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The Second Amendment, ratified in 1791, refers ... which was created in 1903, 112 years later.
Christian news in maine.com ^ | 18January, 2004 | Larry Austin

Posted on 01/18/2005 11:25:23 AM PST by newsgatherer

Handgun Control Inc. says it wants to keep handguns out of the hands of the wrong people. Guess what. If you are a law abiding citizen who owns a handgun you have the "wrong hands."

Banning guns works. That is why New York and Chicago have such high murder rates.

Washington D.C. which has strict gun controls has a murder rate of 69 per 100,000. Indianapolis, without them has an awesome murder rate of 9 per 100,000. Gun control works.

You can incapacitate an intruder with tear gas or oven spray. If you shoot him with a .357 he will get angry and kill you.

A woman raped and strangled is morally superior to a woman standing with a smoking gun and a dead rapist at her feet.

The "New England Journal of Medicine" has some excellent articles on gun control just as "The American Rifleman" carries equally great articles on open-heart surgery.

The Second Amendment, ratified in 1791, refers to the National Guard which was created in 1903, 112 years later.

The "right of the people peaceably to assemble" and "the right of the people to be secure in their homes" refers to individuals while "the right of the people to keep and bear arms" refers to the state.

One should consult an automobile technician for vehicle repairs, a computer programmer for problems with your hard drive and Sara Brady for firearms expertise.

Most citizens cannot be trusted so we need firearms laws because we can trust citizens to abide by them.

If you are not familiar with most of the above you have not been following the firearms debate. In fact you haven't tuned in to the liberals who still have their hands in your pockets and on your firearms even though the pounding defeats ...

(Excerpt) Read more at Christian-news-in-maine.com ...


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KEYWORDS: bang; banglist; christonguns; gunrights; guns
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Terrorist are everybit as big and as dangerous a problem today as Indians, pirates and outlaws were between 1640 and 1880.
1 posted on 01/18/2005 11:25:27 AM PST by newsgatherer
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To: newsgatherer

Sigh, you are right about this. California has already banned sniper rifles. Gun enthusiasts are not happy about it I'm sure. But this is just the beginning of an assault on our 2nd Amendment rights. --Fee


2 posted on 01/18/2005 11:31:51 AM PST by FeeinTennessee (*2005...A year for Miracles! BELIEVE!)
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To: newsgatherer

The leftists don't get it -- criminals don't follow laws (they should know), only law-abiding citizens do. So how does denying the Second Amendment Rights of law-abiding citizens ensure that criminals won't have guns??? (assinine question, I know).

I can buy a hot gun on any one of a hundred street corners in 30 minutes of request. Criminals can get all the guns they want. Just about anywhere.


3 posted on 01/18/2005 11:32:18 AM PST by EagleUSA
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To: newsgatherer

Your comparing Indians to terrorist?

Why?


4 posted on 01/18/2005 11:41:27 AM PST by I got the rope
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To: newsgatherer

I had a teacher who absolutly hated the gun control commercials where you see little timmy climbing into his parents closet and then you hear bang and the screen goes black and writing comes up that says x number of kids were killed last year due to handguns.

What he wanted to see (and me too) was a commercial that showed someone breaking into a house he climbs the stairs and you see a women laying in bed as her door knob turns then the theif walks in and the lady pulls a gun as you hear bang and the screen goes blank. Now the writing says x number of violent crimes were prevented last year due to handguns.


5 posted on 01/18/2005 11:43:15 AM PST by bgnn32
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To: newsgatherer

I know people are really passionate about this issue, so I just want to preface my comment by saying that I'm not trying to start an argument, just asking a real question that I don't know the answer to. Okay, here goes:

The 2nd Amendment says the people have the right to keep and bear arms. At the time the 2nd was ratified, that meant, I guess, rifles, muskets, etc., (I don't know too much about firearm history) as those were the weapons used by militias as well as for hunting and personal protection. As firearms technology expanded, the 2nd amendment seems to have expanded as well (aargh...a living Constitution?) Now there seems to be a right to own weapons that are much more advanced (handguns, high-powered rifles, "assault" weapons) than those used in the late 1700s. But there's also some limit on what arms the people are allowed to keep and bear. For example, I can't keep a cannon or a shoulder rocket or a nuclear missile in my backyard for protection (or hunting), even though those are arguably "arms" as well.

