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The right and extreme gun advocates confuse the Declaration of Independence with the Constitution.  The Declaration was a revolutionary document.  Signing meant you were a traitor to Great Britain -- All signatories risked the gallows for the act of signing.  

The Constitution is a governing document: A compact between states agreeing on a system of government.    Once your state signed the Constitution, its population was no longer revolutionary.  They were citizens of the US, bound to obey and uphold the Constitution -- a governing, not revolutionary document.

Those who say we need guns because we are threatened by the federal government are putting themselves in the place of the Founders -- not against Great  Britain, but against the government of the United States.  They are putting themselves in the position of traitors to the current US, as formed by the Constitution (as the Confederacy did).

Therefore, if you believe you need weapons to fight against the US, you are a traitor to the US, just as the founders were traitors to Great Britain.

To argue that part of the Constitution (the 2d Amendment) is for the purpose of committing treason against the same Constitution, is ludicrous and dangerous.

If you decide you are fighting the Constitution, you can't rely on the Constitution to protect the right to do that.

Originally posted to Upper West on Mon May 06, 2013 at 10:57 AM PDT.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA) and Shut Down the NRA.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Some common sense there. (8+ / 0-)

    For all the good common sense will get you in this debate.

    "Jesus don't like killing, no matter what the reasons for." - John Prine

    by JoeEngineer on Mon May 06, 2013 at 11:14:25 AM PDT

    •  Where's the common sense part? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Neuroptimalian, FarWestGirl, Samulayo

      I hardly think owning a firearm, even as a hedge against a conceivably oppressive government, is covered by the Constitution's definition of treason:

      Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.
      •  you're reading your own subtext into what the (0+ / 0-)

        diarist actually said. qualifying words were used, such as, "those who say we need guns," "if you believe you need weapons to fight," & "if you decide you are fighting"

        i see you're still into hijacking diaries to promote rw talking points. as usual.

        •  Diarist said: (0+ / 0-)
          Therefore, if you believe you need weapons to fight against the US, you are a traitor to the US, just as the founders were traitors to Great Britain.
          The Constitution is not interested in what you think, but what you do.
          •  and, as usual, logic has no place in your rw (0+ / 0-)


            btw, as originally written the constitution denied the premise that anyone other than white male property owners were even capable of thought, & used that rationale to deny a wide swath of the population the right to vote.

  •  Some complexity to the issue (5+ / 0-)

    Much of the western part of what was then the US (the colonies) was hostile to the American revolution, which was basically a coalition between the cities of the Northeast and the ring of non-subsistence farming around them, and the slavery/feudal society in the South.  (It was slavery that enabled enough support for the Revolutionary War, as well as France's desire to make geopolitical life miserable for Britain.)

    On the other hand, Britain (a more or less democratic country at that point) probably would, if pollsters had been around, have had a majority of people favoring the colonists.  We won because Parliament clipped King George's military budget and the British decided that they didn't want to fight France and wind up having a French puppet state in North America.

    •  That's all true (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LilithGardener, Fresno, walkshills

      but I'm talking about the philosophical issue of whether you are functioning within or without of the entity under whose government you live.

      The GOP: "You can always go to the Emergency Room."

      by Upper West on Mon May 06, 2013 at 11:29:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  1976 US polling found only a minority supporting (6+ / 0-)

      the reasons for the revolution when they were stated in generic terms outside of the Declaration of Indedpendance. I found that quite cowardly to my, at the time, fevered patriotic high school mind.

    •  I must take issue with your characterization (0+ / 0-)

      of 1776 Great Britain:

      On the other hand, Britain (a more or less democratic country at that point) . . .  
      While Great Britain did have a Parliament and a lower House of Commons, its seats were not filled by anything resembling universal manhood suffrage and indeed there would be major reform bills introduced throughout the 19th Century to remove or reduce the influence of so-called 'pocket boroughs' (essentially voting districts cooked up out of thin air whose seated MP could hardly be considered democratically chosen).

      I'll grant you that Great Britain was more democratic in 1776 than, say, Russia or Prussia. But it was still a monarchy, albeit a constitutional monarchy, after 1688.

  •  Except that the founders (4+ / 0-)

    most notably Jefferson, did think that the compelling force to pressure the government to uphold their end of the social contract would be fear of revolt, and that is was a moral obligation (above any fawning sense of patriotism) as a decedent of the Enlightenment, to ensure that any tyranny ended in bloodshed.  

    The founders were huge supporters of France and her philosophy and the French viewed Americans as their "Brothers in Arms" against the old regime and thought of our two "revolutions" as different battles in the same larger war.

    Jefferson would have turned on America in a moment if he thought it was straying from its ideals.

    Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

    by Wisper on Mon May 06, 2013 at 11:21:12 AM PDT

    •  The Ideals of the Declaration are very much Alive (5+ / 0-)

      and if the US government were committing the type of abuses listed in the Declaration, it may indeed be appropriate for there to be a rebellion.

      But once you've taken that step, you have stepped outside of the bounds of the Constitution, and you should not rely on the Constitution to prepare you for that.

      And who knows what side Jefferson would have chosen in the Civil War, when the South believed that threatening slavery was straying from its perception of the ideals of the US.

      The GOP: "You can always go to the Emergency Room."

      by Upper West on Mon May 06, 2013 at 11:27:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No I see your point (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Upper West, achronon, KVoimakas

        but the idea, while extreme, is not logically inconsistent.  The idea was that the Constitution was written to be the perpetual governing document of an Enlightened Democracy.  A kind of romanticized classical Greek structure bolstered by the philosophy of 18th Century France.

        But as Children of the Enlightenment, if any government compromises the principles of that ideal, it should be overthrown and replaced with one that will live up to them.

