The Second Amendment is an Individual Right – the Founders Said So

The primary purpose of the 10 Amendments that form the Bill of Rights was to protect the natural rights of the individual from encroaching federal government function. We must remind ourselves and others of this. The only way someone would not know this is if they have not read them. So when a leftist begins to spout off about the Second Amendment, that it applies only to hunting or militias, we must remind them of this. If necessary, review each of the 10 and it will become clear that the founders did not intend for nine of the 10 to pertain primarily to the individual and yet single out just the Second as not having any individual component. It defies logic. But then so does liberalism.

So if we agree that the 10 Amendments pertain to individual rights,  we must then agree that the right to “keep and bear arms” also pertains to the individual. I might also suggest that you explain what “keep and bear arms” means. Simply put, it means to own and carry arms in defense of oneself and others.

Justin Haskins of the Blaze has cataloged several of the views of our founding fathers in the following article.

from the Blaze:

In their own words: What the Founding fathers really believed about guns

When the Founding Fathers approved the “right to bear arms” and the 13 newly formed states agreed to ratify the Second Amendment, the reason couldn’t be clearer: An armed citizenry is a free citizenry.

Yet despite the clear historical evidence showing the true intention behind the Second Amendment, liberals continue to mislead the public by asserting the founders believed the Second Amendment only protects guns necessary for everyday life in the 18th century, such as hunting rifles, or that the founders believed these constitutional protections apply only to militias, not to individuals.

These notions are nothing more than left-wing delusions, carefully crafted by people who in their pursuit of power and “public safety” have become desperate to take away law-abiding citizens’ centuries-old rights to own and operate guns.

As Richard Brookhiser, a historian and author of “What Would the Founders Do?,” concluded in his book’s section on the Second Amendment, “The founders lived among guns; they would never make them illegal; they would subject them to necessary laws, following [William] Blackstone. And they broke their own laws when honor demanded it.” 

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A Living Constitution Provides No Stability

by: the Common Constitutionalist

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I’ve written a lot regarding the Constitution over the years – although not usually two days in row. Most times the topic boils down to a choice between the stability of originalism or the chaos of the co-called “living document.” This has been a great debate since the dawn of the progressive era.

In 2006 Elliott Mincberg, the vice president of the ultra lefty group “People for the American Way” said: “It was the framers intent that the Constitution would adapt to changing circumstances.” In other words, a living Constitution.

Most would be surprised that, in my opinion, the founders would agree with Mr. Mincberg – although I guarantee they would not agree with his method of change.

That same year Todd Gaziono of the Heritage Foundation said: “Original intent is the only legitimate means of interpretation under our written Constitution and all other philosophies are illegitimate.” Mr. Gaziono is also correct.

Okay, both can’t be correct. Obviously the “living Constitution” crowd is wrong because, as we all know, the left has no desire to amend the Constitution. They instead see fit to usurp the Constitution by means of laws, court precedents and presidential decrees.  read more

WND Exclusive – Are you, too, a ‘Declarationist’?

1864 Two Cent Coin

Memorial Day has come and gone. I hope you all sought out the family of one of our fallen heroes or at least said a prayer on their behalf.

Now we’re into summer, though not technically, and America’s next great celebration is on the horizon – that of our nation’s independence.

We in America, and certainly us political wonks, write and speak constantly of the United States Constitution. We may do so often that it can sometimes seem tiresome to listen to – even for other fans of the Constitution. Not that I hear this from my friends and family or anything. read more

Thank Heavens for the Bill of Rights

by: the Common Constitutionalist

The Republicans in the Senate do occasionally find their backbones and were able to display them as they rejected four pieces of anti-gun legislation. Thank you Republicans and thank you founders for giving us the Bill of Rights.

Given the current state of the federal leviathan, imagine the condition of our individual and states’ rights without the specific declaration of those protections against federal intrusion. Turns out the anti-federalists were right to insist on a Bill of Rights!

We would have no right to own or carry a weapon of any kind without the language expressed in the Second Amendment. We on the right would have nothing specific to argue against the gun-grabbers of the left. For decades we have debated the language and meaning of the Second Amendment, but without it, our argument would be relegated to the abstract, for nowhere else does the Constitution specifically address this right. Given the nature of today’s courts – that would not be nearly enough. Thanks to George Mason and the anti-federalists, we at least have the Amendment specifying this natural right.

