Originally Posted by Alpo
Are carry permits a violation of the 2nd Amendment? Absolutely. I've got a permit. I can carry a gun anywhere I want to, in the state of Florida. Except for the dozen or so types of places that are off limits. You know, bars, government buildings, airports, schools. To get this permit, originally, cost me about 200 dollars. There was the permit fee itself, plus the cost for the fingerprint check (that was only for the first permit - not for renewals) plus the cost of the training class, plus the cost of the picture, and it was good for a whole three years. When I renewed, I think it was only 67 dollars. Still three years. Next renewal it had bumped to 5 years. This last time it had dropped to 62 dollars, and had increased to 7 years. So my permit has cost me about 500 dollars over the last eleven years. What if I had not had the extra 500 dollars to spend? Couldn't have got a permit. Couldn't have legally carried a gun. Sounds like an impediment to me. An infringement.
>I think that it is a good safety for our public servants, that the mentally illl and convicted felons cannot carry, and having that permit is showing the police that, you are a responsible citizen.< I must have an edited copy of the Constitution. Mine does not say, "...the right of the responsible people, except for the mentally ill and convicted felons, to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed". Mine says "the people". That means everybody, regardless of age, sex, race, color, sexual orientation, religion, political party, criminal record, or mental capability.
You know, if Uncle Charlie, who has Alzheimer's, and thinks it is 1948, and really wants to vote for Dewey, shows up at the polls, and has a valid voter registration, they are going to let him vote. Why? IT'S HIS RIGHT. It's not a privilege. It's a right. Rights are not dependent upon anything. A right is a right. And it's Uncle Charlie's right to own a gun. His family might decide they need to take it away from him for safety's sake (like they took away his driver's license), but it's none of the government's business.
>i dont mind paying for it. i dont want some ahole in the media saying i got something for nothing.< I mind. To hell with the media. Do you have to pay for your right to go to church? For your right to vote? For your right to not have the police kick your door in and search your house just because they are bored? So why should you have to pay for the right to carry a gun?
>But that piece of paper you show a Policeman when you get pulled over tells the Policeman, yes I am armed but I am a lawabiding citizen.< The piece of paper (actually, in Florida it is plastic) that I show a policeman when I get pulled over tells him I have legal permission to drive an automobile. Why would I show him my carry permit? It is not germane to my running a stop sign. Now, I know some states require showing it (whether you have your gun with your or not), and some states require you to tell the cop if you are armed. Fortunately, Florida is not one of them.
Originally Posted by wmeyerok
damn good reason to leave!!!
Many have tried, the whole population in fact.
verb break, violate, contravene, disobey, transgress
infringe on or upon intrude on, compromise, undermine, limit, weaken, diminish, disrupt, curb, encroach on, trespass on
THE UNABRIDGED SECOND AMENDMENT
by J. Neil Schulman
If you wanted to know all about the Big Bang, you'd ring up Carl Sagan, right ? And if you wanted to know about desert warfare, the man to call would be Norman Schwarzkopf, no question about it. But who would you call if you wanted the top expert on American usage, to tell you the meaning of the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution ?
That was the question I asked A.C. Brocki, editorial coordinator of the Los Angeles Unified School District and formerly senior editor at Houghton Mifflin Publishers -- who himself had been recommended to me as the foremost expert on English usage in the Los Angeles school system. Mr. Brocki told me to get in touch with Roy Copperud, a retired professor of journalism at the University of Southern California and the author of "American Usage and Style: The Consensus."
A little research lent support to Brocki's opinion of Professor Copperud's expertise.
Roy Copperud was a newspaper writer on major dailies for over three decades before embarking on a a distinguished 17-year career teaching journalism at USC. Since 1952, Copperud has been writing a column dealing with the professional aspects of journalism for "Editor and Publisher", a weekly magazine focusing on the journalism field.
He's on the usage panel of the American Heritage Dictionary, and Merriam Webster's Usage Dictionary frequently cites him as an expert. Copperud's fifth book on usage, "American Usage and Style: The Consensus," has been in continuous print from Van Nostrand Reinhold since 1981, and is the winner of the Association of American Publisher's Humanities Award.
That sounds like an expert to me.
After a brief telephone call to Professor Copperud in which I introduced myself but did not give him any indication of why I was interested, I sent the following letter:
"I am writing you to ask you for your professional opinion as an expert in English usage, to analyze the text of the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, and extract the intent from the text.
"The text of the Second Amendment is, 'A well-regulated Militia, being necessary for the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.'
"The debate over this amendment has been whether the first part of the sentence, 'A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State', is a restrictive clause or a subordinate clause, with respect to the independent clause containing the subject of the sentence, 'the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.'
