This is a discussion on USAToday editorial from today about 2nd Amendment within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I almost fainted when I read this in USAToday at Lunch. It almost sound a little tounge and cheek, but just the fact the writer ...
I almost fainted when I read this in USAToday at Lunch. It almost sound a little tounge and cheek, but just the fact the writer admits the 2nd Amendment is an inindividual right.
A liberal's lament: The NRA might be right after all
By Jonathan Turley
This term, the Supreme Court may finally take up the Voldemort Amendment, the part of the Bill of Rights that shall not be named by liberals. For more than 200 years, progressives and polite people have avoided acknowledging that following the rights of free speech, free exercise of religion and free assembly, there is "the right of the people to keep and bear arms." Of course, the very idea of finding a new individual right after more than two centuries is like discovering an eighth continent in constitutional law, but it is hardly the cause of celebration among civil liberties groups.
Like many academics, I was happy to blissfully ignore the Second Amendment. It did not fit neatly into my socially liberal agenda. Yet, two related cases could now force liberals into a crisis of conscience. The Supreme Court is expected to accept review of District of Columbia v. Heller and Parker v. District of Columbia, involving constitutional challenges to the gun-control laws in Washington.
The D.C. law effectively bars the ownership of handguns for most citizens and places restrictions on other firearms. The District's decision to file these appeals after losing in the D.C. appellate court was driven more by political than legal priorities. By taking the appeal, D.C. politicians have put gun-control laws across the country at risk with a court more likely to uphold the rulings than to reverse them. It has also put the rest of us in the uncomfortable position of giving the right to gun ownership the same fair reading as more favored rights of free press or free speech.
The Framers' intent
Principle is a terrible thing, because it demands not what is convenient but what is right. It is hard to read the Second Amendment and not honestly conclude that the Framers intended gun ownership to be an individual right. It is true that the amendment begins with a reference to militias: "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." Accordingly, it is argued, this amendment protects the right of the militia to bear arms, not the individual.
Yet, if true, the Second Amendment would be effectively declared a defunct provision. The National Guard is not a true militia in the sense of the Second Amendment and, since the District and others believe governments can ban guns entirely, the Second Amendment would be read out of existence.
Another individual right
More important, the mere reference to a purpose of the Second Amendment does not alter the fact that an individual right is created. The right of the people to keep and bear arms is stated in the same way as the right to free speech or free press. The statement of a purpose was intended to reaffirm the power of the states and the people against the central government. At the time, many feared the federal government and its national army. Gun ownership was viewed as a deterrent against abuse by the government, which would be less likely to mess with a well-armed populace.
Considering the Framers and their own traditions of hunting and self-defense, it is clear that they would have viewed such ownership as an individual right — consistent with the plain meaning of the amendment.
None of this is easy for someone raised to believe that the Second Amendment was the dividing line between the enlightenment and the dark ages of American culture. Yet, it is time to honestly reconsider this amendment and admit that ... here's the really hard part ... the NRA may have been right. This does not mean that Charlton Heston is the new Rosa Parks or that no restrictions can be placed on gun ownership. But it does appear that gun ownership was made a protected right by the Framers and, while we might not celebrate it, it is time that we recognize it.
Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University and a member of USA TODAY's board of contributors.
Friendship... is not something you learn in school. But if you haven't learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven't learned anything.
Excellent...now if everyone would awaken!
I don't know what to say. He's right of course but to hear a self admitted Liberal say that the 2A is an individual right gives me hope and at the same time makes me wary. I just don't trust the real die hard Libs and when one of them seems to agree with us, I just get the feeling that they have some kind of angle.
I wonder if he was mugged recently.
I think I just heard a pig fly into the side of my house.
Assault is a behavior, not a device.
"Don't never take no shortcuts." Patty Reed, Donner Party
Lifetime NRA member
What next, is Prof. Turley going to 'recognize' that air is in fact necessary for humans to live or that women do in fact fart?
It cracks me up when persons like this of academia and high edumication that are otherwise bright if not outright smart in other varying areas find themselves becoming self aware of their stupidity and/or out right ignorance when it comes to the second amendment and the OMG!!! gunnnnn debate.
Oh and it never fails the use of snippy backhanded passive aggressive belittling comments even when they are trying to say they are wrong it comes out as if we naives might be righter or rightest, this time, but they themselves were not wrong...
"None of this is easy for someone raised to believe that the Second Amendment was the dividing line between the enlightenment and the dark ages of American culture. Yet, it is time to honestly reconsider... the NRA may have been right. This does not mean that Charlton Heston is the new Rosa Parks..."
Excuse me Professor but because you were raised blissfully into perpetuated ignorance by your folks Ma & Pa Moron does not into itself mean we who were less than blinded were or are some how uncultured classless buffoons. Welcome to the light, bask in your new found exposure to your own ignorance. But because you happened to be a fool last week doesn't make that a problem of our own and yes your scat stank last week just as it does today.
Thank you very much for explaining to us how we classless dark aged living folk just might this one time have by oddest of chances gotten this one right. As a guy I know is oft to say; "Sun shines on **** too, every so often".
Well I say to the professor thanks for the consideration and resolution of this point of constitutionality but you sir are over 200 yrs. late in figuring out what we others amongst the classless dark age living nincompoops have long known to be fact contrary to you and your own kinds assertions, yesterday and the day before that.
Stay classy, Professor.
- Gilligan with OMG!!! a gun
being this close to hell.....am I feeling a slight chill?
"Just getting a concealed carry permit means you haven't commited a crime yet. CCP holders commit crimes." Daniel Vice, senior attorney for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, quoted on Fox & Friends, 8 Jul, 2008
"Sometimes, when you're making gumbo, people just show up.", Leah Chase
I noticed that he said the NRA "might" be right. How about the NRA IS right?
It is apparent that liberals never will admit to something being absolute. Everything has to have some degree of flexibility that can be used to obfuscate its meaning.
Of course if he said that the NRA "IS" right, I am sure somebody would want to debate the meaning of the word "IS", but I can't imagine anyone being that stupid. Can you??
I think a whole flock of pigs is flying over the frozen gates of hell......
If you stand up and be counted, from time to time you may get yourself knocked down. But remember this: A man flattened by an opponent can get up again. A man flattened by conformity stays down for good. ~ Thomas J. Watson, Jr.
I think that we should all send a letter of support to the author as we would send letters when we disagree with an author...it will be just as important...especially since he will be getting many letters from the
I'm off to type mine now...I'd ask that you do the same if you are so inclined :)
At least the dude has the intellectual integrity to acknowledge the truth of something he doesn't like.
So few (left or right) do.
"...bad decisions that turn out well often make heroes."
Gary D. Mitchell, A Sniper's Journey: The Truth About the Man and the Rifle, P. 103, NAL Caliber books, 2006, 1st Ed.