Skip to comments.Senator Obama Shoots and Misses
Posted on 02/27/2008 8:42:10 AM PST by .cnI redruM
It took a grandiose gesture on the part of Senator Barack Obama to admit that the US Constitution included a 2nd Amendment. This makes the Junior Senator from The Land of Lincoln more historically well-versed than Michael G. Bellisiles, but still doesnt make him the man we want as Americas next President.
Barack Obamas execrable views on the regulation of gun ownership are bad for individual liberty without any additional context provided. The Senator seems to believe that the States necessary coercive monopoly extends so far that individuals should not own firearms for the purpose of self-protection. His website offers the following brief explanation of where Candidate Obama stands.
Millions of hunters own and use guns each year. Millions more participate in a variety of shooting sports such as sporting clays, skeet, target and trap shooting that may not necessarily involve hunting. As a former constitutional law professor, Barack Obama understands and believes in the constitutional right of Americans to bear arms. He will protect the rights of hunters and other law-abiding Americans to purchase, own, transport, and use guns for the purposes of hunting and target shooting. Barack Obama
Even the fundamental premise behind Obamas willingness to acquiesce on this issue and actually admit that gun rights exist in The Bill of Rights smacks of tyrannical overreach and implicit social engineering. Our overlords have no business granting us conditional constitutional rights. We are allowed to speak, practice our religions, own guns or plead the 5th without reference to why we engage in any of these activities.
Like much of Barack Obamas agenda, so much remains unspoken. How does Senator Obama know why I may choose to own an anti-tank weapon? I may be an Anti-American terrorist. I may just shoot it at oil-tankers for target practice and recreation. The same could be true of anyone who owns a .22 Caliber handgun and who just happens to live near the intersection of Pico and Union.
In apology for Obama, an argument exists that this precludes pretty much any regulation of firearms. Wayne LaPierre should endorse this guy before this opportunity gets away. Yet the candidate himself dispenses any notion that any such libertarian impulse will impede his desires to husband the power of a central government athwart the liberties of wayward individuals. His further thoughts on the limitations a reasonable state actor can bracket our rights with follow below.
"There is an individual right to bear arms, but it is subject to common-sense regulation, just like most of our rights are subject to common-sense regulation."
In case we didnt know yet what was good for us, he shows us the way to change and hope a little more. "the protections of the Second Amendment are subject to the same sort of reasonable restrictions that have been recognized as limiting, for instance, the First Amendment."
Like too many of our political debates, we are now forced to parse the definitions of what is is. The Obama standard by which a central authority is empowered to abjure the exercise of an individual right rests upon the gravamen of the legal realism originally espoused by American Jurist Oliver Wendall Holmes, Jr.
At first glance, Barack could do a far worse as a legal scholar than to base his opinions on the doctrines originated by his fellow Harvard Law School alumnus. Oliver Wendall Holmes Jr. is rightly considered by many to be a champion of American academic jurisprudence. His influence effects the decisions made in hundreds of American courts every day.
Where Senator Obama errs badly is when he attempts to hold the bedrock principals of the US Constitution to Oliver Wendall Holmes legal standards. A key tenant of legal realism is the indeterminancy of law. This school of belief espouses that a good lawyer can make the law say anything that is needed to justify a specific desired decision, at a given point at time.
Therefore, there isnt any bedrock standard to interpret what the law actually says. You can read the polysyllabic words all you want, but that doesnt really explain what the law says this week. Nor does it guarantee what the law will say next week.
Electing to disregard the US Code isnt fatal. The USC itself derives from prudent extrapolation beyond the US Constitution. These laws are rules of the road, but not the final standard to conduct the arbitration of difficult problems.
The US Constitution is the final source of arbitration. If Barack Obama finds the US Constitution to be indeterminate, I can only question the wisdom of conferring upon his person a degree in law. American Law cannot work without the Constitution as bedrock. There is no possible prudent interpretation of Constitutional Rights, if you believe them to be indeterminate straight from Jump Street.
So when Barack Obama tells us he will prudently determine the rights we will continue to enjoy after his election to the White House, no sane audience member should chant back Yes, We Can! There is no prudent interpretation of the indeterminate. That is why no candid mathematical meteorologist will offer you an eleventh day forecast on weather.com. Thats also why the thought of Barack Obama appointing any Federal Judges should scare far more people than just the ones who collect hunting bows and firearms.
and there’s a lot of other thngs that won’t look the same either if hilllereee won.
If it’s still there.
I wanted to watch that one last night.
The problem with this "constitutional law professor" and his logic is that the 2nd amendment does not include the words "Hunting and recreational target shooting being necessary for a free state..."
A "former" constitutional law professor. And obviously not a very good one.
