The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #148617 Message #3465768
Posted By: Ron Davies
13-Jan-13 - 10:30 PM
Thread Name: BS: Shooting tragedies and guns
Subject: RE: BS: Shooting tragedies and guns
Hamilton, Madison and Jay, the 3 main figures behind the passage of the Constitution, felt a Bill of Rights was not necessary. Their stubbornness on this almost defeated passage. Madison, for instance stated that in Federalist #46 he had written that any oppressive federal army would be opposed by a "militia amounting to near half a million citizens with arms in their hands." His assertion did not mollify opponents--they, led by Jefferson, held that the "strong state military units would serve as a forceful deterrent against any desire of a president or Congress to subjugate the people with a large national army." (Chadwick p. 59.)
Here the obvious origin of the 2nd Amendment becomes clear: Virginia, for instance, in its bill of rights, stated that "the people have the right to keep and bear arms; that a well regulated militia composed of the body of the people trained to arms, is the proper, natural defense of a free state."
It is thus blazingly clear to anyone who does even a modicum of research that the militia was both to substitute for a standing army and provide defense against an overreaching federal government. That is the reason for the 2nd Amendment. It is not just the right to "keep and bear arms" but the obligation to be part of the "well-regulated" militia which was to provide defense against enemies from without and within. It was emphatically not the" every man his own militia" attitude which the NRA and other pro-gun-rights groups now endorse.
It is also clear that history was not kind to the idea that a militia could substitute for a standing army--the idea was a disaster from the start.
And it seems we really have done OK with a standing army for quite a while--without any general seeking to make himself dictator.
So the 2nd Amendment has long since lost any value it might have had.
It's not really surprising that the intellectual giants who grace Mudcat and defend the 2nd Amendment are clueless--or too lazy to read-- about the reasons for the 2nd Amendment. Though it is somewhat baffling that 5 of 9 Supreme Court justices were recently so pig-ignorant about its background.