I guess what I'm trying to ask is: how and why do we decide which arms are and aren't allowed under the 2nd Amendment?

Thanks.


6 posted on 01/18/2005 11:48:29 AM PST by nyg4168
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To: I got the rope

You might want to take that up with the author, not the guy who posted his article ;'}


7 posted on 01/18/2005 11:58:32 AM PST by rockrr (Revote or Revolt! It's up to you Washington!)
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To: nyg4168

By your argument the 1st Amendment would only apply to quill pens and parchment, and town criers. That's all there was in the late 1700s so obviously the Freedom of Speech does not apply to E-mail, blogs, television, radio, satellite, internet, whatever.

Private citizens actually owned frigates and other warships and could be pressed into service with the US Navy in that era. Private citizens owned cannons as well.


8 posted on 01/18/2005 12:02:25 PM PST by boofus
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To: nyg4168
I'll bite on this one. It's my opinion that at the time the second was written the common folk had access to the same weapons that the government forces had. One of the functions of the 2nd was to insure that the common folk could stop the government if it turned to tyranny. If that is the case then the common folk would need weapons that could match the governments, up to and including nukes.

The key here is that you have the right to keep and bear arms as long as you don't infringe on someone else's rights.
9 posted on 01/18/2005 12:04:19 PM PST by jjones9853
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To: nyg4168

> how and why do we decide which arms are and aren't allowed under the 2nd Amendment?

That always starts a fight, and it almost always ends up with someone mentioning nuclear weapons. However, here's the logic I woudl use:
1) The internal police (local, State, FBI) should have access to whatever class of weapons they want.
2) The citizens should have ready and uninfringed access to the exact same class of weapons... *at* *the* *least*.

So... if the cops got machine guns, the people should as well. If the cops got A-10 tank busters, the people should be able to as well (if they can afford 'em...).

If the cops don't like the idea of me having a bazooka or an MP-5... then *they* shouldn't have 'em either.


Another discriminator I'd find reasonable to discuss: the citizens should ahve any weapon they want... until you get to weapons of mass devastation. Things like bombs and grenades and flamethrowers... *perhaps* those should have a license requirement.


10 posted on 01/18/2005 12:05:20 PM PST by orionblamblam
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To: FeeinTennessee
Sigh, you are right about this. California has already banned sniper rifles. Gun enthusiasts are not happy about it I'm sure. But this is just the beginning of an assault on our 2nd Amendment rights. --Fee

The onyl way anyone will take my guns is over my dead body.

11 posted on 01/18/2005 12:07:24 PM PST by Paul_Denton
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To: newsgatherer
If you shoot him with a .357 he will get angry and kill you.

Wanna bet???
12 posted on 01/18/2005 12:08:44 PM PST by 76834
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To: nyg4168

"I guess what I'm trying to ask is: how and why do we decide which arms are and aren't allowed under the 2nd Amendment?"

If it is considered a "one person" weapon, such as an individual soldier would carry. It should be allowed. "Arms" inplies military weaponry. I will backtrack a bit and say that keeping "fully automatic" weapons (machine guns) or shoulder fired antitank weapons, etc. is proper. However, the semi-automatic versions (what really counts) of all single user military weapons should be available to the public. I think you should be able to possess an M16, and its variants with all features, except it should be limited to semi-auto fire. There should be no limits on magazine capacity, etc. Except when those arms are used for hunting - which most modern military arms are useless for. That is my opinion.