Our freedom of speech, assembly, religion, etc. would all be substantially abridged, if not for the First Amendment. We would have virtually no states’ rights left without the Tenth – and so on. read more

My WND Weekly Exclusive

OUR FOUNDING DOCUMENT: STABLE OR FLUID?

There has been a great debate roiling in America for more than a century: whether or not the Constitution is carved in stone or a “living document.”

Conservatives wish to govern in accordance with the Constitution and the “original intent” of those who crafted the document. I would agree with this, as obviously would the founders.

In 2006 Todd Gaziono of the Heritage Foundation said: “Original intent is the only legitimate means of interpretation under our written Constitution, and all other philosophies are illegitimate.” Mr. Gaziono is, of course, correct.

That same year Elliott Mincberg, the then-vice president of the George Soros ultra lefty group People for the American Way said: “It was the framers’ intent that the Constitution adapt to changing circumstances.” In other words, it’s a living or malleable Constitution. This has been the progressive movement’s mantra from Woodrow Wilson to today. read more

A Vision of Despotism

by: the Common Constitutionalist

We conservatives love to complain about Obama – that he’s a lawless president, he’s despotic – that we’ve never seen anyone like him. How did he ever get elected?

Well, yesterday on his radio show, Rush Limbaugh read excerpts from a commentor of one of his brother David’s latest articles, “Democrats, the Constitution and the Rule of Law”.

She, the commentor, describes the gist of his article: “… an entire political party and liberal media that grossly underappreciated our unique constitutional system of government and are so blinded by their ideological goal, that they have no problem virtually conspiring with this lawless president and trampling the Constitution and the rule of law to serve his and their ends.”

You’re welcome to read Rush’s take on it here.

Here’s mine, and it ties into a segment that Mark Levin discussed the night prior.

It’s Monday, September 17, 1787 – the last day of the Constitutional Convention and Ben Franklin had a colleague read his parting remarks.

Within those remarks was this: “… I think a general Government necessary for us, and there is no form of government but that may be a blessing to the people if well administered, and believe farther that this is likely to be well administered for a course of years, and can only end in Despotism, as other forms have done before it, when the people shall become so corrupted as to need despotic Government, being incapable of any other.” read more

Radicalism Lives in New Hampshire

by: the Common Constitutionalist

A few miles up the road from my house is a prestigious private school. The average schlub like myself could not, and now knowing what I know, would not send my children there.

The prestigious Derryfield School “educates” students, grades 6 through 12, and costs in excess of $28,000 per year.

It is said that if you graduate from there, you’ve written your own ticket and have your pick of any of the Ivy League schools. I know this generally to be a fact.

So for that kind of money, the school must be able to attract the finest teachers in the land, right? That and the heated, Field Turf lacrosse field. I must admit – that is nice.

Well, I suppose it depends on one’s definition of finest. By finest, if you mean a teacher who will mold and shape your young, highly impressionable offspring into a guilty white, self-loathing, American hating liberal, then yes, you’d be correct.

One of Derryfields finest is a history teacher, David Pook, a big defender of the Common Core Curriculum.

David believes that American schools need to have nationalized standards so minority students can learn to read as well as white students. Yes of course David, because students “of color” are naturally too “stupid” to learn, or frankly accomplished anything, without the help of the benevolent federal government. What a racist thing to say! read more

Governing By Constitution

By: the Common Constitutionalist
The upcoming 2014 midterm elections have a different feel to them. We have a rare opportunity to send to Washington several real conservatives who may actually attempt to govern in accordance with the Constitution. Sad that it’s rare, isn’t it.

But governing by Constitution? What a quaint & provincial idea. I keep thinking, maybe this time we might just try it. Heck, we’ve either tried or been witness to every other failed type of Government. Why not give it a go? Why not try a constitutionally constrained Representative Republic?

The United States Constitution spells out plainly how to get it right, what is allowed & what isn’t. Although this seems like a simple concept, and it is, lawmakers, the courts and academia purposely make it seem that the average Joe could never truly comprehend it.

