RKBA for Non-Violent Felons

Discussion in 'The Constitutional & RKBA Forum' started by GhostGunner, Sep 9, 2017.

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  1. cec2

    cec2 Well-Known Member

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    I have mixed feelings and can see both sides to a degree. Those on both sides have made some good points in this thread.

    As to the notion of an always unlimited right to bear arms, we've got to remember that ral's post is valid. According to the logic of some, we could never enforce ANY law--even premeditated mass murder, because (by that logic) spending even one night in jail deprives or infringes that person of his freedom and the pursuit of happiness along with his right to bear arms along with many other rights. The 2nd Amendment, of necessity in the real world, doesn't mean that no restrictions can be made for any reason, even if it doesn't explicitly state that within each and every amendment. The founding fathers had common sense and presumably thought future generations would, too. That condition (no restrictions/infringement for ANY reason) would be chaos and anarchy, as others have pointed out. Do death row inmates still have the right to bear arms? That's an extreme example, but the answer is, of course not--despite their 2nd Amendment rights. At one time they had that right, but they forfeited it. Citizens are born with the right to bear arms ("shall not infringe"), but of course they can choose actions that forfeit their rights, and correctly so. Whether a single instance of an on-the-not-dangerous-end-of-non-violent-felonies (whatever that would mean) with no repeat offenses should result in permanent loss of certain rights does deserve some consideration.

    I agree that some convicted non-violent felons undoubtedly really have paid their debt to society, have truly learned their lesson, and would not be a threat if allowed to legally own and carry firearms, and I don't have a problem with all of their rights being restored. But I have a nagging suspicion that they may be more the exception rather than the rule. And how to accurately determine who they are? As others have pointed out, a majority of felons continue to commit felonies after they're let out of prison. Perhaps it's their attitude that laws are for everyone except themselves, which got them in trouble in the first place, that's an underlying problem. And many people who've committed felonies are let out of prison early, or never go to begin with, before their debt to society is fully paid, if that matters. Nevertheless, I'm pleased to learn that there are ways for some non-violent felons to have their rights restored, as I was unaware of that. People do make one-time mistakes sometimes and never do it again.


    The best solution is for people to not break the laws to begin with, but some will choose to do so for their own reasons, and there are consequences for that--which should be an extra motivation to obey the laws. There is no simple or perfectly fair solution. If everyone would "just do right" it would be a much simpler, better world. Wishful thinking, I know.
     
  2. ricochet rabbit

    ricochet rabbit Active Member

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    Some of you speak of a "case by case review". Lets consider the number of felons who have spent time in prison and been released early on "good behavior". Only to find out, too late, that this was their plan all along in order to commit new crimes with the intent of never being caught/ imprisoned ever again. Who's definition of "violent crime" do we go by?
    If we are going to go by your opinion, why incarcerate "non-violent criminals" in the first place?
    I'm guessing you can see by now my opinion is NO!
     
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  3. ral357

    ral357 Well-Known Member

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    The system is a mess. Some offenders might be better off making restitution rather than becoming a further burden on society......a thief For example being made to payback those They have stolen from. The victim would certainly be better off and the offender will not be sent to a criminal university where he will become less a member of the community and more of a predator. ....
     
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  4. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

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    Here's the glitch, after the person has paid their debt to society, according to due process, why do we continue to punish them? Yes, your life, liberties, and property can be seized by the government after due process. If it's your life, then that's final/permanent. If it's your property, you will/should receive proper payment for such. But your liberties should be restored after your debt to society has been paid, if that payment did not include your life. Otherwise your debt to society can never be paid if your punishment continues for the rest of your life. Remember these are God given rights, not government given rights.
     
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  5. SilasW

    SilasW Well-Known Member

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    In most cases, the criminal is sentenced to pay restitution to the victims. However it is seldom paid. Inmates have "accounts" through the state by which they can buy tobacco, soda, candy or about any other item you can think of. Their family or friends can send money to DOC to be placed on this account. In many cases the restitution is taken directly from this account.
    In order to get around paying, most will have money sent to another inmate's account that isn't charged with restitution. They give that inmate a "store list" and they buy the items for them, charging a fee for this service.. The victims get nothing since there's no money on the first inmate's account.
    The average age of the prison population gets younger all the time. Unlike the past, they see prison as a badge of honor. Glorified by TV and movies it's stylish to be a "thug" or gangster. We call it "finishing school for felons."
     
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  6. ral357

    ral357 Well-Known Member

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    The debt to society being paid is only one aspect, protecting the innocent from predators is the more important aspect IMHO. What about the fact that the person may have exhibited such selfish anti social characteristics that there is grave doubt they can be trusted in all circumstances. As has been pointed out not long ago a large percentage of these folks would never walk the streets freely again. It is not unreasonable for them to earn those rights again by living as a decent productive member of the community for some time regaining the trust of the community they live in.
    Our system is already set up on the principle that " it is better that 10 guilty men go free than one innocent man be falsely imprisoned". After release the community at large deserves the same amount of protection from a PROVEN risk. The system does need a overhaul but all emerging from the pen don't come out "clean". The statistics certainly tell a different story.
     