13 posted on 01/18/2005 12:08:57 PM PST by Sola Veritas (Trying to speak truth - not always with the best grammar or spelling)
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To: bgnn32
I had a teacher who absolutly hated the gun control commercials where you see little timmy climbing into his parents closet and then you hear bang and the screen goes black and writing comes up that says x number of kids were killed last year due to handguns. What he wanted to see (and me too) was a commercial that showed someone breaking into a house he climbs the stairs and you see a women laying in bed as her door knob turns then the theif walks in and the lady pulls a gun as you hear bang and the screen goes blank. Now the writing says x number of violent crimes were prevented last year due to handguns.

I agree. Such a commerical would espcially make an impact if it also included the x number of rapes prevented due to armed women.

14 posted on 01/18/2005 12:15:05 PM PST by Paul_Denton
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To: nyg4168
I guess what I'm trying to ask is: how and why do we decide which arms are and aren't allowed under the 2nd Amendment?

Well you can thank the left for that. The 2nd Amendment has been infringed upon since the 1930s.

15 posted on 01/18/2005 12:17:59 PM PST by Paul_Denton
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To: nyg4168
A couple days ago, another poster on a similar thread answered this question along these lines:

Our government is supposed to govern with the consent of the governed - us. Thus, our government gets its authority from us - the government has the rights we chose to give to it. Our government only has the right to possess nukes because we gave it that right. We can't give rights that we don't already have ourselves; thus we have the right, if not the means, as individuals to possess nukes.

Hard to argue with that logic, if you buy into that quaint old notion of "consent of the governed".

16 posted on 01/18/2005 12:20:07 PM PST by Another-MA-Conservative
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To: nyg4168

“I guess what I'm trying to ask is: how and why do we decide which arms are and aren't allowed under the 2nd Amendment?”

The founding fathers did not discuss the issue in these terms. They spoke of managing the militia when they discussed the Constitution (see Madison’s notes) . It was not until the federalists and the anti-federalists got into squabbling over a bill of rights (as a requirement before the states would ratify the Constitution) that the Second Amendment was discussed. In those discussions, it was made very, very clear that the militia was the body of the people capable of bearing arms. There is not a single founder on the winning side of the argument in favor of a bill of rights that spoke of a collective (state) right. The people mentioned in the amendment were the same people found in the rest of the bill of rights. The Militia Act of 1792 specifically spoke of the militia as being the body of the male population capable of bearing arms and also specifically required these people to arrive for service with their own military style arms.

The first mention of a collective right did not occur until a Tennessee case in 1840 involving concealed weapons and based solely on the Tennessee state Constitution. The first federal case to invent a collective right was US v Adams, a district court case in the 1930’s that traces its historic rationale all the way back to this case in 1840.

Every Supreme court case specifically protects the rights of the people to own arms of a military sort as usefull to a militia. The only rights that have been proscribed are the rights to own arms not suitable to a militia. In fact, the overwhelming number of court cases out there only speak to a states ability to regulate concealed carry.

So, the right is an individual right and the specific weapons protected under this right are those suitable for militia use. For this reason, I would have loved to have seen a challenge to the assault weapons ban based on court precedent.


17 posted on 01/18/2005 12:22:30 PM PST by Jim Verdolini
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To: orionblamblam
Another discriminator I'd find reasonable to discuss: the citizens should ahve any weapon they want... until you get to weapons of mass devastation. Things like bombs and grenades and flamethrowers... *perhaps* those should have a license requirement.

A flamethrower would be awesome.

18 posted on 01/18/2005 12:23:32 PM PST by Paul_Denton
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To: nyg4168

"Arms" are weapons which a man could carry. Firearms are those which use gunpowder and can be carried. Those claiming that the amendment allows possession of any and all weapons are guilty of reading into the document those things they wish. This is exactly what they condemn the liberals for.


19 posted on 01/18/2005 12:24:48 PM PST by justshutupandtakeit (Public Enemy #1, the RATmedia.)
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To: nyg4168

They're all allowed. The issue is what one does with them.


20 posted on 01/18/2005 12:25:22 PM PST by ctdonath2
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To: Paul_Denton

> A flamethrower would be awesome.

Legalities aside, what would you do with one? I doubt the local gun range woudl appreciate it...

