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1471 comments

Your Rights ONLINE? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175058)

What the hell does the second amendment have to do with my rights ONLINE? I'm still allowed to shoot people in games over the internet, regardless of what the handgun rights are here in DC.

Re:Your Rights ONLINE? (5, Funny)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175072)

If the government is going to tax people for their "virtual earnings", taking away their "virtual weapons" is the next step.

Re:Your Rights ONLINE? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175206)

It should be interpreted more as "Your Rights, Online" I think. The comma makes all the difference.

Re:Your Rights ONLINE? (3, Informative)

ravenshrike (808508) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175252)

Of course, the only ratified versions of the 2nd around actually have only 1 comma, in the middle, but the gun grabbers have yet to realize this.

Re:Your Rights ONLINE? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175266)

Ando: "No, no, save the cheerleader, then save the world."

Hiro: "No, it's an "if, then" statement."

Ando: "How do you know?"

Hiro: "I was the one who said it!"

Ando: "Future you doesn't count as you."

Re:Your Rights ONLINE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175318)

You mean you don't put a couple of rounds into your DSL modem every time it drops a connection?

More Importantly.. (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175394)

What the hell does this have to do with news for nerds??? It seems the only gun-related news on slashdot gets posted when it makes gun ownership look bad, or their owners like maniacs.

It's funny how the same people who hate the second amendment right to bear arms have no problem with the Supreme Court magically finding a constitutional right to an abortion.

US DOJ says (5, Informative)

RevDobbs (313888) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175066)

The United States Department of Justice says that the 2nd amendment is an individual right [usdoj.gov].

Re:US DOJ says (4, Insightful)

aichpvee (631243) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175250)

Pretty sure the Department of Justice is condoning torture and crimes against humanity now. Not exactly the most credible source of opinion on such things.

Re:US DOJ says (4, Informative)

Spetiam (671180) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175422)

Be that as it may, "the people" is never used in the bill of rights to refer to citizens collectively. The majority in Dred Scott knew this, which is why they said it was unthinkable that blacks could be citizens because then they could "keep and carry arms wherever they went." Interesting that a Jim Crow law is still so popular in DC...

they would say that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175288)

since their boss (GW bush) has drunk the NRA kook-aid.

Now is the time to define. . . (1)

Ninjaesque One (902204) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175076)

What a 'well regulated' militia is. Probably has to be set up to defend nat'l safety.

Re:Now is the time to define. . . (1)

Harmonious Botch (921977) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175202)

I think Jefferson offered some guidance here, with his comments about a little revolution every now and then is a good thing. He noted that it should probably happen every 2nd or 3rd generation. ( Sorry, I forget the exact quote. )

From my cold dead hands (3, Insightful)

drewzhrodague (606182) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175086)

Hi. Like the man said, 'from my cold dead hands.' Guns aren't just for the military, cops, and gang-bangers -- we have 'em to make sure that our government doesn't herd us into cattle-cars, and send us off to the thermal depolymerizor en masse. We've already got Extrordinary Rendition, what's after that?

I have '666' in my NRA membership number.

Re:From my cold dead hands (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175140)

The other side's argument to that is usually, "What can your deer rifle do against an Abrams tank or a nuclear bomb?" They neglect to think. In the days when the Bill of Rights was drafted, there were no heavier weapons than a cannon -- which was a slow, easy-to-capture target serviced by slow humans. When the US Gov't passed the 1932 Gun Control Act because the cops were outgunned by the Mafia and other criminals, that's when the power shifted hands. People like Al Capone and Bonnie and Clyde fucked it up for all of us.

Re:From my cold dead hands (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175434)

Pardon me, I got that date and law totally wrong. It's the Federal Firearms Act of 1938. The reasoning is the same, though.

Wow, I can't believe ACs have to wait 20 minutes between posts. That's ridiculous.

Re:From my cold dead hands (5, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175152)

Right, because your grand-daddy's rifle is really going to help against tanks and automatic weaponry. And most people can buy a gas mask, but not many do, which means that anyone wanting to subdue you non-violently just has to use some simple tear gas. The times when a group of civilians could contend with an equally numerous group of soldiers are long gone.

Re:From my cold dead hands (5, Insightful)

kryten_nl (863119) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175182)

You haven't seen the news in the last couple of years, have you? (Iraq, Afghanistan)

Re:From my cold dead hands (4, Interesting)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175292)

The resistance in Iraq and Afghanistan has access to automatic weaponry and rocketry. American civilians don't, and many advocates for the Second Amendment don't try to claim that anyone has a right to arms so powerful.

