I carry a card in my wallet; it’s a little larger than a business card. The front shows some Founding Father types gathered, discussing trophies mounted on the wall – “bear arms.” Not a trophy buck; not some exotic trophy brought back from an African safari, not… well, not “whatever.” They’re “bear arms.” And I whip it out whenever some gun nut (often, with a tin-foil lined cammo hunting/military cap) starts to go ballistic about liberals/leftists/socialists/french fry eating/UN loving/tree huggers wanting to limit their 2nd Amendment right to own guns.
Here’s what the back of said card looks like. It starts out with the 2nd Amendment, verbatim:
“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.”
“Of course it’s clear! Every American has the right to hang a pair of bear arms on their wall. How could that possibly be misconstrued?”
Here’s the point:
People will argue about the semantics of the 2nd Amendment, but what people cannot argue is virtually everyone – even those wearing tin-foil lined cammo hunting/military hats – thatwe ALREADY regulate “arms.”
No one has a right to own a bazooka nor a flame thrower nor a mortar/grenade launcher; not even a machine gun (think Thompson, Uzi, AK47, fully automatic M-16, etc.)
Well “almost everyone.”
But even the extremist Nation Rifle Association isn’t advocating anyone’s right to own a fully automatic machine gun or a couple of live grenades.
And even the 5-4 “District of Columbia v. Heller” decision (2008), via obiter dictum, affirmed the right of the government to ban a class of weapons – specifically, machine guns.
So we ALREADY agree (even Supreme Court Justices Scalia, Thomas, Alito, Kennedy & Roberts) that the Feds can impose “regulations” on the lawful ownership of weapons by The People.
What the argument today is, is where that line of regulation is drawn.
I’m saying the banning of assault weapons – including magazines (“clips” if you will) is on the regulatory side of the line government can ban.
Today’s assault weapons, with the capacity for carnage similar to the Thompsons of the 1930′s, can and should be banned.
Well, more accurately: AGAIN.
Because even though that card I carry in my wallet is a joke, the carnage assault weapons continue to cause is not.