"I would request that your analysis of this sentence not take into consideration issues of political impact or public policy, but be restricted entirely to a linguistic analysis of its meaning and intent. Further, since your professional analysis will likely become part of litigation regarding the consequences of the Second Amendment, I ask that whatever analysis you make be a professional opinion that you would be willing to stand behind with your reputation, and even be willing to testify under oath to support, if necessary."
My letter framed several questions about the test of the Second Amendment, then concluded:
"I realize that I am asking you to take on a major responsibility and task with this letter. I am doing so because, as a citizen, I believe it is vitally important to extract the actual meaning of the Second Amendment. While I ask that your analysis not be affected by the political importance of its results, I ask that you do this because of that importance."
After several more letters and phone calls, in which we discussed terms for his doing such an analysis, but in which we never discussed either of our opinions regarding the Second Amendment, gun control, or any other political subject, Professor Copperud sent me the follow analysis (into which I have inserted my questions for the sake of clarity):
[Copperud:] "The words 'A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state,' contrary to the interpretation cited in your letter of July 26, 1991, constitutes a present participle, rather than a clause. It is used as an adjective, modifying 'militia,' which is followed by the main clause of the sentence (subject 'the right', verb 'shall'). The to keep and bear arms is asserted as an essential for maintaining a militia.
"In reply to your numbered questions:
[Schulman:] "(1) Can the sentence be interpreted to grant the right to keep and bear arms solely to 'a well-regulated militia'?"
[Copperud:] "(1) The sentence does not restrict the right to keep and bear arms, nor does it state or imply possession of the right elsewhere or by others than the people; it simply makes a positive statement with respect to a right of the people."
[Schulman:] "(2) Is 'the right of the people to keep and bear arms' granted by the words of the Second Amendment, or does the Second Amendment assume a preexisting right of the people to keep and bear arms, and merely state that such right 'shall not be infringed'?"
[Copperud:] "(2) The right is not granted by the amendment; its existence is assumed. The thrust of the sentence is that the right shall be preserved inviolate for the sake of ensuring a militia."
[Schulman:] "(3) Is the right of the people to keep and bear arms conditioned upon whether or not a well regulated militia, is, in fact necessary to the security of a free State, and if that condition is not existing, is the statement 'the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed' null and void?"
[Copperud:] "(3) No such condition is expressed or implied. The right to keep and bear arms is not said by the amendment to depend on the existence of a militia. No condition is stated or implied as to the relation of the right to keep and bear arms and to the necessity of a well-regulated militia as a requisite to the security of a free state. The right to keep and bear arms is deemed unconditional by the entire sentence."
[Schulman:] "(4) Does the clause 'A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,' grant a right to the government to place conditions on the 'right of the people to keep and bear arms,' or is such right deemed unconditional by the meaning of the entire sentence?"
[Copperud:] "(4) The right is assumed to exist and to be unconditional, as previously stated. It is invoked here specifically for the sake of the militia."
[Schulman:] "(5) Which of the following does the phrase 'well-regulated militia' mean: 'well-equipped', 'well-organized,' 'well-drilled,' 'well-educated,' or 'subject to regulations of a superior authority'?"
[Copperud:] "(5) The phrase means 'subject to regulations of a superior authority;' this accords with the desire of the writers for civilian control over the military."
[Schulman:] "(6) (If at all possible, I would ask you to take account the changed meanings of words, or usage, since that sentence was written 200 years ago, but not take into account historical interpretations of the intents of the authors, unless those issues can be clearly separated."
[Copperud:] "To the best of my knowledge, there has been no change in the meaning of words or in usage that would affect the meaning of the amendment. If it were written today, it might be put: "Since a well-regulated militia is necessary tot he security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be abridged.'
[Schulman:] "As a 'scientific control' on this analysis, I would also appreciate it if you could compare your analysis of the text of the Second Amendment to the following sentence,
"A well-schooled electorate, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and read Books, shall not be infringed.'
"My questions for the usage analysis of this sentence would be,
"(1) Is the grammatical structure and usage of this sentence and the way the words modify each other, identical to the Second Amendment's sentence?; and
"(2) Could this sentence be interpreted to restrict 'the right of the people to keep and read Books' _only_ to 'a well-educated electorate' -- for example, registered voters with a high-school diploma?"
[Copperud:] "(1) Your 'scientific control' sentence precisely parallels the amendment in grammatical structure.
"(2) There is nothing in your sentence that either indicates or implies the possibility of a restricted interpretation."
Professor Copperud had only one additional comment, which he placed in his cover letter: "With well-known human curiosity, I made some speculative efforts to decide how the material might be used, but was unable to reach any conclusion."
So now we have been told by one of the top experts on American usage what many knew all along: the Constitution of the United States unconditionally protects the people's right to keep and bear arms, forbidding all governments formed under the Constitution from abridging that right.