If you owned a few hundred acres of desert, maybe. But if you live in the city...


21 posted on 01/18/2005 12:25:49 PM PST by orionblamblam
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To: nyg4168
"I guess what I'm trying to ask is: how and why do we decide which arms are and aren't allowed under the 2nd Amendment? "

If you want my "strict-constructionist" argument, anything the government can have, WE THE PEOPLE can have. The Pennsylvania and Kentucky rifles of the Revolutionary War period were the "battlefield superiority weapon" of the day. Like the M-16 in the 1960's, they were smaller caliber, and used less powder, than the predominant military weapons of their day. (that analogy is weak in some areas, and very strong in others, but that is subject for another discussion) The average Pennsylvania or Kentucky rifle of the day was .36 to .45 caliber, where the Brown Bess musket the English soldiers were armed with was .70 caliber. The smaller-caliber weapons used much less powder, were easier to carry, lighter in construction, and generally quite a bit more accurate than the Brown Bess, which was a smooth-bore weapon.

Smoothbore and rifle are important distinctions, as well, in firearms. A smoothbore has a hole drilled in the barrel that is roughly the same diameter all the way down the bore (which is what the hole is called, btw.) A rifled barrel has groves cut in it that twist down the bore, like a long, slow screw thread, and when the ball engaged those grooves, it caused the ball to spin when fired. This stabilized the ball, and helped the rifle to be more accurate than a similar smoothbore weapon. Most muzzleloading rifles used patches of cloth or leather to help the bullet (ball) catch the grooves of the rifling, and to keep the ball from falling out of the barrel.

You mentioned that you are not particularly firearms knowledgeable, so you might not know that caliber is the measurement of the diameter of the bullet in hundredths of an inch; i.e. .70 caliber is 70/100's of an inch diameter. Bullets then were mostly round balls, cast in a mold, or "shot" which was molten lead dripped into a pot of water, and might be more ovoid, but was usually used in a smoothbore weapon, and varied widely in size. They are where we get the term "shotgun" from, as they fired a bunch of smaller pellets, rather than one large ball. Market hunters sometimes used shotguns with a 1.5 inch bore.

The Brits, and most other European armies, fought in formations, where the rebels fought from behind trees and bushes, as the Indians had, until they were trained in the European manner. Fighting as irregulars, they often inflicted proportionately heavy casualties on the Brits, but they seldom won a battle, as they couldn't stand the massed fire of the British formations.

By the way, handguns were fairly common then, as well, for self-defense. They were expensive, but not as much so as the long guns were. Any gun at all was treasured; even broken guns were often willed to descendents. They were very much a way of life in Colonial and Revolutionary War times, and for long after.
22 posted on 01/18/2005 12:26:03 PM PST by Old Student (WRM, MSgt, USAF (Ret.))
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To: Another-MA-Conservative

Nonsense. There was never any such understanding. If the 2d used the term "weapons" there might be a scintilla of evidence for that interpretation.

Using the term "arms" limits the concept extensively.


23 posted on 01/18/2005 12:28:20 PM PST by justshutupandtakeit (Public Enemy #1, the RATmedia.)
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To: jjones9853

Yeah, you're right. The discussions the founding fathers had at the time of the drafting of the second amendment were fairly clear that the second amendment was meant to be the citizens check against the military, in so many words. And it is just as necessary today as ever.


24 posted on 01/18/2005 12:29:08 PM PST by Lekker 1 (A government policy to rob Peter to pay Paul can be assured of the support of Paul [G.B. Shaw])
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To: justshutupandtakeit

There is absolutely NOTHING which indicates the Founding Fathers intended ANY limitation on the "arms" referred to in the 2nd Amendment. To the contrary, these guys had crew-served explosive-shell cannons (used as lawn ornaments when not in use).

Considering that they had just gone thru a war to throw off tyrrany, and done so using personally-owned arms including the largest known at the time (cannons and battleships), they DELIBERATELY included the 2nd Amendment to ensure the people had the tools to take on a government - and win. The ultimate point of RKBA is protection against tyrrany ... and you can't do that effectively when limiting yourself to what an individual can carry.


