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View Diary: What gun control does the Second Amendment allow? (226 comments)

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  •  I'll chip in some words (22+ / 0-)

    and terms that may well be brought to bear on "keep and bear arms" issues.

    "KEEP" Arms. "BEAR" arms.

    I concede these words, a literal reading of the Amendment, one that Scalia and the rest of the offscoured scum of the Supreme Court insist upon. I AGREE with those mofo's!

    I also note the Amendment is silent on other words:
    "Sell" Arms.
    "Buy" Arms.
    "Trade" Arms.

    (And I recall vividly the main body of the Constitution gives Congress the right to regulate commerce, i.e. buying and selling of goods and services.)

    "Buy" Ammunition.
    "Sell" Ammunition.
    "Trade" Ammunition.

    (The original intent of the the Founders (pay attention here, Scalia et. other scum) of course dealt with home-made ammunition. I readily CONCEDE the right of all citizens to make their own lead ball ammunition, just as the Founding Fathers intended and envisioned. And if you REALLY want to get "originalist" in interpreting the Constitution, I grant without limit the right of Americans to bear single-shot, flintlock arms, using black powder and homemade, lead ball ammunition. Otherwise, see "Commerce Clause" above.)

    "Register" Arms.
    "Tax" Arms.

    (These are all functions of "well-regulating" a militia. It would be a logistical nightmare for the government to have to provide 87 different kinds of ammunition to a company of 100 in the militia and would make the force useless for defending the "security of the State." (.45 caliber bullets are a lousy fit in a .22 caliber barrels.) Regulating by requiring uniform weapons for use in the militia and using the governmental taxing power to discourage the use of non-standard weapons, the militia can be much more effective because they can all use their weapons and be readily supplied by the state. (Homemade, lead ball ammunition being the obvious exception of course.)

    "License" arms.

    (The NRA opposes this, along with demonstrating gun skills in order to obtain a license, on grounds of "the slippery slope." "It's just the first step for the government to find out who owns guns as they get ready to come an take them away from you...."
         I note millions of Americans carry a driver's license, which they obtained after demonstrating driving skills in order to obtain it. In over 100 years of licensing drivers I look through American history for instances when the government used lists of licensed drivers as the first step toward seizing your car. The "slippery slope" of car licensing, to my knowledge, has not led to wholesale, or even retail, government confiscations of private vehicles. (Vehicles used in a crime are of course another matter. And even there, the government has not defined vehicles as illegal and subject to seizure, only as physical evidence involved in a crime.)

    Just a few thoughts on how and where some terms might fit in a "national conversation about guns" might fit.


    "God has given wine to gladden the hearts of people." Psalm 104:15

    by WineRev on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 10:35:21 AM PST

    •  Our hearts are in the same place (5+ / 0-)

      and I wish he would rule differently.  Nevertheless, he is a Justice of the Supreme Court, and deserves better than to be called "scum".  

      •  Scum is what it is - a title & unearned power (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mike101, Nautical Knots

        can't change that.

        What I see in Scalia is that dangerous behavior of picking & choosing words & phrases in a codified document to end up with an interpretation agreeable to a certain, narrow group.

        It's the same thing all the various Bible-pushers do that continually leads to division & strife within a civil society.

        Also, stupid, dangerous, hurtful & unethical behaviors are too often legal because of this behavior. There is a continual eroding of trust in government when it is distorted from the public interest by corporate lobbying.

        It seems to me the GOP is giving us troublesome government as a way to allow for historical precedent showing a need for increased anti-government activity.

        They have certainly pushed for a violent, heavily armed populace that believes in a 'dog eat dog' world.

        Something that doesn't make good sense, makes bad sense. That means someone is being deliberately hurtful & selfish. Look for motives behind actions & words.

        by CA wildwoman on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 01:44:56 PM PST

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    •  Yes, but the government did use drivers (0+ / 0-)

      licenses as a way to register voters the damn scum!

      "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

      by Andrew C White on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 10:45:36 AM PST

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    •  Licensing restrictions are likely constitutional (12+ / 0-)

      But I'm not with you on the strict verb-based reading of the Second Amendment; after all, the First Amendment doesn't include the freedom to read and the Fourth doesn't protect one's car from being searched, only "persons, houses, papers, and effects."

      •  I think "effects" in 18th Century would (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        have extended to cars ...

        Economics is a social *science*. Can we base future economic decisions on math?

        by blue aardvark on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 10:51:56 AM PST

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      •  Adam - (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Loge, SilentBrook, ExStr8

        Here's another example of Scalia being a strict constructionist when it suits him - he believes Stinger missiles are permitted because you can "bear" (i.e., carry) them.

        By that logic, it is worth noting, viz your comment, that nowhere in the Constitution is the right conferred to actually USE arms, only to keep and bear them. Nor does the right to a free television or radio station or Internet appear anywhere in the Constitution.

        Politics is about the improvement of people's lives. - Paul Wellstone

        by occams hatchet on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 10:59:02 AM PST

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      •  Dude, they practically can search your car (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        They can make you wait for two hours, check all areas the driver could access, and even run a k-9 thru it.

        I'd say our cars aren't much protected these days.  Thank you Republicans and Democrats.

