The question was recently posed, “Does the Second Amendment Protect the Rest?” It’s a great question, and increasingly timely. My answer: of course not . . .
The 2A is a great thing, part of the Constitution of the United States, a wonderful document that is the flower of political writing. In it, those “certain inalienable rights” were expressed as never before in history.
The Declaration of Independence [above] was signed in 1776, and the Constitution was ratified in 1788. Between those two dates we had the Revolutionary War. Fighting began in 1775 at Concord, MA, and ended with the Treaty of Paris in 1783.
For seven years, We The People waged war “to dissolve the political bands” which connected us with England “and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them” People killed and were killed and fortunes were lost. Homes were destroyed and innocents died, as they always do in war.
In the end, We The People prevailed. We didn’t prevail because of the words on the paper. We won because the men and women that fought to give those words meaning were victorious. It wasn’t enough to simply fight for the cause…they had to win.
I love the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. But the words contained therein have no power on their own. Then, as now, the system of government that was created, and the rights that were recognized, depend on the willingness of We The People to back them up with our deeds.
Whether or not we will continue to enjoy that freedom is up to us. Right now, what Yamamoto called “the sleeping giant” continues to slumber. Most of us don’t act to protect our freedoms. If a few less freedom lovers had stayed home the last couple of elections, things would look a little different today.
Will we survive as a free people? Nations come and go, history is awash with them. Perhaps it’s our turn to go down. I don’t know what will happen. I’m a doctor, not a fortune teller. But mark my words: If we depend on words on paper to secure our liberties, our liberty will soon be nothing but a memory.