when the Federal government seeks to violate them? Are they not Rights when the States make laws?

          Why does the 10th Amendment say “…nor prohibited by it to the States…”?

        6. avatar Sam I Am says:

          I am not twisting anything, only pointing out the flaw in arguing that the constitution represented a complete surrender of states’ rights to a central government.

          You have to “see” the constitution at its founding, not as is today, not as was after the 14th amendment. The “Congress shall make no law…” meant what it said. No low abridging the right of free speech among the people of the states. The wording does not state, “Congress, nor any of the states, shall make no law,,,”. Arguing that the origin of the constitution was designed to constrain the states in lockstep with the central government makes no sense. The founders were perfectly capable of making it clear that every provision in the constitution applied equally to the states. The states did not “think” themselves subservient to a creation of the states. To argue otherwise means one does not understand at all the reason for the revolution, nor the attempt to establish a limited central government to serve the interests of the states (and citizenry). If the founders had written that the constitution constrained the states in the exact same manner, the 14th amendment would have been unnecessary.

          As already noted, if the founders intended the constitution (specifically Art 6, para 2) to control the states, a single statement (Art 6, para 2) would have been the entirety of the constitution. That being because the article is being interpreted as voiding the tenth amendment. How can a state retain power to determine what the central government may do/not do, if the central government can enforce the federal compact on the states, individually?

          No one reading the history of the US between 1789 an d1860 can conclude the stated believed the federal compact displaced, or removed the sovereignty of the states, that the federal compact applied equally to the individual states.

          To be repetitive, one cannot substitute “State” for “Congress” in the application of the constitution, AS ORIGINALLY CONCEIVED (I don’t know how to bold or italicize text here). The proper reading is that “Congress (alone) shall not make any law”.

        7. avatar Sam I Am says:

          “If the Amendments only apply to the Federal government, then why does the First Amendment start with “Congress shall make no law…”? “Is that not, at best, redundant?” ”

          It is redundant, and intentionally so. The founders wanted to be clear that the constitution constrained the federal government, not the states. Some voted against the BOR as unnecessary because the plain meaning of the reason and installation of the constitution was clear to everyone. Madison and others did not so trust government as to leave it to politicians to make the distinction.

          Redundancy, however, does not indicate an intention that the constitution be applied to the states in like manner. There is no evidence that the framers ever intended to enforce the constitution on the states EXCEPT where clearly detailed.

        8. avatar Danny338 says:

          @ Sam I Am

          You seem to have not understood what I wrote, and seem to be twisting it to mean something else. So I will leave you with this:

          If the Amendments only apply to the Federal government, then why does the First Amendment start with “Congress shall make no law…”? “Is that not, at best, redundant?”

          Are the Rights “retained by the people” in the other Amendments, only Rights when the Federal government seeks to violate them? Are they not Rights when the States make laws?

          Why does the 10th Amendment say “…nor prohibited by it to the States…”?

          Sovereignty ultimately resides with the people.

        9. avatar Danny338 says:

          “arguing that the constitution represented a complete surrender of states’ rights to a central government”

          If you had actually paid attention to what I wrote, you would realize that I argued no such thing.

          You have ignored what you didn’t want to see, and brushed aside my questions with specious reasoning. You and the Federal and State governments will continue to ignore what the Constitution and the Amendments say.

        10. avatar Sam I A says:

          Please try again. Where are we differing? As a staunch (rabid?) states’ right supporter (constrained federal government supporter) believer that the founders did not intend to surrender their interior right to the federal government beyond that specifically detailed in the constitution I try to keep the early history of the constitution separate from views of how the constitution today is what was originally intended and written.

  18. avatar RageQuit says:

    There’s going to be a point of this “experiment” in “government of the people” when enough people get tired of the overly complicated and verbose legal code and just stand up, say, “enough is enough,” knock the game pieces off the board and flip the table over.

    I’m not saying that I am advocating it. But I can see it becoming more and more likely as I watch the paradigm-shift within the population. It is changing, and it’s happening at a quickening pace.

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      “There’s going to be a point….when enough people….say, “enough is enough,” ”

      That is the general, and comforting, claim of many gun owners. But what is the truth? Have we not permitted government intrusion upon the rights of individuals well beyond that which sparked the original rebellion? It might be good to review that which the founders found intolerable. I ask again, “Waco, Ruby Ridge, Bundy1, decisions by the Supreme Court that a farmer holding product off the market to feed his family and neighbors is an unconstitutional violation of the commerce clause, and on it goes. Where is the red line?”

