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A little history, re: Gun Control

04/15/2011

All through out history, you can find innumerable scenarios where the conquerors have taken away the weapons of the defeated. Ancient Greece, etcetera, etcetera. Our own nation, before it WAS our own nation, the Crown tried to take away our guns. Communist take overs, NAZI Germany, Cambodia, China, on and on. Rhetorical question: WHY?

So the people could not resist the oppression of the government. Could not fight back. Could not take that country back to the people. Could not prevent their own slaughter by the agents of that government.

After our Revoltion against the Crown, and the establishment of the United States of America, nobody messed with the peoples Right To Keep And Bear Arms. Until the return of the power mad. The controllers. The oppressors of Freedom. You can put that shortly after the War Between The States, aka the Civil War. And again I ask, rhetorically, WHY? Oh, and, WHO?

It wasn’t until the debate over the citizenship of freed blacks began to heat up that the general right to arms became an issue of any significance. The reasons for the two issues to be connected, and the challenges involved in recognizing blacks as citizens, were summed up by Chief Justice Roger Taney in the Supreme Court’s notorious Dred Scott decision of 1856.

In that case, Mr. Scott was a slave who was suing for his freedom based on his owner’s relocating from a slave state to a free state and back to a slaveholding state. According to Scott’s argument, he felt that when he was taken across state lines into a free state he automatically became free himself. He claimed that for his now former owner to force Scott to accompany him back to the South and back into bondage was nothing short of kidnapping.

Unfortunately Scott had to sue in federal court, where the sentiment ran pretty strong against any recognition of blacks as citizens. In his majority opinion Taney wrote that it was basically unthinkable to even consider the idea of blacks as citizens, since as citizens they would have “the right to enter every other state whenever they pleased … the full liberty of speech in public and in private upon all subjects upon which its own citizens might speak; to hold public meetings upon political affairs, and to keep and carry arms wherever they went.”

Two things are abundantly clear from Taney’s writings in Dred Scott: 1. Taney saw the Second Amendment as absolute in its protection of the right to arms for all citizens. 2. Taney was opposed to allowing blacks to share in that right or other rights of citizenship.

Now, who were they trying to deprive? And who votes for those self same people ad nauseum? And why in the Name Of All That’s Holy DO they continue to vote for them? Who continues to hold these people in a “slave status”? You work (vote) for us, and we’ll keep you housed and fed. You keep the plantation working (Us in power), you just do as you’re told, and we’ll make sure you don’t have to think about bettering your own life. You’ll be taken care of enough to survive.

Initially these laws were intended to only be enforced against African-Americans, but it wasn’t long before they were being applied to other various “underclasses” – the poor, recent immigrants and people in less respected trades. Eventually people’s sense of fairness began kicking in, but rather than repeal the oppressive laws, they began enforcing them more even-handedly against everyone.

The definitions and history that was so intentionally twisted and distorted to disenfranchise black citizens became the foundation for disenfranchising the citizens of many states, and in 1934 the entire nation with enactment of the National Firearms Act.

Even then Congress and the federal government recognized the supremacy of the Second Amendment, but they used the same sort of distorted legalese to claim that they were not exercising regulatory powers, but rather exercising taxing powers and that there was nothing in the Constitution saying they couldn’t tax firearms.

The Supreme Court then spent most of the next 70 years avoiding the issue. They dodged a bullet in the 1939 Miller case, which challenged a conviction for transporting a sawed-off shotgun across state lines. The plaintiffs in the case were no-shows, and the Court made its ruling based solely on the case presented by the government. Their conclusion was that since they had no evidence that a short-barreled shotgun was common in the service of the militia, they didn’t see that it would be protected under the Second Amendment.

Of course short-barreled shotguns have always been staples of the armed forces, but that didn’t matter because there was no one present to inform the Court about that fact in 1939. The Court’s suggestion that only military-style weapons were protected under the Second Amendment was, and continues to be, ignored, but a comment made earlier in the decision to the effect that the most important aspect of the Second Amendment was its relationship to the militia, was clutched to the chests of hoplophobic judges and gun banners and interpreted to mean that the Second Amendment only applied to people actively serving in the militia.

And there’s plenty more where that came from. This is some real shit to think about. As if that weren’t enough, part 1 of the potential exercise in futility of explaining this historical set of facts, then comes part 2.

The right to arms was firmly ensconced in the American system and psyche as a fundamental aspect of liberty – distinguishing citizen from subject and master from slave. It is ironic that, as another group broke the bonds of slavery and strove for recognition as free men and citizens, this same fundamental principle of liberty should cause citizens to compromise their own rights in an attempt to limit the rights of others.

The two key obstacles blocking restrictions on arms at the state and local levels were originally the objections of white citizens not willing to have their rights infringed and federal intervention under authority of the Bill of Rights, and later the 14th Amendment.

But whites’ fears of lost liberty were largely overridden by their fear of ex-slaves being given the full rights of citizenship – in other words, armed blacks – and assuaged by assurances that any restrictions would apply only to “undesirables.”

Fear the government that fears your guns. I know that’s “bumper sticker wisdom”, but it’s also HISTORY. From the time people invented writing, hell, from the days of stories passed down through speech, it has always been true. “Those who turn their swords to plowshares, will plow for those who do not”. This is normally attributed to Thomas Jefferson, or Benjamin Franklin. But a more appropriate quote might be this from the same place:

“The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing. Indeed, I would go so far as to say that the supply of arms to the underdogs is a sine qua non for the overthrow of any sovereignty.”

– Adolf Hitler, April 11th 1942

There are many more of that flavor. Check that link, it’s very informative!

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