Thursday, July 27, 2006

If they were all the 2nd...

Imagine the Bill of Rights (BoR, later in this post) interpreted like the 2nd Amendment. Some groups like to interpret "the people" as the collective, not individuals. In other words, the right to bear arms is a right of the states.
Let's see how the rest of the BoR would look when interpreted this way:
I. Congress can't establish a state religion, but each state can. They can also prevent the free exercise of religion, should they so choose. Each state shall be free to set up a press, and shall be able to speak for the collective state. States may hold peacable assemblies. States may petition the federal government for redress of grievances.
IV. The states have the right to be free of warrantless federal searches.
V. The only change would be that the states can take land without just compensation, though the feds can't. The states would take it and sell to the feds, though.
VI. Wait, this one said state when they obviously meant the people. It was supposed to read "an impartial jury of the people and district," not the State. It means the same thing, though.
IX. The rights that the Constitution spells out do not necessarily mean that the states don't have other rights.
X. The rights not given to the feds are for the States. Yeah, they say "reserved to the States respectively, or to the people," but we all know that "the people" was just reiterating the emphasis on the states.
Of course, since the anti-gun people also like to talk about technology changes, the freedom of the press is only for the printing presses they had then, not the higher-tech ones now, and definitely not blogs or other electronic sources. The freedom of religion does not apply to Scientology or Mormonism. The right to assemble cannot include facilities with air conditioning, cannot use automobiles to get there, can't film the assembly, and can't use or distribute any printed materials (unless they are made with an old-style printing press). When you petition for redress of grivance, it should be handwritten and hand-delivered.
And that's just the 1st Amendment.
Finally, there's the argument as to which guns we should be able to have. Many anti-gunners claim to be okay with hunting. They would like us to have bolt-action rifles and might even allow a pump-action shotgun. Handguns, semi-autos, full-autos, and calibers not generally used in hunting are dangerous, they say. I'm sorry, but there's no right to hunt in the Constitution, just the right to keep and bear arms. If you really want to link the militia to it, as they generally do, we should have MORE access, since the militia is expected to own and be able to use weapons with a military purpose. As for those who say I'm not a part of the militia, allow me to cite US Code Title 10, Subtitle A, Part I, Chapter 13, Section 311: "The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard."
Males are part of the militia from age 17-45, and females who are in the National Guard are part of it (never mind the obvious discrepancy between the state-run militia and the National Guard).
It's just too bad some of the people (which, in this case, refers to individuals, not the states) who defend the 1st Amendment with great vigor don't recognize the 2nd's importance.

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