      1. I think as with most bullies, if enough patriots stand up to the bureaucrats, they will back down.
        If we fight on their terms, they will slaughter us one by one.
        They have no problem murdering women and children and lone wolves. But they don’t have the nads to face a militia.

        1. avatar Sam I Am says:

          “I think as with most bullies, if enough patriots stand up to the bureaucrats, they will back down.”

          Yes, yes. Mom, home and apple pie. Now what? We are so far into tyranny that the founders would disown us. When is “enough”. We all claim there will come a time, but no one is putting forth the circumstance that will cause the patriots to punch the bully in the face.

          Where/when is the “red line”?

  19. avatar Bob999 says:

    Not one more inch. I will not give up my guns. No supposed compromise, no alteration or misinterpretation of the Constitution, or touchy-feely progressive BS will convince me otherwise. And I am not alone, and our numbers are larger than the liberal fascists can oppose. (Trolls, don’t even bother to debate me on this, because I don’t care what you have to say.) But, frankly, I doubt we will ever have to see what a “post 2nd Amendment” US will look like. The leftists use of identity politics has alienated much of the population, and it shows. Recently, key Democrat Party officials have started begging their followers to stop attacking gun owners, which tells me they know that they screwed up. I am betting Trump will be appointing at least two more justices. I think we have won even if the left won’t stop fighting.

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      “Not one more inch. I will not give up my guns. No supposed compromise, no alteration or misinterpretation of…”

      Where, precisely, do you find any of this in my posting? I am saying we should turn on the anti-gun mafia and declare, “Ok. This is me. I am a member of a recognized militia. These are my arms and equipment. The constitution states that because of the need for a militia, if I am a member of the militia, my right to keep and bear arms cannot be infringed. You have what you asked for, now go suck it.”

      1. avatar MamaLiberty says:

        Doesn’t work, Sam. I’m 71 years old, disabled, and certainly never going to be any part of a “militia.” I can and do own/shoot a good number of guns, and work hard to increase my competence in self defense on many fronts. But the militia thing is just never going to work for me. And I have lots of company. How many of the older folks in this country, including the disabled and those who are now regarded as “too young,” or all of those with bogus “felony” charges that make them “prohibited” would be excluded? Seems you would toss all of us under the bus with this militia stuff.

        I never did consent to the “constitution,” or to any non-voluntary government at any level. And conscription of any kind, for any reason, is a death blow to our individual liberty. It is certainly no part of the solution.

        1. avatar Sam I Am says:

          Do you think the revolution was conducted by teenagers and callow young men? The militia is anyone who can pull a trigger.

          I am not talking about the myth of the sovereign individual who recognizes no authority of any kind. If you benefit from being alive in this country, you benefit only because of the compact that you claim not to have agreed to. By your own logic, you should have no benefit of any kind.

          But all of that is irrelevant. I am proposing a new line of attack against gun grabbers. Surely at 71 you have not become a complete and useless dunderhead. I cannot accept that “your time has passed. As a member of “the people”, you would automatically become a member of the militia, and vice versa. The intent is to form a new avenue of attack against those who demand that the second amendment apply only to the militia. Let’s face them with a huge and recognized militia of “the people”; force them to gag on their own rhetoric. 51 recognized militia officially established militia, armed to the teeth, meeting the qualification for gun ownership set by those who twist the second amendment into an exclusionary provision.

  20. avatar Richard Steven Hack says:

    Frankly, this is complete idiocy.

    All this “history of the Constitution stuff” ignores the fact that the basic principle, as Patrick Henry and numerous others stated explicitly, is that “every man be armed.”

    Not in a “regulated militia” – which term simply meant the body of the people with experience in using firearms – but EVERY MAN (woman, of course, were historically excluded – deal with it.)

    The notion that the US government today is going to allow the states to form armed militias is a hilarious fantasy. There is absolutely ZERO chance of that happening no matter how many of us “gun nuts” advocate for it.

    For someone suggesting that “2nd Amendment absolutism” isn’t working to suggest this approach is simply pie-in-the-sky delusion.

    Some people need to stop going to the range too often and get out more. The population of this country is sufficiently brainwashed that there is no chance that “militias” composed of “gun nuts” is going to be allowed to fly.

    I think some people think that if they join a militia, they get to exercise their Rambo or Red Dawn fantasies. I don’t care how “legal” the militia might be, it’s going to be infiltrated by every one of the 17 intelligence agencies as well as every state and local police department to make sure that there is nothing that might be the slightest threat to the federal government.