        The symbol for the Republican party shouldn't be an elephant -- it should be a unicorn.

        by Deadicated Marxist on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 01:09:56 PM PST

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        •  That does it! Right to Keep and Drive Cars (RKDC)! (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Dammit, we need to add this to the Bill of Rights. Every American should have their right to keep and drive cars embedded in a Constitutional Right, that shall not be infringed. We need a new Amendment! RKDC!

          This right is necessary for the common defense, for uncommon defenses, and to get your Christmas shopping done.

          Are Republicans going to take away our cars? Will they infringe on our right to drive? Are they going to start restricting the size of cars or motors we can use, or the number of vehicles? It's a slippery-slope: first they come up with CAFE standards, the next thing you know they're tearing down your garage door and towing away your 454ci Mustang.

          How can any American who loves freedom, the open road, and Boss Bruce Springsteen be opposed to the RKDC Amendment?

      •  Probably not for ownership. (0+ / 0-)

        Possibly not for open carry. (that one's pending a definitive ruling on the meaning of "bear", which we will probably get int he next year or two.)

        almost certainly for concealed carry.


        Such licences would have to be non-discretionary... If you meet a clearly-defined and equally-applied-to-all standard, the government must give you one. They also could not be subject to fees in excess of what is required to process them. So the idea of requiring a licence, and making it too expensive for anyone to get won't fly. There's a long list of precedents that say that charging fees or taxes to exercise an enumerated right is prohibited by the Constitution. Those are precedents that we liberals really, really don't want to weaken.

        And a Federal license might not fly at all. The Federal government doesn't have plenary powers. There's a reason we don't have national driver's licences.


        "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
        "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

        by Leftie Gunner on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 08:38:17 PM PST

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    •  If you want to be consistent (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SilentBrook, FrankRose, fuzzyguy

      Then you should also hold that freedom of speech refers only to verbal communication, if you hold to the literal meaning of "speech".  I don't believe in either a literalist or originalist interpretation of the Constitution, so I see your attempt as merely a silly word game that should not be considered in any way meaningful.

    •  It is, however, (4+ / 0-)

      possible to find examples of registration lists for guns being used in confiscation efforts. See CA and the SKS.

      Rare, yes, but unheard of, no.

      "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

      by happy camper on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 11:09:23 AM PST

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    •  The US constitution is not the only one ... (0+ / 0-)

      ... to recognize the right to keep and bear arms. The Mexican constitution does too.

      Citizens of the republic may, for their protection, own guns and arms in their homes. Only arms sanctioned by the Army may be owned, and federal law will state the manner in which they can be used (Firearms are prohibited from importation into the Republic without proper licensing and documentation. Foreigners may not pass the border with unlicensed firearms; the commission of such act is a felony, punishable by prison term.  (Original here as Articulo 10)
      Interestingly, it too is silent on the question of trading, selling and buying. So, Mexico solves this by granting a subagency of the Army a monopoly on gun sales. Not that Mexico has the gun-violence problem solved any better than we do, because there's an extensive private secondary market where regulations requiring recordkeeping, like most regulations in Mexico, are ignored.

      But it would be interesting to see what would happen if one of the states decided to do the same thing here (much as several already do with liquor sales). I can't see how it would be unconstitutional.

    •  It seems to me that IF you have a right to keep (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fuzzyguy, Justanothernyer

      something (i.e. piece of property) that right is somewhat useless if you can't buy, sell, or trade it.

      I agree the Commerce Clause is wide and vast in the power it grants Congress, but the problem here is, IF we are going to say the 2nd Amendment applies to individuals, as the Supremes have now so ruled, then it is one of the few, if only, property based things in the BOR.

      There isn't an Amendment that specifically addresses a thing other than guns (arguably homes in the 3rd and 4th Amendment, but that's less about the right to "posses" a home than the right to be secure in your home--still probably the only other example).

      Then there's the whole 5th Amendment Due Process thing.

      I think you are right that licensing, registration, etc are all copasetic under the current 2nd Amendment jurisprdunce, the problem there is political, not judicial...but I suspect the courts would find some limits if you went too far.

      •  But look at the intent. The amendment doesn't (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CA wildwoman

        anticipate keeping, selling, trading and bearing. And given the historical context, you were supposed to keep it... you know, militia and all that.

        It seems that they only ruled only on one narrow question, absent a decision of regulation, obviously, therefore I would agree that just about everything else is up in the air. At least that's what I read into this.

        202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

        by cany on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 02:16:28 PM PST

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        •  So I have been advocating everywhere the KEEP (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Debby, cany, CA wildwoman


          Felony - failure to secure deadly weapon
          Accessory - to any crime made with your unsecured weapon
          Intent to murder - possession of a gun without a serial number.

          We have always glossed over the word keep.  Gun owners need to keep their guns.  Take responsibility for their guns.  Control their guns.

          We can call it the Charlton Heston cold dead hands laws.

          Hey, GOP - Get In, Sit Down, Shut up, & Hang On!

          by 88kathy on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 03:08:52 PM PST

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      •  So licencing and registration would be fine... (0+ / 0-)

        for the First, Fourth, Thirteenth and Twenty-Fourth Amendments too, right?

    •  "Train" users. "Enlist" users. "Send" users to (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CA wildwoman


      If the National Guard = the militia, then non-Guard members should not have antipersonnel grade weapons.

      Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

      by dadadata on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 01:57:45 PM PST

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