Concerning the Miller case, Jack Miller and Frank Layton were apprehended carrying a sawed-off shotgun in their car from Claremore, Oklahoma to Siloam, Arkansas. They were brought, under indictment, to the federal district court in Arkansas. The indictment filed against them charged, in part, that they “did unlawfully, knowingly, wilfully, and feloniously transport in interstate commerce from the town of Claremore in the State of Oklahoma to the town of Siloam Springs in the State of Arkansas a certain firearm, to-wit, a double barrel 12-gauge shotgun having a barrel less than 18 inches in length…”, in violation of the Federal Firearms Act, 26 USC Section 1132, a felony crime. Their response to the indictment reads, in part, that the National Firearms Act “offends the inhibition of the Second Amendment”, infringing upon their right to keep and bear arms. The federal court agreed, quashed the indictment, and they were discharged from custody.
Interesting. Thanks for that.
Ok, but let’s look a bit closer at the problem. I’ll simplify it.
No standing army = A need for a militia to defend the country.
Need for a militia = A need for arms (lots of arms).
A standing army = No need for a militia.
I am not against the idea of a standing army, as we would be speaking another language by now if we didn’t have one.
There’s no way a civilian force could withstand another country’s real army, especially starting at the turn of the 20th Century.
You can try to have the definitive word all you want, but the debate on what the Founders meant or what they would have thought of modern times…will go on forever.
I am more tuned to the UN having a universal force to quell disturbances rather than to have individual countries arming themselves, much like what was seen in The Day The Earth Stood Still, where the alien society had created a robot force to keep the peace.
Then again… an occupying army… even one of millions would find attrition to be a rather serious problem… those damnable rebels hiding behind trees at every turn…
Of course one must ask… what came first… the standing army or the need for one… I understand that the United States determined after WWII that it would not be caught short again but I’m thinking over kill and the race that came with it…
You highly underestimate the capability of armed men committed to battle. I have fought in Iraq and Afghanistan. I can tell you that these were not easy fights, despite our technical superiority. I have many buddies who have been either killed or severely wounded from crude homemade IEDs vs our up-armored vehicles. A well armed force with the tactical know how and commitment to fight could devestate well trained formal Army. Never underestimate the capability of the common man, regardless of the time or weaponry. Especially when the enemy can blend in with the non-hostile population.
Guys, let’s be honest. In our lifetime, America will have gun laws equal to that of other civilized countries like the UK, or Australia. It’s going to happen. Why do you all care so much about the 2nd amendment, anyway? Black’s and women didn’t have a right to vote, so we changed the constitution.
It finally seems time to do the same with the 2nd, and with Hillary getting 4 supreme court judges we can finally bring US gun control aligned with the rest of the world. I know most of you are racists so you don’t care about the gun violence that disproportionately kills African Americans but try to have a heart.
go play somewhere else…
Auh Yes… another antisocial, undemocratic group … betsyriot.com Just like so much of the childish left, if you can’t get the vote you want… break something… Its not just monkey’s who fling their poop…
I support a new amendment to repeal the 2nd Amendment. Yeah…it was designed for a well regulated Militia, which currently exists under the Army and other Military branches. No need for it. Not sure what you guys don’t understand about the need to remove all guns from America.
the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed
Which part of this is difficult for you?
Ok, let me jump bank in to basic American history for those who skipped class.
The rough draft of the Bill of Rights was the Virginia Declaration of Rights written by George Mason and Thomas Jefferson. A Jefferson addition was section 13:
That a well-regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the proper, natural, and safe defense of a free state; that standing armies, in time of peace, should be avoided as dangerous to liberty; and that in all cases the military should be under strict subordination to, and governed by, the civil power.
They clearly make a distinction between a government run military and a militia run by free people.
It was never “twisted” in the way you imply @Brandon. You just don’t understand the wording.
If you actually read the writings of Jefferson it’s because he intended for us to revolt every now and again to keep the government scared.