25 posted on 01/18/2005 12:32:14 PM PST by ctdonath2
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To: orionblamblam
If you owned a few hundred acres of desert, maybe.

An awful lot of this country is desert or other wide-open space, owned in the hundreds of acres.

26 posted on 01/18/2005 12:33:45 PM PST by ctdonath2
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To: justshutupandtakeit
"Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American... The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state government, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people" (Tench Coxe, Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788)

Just firearms that require gunpowder? What about edged weapons? Battle ships? Field cannons? Buy a clue.

27 posted on 01/18/2005 12:35:23 PM PST by Dead Corpse (Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.)
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To: justshutupandtakeit
There was never any such understanding.

Bull. That IS the standard understanding. The government has no rights, only powers (based on individual rights) granted by the people.

28 posted on 01/18/2005 12:35:40 PM PST by ctdonath2
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To: ctdonath2

Yeah but in my home State, 90 percent of the desert land is owned by the big Gub'ment. (Hmmmm, I don't remember seeing anything in the Constitution about Fed being a landlord...)


29 posted on 01/18/2005 12:36:09 PM PST by Lekker 1 (A government policy to rob Peter to pay Paul can be assured of the support of Paul [G.B. Shaw])
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To: justshutupandtakeit
Nonsense. There was never any such understanding. If the 2d used the term "weapons" there might be a scintilla of evidence for that interpretation. Using the term "arms" limits the concept extensively.

Uh, no, you are a drawing a distinction based on modern definitions that did not exist at the time the Constitution was framed.

The founders had just thrown-off their own tyrannical government. Why would they chose to form a new one and give it exclusive power to once again impose tyranny?

30 posted on 01/18/2005 12:37:59 PM PST by Another-MA-Conservative
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To: ctdonath2
Founders wanted "We the People" on an EQUAL footing with our standard military.

"[I]f circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude, that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people while there is a large body of citizens, little if at all inferior to them in discipline and the use of arms, who stand ready to defend their rights and those of their fellow citizens." -- The Federalist, No. 29 - Alexander Hamilton

31 posted on 01/18/2005 12:40:36 PM PST by Dead Corpse (Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.)
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To: nyg4168
You are entitled to own what a combat infantryman carries.

IMO.

32 posted on 01/18/2005 12:41:40 PM PST by metesky ("Brethren, leave us go amongst them." Rev. Capt. Samuel Johnston Clayton - Ward Bond- The Searchers)
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To: ctdonath2
I'm afraid I must disagree. The militia act of 1792 provides a specific list of what they expected the individual members of the militia to arrive with. This act was drafted by the very founders we are discussing. In addition, the Congress and State governments established magazines where arms such as cannon were stored for the use of this same militia and these arms were provided by government, in every case I am aware of.

Every court case I have read that addresses the idea of specific weapons covered by the 2nd specifically and only constitutionally protects arms appropriate to a militia. See Miller as an example.

There is not a scintilla of evidence that any arm greater than a individual arm was ever considered as an arm to be kept or provided by an individual militia member. There is considerable evidence to the contrary.

If you doubt me, provide a reference to a specific founder or a court case where the issue comes out as you claim. I can provide the opposite.
33 posted on 01/18/2005 12:43:57 PM PST by Jim Verdolini
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To: All

Thanks to all for your answers to my question. Need to run to a meeting, but I'll digest your responses and add my own a bit later. :)


34 posted on 01/18/2005 12:44:59 PM PST by nyg4168
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To: All
Citizens' Self-Defense Act of 2005 (Introduced in House)
35 posted on 01/18/2005 12:47:55 PM PST by michigander (The Constitution only guarantees the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.)
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To: Dead Corpse
Notes of Debates in the Federal Convention of 1787
by James Madison

Saturday, August 18
Summary of this Day
Table of Contents

IN CONVENTION
Mr. MADISON submitted in order to be referred to the
Committee of detail the following powers as proper to be
added to those of the General Legislature


"To dispose of the unappropriated lands of the U. States"

"To institute temporary Governments for New States arising therein"

"To regulate affairs with the Indians as well within as without the limits of the U. States



These propositions were referred to the Committee of detail which had prepared the Report and at the same time the following which were moved by Mr. Pinkney: in both cases unanimously.

