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That South Dakota Gun Mandate (A recent bill to compel SD residents to buy a firearm?)
American Thinker ^ | 02/03/2011 | Selwyn Duke

Posted on 02/03/2011 7:31:54 AM PST by SeekAndFind

The recent bill that would compel every South Dakota resident to buy a firearm has created quite a stir.  And since the piece I recently wrote on the subject evoked some fairly strong emotional responses, I want to clarify a few matters.

Some respondents assumed that my article reflected a negative attitude toward guns, but nothing could be further from the Truth.  I not only believe that every good man in America should own at least one firearm, I think that every time gun manufacturers are targeted by Bloombergettes with lawsuits or legislation, we should buy another firearm to support Smith, Wesson and the rest of our friends.  My motto is, the pen is mightier than the sword...but not the AR-15.   

Then there were respondents who viewed my statement that states may lawfully compel citizens to buy firearms as advocacy of such coercion.  This is also an incorrect interpretation.  Let's discuss the correct one.

First we need a little background.  The SD bill was created as a protest, to illustrate the injustice of ObamaScare's health-insurance mandate.  The idea is that if leftists wouldn't like government to compel them to buy something they don't want, why are they compelling their fellow man to buy something he doesn't want?  And this is fine if you make clear that you are making this, and only this, libertarian moral argument.  But it serves to reinforce a dangerous misconception if observers are left with the impression that there is also legal equivalence between these two mandates, one state and one federal.

In the healthcare debate, this misconception becomes apparent when the left uses state-mandated car insurance as a precedent for federally-mandated health insurance, which isn't just mixing apples and oranges.  It's mixing a national apple supplier with a local orange seller. 

Now, this mistake is partially the result of not separating two matters when evaluating a law: That of whether it's constitutional and that of whether it's a good idea (the practical or moral dimension).  And note that something can be a good idea but unconstitutional or constitutional but a bad idea.  Now, if I point out that a proposal is constitutional, it isn't synonymous with advocacy.  And when people assume the latter and take exception to it, they err.  We must always, always, always be clear on what the Constitution says -- even if it is our own ox being gored. 

When considering this, realize that constitutional government is no guarantee of good government.  It only ensures that the government will act in accordance with the constitution in question.  And do you know what this means when that happens to be the US Constitution?

That states are still allowed to do a multitude of stupid things.

This is why the people must take great care when molding their state constitutions.

So I have no problem with gun ownership.  I don't even much care about the SD gun-ownership bill.  But I have a big problem with the implication that there is any kind of legal equivalence between it and ObamaScare.  In compelling every resident to buy a gun, SD would be acting within the bounds of the Constitution (whether wisely or not is irrelevant to this point).  But when putting a gun to our heads and forcing us to buy health insurance, the feds are exceeding those bounds.

Legally speaking, if we want to compare the SD bill and car insurance to a socialized medicine scheme, we should choose RomneyCare in Massachusetts.  They are all constitutional.  And practically speaking, if we want to compare ObamaScare to a state mandate, we should also choose RomneyCare.  They are both bad ideas.



TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events; US: South Dakota
KEYWORDS: banglist; gunmandate; guns; searchandfind; southdakota

1 posted on 02/03/2011 7:32:01 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Been there. Done that.

Gun Ownership Mandatory In Kennesaw, Georgia -— Crime Rate Plummets

tysk news ^ | 1997 | Baldwin

Posted on Tuesday, April 17, 2007 2:29:03 PM by doug from upland

The New American magazine reminds us that March 25th marked the 16th anniversary of Kennesaw, Georgia’s ordinance requiring heads of households (with certain exceptions) to keep at least one firearm in their homes.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/1818862/posts


2 posted on 02/03/2011 7:35:02 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: KeyLargo
Been there. Done that.

Really? The Kennesaw legislation was written to show that Obamacare is unconstitutional? Did you happen to read the article?

3 posted on 02/03/2011 7:39:20 AM PST by Malsua
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To: Malsua

I don’t think anybody in Georgia complained about that legislation, so nobody challenged its constitutionality.

But what if someone did? Would the Kennesaw law be declared unconstitutional?

Talk show host Hugh Hewitt (Mr. “Morning Glory, Evening Grace”), a lawyer, claims that states can Mandate purchases of products, but the Federal government cannot.