    Articles like this are “completely irrelevant” and don’t help retention of the 2nd Amendment one iota.

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      Sir, I am afraid your skills of reading and comprehension failed you. Or maybe you are looking for infringement behind every word, just like some in society find racism behind every word. Those looking to be offended, will be.

      Gun grabbers are staking everything on believing only the militia may keep and bear arms. They have not given any thought as to where they go when the militia shows up, made up of everyone who want to join, fully armed. We will have met their requirement, we will be armed, and they will have set the stage for toppling their objections. They cannot argue both that people can only keep and bear arms as part of a militia, but being part of a militia does not mean the militia members cannot keep and bear arms.

  21. avatar John says:

    As “Sam I Am” points out, the Supreme Court has the power of interpretation (the govt gets to interpret the powers of the govt) so the absolutist or militia view is irrelevant.
    What is relevant is gaining the support of fellow citizens by being perceived as an asset and benefit to the community.
    One way is to revisit the discussion of the law-abiding citizen who carries a weapon and to note they are often the true “first responder” since they may actually be on the scene when their support is useful. This is like knowing how to perform CPR. It sure is handy to have someone around who can apply it while the ambulance is on the way.
    Being perceived as reasonable, conscientious, and contributing members of the community will help retard the process by which all of our rights can, and perhaps will, be reinterpreted over time.

  22. avatar El Bearsidente says:

    Ah, no, you’re not conscripted into the militia. That would imply that the militia is a standing military unit, that has a rotation of members in its ranks. Conscription also requires paperwork.

    The militia, at the times this was written by the Founding Fathers, was everybody in a town. You live in that town, you are automatically part of that militia and you were expected to defend your home, together with everybody else. Which makes a lot of sense, really.

    Today I would argue the closest thing that exists to a militia are not these weirdo groups, but rather shooting clubs. Today’s militias are functioning as standing para-military units, which is not what a militia of citizens is.

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      I used the word “conscripted” rather loosely. By “conscripted” I meant if you are between certain ages (determined locally), and you are breathing, you are militia. From what I gather, some states do not have a recognized militia of any sort. We should work to change that.

      But if we take the position that the definition of militia contained in 32 U.S. Code § 313, applies, and can be different according to state constitutions, we are almost there. We need only a means to expand membership age to cover everyone.

      With every state (states are allegedly the means by which the people control the central government) having a militia of everyone above 17, “the militia” equals “the people” (which it already does, but we need to have an enlarged pool of citizens). Once we establish broadly and nationally that “that the militia” now represents the entirety of “the people”, we have met the standard the anti-gun people insist limits who can keep and bear arms. With the militia = everyone publicly pronounced and enshrined in state laws, we meet the standard that allows everyone (IAW the measure used by gun-grabbers) to keep and bear arms. That would require the anti-gun crowd to argue that the second amendment does not include the militia, after all. That using federal law to confiscate guns would not violate “shall not be infringed”. That any law regarding gun possession does not violate the secondment intention that only the militia are guaranteed the right to unconstrained gun possession.

      We need to force the gun-grabbers onto the defensive.

  23. avatar Timoa Theos says:

    Fine “Sam”, got it, you want to regulate my Second, i want to regulate your First and 13th, we’ll see who wins this one.

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      No, you don’t “got it”.

      You have to really bend your mind to come to the conclusion that anything I wrote endorses any sort of “regulation” as you think of it. I am simply saying we should form official militias in every state, then turn to the gun grabbers and say, “OK, you got your militia. We are all the living breathing individuals residing in the states and territories. By your own reckoning, by your own standard, by your own admission, the militia is the entity permitted the un-infringed right to keep and bear arms. The militia is all of us, all of us have the constitutionally protected individual right to keep and bear arms, by your own standard and claim.”

      BTW, the constitution already grants the central government and the states to regulate, control, field, equip and discipline the militia.

  24. avatar Darkman says:

    When it comes to the Bill of Rights. Nit picking what you support and what you don’t support. Is exactly what Liberal politicians want to see us do. Divide and conquer is an age old tactic that’s worked pretty over the centuries. Our Founding Fathers knew this all to well in having to deal with the Tories. Our choice continues as there was made. If we don’t stand together we will surely hang separately. Rights are never taken away in big chunks. Politicians have learned to use the. How do you eat an elephant technique. One bite at a time. Chip away at our rights always for some commonsense justification. Who’s idea of commonsense? This is a battle for all or nothing. The only questions are who wins. How long will it take. Did we fight the good fight. The eyes of Hundreds of thousands of are ancestors are looking down on us. Do we make them proud or do we let them down and waste the sacrifices they made to give up the FREEST Nation on the Earth. Patriot or Tori?