"To fix and permanently establish the seat of Government of the U. S. in which they shall possess the exclusive right of soil & jurisdiction"

"To establish seminaries for the promotion of literature and the arts & sciences"

"To grant charters of incorporation"

"To grant patents for useful inventions"

"To secure to Authors exclusive rights for a certain time"

"To establish public institutions, rewards and immunities for the promotion of agriculture, commerce, trades and manufactures"

"That funds which shall be appropriated for1 payment of public Creditors, shall not during the time of such appropriation, be diverted or applied to any other purpose and that the Committee prepare a clause or clauses for restraining the Legislature of the U. S. from establishing a perpetual revenue"

"To secure the payment of the public debt"

"To secure all creditors under the New Constitution from a violation of the public faith when pledged by the authority of the Legislature"

"To grant letters of mark and reprisal"

So what are letters of mark & reprisal?

1. A document issued by a nation allowing a private citizen to seize citizens or goods of another nation.2. A document issued by a nation allowing a private citizen to equip a ship with arms in order to attack enemy ships.

I doubt the private ships were using bows and arrows to board and capture enemy warships. So yes private citizens DID own warships and cannon which were the most powerful weapons in existence at the time.

36 posted on 01/18/2005 12:48:15 PM PST by boofus
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To: newsgatherer
You can incapacitate an intruder with tear gas or oven spray. If you shoot him with a .357 he will get angry and kill you.

I was in an arguement with my mother the other night, about my gun. (I live on my own.) She was concerned that, since I leave it in my bedstand drawer, I might shoot an intruder and be in serious trouble with the law. (I live in NH, so I'm not very worried about that.) I tried to explain to her that self-defense is a justifiable cause, and it's better than letting myself get killed. She only got more hysterical, and I couldn't get my point across.

She's not really a liberal, she just gets too much news from Peter Jennings.

37 posted on 01/18/2005 12:54:05 PM PST by shekkian
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To: nyg4168
I'm not responding to your question, but bringing your attention to one of your statements.

But there's also some limit on what arms the people are allowed to keep and bear.

Our rights come from the Creator. One of those rights is to keep and bear arms. Who or what are you referring to that has the authority "to allow" us our Constitutional rights.
38 posted on 01/18/2005 12:55:03 PM PST by Beckwith (John Kerry has now met with the enemy during war two times, once in 1970 and once in 2005.)
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To: jjones9853

Although I agree with you post, I know that if the feds knew of my nuclear stash, they'd still try to confuscate it. My nukes are for protection only.

Mine are very small. I doubt anyone more than a mile away would be affected other than feeling a hot back and forth wind.

I got them from the helpful friendly folks at "Neighborhood Nuclear Superiority." You just attach them to an ordinary garden hose for delivery to the target. I understand that their bigger ones will take out an entire city block.

Note to FBI/CIA: I'm kidding...


39 posted on 01/18/2005 12:57:52 PM PST by RobRoy (Science is about "how." Christianity is about "why.")
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To: newsgatherer

Like Ann Coulter said, "If the courts interpreted the Second Amendment as they do the First Amendment, we could all own tactical nukes.”


40 posted on 01/18/2005 12:58:08 PM PST by ORECON (Condi Rice/Ann Coulter 2008)
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To: Beckwith

Thanks for the reminder on that. Someone once told me that the bill of rights is not what rights the government gives us. It is the God given rights that the government will not take away.

Gives "rights" a whole different perspective.


41 posted on 01/18/2005 12:59:56 PM PST by RobRoy (Science is about "how." Christianity is about "why.")
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To: Jim Verdolini
those suitable for militia use.