        This is very in much with the founders thoughts (some of them anyway), but your larger point is more apt:

        and if the US government were committing the type of abuses listed in the Declaration, it may indeed be appropriate for there to be a rebellion
        And there is the true argument.  What the founders were rightly rebelling against was pure tyranny, unmitigated institutionalized monarchical privledge.... to suddenly equate that with "Obama passed a new regulation I don't like" is to not undermine your entire argument but to also trivialize the nature of the ACTUAL revolutions of American and France.

        Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

        by Wisper on Mon May 06, 2013 at 11:39:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  That's not entirely accurate. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The founders were huge supporters of France and her philosophy and the French viewed Americans as their "Brothers in Arms" against the old regime and thought of our two "revolutions" as different battles in the same larger war.
      Some of the founders—the ones who became known as "Republicans" (the party later became the Democratic-Republicans, then just the Democrats), including Jefferson, Madison, and Monroe—were Jacobins and hugely supportive of the French Revolution. (It should be noted, for the record, that all of their flowery talk praising the French for liberating themselves by force of arms must have rung pretty hollow in the ears of the slaves they owned.)

      Others—Federalists like Adams, Hamilton, and Washington—tended to be more wary of the French Revolution, and sided with the English in the geopolitical struggle between those two countries. (Though they were all more aristocratic-minded generally, the Federalists were also, rightly it turns out, concerned that the French "liberation" would become the French Terror, and finally the French Autocracy under Napoleon.)

      "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

      by JamesGG on Mon May 06, 2013 at 01:09:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  God put kings on earth ... (6+ / 0-)

    to keep order among men. Yes, you Christians believed in the divine right of kings for over 1000 years.
    James I of England believed in it. Ivan the Terrible believed in it. Louis XIV believed in it. Ernst Augustus, Duke of Cumberland and later King of Hannover, believed in it. No doubt his father George III did. So the American Revolution was against God.
    The divine right theory did not really die out until after World War I. Kaiser Wilhelm II and Czar Nicholas II alike believed in it.
    On this side of the Atlantic we have long had those who believe in some divine right theory of democracy.

    Censorship is rogue government.

    by scott5js on Mon May 06, 2013 at 11:26:17 AM PDT

  •  You are sadly mistaken (1+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    Hidden by:

    The Second Amendment was created for precisely that reason - i.e. in case the government ever became tyrannical.

    Taken along with the Third Amendment, it makes sense:

    The Third Amendment states:

    No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
    This and the 2nd Amend were created with the revolution fresh in the minds of Americans.  The British didn't want Americans to have guns in their homes.  They also tried to seize stockpiles of arms.  And, they forced Americans to house British troops.

    The founders wanted to make sure this was never allowed again and guaranteed Americans the right to keep arms - especially in case the federal government became tyrannical and needed to be overthrown.

    Treason?  No.  Quite the opposite - patriotism.

    •  I don't see the logic of (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      achronon, Fresno, left turn, alain2112, lazybum

      the Third Amendment meaning that the Second Amendment means that you can stockpile arms in case you want to overthrow the government.

      The Constitution doesn't guarantee the right to revolution.  Once you take that step, you're no longer operating under the Constitution.  You are operating under the ideas of the Declaration of Independence, but you should be sure that your views are widely shared.  Otherwise,you'll be a lone rebel.

      The GOP: "You can always go to the Emergency Room."

      by Upper West on Mon May 06, 2013 at 12:26:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No. Constitution DOES guarantee the right to (1+ / 1-)
        Recommended by:
        Hidden by:

        revolution.  That is exactly the point the founders were making when creating the second and third amendments!

        The founders themselves explained the reasons for those amendments - to guarantee the ability of Americans to overthrow their government if it becomes oppressive.

        The fact that you refuse to see that doesn't make it go away.

  •  But believing (0+ / 0-)

    that a revolution at some unspecified time in the future against a government that does not yet exist, might be necessary, is not the same as engaging in insurgent acts against an extant constitutional government.

    What are you doing to fight the dangerous and counterproductive error of treating dirtbag terrorist criminals as though they were comic book supervillains? I can't believe we still have to argue this shit, let alone on Daily Kos.

    by happymisanthropy on Mon May 06, 2013 at 12:44:06 PM PDT

  •  And in fact treason is the only "crime" (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho, left turn, Upper West

    specifically defined in the Constitution - partly because the term is frequently used by abusive governments to suppress whose "free speech" expounds on those abuses.  You cannot constitutionally rebel against the Constitution.

  •  "a well regulated militia" (4+ / 0-)

    is read together with Art 1, Sec. 8  that provides "for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions" which made sense after Shay's Rebellion. The Federalists got the Constitution they wanted. Heller's collapsing of the second amendment militia with the property right to a gun should be read to expressly exclude violation of the laws, insurrection and invasion as proper uses.  

  •  Fuck the founders who made slavery law (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DefendOurConstitution, Musial

    TJ is the biggest betrayer ever. He was a rapist who owned people. Ninth circle is too good for him.

    •  TJ, et al., designed a government (0+ / 0-)

      using reality-based principles.

      They did the best they could given the circumstances. But seeing as you are high-information reality-based DKosian, you must already know that.

    •  not just tj but the dem party from (0+ / 0-)

      Jackson to today. Just as we don't boycott VW, there are things salvageable like the declaration of independence. Salvage of the Dem party should focus on the opposition to big banks and the economic royalists that gave the party its name up through the New Deal, opposed now by both genocidal parties.

  •  T to the friggin R! Sick and tired of the (0+ / 0-)

    heirs of Southern treason presuming to lecture me about patriotism and the Constitution.

    Fuck 'em

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