When I hear a democrat say that they don’t really worry about the Constitution, I cringe. When I hear republican claim, regarding any issue, he isn’t sure it is constitutional, I have the same response.

What do you mean you’re not sure? Aren’t you guys charged with upholding it? It either is or isn’t! Look it up. It’s not hard. I was able to do it. Read what the founders had to say. read more

Syria: Should We or Shouldn’t We: American Neutrality is Not Isolationism

by: the Common Constitutionalist

 

Syria is neither a friend nor ally. The conflict in Syria is a civil war, an internal struggle, not a war of international aggression or imperial colonization. Yet those of the “we must do something” crowd are insistent of our entanglement and brand all others as “Isolationists”.

 

Once again, our governmental brain trust would be well served to consult our own history. More often than not, the answer can be found.

 

As The Heritage Foundation asserts, it is helpful to define what is meant by “isolationist.” The term isolationism applies to a policy of abstaining from economic and political relations with other countries. By this definition, the best examples of isolationist foreign policies are offered by 17th century China, 18th century Japan, 19th century Korea, or 20th century North Korea.

 

Let’s not confuse or commingle military abstinence with economic and political isolationism.

 

During an Independence Day speech, John Quincy Adams fervently argued that America had no inherent responsibility to intervene abroad (emphasis added):

Wherever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She will recommend the general cause, by the countenance of her voice, and the benignant sympathy of her example.”

 

Policies set forth by the founders were born of affection for republican self-government and their desire to preserve the country’s sovereign independence.

 

Washington advocated for a foreign policy that would allow America to, “choose peace or war, as our interest, guided by justice, shall counsel.”

 

During Thomas Jefferson’s Administration, the United States, acting in our interest chose war, joining forces with Sweden and the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies during the Tripolitan War against the Barbary Pirates. Such foreign military cooperation was essential in defeating the Muslim privateers (terrorists), loosely associated with the Ottoman Empire (surprise; present day Iran). It was the new nations first foreign war.

 

From the beginning, the primary purpose of U.S. foreign policy has been to defend the American constitutional system and the interests of the American people.

 

Jefferson summed it up in his First Inaugural Address as “peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations—entangling alliances with none.”

 

And thus was a difficult decision to be made by our first president. The rebellion during the French revolution solicited Americas help as a military and political ally. The Marquis de Lafayette, who had been George Washington’s aide-de-camp during the American Revolution and had become a close personal friend, had personally requested the assistance of Washington and the Americans. Yet Washington knew that supporting France would likely drag America into a disastrous war against her will.

 

So in April, 1793, George Washington signed a proclamation declaring America’s neutrality, although the word neutrality is found nowhere in the declaration. In short Washington, like Jefferson feared an entangled alliance. He also did not wish to involve America in another nations internal struggle.

 

In 1822, President Monroe officially recognized the independence of Argentina, Peru, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico. The United States was the first established nation to welcome these new republics into the community of nations. Thus was the Monroe Doctrine.

 

President Monroe stated of the Monroe Doctrine, “The occasion has been judged proper for asserting, as a principle in which the rights and interests of the United States are involved, that the American continents, by the free and independent condition which they have assumed and maintain, are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European powers.”

 

The Monroe Doctrine would hardly be considered isolationist and it was the last major declaration blessed by both James Madison and Thomas Jefferson. Must have been nice and quite convenient to be able to seek direct council from the Authors of the both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. How cool is that?!

 

With the Monroe Doctrine, the U.S. attempted to ban imperial ambition from one-third of the globe’s surface, thereby delegitimizing the accepted system of imperialism and attempting to fundamentally alter the international order – hardly an isolationist policy.

 

So how does all this “history” equate or relate to the upheaval in the Middle East? What would the founders have advised us to do?

 

That’s easy; stay out of it. We had our chances long ago to support freedom and liberty and we sat back and did nothing. Now all these uprisings have been high jacked by one terrorist group or another. There are no good guys, no freedom or liberty to support.

 

This is also an internal struggle. If Washington was able to say no his dear friend, The Marquis de Lafayette, during France’s bloody revolution, we sure as heck can say no to Syria, who are neither friend nor ally.