Some Thoughts on"Reasonable" Restrictions

This is a discussion on Some Thoughts on"Reasonable" Restrictions within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Now, I'm certain that this is not a new idea, but all the talk of "strict scrutiny" and "reasonable restrictions" has gotten me thinking. I ...

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Thread: Some Thoughts on"Reasonable" Restrictions

  1. #1
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    Some Thoughts on"Reasonable" Restrictions

    Now, I'm certain that this is not a new idea, but all the talk of "strict scrutiny" and "reasonable restrictions" has gotten me thinking.

    I believe we all agree that there are some restrictions to our personal freedoms, Constitutionally guaranteed or otherwise. There are, for example, a number of restrictions on the 1st Amendment - you cannot slander, incite riots, etc. This argument is often brought up when it comes to the 2A - "reasonable restrictions" are accepted and should be applied to the 2A as well...

    OK, sounds, well, reasonable, doesn't it? Here's the problem as I see it - and I grant that it's an academic exercise and will likely have no effect on the law, but here it is anyway:

    The restrictions on the 1A (and others) are for [b]acts[/i]. I can think about slandering/libeling someone, I am allowed to have the top-of-the-line tools to slander/libel (printing press, printers, high-speed internet, and so on), and I am allowed to go anywhere, any time, with the tools and physical capability to commit these crimes. Contrast that with the restrictions on the 2A...

    Here, we restrict the tools. Here, we restrict the possibility - not the crime. Possession of a gun does not lead to murder any more than possession of a loudspeaker leads to incitement of riots. The restrictions are utterly out of synch with each other, and the argument that these 2A restrictions are OK because of the 1A (and other) restrictions is completely false.

    So, in that light, let's enact "reasonable" restrictions on the 2A as we do the others - it should be illegal to use a firearm to harm another person except in defense of life or limb (to make a broad generalization). What? It's already illegal to do that? Then why is there such a thing as "gun control debate?"
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    Point taken, but I think we will see something similar to the restrictions place on automobiles.

    State licenseing, testing and training rules. Federal standards for firearms etc....

    I like your 1st Admendment arguement better but I don't see it headed that way.
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

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    Senior Member Array BlackPR's Avatar
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    I see where you're going with this. Let me play devils advocate.

    LawyerBlackPR: The restrictions are identical. They're restricting the actions enumerated in the constitution -- namely, "keeping" and "bearing". So in affect, we aren't restricting the tools at all, only the actions of keeping and bearing them.


    Note: I'm not really a lawyer, but I play one on this thread.
    The facts are indisputable. There is more data supporting the benefits of Conceal Carry than there is supporting global warming. If you choose ignorance, in light of all the evidence, in order to bolster your irrational fear of guns, you are a greater threat to society than any gun owner.

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    There has and always will be war. Mankind has killed mankind sine the son’s of Adam. The Middle East has always been at war, and always will be. Some truths hold through out time; never changing, and will remain with us.

    Demi gods, and thief’s who want to take away your life, must less everything you own, have been with us, and are going to be with us till the end of time.

    Yet, knowing that, some citizens want to appointment themselves over others; because they think they have a better idea, or have invented a “better mouse trap”. But the truth be it known, their ideas have been tried before, and have failed.

    In this case, its gun registration, and licensing but it too has been tried before, by other world civilizations, and those civilizations have failed. (Think Germany, Russia,)

    The 2nd amendment was added to allow ordinary citizens the ability to protect themselves, from not only thieves, but the very government its self, should it veer in to anarchy.

    No, these nay Sayers are only after one thing, be it a step at a time, but it is to disarm ordinary citizens, and allow the Police, and military to be the only ones with guns.

    The problem comes from the fact that criminals do not pay any attention to the law, and without the 1st and 2nd amendment, there would be not checks and balance to keep track of our government.

    God bless, America

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackPR View Post
    I see where you're going with this. Let me play devils advocate.

    LawyerBlackPR: The restrictions are identical. They're restricting the actions enumerated in the constitution -- namely, "keeping" and "bearing". So in affect, we aren't restricting the tools at all, only the actions of keeping and bearing them.