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  7. cec2

    cec2 Well-Known Member

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    I do see your point and I gave the post a like, as I find myself doing for so many of your posts. For some one-time non-violent offenses, I can certainly agree. I can give an example of a sweet lady now in her 80's I know who got in trouble over some food stamps many decades ago when she was a working divorced mother with four young children. (Nowadays I guess she'd be given a free cell phone, too! I digress.) A "friend" of hers who worked at the food stamp office told her it was alright to do whatever it was that they did. Not sure of the details. When it turned out that it most certainly wasn't alright (some kind of fraud, IIRC), she wouldn't rat out her friend. She didn't have to serve any time but lost some rights. She still can't vote, much less possess a firearm. Not really excusing the offense (the law is the law), but honestly she's never been a physical threat to anyone. She was working full time, receiving a little child support on and off, and trying to take care of four little children in the 60's.
    (I feel like I've just weakened the point I wanted to make below, LOL, but I'll make it anyway, because it is a valid point.)

    This: Another way of looking at the issue is that the permanent loss of some rights IS part of the debt owed to society. Time incarcerated is only one part of the debt he owes to society. Loss of some rights is the other part of the debt.

    I think some are looking at it that way, and for some offenses so do I. Most would probably agree that a permanent loss of the right to carry a firearm is appropriate for a murderer even after he serves his time or is paroled; it's a part of his debt to society because of the crime he chose to do. It's just hard to know where to draw the line.

    EDIT to add: Another great post above, ral, that I didn't see until after I posted mine. We are on the same wave-length here. Protecting society from a demonstrated, known danger can be considered to be part of the debt he will always owe to society because of his crime, imo.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017
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  8. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

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    Let us all be on the same page here, it's not just the loss of a right to defend yourself from violence. These men/women also loose their rights to vote, to travel abroad, jury service, employment in certain fields, public social benefits, and housing, and sometimes parental benefits. These rights are taken away permanently, just like the right to own a fire arm. If they have lost these rights permanently, then they are still being punished. And can never pay their debt to society. I can understand the loss of the right to vote. That really doesn't inhibit your ability to make a living, or the right to defend yourself. And the loss of the right to vote goes all the way back to the ancient Greeks. However, if you impose such penalties on a person that most States impose, then you create a position for that person to make his living outside the law. If he can't work to make money to buy food, then he will steal to get what he needs/wants. Some States allow for a convicted felon to own fire arms, most don't. We need to fix this. Every State should be on the same page with this, just as they should all be on the same page when it comes to owning firearms.
     
  9. GhostGunner

    GhostGunner Active Member

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    Nothing that anybody ever found out about. Much less conviction. Heeheehee! :p
     
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  10. SilasW

    SilasW Well-Known Member

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    Years ago I had a co-worker at the prison that I deer hunted with. He and I were on the Emergrncy Squad together. Trusted each other with our lives, like family. One night he had too much to drink and let a pretty young lady talk him into taking her for a ride on his motorcycle. Needless to say, it ended badly. He failed to navigate a curve and struck a utility pole, killing her and nearly killing himself. After a long recovery, he was criminally charged for her death. Not sure how long the sentence was, but he served about 5 years and had many years of probation to walk down.
    Because of one stupid mistake while intoxicated, he lost his rights for the rest of his life. He was so ashamed that he never returned to our area and took a job working construction. Actually making more than he did as a corrections officer.
    I still consider him a friend, even though he has no contact with any of us. Is he a threat to society? Not in my opinion. If his rights were restored I'd hunt with him again in a second. But it's not up to me. Is it fair? I don't know. He took a life, didn't intend to, but he did. Life changing bad decision on his part.
     
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  11. GhostGunner

    GhostGunner Active Member

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    That is definitely a sad story.
     
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  12. GhostGunner

    GhostGunner Active Member

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    DB cooper, Ahhhhh BOOOOOOO
     
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  13. GhostGunner

    GhostGunner Active Member

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    Having Rights for some but not all citizens is establishing Second class citizens. Wh itch is unconstitutional, Illegal, and just plain Bullsh*t. :mad:
    Either you are an American Citizen or you are NOT. :D
     
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  14. jedwil

    jedwil Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    A citizen has the responsibility of being Constitutionally lawful. Violators can be punished and should be punished if the nation is to survive without chaos.
     
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  15. GhostGunner

    GhostGunner Active Member

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    Violators who don't hurt anybody except maybe themselves, should not be punished for the rest of their lives because of a mistake or mistakes they made.
     
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