“There is an individual right to bear arms, but it is subject to common-sense regulation, just like most of our rights are subject to common-sense regulation.”
So according to “constitutional law professor” Barak Obama, our RIGHTS are subject to COMMON SENSE regulation???
Only SPECIFICALLY ENUMERATED RIGHTS like freedom of speech, right to keep and bear arms, etc. For the penumbra rights (those not enumerated but invented out of whole cloth under the priveleges and immunities clause of the 14th amendment for example) such as the right to abortion on demand, there is no such thing as a common sense regulation that should apply.
Indeed. The more I read what this man says- the more uneasy and worried I become.
Hey, uh, Perfessor, I might be just a bit ignorant about things, so please enlighten me:
Where the F, exactly, does the 2nd Amendment say anything about such trivial activities as hunting and target shooting?
Being a perfessor and all, you might understand better than me, but this one little fact keeps nagging at me, namely:
Why on Earth would the leaders of the Founding Generation add such a trivial clause to a document that was intended to create a government fit to govern our nation for all of posterity?
I mean, come on, Perfessor, many of these guys who voted for it had, just 15 years before the 2nd Amendment was ratified, started and participated in (at great personal cost and risk) an open insurrection against the most powerful empire the world had seen, an empire considered to have legitimate authority here by most of the population, and had engaged in combat against the most powerful army and navy of the day at a huge cost in blood and treasure. Oh, and a great number of the elected representatives of the people of this nation were terribly afraid of the power of a central government (like England's) being set up here - and they passed a bunch of other Amendments to limit its power. In view of these facts, is it REALLY the case that such men - even if they were white males and some owned slaves - were so enamored with the idea of hunting and target shooting that they'd put in a clause like this? Am I really so dense that I completely missed something?
Please, Perfessor, enlighten me...you condescending, paternalistic, anti-American f'ing, tyrant-wannabee!
Or he could be a specialist on former constitutions that are no longer in use.
With so much to know, one can't reasonably expect him to understand the U.S. Constitution.
Enemies of 2A will always be with us. I have a 500-page book called “The Bill of Rights: Its Origin and Meaning” by Irving Brant. He says nothing about 2A until page 470-something, then treats and dismisses it in a single paragraph. Says it pertains to a collective right only, mocks proponents of RKBA, and claims that 2A cannot be transformed into a personal right. One paragraph out of some 500 pages!
Not only does the 2nd A. reasonably imply the use of arms for self defense as opposed to for sports or hunting, but beware of any discussion about the 2nd A. where the 14th A. is not also mentioned. The 14th A. is important for any discussion about the 2nd A. for the following reason. John Bingham, the main author of Sec. 1 of the 14th A. included the 2nd A. when he referenced the first eight amendments as examples of constitutional statutes containing privileges and immunities that the 14th A. applied to the states. So there is no doubt in my mind that the 2nd and 14th Amendments protect the personal right to bear arms from both the federal and state governments as much as any other constitutional privilege and immunity protects other personal rights.
See the 2nd A. in the middle column of the following page in the Congressional Globe, a precursor to the Congressional Record.
Also, in addition to Obama's politically correct slants on the 2nd A., let's not overlook Obama's constitutionally unauthorized federal spending proposals. This post (<-click), while addressing a tax-related thread, explains in more detail why misguided dreamers like Obama are foolishly following in the footsteps of FDR's dirty federal spending politics.
In fact, in sharp contrast to Obama's vision for health care, note that Thomas Jefferson, while reflecting on the Founder's division of federal and state powers, emphasized that the Founders trusted the states, not the federal government, with the care of the people.
"Our citizens have wisely formed themselves into one nation as to others and several States as among themselves. To the united nation belong our external and mutual relations; to each State, severally, the care of our persons, (emphasis mine) our property, our reputation and religious freedom." --Thomas Jefferson: To Rhode Island Assembly, 1801. ME 10:262 http://tinyurl.com/onx4jI think that Obama, like FDR, is clueless to the fact that he first needs to rally the people to exercise their Article V powers to amend the Constitution to properly authorize the federal government to address health care issues. In the meanwhile, we cannot allow people like Obama to make our high federal taxes even higher to pay for federal government programs that are constitutionally unauthorized in the first place.
The bottom line is that the people need to reconnect themselves with the restraints that the Founders put on the federal government as reflected by the Constitution. Bluntly put, the people need to quit sitting on their hands and send home constitutional "experts" like Obama who are not upholding their oaths to defend the Constitution, as opposed to trying to send them to the Oval Office.
Sen. Obama, when seconds count the police are only minutes away. Do you protect the right of law-abiding Americans to own and use a gun for the purpose of self-defense?