  25. avatar joetast says:

    My States Constitution and it’s bill of rights says I can have arms for my defense and security, sooo whatever they Feds says don’t count on me. Just like that Fed law on Domestic Violence. The Feds says you can’t have guns but my State says you can, so they don’t confiscate them. And fuckem all anyway. Most laws are just made to see how much shit they can pile on you. They Feds aren’t going to do away with guns, just like boozee, smokes and drugs, it’s a money maker. They just bitch to make libs think the gov gives a shit

  26. avatar Aaron M. Walker says:

    Hmmmm…States are going to get in line for simple political manoeuvres…Yeah, okay…Good luck trying to convert “Not-So-Free-States” that have already made such huge power grabs to usurp a US citizens constitutional rights…It’s all about Dismembering the Bill of Rights, and Control over the US citizenry! For Absolute power corrupts Absolutely ! (Re: See Commiefornia, CT. ,NJ, NY, MD, People’s Republic of Massachusetts, etc…)

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      The beauty of using the militia concept against the anti-gunners is that even hostile states have people, and the militia is defined in federal law as “all” the people of certain age, regardless of the state of residence. The hostile states have no say. There is no provision in the federal law to “opt out” of being militia..

      The real point is we need to attack, not defend. We have been comfortable in our bunker of slogans, while losing the culture war (stalemate is not winning). Let’s try something different because whatever we think we have been doing is not defeating opponents of inconvenient individual rights.

  27. avatar cisco kid says:

    The Founding Fathers deliberately made the Second Amendment vague because like all demagogues they feared the people. After all their Electoral College was a glaring example of such a lust for absolute power over the Proletariat. If back then they would have had an overpopulated Nation with a lack of good paying jobs or lack of jobs altogether which results in civil unrest and rampant crime along with mental depression and inevitable rampant insanity and mass murders they themselves would have restricted the right of the proletariat to own firearms. And yes they themselves would have used the excuse that the Second Amendment only applies only to the Military. People in power lust for absolute power no matter if it be a democracy or a dictatorship, that is the “law of warped human nature”. Because of their lust for power and greed for money the U.S. Missed out on forming a Parliamentary Government that would have given the people true Democracy and had the ability to get things done by the use of a coalition Government and that would have taken away too much power from the Founding Fathers who wanted a “fake democracy” and all the power they could get while still looking like they were giving the people a democratic government. It worked like a charm then and the Moronic Far Right are still dumb enough today to have never discovered the ruse.

    Today the Militia no longer exists as the National Guard has been incorporated under the control of the Federal Government so that the States have no means of resisting the Federal Government. States rights ceased to exist because of this and as Mayo Zedong once said “Power comes from the barrel of a gun” and the government has all the firepower and its robotic military obeys its commands without question because the Far Right Military Fanatics are only taught “what to think” not “how to think”. Give a group of people (like the Police or Military) power and to keep that power they follow orders even if told to throw cyanide down on the heads of helpless women and children. Hitlers Germany proved that beyond all doubt. The savage Male Neanderthal lives for one thing “Power” and he will destroy even himself to hang on to it. Hitler chose death over life when he lost his power as he could not live without it.

    The Supreme Court except for the one isolated ruling under Scalia have always voted for Power over the people by restricting Second Amendment rights and now that Scalia is dead and rotting in his grave his ruling has been largely ignored by the Courts. All of the outright bans on gun ownership along the East Coast have already been ruled Constitutional and California is in the process of confiscating major classes of modern weapons and has outlawed all carry of weapons by the proletariat both concealed and open carry. Reagan “God of the Republican Morons” took way the right to own modern automatic weapons as well. As one can see its been a steady progression of take one category at a time until nothing is left.

    The Government must be able to control large populations that do not have decent paying jobs or have no jobs at all and to do that the guns must be taken from the people Constitution or no Constitution. The Republicans just this week are going to introduce legislation nullifying the “right to privacy” that was temporarily given back to the people because of the “Great Patriot Edward Snowden” who exposed the blatant unrestricted spying by the Government on all the American People including even the President himself. Herr Drumpf is ecstatic over the new bill on unrestricted spying by the Government. Why would he not as he keeps a copy of Mein Kampf by his bedside.