As I write this, the attempted coup against constitutional government in the Soviet Union has failed, apparently because the will of the people in that part of the world to be free from capricious tyranny is stronger than the old guard's desire to maintain a monopoly on dictatorial power.
And here in the United States, elected lawmakers, judges, and appointed officials who are pledged to defend the Constitution of the United States ignore, marginalize, or prevaricate about the Second Amendment routinely. American citizens are put in American prisons for carrying arms, owning arms of forbidden sorts, or failing to satisfy bureaucratic requirements regarding the owning and carrying of firearms -- all of which is an abridgement of the unconditional right of the people to keep and bear arms, guaranteed by the Constitution.
And even the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), staunch defender of the rest of the Bill of Rights, stands by and does nothing.
it seems it is up to those who believe in the right to keep and bear arms to preserve that right. no one else will. No one else can. Will we beg our elected representatives not to take away our rights, and continue regarding them as representing us if they do? Will we continue obeying judges who decide that the Second Amendment doesn't mean what it says it means but means whatever they say it means in their Orwellian doublespeak ?
Or will be simply keep and bear the arms of our choice, as the Constitution of the United States promises us we can, and pledge that we will defend that promise with our lives, our fortuned, and our sacred honor ?
(C) 1991 by The New Gun Week and Second Amendment Foundation. Informational reproduction of the entire article is hereby authorized provided the author, The New Gun Week and Second Amendment Foundation are credited. All other rights reserved.
About the Author
J. Neil Schulman is the award-winning author of novels endorsed by Anthony Burgess and Nobel-economist Milton Friedman, and writer of the CBS "Twilight Zone" episode in which a time-traveling historian prevents the JFK assassination. He's also the founder and president of SoftServ Publishing, the first publishing company to distribute "paperless books" via personal computers and modems.
Most recently, Schulman has founded the Committee to Enforce the Second Amendment (CESA), through which he intends to see the individual's right to keep and bear arms recognized as a constitutional protection equal to those afforded in the First, Fourth, Fifth, Ninth and Fourteenth amendments.
J. Neil Schulman may be reached through:
The SoftServ Paperless Bookstore, 24-hour bbs: 213-827-3160 (up to 9600 baud).
J. Neil Schulman
PO Box 94, Long
Beach, CA 90801-0094.
GEnie address: SOFTSERV
Firearms and the Fourteenth Amendment
February 26, 2003
In their zeal to defend the individual right to keep and bear arms, most firearms owners limit their discussions to the Second Amendment. There is, however, another amendment that not only helps resolve the controversy surrounding the intent and wording of the Second Amendment, but also makes the prohibition enumerated in that Amendment enforceable against the States. In the author’s opinion, this is one of the reasons why opponents of the individual right to keep and bear arms, at the State level, are so opposed to this interpretation of the Second Amendment.
In order to understand the effect of the Fourteenth Amendment on the individual right to keep and bear arms, it is necessary to review some of the legislative history surrounding the Amendment. Ratified by the several States on July 9, 1868, section 1 of this Amendment states in part:
No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
The legislative origin of this part of the Fourteenth Amendment can be traced to the Joint Committee on Reconstruction. Following the War Between the States, Congress appointed a Committee to report “by bill or otherwise” whether the Confederate States “are entitled to be represented in either House of Congress.” The Committee had a broad mission and began its work by drafting constitutional amendments that would outline the plan of reconstruction.
On January 12, 1866, a subcommittee submitted a “proposed amendment to the Constitution.” Representative Bingham delivered the report of the Committee:
"The Congress shall have the power to make all laws necessary and proper to secure to all persons in every State within this Union equal protection in their rights of life, liberty, and property."
The Committee rejected this proposal, but it formed the basis for subsequent proposals. During the following months, additional proposals were considered but were also rejected.
The proposal that became section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment was submitted by Congressman Bingham and agreed to by the Committee on April 28, 1866.
Representative Stevens, speaking for the Committee, introduced the proposed amendment in the House of Representatives on May 8, 1866:
"I can hardly believe that any person can be found who will not admit that every one of these provisions is just. They are all asserted, in some form or other, in our Declaration [of Independence] or organic law. But the Constitution limits only the action of Congress, and is not a limitation on the States. This amendment supplies the defect, and allows Congress to correct the unjust legislation of the States..."
