That Pesky Second Amendment

by Rick Olson

“A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” —Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, adopted on December 15, 1791

SECOND_AMENDMENT_DELETE_smallIn a world where liberals view the constitution as a, “living document”, whereby the meaning changes with the (downward spiraling) values of the nation at large, it is no wonder that so many contorted meanings emerge regarding the second Amendment.

And who can blame them? Our second amendment is the very antithesis to advancement and prosperity of an arbitrary socialist, Marxist oppressive state. It is this notion that absolutely frosts the left. The U.S. Constitution is an obstacle to progressivist notions so all there is left to do is nibble at it from around the edges.

The phrase “well-regulated” was in common use long before 1789, and remained so for a century thereafter. It referred to the property of something being in proper working order. Something that was well-regulated was calibrated correctly, functioning as expected. Establishing government oversight of the people’s arms was not only not the intent in using the phrase in the 2nd amendment, it was precisely to render the government powerless to do so that the founders wrote it.

The following are taken from the Oxford English Dictionary, and bracket in time the writing of the 2nd amendment:

  • 1709: “If a liberal Education has formed in us well-regulated Appetites and worthy Inclinations.”
  • 1714: “The practice of all well-regulated courts of justice in the world.”
  • 1812: “The equation of time … is the adjustment of the difference of time as shown by a well-regulated clock and a true sun dial.”
  • 1848: “A remissness for which I am sure every well-regulated person will blame the Mayor.”
  • 1862: “It appeared to her well-regulated mind, like a clandestine proceeding.”
  • 1894: “The newspaper, a never wanting adjunct to every well-regulated American embryo city.”

“I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials.”
— George Mason, in Debates in Virginia Convention on Ratification of the Constitution, Elliot, Vol. 3, June 16, 1788.

Many liberal-progressive jurists, liberal judges will assert our Constitution is a “living, breathing document,” implying that its text intended flexibility. Not True. The Constitution serves as a foundational set of rules, upon which are the basis for how we legislate and navigate our law. Like any other set of rules, The Constitution was meant to be strict and uncompromising, notwithstanding modification through an amendment process. And, through this amendment process any amendment subsequently ratified, becomes like the rest of the Constitution; rigid.

One of the most liberal and corrupt-thinking commentators of our time, Jeffrey Toobin, said this back in December in the New Yorker:

The battle over gun control is not just one of individual votes in Congress, but of a continuing clash of ideas, backed by political power. In other words, the law of the Second Amendment is not settled; no law, not even the Constitution, ever is.

Toobin is another one of the many legal scholars who believes in a living, breathing constitution, advancing arguments and opinions that the Supreme Court got it wrong on Guns and the current make-up of the court arises out of some right-wing conservative conspiracy hatched in the late 70’s, followed by the emergence of Ronald Reagan as President.

It always intrigues me how liberals like Toobin argue the court got decisions like Roe v. Wade, Buckley v. Valeo and other such lefty favorites right, Obamacare to name the latest, but somehow this court is a, “right wing shill.”

With the endless attacks by lawmakers in Washington on the Second Amendment, Toobin was certainly right in a sense that the law of the Second Amendment is not settled. Liberals view our constitution as an obstacle. Instructive is when Toobin will tell us, “not even the Constitution is ever settled law.”

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