    It must also be realized that the Supreme Court rules with public opinion to hang on to their power and to increase their power over the Proletariat they must do everything possible to disarm the people. Its prior history of ignoring even the most basic rights of the Constitution would not fool even a grade school student.

    The gun owning public is now at its lowest point in U.S. History with some survey’s putting gun ownership at a mere 35 per cent. This simply means the majority of people are not gun owners and view the Second Amendment as a threat to their safety and security both by radical far right groups playing at being a “pretend anti-government Nazi Militia” and the public’s panic over mass killings that now have become almost a monthly reality. Its easy to see where this is all going. The fiasco of the Herr Drumpf regime and the Republican infighting that has failed to get anything done means the Democrats are in for a slam dunk take over of both Congressional Houses and a future Democratic President who will run on the complete destruction of all gun ownership in the U.S and the bulk of the non-gun owning public will support it.

    1. avatar Serpent_Vision says:

      “After all their Electoral College was a glaring example of such a lust for absolute power over the Proletariat.”

      Either that, or an attempt to balance representation at the state level with representation at the individual level.

      1. avatar Big Bill says:

        The Crisco Kid obviously has no idea of why the Electoral College was instituted.
        In several states, the majority of the population was in cities; if “one man, one vote” were absolute, then the agricultural areas of the states (the vast majority of the states) would be disenfranchised, represented by people who had few common interests with the farming people. Sort of like California today.
        It’s also to ensure that someone who isn’t qualified gets to be president (regardless of anyone’s opinion of Trump or Obama).
        The Founding Fathers knew that.

    2. avatar Excedrine says:

      The Founding Fathers actually made the Second Amendment language quite clear, and any vagueness whatsoever is completely fabricated from whole cloth and inserted where it clearly never was in the first place and will never belong. They actually feared the government, not so much the people, too. Oh, and the Electoral College was actually established so that 57 populous coastal counties aren’t able to lord over the rest of the 2,950 other counties that make up these United States. Overpopulation is a myth invented by you Marxists NEETs back in the 1970s, and even if your purely mythical scenario was true back in the Founder’s day they still would not have restricted the right to keep and bear arms, either. And no, they would not have said that it only applies to the military and you have absolutely zero evidence — empirical or otherwise — to support these or any other assertion you’ve ever made in regards to anything you’ve ever lied about anywhere on the whole of this site. Parliamentary government is also every bit as much about money and will still never bring any population anywhere even remotely close to a “true democracy.” Whatever that’s supposed to mean. Besides, we were never a democracy to begin with, but a Constitutional Republic. A nation of laws, not of mere mortals. Ideally, anyway. It worked like a charm then and the moronic far left are still dumb enough today to continue dismantling it.

      Today, the militia absolutely does still exist and you’d know that had you ever done any modicum of research into literally anything, ever. State’s rights actually ceased to exist with the Whiskey Rebellion, and it’s actually far left authoritarian military fanatics that obey every command from their Dear Leader because they are only taught “what to think” and not “how to think.” People like you want to give the military and the police the ability to keep their power through gun control, which you have for a fact called before numerous times by the by, and you’d watch with glee as they dropped white phosphorous onto the “right people.” Your own Herr Hilter proved that beyond all doubt. You savage Neanderthals love for one thing and one thing only: power. You will destroy not only yourselves but anyone and everyone who gets in your way to achieve and hold onto it. Your own Herr Hitler committed suicide like the coward he is, like the coward you in fact are, when the walls closed in.

      No outright bans on ownership have ever been passed, not even in your own deep blue havens like KKKommiefornia. But, don’t worry your empty little head. Confiscation will never happen. Didn’t in Connecticut or ZOO York when they handed out fresh registration AND ban legislation. Didn’t even happen in L.A. when the magazine ban was passed. And, no, neither concealed nor open carry has been banned, either. Not even in KKKommiefornia. Barry “God of the Dumbass-O-KKKrat Morons” Soetoro couldn’t even get a ban bill to his desk after Sandy Hook, over which he cried crocodile tears on national TV.

      Herr Shillary is who’s actually ecstatic over any bill allegedly “nullifying” any rights to privacy, especially as Dear Leader Soetoro not only repeatedly renewed but expanded the scope of the Patriot Act. They, as well as you, sleep with a copy of Mein Kampf at their bedside.

