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View Diary: What you may not know about gun violence in Chicago (335 comments)

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  •  A Well Regulated Militia (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hangpilot

    In terms of the language when the 2nd Amendment was penned, "well regulated" meant "properly functioning", not "regulated by laws" as the term might mean today.

    Even today, the militia is not the National Guard or any other state controlled body. It is the body of the people of an age and capability to fight, defined in the US Code as all able-bodied men between the ages of 17-45. In light of the fact that the Defense Department is opening combat arms to women, that should likely be updated.

    I am from Missouri, neighbor to Illinois in which Chicago is located (for the geographically challenged). In our state, as in many others, we have by state statute, an "unorganized militia", which codifies this fact at a state level. Private individuals are encouraged to train in small, local units and the state provides opportunities for more formal training as well.

    I recommend folks step out of the echo chamber from time to time and research whether those with opposing views might have the law, SCOTUS decisions, and history on their side.

    •  Echo chamber or not (5+ / 0-)

      The current conservative SCOTUS has undone 100 years of precedent in many areas, not the least of which is the 2nd Amendment, expanding individual rights to 'bear arms' to a point that it is endangering the rest of the population rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  Before the 1970s, The courts had found that the first part, the “militia clause,” trumped the second part, the “bear arms” clause. In other words, according to the Supreme Court, and the lower courts as well, the amendment conferred on state militias a right to bear arms—but did not give individuals a right to own or carry a weapon.  (Jeffrey Toobin did a good article on this in the NYer.  I don't know how to add links on daily/kos or I'd do it.)

      So called "Originalists" mock the idea of a living Constitution (until they want to change the law to suit their corporate agendas)  Toobin demonstrates that there is no better example of the living Constitution than the conservative re-casting of the Second Amendment since the NRA took a hard right turn in the late 1970s, dragging politicians and jurists with them.

      And nearly every state now has a constitution that clearly protects an individual's right to own stacks of assault weapons unattached to militia service.

    •  That is simply incorrect. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ItsSimpleSimon, emelyn, wsexson, louisev

      When the Constitution was written, there were a host of militia laws in the states that most certainly did regulate firearms. These laws go all the way back to the earliest colonial period and did not change significantly until well into the 19th century. Even in as old a set of regulation as the ones issued by the United Colonies of New England in 1643 (and adopted by the member colonies) specified the acceptable types of arms militia soldiers could use and regulated their upkeep and transfer. It is completely a-historical to insist that "a well-regulated militia" does not include regulations (and restrictions) on firearms.

      This has been a topic I've researched for many years, mostly because my specialty as an historian is colonial military and strategic policy. What you've parroted is a standard canard of the right-wing "militia" movement, but it is counter to what militias actually were in our history.

      Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory, tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat. Sun Tzu The Art of War

      by Stwriley on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 09:34:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  What "well regulated militia" meant in 1789 (0+ / 0-)

      should instruct us today about as completely as their contemporaneous definition of a person.

      Things change, and you may be living through a watershed moment - the beginning of the modernization of the 2nd amendment.

    •  indiana constitution (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      louisev

      article 12. militia. all persons over 17 are part of the militia. active or inactive. cos don't have to carry guns. i'm 68 and legally still in the militia. people should  read their state constitutions, surprising what they will find in there.

      WELCOME to kos. i'm am what kos himself called "a libertarian democrat". billy

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