I wonder if this doesn't beg the question: What is the militia's purpose? Is it strictly infantry? Was the militia not responsible for artillery, spying, cavalry, etc? I thought at the time of the founding, the whole army was the militia. Or is the militia just armed men to supplant whatever army is organized?

42 posted on 01/18/2005 1:04:39 PM PST by Huck (I only type LOL when I'm really LOL.)
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To: Jim Verdolini
You are arguing in reverse. The Militia Act established MINIMUM requirements for what you show up with, no mention of a limitation on what you could own.

"As civil rulers, not having their duty to the people duly before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as the military forces which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow citizens, the people are confirmed by the article in their right to keep and bear their private arms."
(Tench Cox in "Remarks on the First Part of the Amendments to the Federal Constitution." Under the pseudonym "A Pennsylvanian" in the Philadelphia Federal Gazette, June 18,1789 at 2 col. 1)

43 posted on 01/18/2005 1:08:02 PM PST by Dead Corpse (Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.)
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To: Jim Verdolini
You've described the second amendment protections against federal laws.

Certainly, state gun laws are only restricted by their state constitution, correct?

44 posted on 01/18/2005 1:08:30 PM PST by robertpaulsen
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To: boofus
Two problems with your use of the Constitution. First, note that it mentions Government granting letters of Marque. If ships armed with cannon were protected under the 2nd, there would be no reason for government to give its permission.

Next, Madison's notes come from the Constitutional Convention which occurred 2 years before he wrote a Bill of rights. The use of privateers discussed at the Constitutional convention could not be based on a right that was only drafted 2 years later.

No, the right protected by the 2dn is best described in the Militia Act of 1792 here:

"I. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, That each and every free able-bodied white male citizen of the respective States, resident therein, who is or shall be of age of eighteen years, and under the age of forty-five years (except as is herein after excepted) shall severally and respectively be enrolled in the militia, by the Captain or Commanding Officer of the company, within whose bounds such citizen shall reside, and that within twelve months after the passing of this Act. And it shall at all time hereafter be the duty of every such Captain or Commanding Officer of a company, to enroll every such citizen as aforesaid, and also those who shall, from time to time, arrive at the age of 18 years, or being at the age of 18 years, and under the age of 45 years (except as before excepted) shall come to reside within his bounds; and shall without delay notify such citizen of the said enrollment, by the proper non-commissioned Officer of the company, by whom such notice may be proved. That every citizen, so enrolled and notified, shall, within six months thereafter, provide himself with a good musket or firelock, a sufficient bayonet and belt, two spare flints, and a knapsack, a pouch, with a box therein, to contain not less than twenty four cartridges, suited to the bore of his musket or firelock, each cartridge to contain a proper quantity of power and ball; or with a good rifle, knapsack, shot-pouch, and power-horn, twenty balls suited to the bore of his rifle, and a quarter of a power of power; and shall appear so armed, accoutred and provided, when called out to exercise or into service, except, that when called out on company days to exercise only, he may appear without a knapsack. That the commissioned Officers shall severally be armed with a sword or hanger, and espontoon; and that from and after five years from the passing of this Act, all muskets from arming the militia as is herein required, shall be of bores sufficient for balls of the eighteenth part of a pound; and every citizen so enrolled, and providing himself with the arms, ammunition and accoutrements, required as aforesaid, shall hold the same exempted from all suits, distresses, executions or sales, for debt or for the payment of taxes."

No mention of cannon there.

You confuse owning a cannon with having a protected right under the Constitution to own a cannon. The founders simply did not grant protection to the cannon nor did they forbid them. They left that up to the states.
45 posted on 01/18/2005 1:09:02 PM PST by Jim Verdolini
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To: boofus

Read up a bit more. It was to provide Federal funding for private ships already equied to be hired in to the Navy, to allow them to attack pirates/enemies, and to disburse funds for their up keep and re-arming.


46 posted on 01/18/2005 1:09:59 PM PST by Dead Corpse (Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.)
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To: ctdonath2

> An awful lot of this country is desert or other wide-open space, owned in the hundreds of acres.