4 posted on 02/03/2011 7:45:21 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind
Isn't the whole debate about Obamacare that government is forcing people to buy something that they don't want. Look everyone over the age of consent should have a firearm and know how to use it. It is just common sense. Just like everyone should have health insurance. But hey if you want to run the risks it is your life. Part of freedom is the freedom to do something foolish. I don't like the government telling me what to do, even when on the rare occasion it is telling me to do something that I happen to agree with.
5 posted on 02/03/2011 7:45:21 AM PST by GonzoGOP (There are millions of paranoid people in the world and they are all out to get me.)
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To: SeekAndFind

While it might seem to be a good idea to force everyone to be armed, it is a violation of property rights. No man nor group of men has a right to force someone to use their property in some given way. Neither does the state. Only force or the threat of force would get compliance.

Obamacare is a violation of property rights. Obamacare is a violation of the US constitution.

All those do-gooders in the federal government that want to “fix” healthcare or health insurance cannot legally do that. They have not been granted that authority in the US Constitution. It is NOT their job.

I don’t know if the SD constitution allows the SD law. I would still be against it, because I believe property rights should not be infringed by any government.

It would do all of us on the right good to determine exactly what the philosophical foundations are for our beliefs. If we just do things because we intuitively like them, we are just like the left statists except we have different preferences.


6 posted on 02/03/2011 7:47:36 AM PST by MichiganConservative (Terrorists don't commit genocide. That's what governments do.)
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To: GonzoGOP

Obamacare and Romneycare both fund abortion. That’s a huge part of why both are very bad law.


7 posted on 02/03/2011 7:47:36 AM PST by BenKenobi (one of the worst mistakes anybody can make is to bet against Americans.")
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To: BenKenobi
Obamacare and Romneycare both fund abortion.

Abortion is an extreme form of property rights violation. You are depriving the young human from all their property for selfish reasons.

8 posted on 02/03/2011 7:50:21 AM PST by MichiganConservative (Terrorists don't commit genocide. That's what governments do.)
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To: Malsua

Kennesaw, where everyone is armed by law By Anna Fifield, Photographs by Bryan Meltz

Published: September 24 2010 23:11 |

http://www.ft.com/home/us

9 posted on 02/03/2011 7:59:27 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: SeekAndFind
No matter how good it sounds in principal, it is unconstitutional to force a citizen to purchase a private product.

Now, if they want to raise taxes, then offer a tax credit for each purchased firearm, that's another matter. That's also how they'll eventually get around the unconstitutional individual mandate in the Health Care bill.

10 posted on 02/03/2011 8:04:11 AM PST by Yo-Yo (Is the /sarc tag really necessary?)
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To: GonzoGOP

RE: Just like everyone should have health insurance. But hey if you want to run the risks it is your life. Part of freedom is the freedom to do something foolish.


Here’s a counter argument by liberals... if the person who takes the risk by not buying health insurance suddenly gets seriously ill.... does he have to pay out of his own pocket? Or does he depend on your money and mine to be treated for free ?

If the former, then there’s no argument against liberty — the person uses his own money to pay for treatment.

But if it is the later — then we have a problem. The person refuses to be responsible for his own insurance, yet EXPECTS tax payers to foot the bill when he gets sick.


11 posted on 02/03/2011 8:12:30 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: KeyLargo

If someone were to challenge the constitutionality of Kennesaw’s firearms law, would it pass constitutional muster?


12 posted on 02/03/2011 8:13:42 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

It is funny. The leftists insist on some socialism for “compassion” for those that refuse to take care of themselves. Then when that little bit of socialism has really expensive “unintended” consequences, their answer is always more socialism. Never do the leftists say “yeah, that didn’t work so we should end it”. It is always their position to grow and strengthen government.


13 posted on 02/03/2011 8:23:05 AM PST by MichiganConservative (Terrorists don't commit genocide. That's what governments do.)
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To: SeekAndFind

My own belief is that for the same reason that our right to vote carries with it the responsibility to do so, the God given right to own and bear arms carries the responsibility to own your own gun and to stay current on it.


14 posted on 02/03/2011 8:34:43 AM PST by texmexis best
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To: SeekAndFind

This is the whole ‘helmets required for motorcycle riders’ argument in a nutshell.


15 posted on 02/03/2011 8:40:55 AM PST by Vor Lady
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To: texmexis best

There is no right ot vote.