Dry and boring as it is… A grammar lesson … http://www.constitution.org/2ll/schol/2amd_grammar.htm
You see that bet down their close to the bottom about the Soviet Coup… well, a government controlled military is not guarantee of a ‘free state’. Their is no way to have a well regulated militia without the ability to form one today, tomorrow or one hundred years from now…
Why is it so difficult to realize that the 2nd amendment doesn’t refer to “the people” as every single individual but as a whole?
What it means is that the United States has a right to have arms in order to protect it’s citizens, not that every single individual can have a gun to protect itself. It’s not that hard guys
Seems to be harder for you than most.
I know that the logic of the constitution and the arguments used to construct it are hard to understand. It is, according to many people who read it, both redundant and vague at the same time. Like enumerated powers and the limitless ability of the federal to do what it damned well pleases… and the responsibilities of the federal clearly outlined in the preamble to provide for the common defense and a RIGHT specially granted to THE PEOPLE that is not granted by government and cannot be taken away by government.(Some people see the same redundency in the preamble and the 2nd amendment that they do between say, enumerated powers and abortion) Now some people found the powers of the federal government to be so limited in scope and so clearly designed to give the power not to the government but to the people, that they wanted to scrap the bill of rights as being totally redundant and self evident.
Now specifically… how can the people have any method of guaranteeing a ‘free state’ if all the power to enforce resides with the state? While it is certainly not the first time the US has gone down the slippery slope of ignoring the admonishments of the anti-federalists, a standing army was decried almost universally as being a direct threat to a free state. I vote for the insurance of the 2nd amendment.
So, let me get this straight . Are you saying that the Second Amendment was put into place for someone to start their own militia? Then how do you explain the “well regulated militia” part? Part of what the government does is enact regulations. In order for something to be regulated, there must be an entity to enforce the regulation. The document that gives authority to the government to enact such a regulation is the Constitution.
But if you are still hanging your hat on the unorganized militia, then wouldn’t an unorganized militia, by its very definition, be one that is absent of regulation?
Don’t worry, you are not the first Conservative/Libertarian that I have stumped on this.
Given the important and currently irrelevant fact that States, retain (or are suppose to retain) certain powers, they too could be regulatory… No? This is from the perspective that the state is the only group who has the ability to organize and operate a “well regulated militia”… but given the admonishments of the Declaration of Independence:
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation…
… Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
That is THE purpose, barring the need to form a standing army from the citizenry, for the second amendment… For without the ability to create the militia out of a citizen uprising, the revolution never would have occurred. You see the constitution was written to support the principles of the revolution and the founders, many of whom who were involved with the Declaration of Independence, had good reason for the people to be wary of government.
The Declaration of Independence was a Revolutionary Document that encourage rebellion and throwing off a government.
The Constitution formed a NEW Republic and set the law. There is nothing in the Constitution that supports, provides or suggests it is ok to attack the government in fact if you do that you will be executed.
The Declaration of Indpenedance has no legal standing and is only a historical document albeit a substantial one in the top 10 probably considering the Magna Carta #1.
Our Founding Fathers knew it was much different to declare a Revolution than to run a Country.
The Consitution was NOT written to support the Declaration.
The Constitution was written to provide for States to defend themselves to protect the established government the Constitution provided the nation.
George Washington Alexander Hamilton and many other said m/l it was insane to not have a strong central government.
The Constitution was written specifically to protect that government and provide death to anyone who tried to usurp it.
- 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.
Seems you missed the comma’s.
A punctuation mark ( , ) used to indicate a separation of ideas or of elements within the structure of a sentence.
I believe two things here Steve.
you will and have used to your advantage in a discussion, letters, comments and documents other than the direct words of the US Constitution to support your position and will wave your arms that those same documents have no standing when they don’t suit your position…
When the government which has authority that is no less illusionary than a border or a corporation does not fulfill the need of the people… a government that is granted strictly by and for the people then the first amendment directly grants people the right of assemble and the right to petition for regress of grievance… If the government is unresponsive to those ends then I’m thinking the legitimacy of the government under a just constitution is called into question… then the words of the revolutionary document become relevant.