    Note: I'm not really a lawyer, but I play one on this thread.
    OK, I get it, but with all other tools possession is not restricted, OVERT acts are. I can own a knife that is quite capable of killing - I only get in trouble if I kill. I can own a computer that is quite capable of sending libelous statements all over the world instantaneously, I only get in trouble if I do that. I can own a camera that is quite capable of taking pictures of child porn, but owning the camera is not a crime... And really, if you came out and said "we are going to specifically make 'keeping' and 'bearing' arms illegal, do you think that would stand Constitutional muster? Would a federal law that specifically said "Congress is going to establish a state religion" be weighed differently?
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    VIP Member Array Kerbouchard's Avatar
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    Opfor, great reasoning...a well thought out argument and it's put forth very well. If you can just shorten all of the words to one syllable or less(i.e. grunts), we might be able to help the anti's understand.

    Until then...A parting thought...

    If a decision or position is reached via emotion or prejudice rather than reasoning, what makes you think reasoning can change that decision/position?
    There are two sides to every issue: one side is right and the other is wrong, but the middle is always evil.

    http://miscmusings.townhall.com/

    Who is John Galt?

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    Senior Member Array BlackPR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OPFOR View Post
    And really, if you came out and said "we are going to specifically make 'keeping' and 'bearing' arms illegal, do you think that would stand Constitutional muster? Would a federal law that specifically said "Congress is going to establish a state religion" be weighed differently?
    Well, as we heard in the arguments for heller yesterday, there are three ways they're looking to skin this cat.

    1. Does "keep and bear arms" enumerate one right or two rights? How that would be decided could possibly lead to limitations. If it's two rights, then carrying and owning are both individual rights. If it's one right, then carrying may not be considered a right.

    2. What is the definition of "arms"

    3. What scrutiny is given to laws limiting firearms. Strict Scrutiny or a lesser standard.

    The limiting tools vs. limiting rights is a symantical (is that a word?) argument. They would argue that speech, by its nature, is not tangible object, so any comparisons of the 2A to other rights fail, since they don't enumerate tangible objects.

    In other words, a lawyer would argue that it's apples and oranges. They might even use your example by saying "everyone agrees that limitations on speech such as libel are acceptable, but we couldn't apply that standard to religion and say that only reasonable religions are covered. So the reasonableness standard has to be applied uniquely to each instance of application, not as an umbrella that covers all rights."

    Again, I'm playing devils advocate. I dislike "reasonable restrictions" because "reasonable restrictions" are always, always, always a slippery slope. But it seems to be an accepted reality, unfortunately.
    Last edited by BlackPR; March 19th, 2008 at 02:28 PM. Reason: fixed wording
    The facts are indisputable. There is more data supporting the benefits of Conceal Carry than there is supporting global warming. If you choose ignorance, in light of all the evidence, in order to bolster your irrational fear of guns, you are a greater threat to society than any gun owner.

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    Distinguished Member Array kazzaerexys's Avatar
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    Actually, if you look closely, there are efforts in various legislatures to restrict the "tools" associated with other rights. Look at the various laws suggested to make anonymous Internet posting unlawful (analogous to gun registration), to tax Internet access (license/permit fees, tax stamps). I am sure I am missing some.

    No, the approach to gun control is not confined solely to gun control. Heck, the attempt to bring back the so-called Fairness Doctrine in order to muzzle conservative talk radio is kind of like the handgun ban (we aren't silencing your ability to Speak Freely, we are just preventing certain categories of speech...)

    The best example of restricting the "tools" is the copyright wars brought on by RIAA and MPAA. They want to restrict your ability to buy or own digital copying devices because you could use them for illegal copies, and a lot of legislators seem to be buying into that bunk...

    My personal belief is that the Second is on an exactly equal legal footing as the First, so I will be satisfied if the same standards (strict scrutiny) are applied by the courts.

    Personally, depending on how these things show up in Heller's decision, I think there were two really good things said yesterday. One was the possibility of identifying "keep" and "bear" arms as separate rights, which would give some push to "shall issue" or "Vermont-style" carry. The other is the obvious direction the machine gun debate was going (i.e., there is a defensible 2A right to owning fully automatic weapons) before Gura wisely sidestepped that particular trap.
    “What is a moderate interpretation of [the Constitution]? Halfway between what it says and [...] what you want it to say?” —Justice Antonin Scalia

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