16 posted on 02/03/2011 8:47:54 AM PST by Ratman83
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To: texmexis best
My own belief is that for the same reason that our right to vote carries with it the responsibility to do so...

Rights come from property. You own it you can do with it as you please. What do you own that gives you the right to vote?

I believe that the "right to vote" is nothing more than a lie perpetrated by the progressives to bring about democracy, something the founders despised. Voting is basically a rite in our strange civic religion. Voting to honor the great god Democracy.

17 posted on 02/03/2011 8:50:57 AM PST by MichiganConservative (Terrorists don't commit genocide. That's what governments do.)
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To: SeekAndFind
Because the government has illegitimately usurped the power to spend collected tax dollars on people medical care does not suddenly give them the legitimate power to control medical costs by forcing people to buy insurance. The constitutional remedy it to have government stop providing health care with tax dollars.
18 posted on 02/03/2011 9:43:48 AM PST by Durus (Don't talk about what you have done or what you are going to do. Thomas Jefferson)
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To: MichiganConservative

Voting is a vital part of maintaining a republic created by the people, of the people, and for the people. Without the right to vote there is no control over the government. If you are suggesting some limitation to the franchise let’s hear it, but until then there must be a right to vote.


19 posted on 02/03/2011 9:52:21 AM PST by Durus (Don't talk about what you have done or what you are going to do. Thomas Jefferson)
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To: SeekAndFind
RE: Just like everyone should have health insurance. But hey if you want to run the risks it is your life. Part of freedom is the freedom to do something foolish.

The answer would be, that if id can't pay, he doesn't get treated.

It's liberals that instituted the policy that hospitals must treat people regardless of ability to pay, and then use the argument that you have to pay for it, as justification to force you  to get insurance as well.

Kinda nice to have a 'heads I win, tails you lose' system.

20 posted on 02/03/2011 10:33:40 AM PST by zeugma (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam)
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To: Ratman83

correct. my bad.


21 posted on 02/03/2011 10:52:37 AM PST by texmexis best
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To: MichiganConservative

>I don’t know if the SD constitution allows the SD law.

It does:
SD Constitution
ARTICLE XV — MILITIA
§ 2. Legislative provisions for militia.

The Legislature shall provide by law for the enrollment, uniforming, equipment and discipline of the militia and the establishment of volunteer and such other organizations or both, as may be deemed necessary for the protection of the state, the preservation of order and the efficiency and good of the service.


22 posted on 02/03/2011 2:44:40 PM PST by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: SeekAndFind

>If someone were to challenge the constitutionality of Kennesaw’s firearms law, would it pass constitutional muster?

Probably.

GA Constitution
ARTICLE I. Bill of Rights
SECTION I.
Paragraph VII. Citizens, protection of.
All citizens of the United States, resident in this state , are hereby declared citizens of this state ; and it shall be the duty of the General Assembly to enact such laws as will protect them in the full enjoyment of the rights, privileges, and immunities due to such citizenship.

Paragraph VIII. Arms, right to keep and bear.
The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, but the General Assembly shall have power to prescribe the manner in which arms may be borne.

Art III. Legislative Branch
SECTION VI.
EXERCISE OF POWERS
Paragraph I. General powers.
The General Assembly shall have the power to make all laws not inconsistent with this Constitution, and not repugnant to the Constitution of the United States, which it shall deem necessary and proper for the welfare of the state.

Paragraph II. Specific powers.
(a) Without limitation of the powers granted under Paragraph I, the General Assembly shall have the power to provide by law for:
(1) Restrictions upon land use in order to protect and preserve the natural resources, environment, and vital areas of this state.
(2) A militia and for the trial by courts-martial and nonjudicial punishment of [...]


23 posted on 02/03/2011 5:53:36 PM PST by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: OneWingedShark
Here's the deal: Require everyone to have a gun. For those philosophically opposed, make them prove why they shouldn't have to buy one. After they qualify, then tax them for the privilege of their neighbors providing them unpaid security services.

If I have a gun and you choose not to, OK. However, my having a gun keeps my stupid gunless neighbor safe because the crooks don't know which house has a gun and which doesn't. Ergo, I provide my gunless neighbor with unpaid security. Pay up, pilgrim.

24 posted on 02/03/2011 9:45:42 PM PST by MasterGunner01 (To err is human; to forgive is not our policy. -- SEAL Team SIX)
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