Rice Says Gun Rights Are as Important as Right to Free Speech and Religion
By Barry Schweid The Associated Press
Published: May 11, 2005
WASHINGTON (AP) - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, recalling how her
father took up arms to defend fellow blacks from racist whites in the
segregated South, said Wednesday the constitutional right of Americans to
own guns is as important as their rights to free speech and religion.
In an interview on CNN's "Larry King Live," Rice said she came to that view
from personal experience. She said her father, a black minister, and his
friends armed themselves to defended the black community in Birmingham,
Ala., against the White Knight Riders in 1962 and 1963. She said if local
authorities had had lists of registered weapons, she did not think her
father and other blacks would have been able to defend themselves.
Birmingham, where Rice was born in 1954, was a focal point of racial
tension. Four black girls were killed when a bomb exploded at a Birmingham
church in 1963, a galvanizing moment in the fight for civil rights.
Rice said she favored background checks and controls at gun shows. However,
she added, "we have to be very careful when we start abridging rights that
the Founding Fathers thought very important."
Rice said the Founding Fathers understood "there might be circumstances that
people like my father experienced in Birmingham, Ala., when, in fact, the
police weren't going to protect you."
"I also don't think we get to pick and choose from the Constitution," she
said in the interview, which was taped for airing Wednesday night. "The
Second Amendment is as important as the First Amendment."
The First Amendment protects religious, press and speech freedoms as well as
the rights to assemble and petition the government. The Second Amendment
guarantees "a well-regulated militia" and "the right of the people to keep
and bear arms." Gun-rights supporters and those who favor gun control
disagree over whether the amendment guarantees individual gun ownership.
P95Carry "how bad can the media get!!!" <mad>
as bad as you think...triple it...and you'll be getting fairly close. :mad:
BTW...I always liked Condoleezza Rice.
My gut feeling about her was always good.
At least she is up front & honest.
I like her even more after I read that. Thanks Bumper.