Sadly, Da Gubmint owns *more*. I'd personally love to own a few thousand acres of Alaska. Ain't gonna happen.


47 posted on 01/18/2005 1:10:06 PM PST by orionblamblam
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To: Another-MA-Conservative

That distinction is as old as the gun and is in no way a modern one. It was called a "firearm" for hundreds of years before the Constitution because it could be carried and emitted fire.

Apparently you have not carefully read the 2d which is in no way designed to use to fight the government. It clearly refers to a "well regulated" militia and part of that regulation was being led by STATE appointed officers. Only the nuttiest of the Founders believed that a government elected by the PEOPLE was a danger such as that put over them by a power which was outside their control. You also ignore the fact that the fedgov had the power to call State militias into federal service.


48 posted on 01/18/2005 1:10:35 PM PST by justshutupandtakeit (Public Enemy #1, the RATmedia.)
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To: Jim Verdolini
The militia act of 1792 provides a specific list of what they expected the individual members of the militia to arrive with.

That was a minimum that they were expected to arrive with. In no way would a poor farmer be expected to show up with cannon or battleship - that would be preposterous. The modern equivalent would be a militia act of 2005 specifically stating "Selective Service" draftees show up with an M4, 3 magazines, and 90 rounds of ammo; there would presumably be no prohibition against a citizen showing up for war duty with an M40A3, M82 Barrett, M1 Abrams or A10 Warthog suitably loaded.

The flip side is there is NOTHING in the 1792 act (or other writings) indicating a limit on what one could own. There may have been local gov't-run armories, but those were presumably provided precisely because few in town could afford the contents (NOT because the locals were prohibited from owning such).

There is not a scintilla of evidence that any arm greater than a individual arm was ever considered as an arm to be kept or provided by an individual militia member.

Certainly nothing REQUIRED one to own larger arms. There is not a scintilla of evidence that any arm greater than an individual arm was ever PROHIBITED from being kept or provided by an individual militia member.

If you doubt me, provide a reference to a specific founder or a court case where the issue comes out as you claim.

I present: The very cannons kept by George Washington upon his front lawn, and likewise by other Founding Fathers.

I present: The complete absence of any writings by any Founding Father indicating anything to the effect of "the people should not be permitted cannons, battleships, or other arms unsuitable for individual use".

I can provide the opposite.

Go for it. I'm waiting to see a single law or writing, penned by the Founding Fathers, which calls for, allows, or presumes the prevention of private citizens from owning cannons or battleships or anything larger than individual arms.

49 posted on 01/18/2005 1:11:24 PM PST by ctdonath2
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To: nyg4168

look at the US Constitution, Article One, Section Eight, Part Eleven.

allow me to quote it for you:

The Constitution of the United States... ARTICLE I... Section 8. Powers of Congress... The Congress shall have the power... 11.To declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water...

Look up the meaning of "letters of marque and reprisal" and then think of the implications such a power has on the types of arms a private citizen is "allowed" to possess according to the wisdom of the Founders.

Again, allow me to cut to the chase:
A letter of marque and reprisal is a congressional writ authorizing a private citizen to cunduct maritime acts of war against a foreign enemy's assets, military/naval and/or shipping/commercial, using his own privately owned ship(s) armed with his own privately owned cannons.

You should also try to understand that the "militia" definition the Founders had in mind was the reserve militia comprising all able-bodied men at least seventeen years of age. These militia were not the standing army, nor were they the "select" or cadre militia of the several states, nor yet were they the paramilitary forces of the police or fire brigades. They were the common man, and trhey were expected to be armed and trained at their own expense with at least the standard shoulder-arm of the day.

As to "arms" - one last note: DO YOU THINK THE FOUNDERS WERE IDIOTS???
They were well aware of technological progress in firearms design, and knew very well that further improvements were inevitable. Why do you think they used the term "ARMS" instead of "flintlock rifled musket"?


50 posted on 01/18/2005 1:13:33 PM PST by King Prout (Halloween... not just for breakfast anymore.)
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