On May 23, 1866, Senator Howard of Michigan introduced the proposal in the Senate. In a 1994 Duke Law Journal article, William Van Alstyne and his associates wrote the following concerning Senator Howard’s remarks:
So, in reporting the Fourteenth Amendment to the Senate on behalf of the Joint Committee on Reconstruction in 1866, Senator Jacob Meritt Howard of Michigan began by detailing the ‘first section’ of that amendment, i.e., the section that ‘relates the privileges and immunities of citizens.’ He explained that the first clause of the amendment (the ‘first section’), once approved and ratified, would ‘restrain the power of the States’ even as Congress was already restrained (by the Bill of Rights) from abridging―
"...the personal rights quarantined and secured by the first eight amendments of the Constitution; such as freedom of speech and of the press; the right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the Government for redress of grievances, a right appertaining to each and all the people; the right to keep and bear arms... [etc., through the Eighth Amendment]." [Emphasis added]
Senator Howard referred to the right enumerated in the Second Amendment as a personal right of the people, not a collective right of the States. He concluded his remarks by stating:
[T]here is no power given in the Constitution to enforce and to carry out any of these guarantees. They are not powers granted by the Constitution to Congress... they stand simply as a bill of rights in the Constitution, without power on the part of Congress give them full effect; while at the same time the States are not restrained from violating the principles embraced in them… The great object of this first section of this amendment is, therefore, to restrain the power of the States and compel them at all times to respect these great fundamental guarantees.
If the Second Amendment pertained to a “collective right” of the States, as opposed to an individual right of the people, then his statement that the “great object of this first section of this amendment is...to restrain the power of the States and compel them at all times to respect these great fundamental guarantees” would be an absurdity. Fundamental guarantees pertain to the natural rights of the people, not so-called “collective rights” of the States. It should also be noted that there was no descent from Senator Howard’s description of this part of the Amendment.
In 1871, a bill was before the House of Representatives that contemplated enforcement of the Fourteenth Amendment. Mr. Garfield, who had participated in the debates on the Amendment in 1866, stated these debates would be historic because they would settle the meaning of section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment:
"I ask the attention of the House to the first section of that amendment, as to its scope and meaning. I hope gentlemen will bear in mind that this debate, in which so many have taken part, will become historical, as the earliest legislative construction given to this clause of the amendment. Not only the words which we put into the law, but what shall be said here in the way of defining and interpreting the meaning of the clause, may go far to settle its interpretation and its value to the country hereafter."
A few days earlier, in a debate on the same bill, Representative Bingham, still a member of House, gave a lengthy explanation of the purpose of the Amendment as he had originally conceived it:
Mr. Speaker, the Honorable Gentlemen from Illinois [Mr. Farnsworth] did me unwittingly, great service, when he ventured to ask me why I changed the form of the first section of the fourteenth article of amendment from the form in which I reported it to the House of February, 1866, from the Committee on Reconstruction. …I had the honor to frame the amendment as reported in February, 1866, and the first section, as it now stands, letter for letter syllable for syllable, in the fourteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States, save the introductory clause defining citizens.
He continued his remarks by stating that the first eight Amendments “never were limitations upon the power of the States, until made so by the fourteenth amendment.”
It is a cardinal principle of statutory construction that the intent of the lawmaker constitutes the law. This principle also applies to constitutional law. In this case, we have a direct quote from the individual who framed the wording of the first section of the Fourteenth Amendment ― “letter for letter syllable for syllable.” The intent of section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment, as stated by its author, was to make the limitations enumerated in the first eight amendments of the Bill of Rights applicable to the States. Thus, from a constitutional standpoint, adoption of Fourteenth Amendment made the restraint contained in the Second Amendment, concerning the individual right to keep and bear arms, enforceable against every State in the Union.
The intent of section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment also disproves the “collective right” interpretation of the Second Amendment. The Brady Campaign contends the Second Amendment was adopted “to prevent the federal government from disarming the State militias.”
The U.S. Constitution established a permanent professional army, controlled by the federal government. With the memory of King George III’s troops fresh in their minds, many of the ‘anti-federalists’ feared a standing army as an instrument of oppression. State militias were viewed as a counterbalance to the federal army and the Second Amendment was written to prevent the federal government from disarming the state militias.
If this was an accurate statement, then Congressman Bingham could not have included a “collective right” Second Amendment in the limitations of section 1. He would have had to omit it because this provision prevents the States from infringing the rights of the people. It has nothing to do with the so-called “collective rights” of the States. Thus, section 1 could have only made 7 of the first 8 Amendments applicable to the States.
This section, as stated above, did indeed extend the limitations enumerated in the first 8 amendments to the individual State governments. If the Second Amendment was adopted “to prevent the federal government from disarming the State militias,” as the Brady Campaign asserts, then section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment extended this prohibition to the individual States. In other words, this provision would bring into play the limitations of the Second Amendment and prevent the States from disarming themselves. The absurdity of this can be seen in the following example. If a State like Nevada attempted to disarm its militia, this section would give Nevada standing to go to federal court and sue Nevada to prevent Nevada from disarming itself. Let’s see the Brady Campaign spin this one!
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