      It must actually be realized that the SCoTUS does not often rule with public opinion and the gun owning public is also actually just as big as it ever was, still above 40% and the raw total number is always rising as well. Even a grade school student can see that, yet you can’t. What this actually means is that the majority of people probably are gun owners but don’t trust strangers randomly calling them on their phones and asking them if they own guns. They also actually see the Second Amendment as a bulwark against threats to their safety and security by radical far left groups playing at being a “pretend anti-government Communist militia,” and public’s panic over mass shootings that are actually still not anywhere remotely close to “monthly” often fades pretty quickly. The fiadco of the Herr Shillary Deep State and the Dumbass-O-KKKratikkk infighting that has failed to get anything done actually means the Republicans are in for another slam dunk take-over of both Congressional houses and a re-elected Drumpf will until the end of his second term put the brakes on the continued diminution of the right to keep and bear arms — and the bulk of the non-gun owning public will support that.

      1. avatar cisco kid says:

        to Excedrin headache

        quote——————————No outright bans on ownership have ever been passed,————————quote

        What planet do you live on. Confiscation in California of assault rifles is to be a two year confiscation. And the California Courts recently declared no one but the Police have a right to concealed carry and they refused to rule on prior bans open carry thereby effectively banning the right of all carry concealed or open. WHAT PART OF ALL THIS DO YOU NO UNDERSTAND?????

        As far as the Electoral College two Presidents have recently been elected that were not elected by the majority of the people this is no different than a 3rd World Dictatorship type of government. Democracy in the U.S. is a shame and an obscene joke. The only reason the far Right Fanatics like Excedrin Headache are for the Electoral College is because that they know their Nazi leaders would never have another President elected if it was left up to true Democracy and the will of the American people. Rather now with the current unjust system you have a minority of ignorant Hill Jack States determining who will become President. What a joke are elections are, they are an insult to the Country and to its people.

        1. avatar Excedrine says:

          We certainly know that you don’t live on Earth. KKKommiefornia didn’t ban guns outright, like you did in fact claim (note the lack of disctintion of class in your original post), and its actually only a few counties on the coast that refuse to hand out permits as the rest of the state is effectively shall-issue. People living in that deep blue cesspool even came out and repudiated you and supported me, too. WHAT PART OF ALL OF THAT DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND?

          Oh, and I have already dictated to you the real purpose of the Electoral College: to prevent just 57 coastal counties from ruling the other 2,950. To not have it would actually be like living in a third-world dictatorship — which I happen to know for a fact that you’ve never experienced anyway — and the U.S. is not now and has never been a democracy to begin with. It’s a Constitutional Republic; a ntion of laws, not of mere mortals. The only reason far left fanatics like crisco kid are against the Electoral College is because that they know their Nazi leaders would never have another President elected if it were left up to their mob and not the will of the American people at large. Rather now with the current system, you actually have a minority of ignorant Marxist NEETs throwing a tantrum over losing fair-and-square to someone they hate. What a joke you are, being an insult to this and every other country and to all of humanity in them.

  28. avatar Drake_Burrwood says:

    Caution; the Militia already exists in Federal Statute both Organized and Unorganized. But Constitutional REQUIREMENT that the Militia may only be “in service” ie enrolled under Military Discipline; in times of Invasion, Insurection, and “enforcing the Laws of the Union”.
    Nothing requiring training to be under Military Discipline.
    They might try to regulate away the keeping of military arms even more then now.

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      Understand, but I remain unmoved. The opposition can make all the mischief assumed in this discussion thread. Our remaining quiet, continuing to throw up the same defenses, does nothing to prevent the gun grabbers from doing anything imagined here.

      Refusing to go on the offensive because it might anger the oppo is attempting to placate the bully by being nicer. It was that same technique that gave us a non-conservative Republican party, and the fossilized Republican establishment. Attacking those Republicans head-on changed the landscape, and yes, the establishment struck back (so far with little to show for it).

  29. avatar Matt says:

    It is really very simple and I have been saying it for years. If the second amendment only applies to militias fine, but answer these two questions as a result. Who makes up a militia? The average everyday person not in some form of military or police service at a minimum, at a maximum everyone. What arms are suitable for militia use? At a minimum all the stuff that a standard military force would be equipped with, at a maximum literally anything you can get your hands on. It is an individual right in spite of the militia clause because the individual is the basis of the militia.

    1. avatar Sam I Am says:

      Agree, entirely. So let’s hammer the anti-gun mafia with the fact that the militia they demand is now before them, and it is “the people”. Ask, “How can you argue only the militia has the right to keep and bear arms, but, at the same instant, deny the militia the right to keep and bear arms because the militia is “the people”, the individuals of the country?”

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