Re:From my cold dead hands (2, Insightful)

Average_Joe_Sixpack (534373) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175366)

The real power of the resistance in Iraq and Afghanistan are the assassinations of any locals caught working with the Americans. That's the true power of the second amendment. No mayor, sheriff or soldier is going to impose oppressive measures when they risk a bullet in the back of the head (or that of their family members) every time the go out to start the car.

Re:From my cold dead hands (1)

kryten_nl (863119) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175408)

Still, parents comment was to broad. If you want to get into a logistics discussion I would kindly suggest you read up on the Oklahoma Bombing a few years back.

Re:From my cold dead hands (5, Insightful)

cptgrudge (177113) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175448)

There's nothing magical or extraordinarily high tech about automatic weapons and rockets. If it really came down to a full on Civil War in the USA, I'm sure a few facilities could ramp up to produce the things under the radar. There are drug labs all over the place now, and look how efficient we've been at taking care of those.

Of course, all that may be unnecessarily complicated. There are plenty of international weapons manufacturers that would love to sell to the American public, and getting those products across the largely unprotected/unwatched US borders would probably be trivial.

In short, if it gets that bad, the weapons will show.

Re:From my cold dead hands (1)

Average_Joe_Sixpack (534373) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175224)

Example 1: Iraq
Example 2: Afghanistan
Example 3: Chechnya
Example 4: Columbia
Example 5: Vichy France

Re:From my cold dead hands (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175374)

Example 1: Iraq
Example 2: Afghanistan
Example 3: Chechnya
Example 4: Columbia
Example 5: Vichy France


There was a revolution in Columbia, Maryland?
Unless you mean the country of Colombia...

Re:From my cold dead hands (5, Insightful)

isomeme (177414) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175268)

The times when a group of civilians could contend with an equally numerous group of soldiers are long gone.

Absolutely. But combat-capable civilians outnumber soldiers and police in our country by at least fifty to one. That tends to even the odds a bit.

To quote (from memory) a German commander on the Easter front during WWII: "Each of our tanks could beat five of theirs. We kept meeting six."

Re:From my cold dead hands (2, Funny)

Blkdeath (530393) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175308)

To quote (from memory) a German commander on the Easter front during WWII: "Each of our tanks could beat five of theirs. We kept meeting six."

How many tanks do you and your neighbors own?

Re:From my cold dead hands (4, Insightful)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175398)

How many tanks do you and your neighbors own?

The US Army does not have enough tanks to cover the contry. If it actually came down to it, you would not have a tank in your neighborhood, but your friendly local cop at your door. And him I can defend against.

Re:From my cold dead hands (1)

drewzhrodague (606182) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175294)

Also, note the problem -- I'm at home here with my laptop, and outside there are armed soldiers with tear gas tanks, and automatic weaponry. Can you see why this is bad? Note that I am not David Koresh [wikipedia.org]. Lets hope that armed soldiers don't need to pull American Citizens from their homes with automatic weapons, tear gas, or anything else.

Re:From my cold dead hands (0)

ravenshrike (808508) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175380)

You're not a pretty nice guy, albeit a bit kooky, who got fucked over and killed by the govt.? What a surprise, seeing as you're alive to post.

Re:From my cold dead hands (2, Insightful)

dingDaShan (818817) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175328)

There are places to buy stuff online like gas masks, etc. Regardless of how many people DO buy one, people CAN. The 2nd Amendment right has been interpreted as being able to have weapons for the entire history of the united states. Getting rid of it would only mean that the ones with the weapons are the criminals and not the people that don't use them maliciously.

Right, because your grand-daddy's rifle is really going to help against tanks and automatic weaponry.
If it can't contend with the military, then what is the problem?

Re:From my cold dead hands (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175382)

If it can't contend with the military, then what is the problem?

The problem is that, even if you can't contend with the military:

  1. Your kids can still hurt themselves, even if you think you locked stuff up enough.
  2. You can still shoot your spouse after a domestic altercation
  3. You can kill a person "in self-defence" and yet have it turn out that he was no harm at all, you just overreacted and now you're going away from a long time.

grand-daddy's rifle (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175348)

From reports in the media one would be led to believe that individuals with improvised and small munitions are competing quite successfully against numerous, well equipped, highly trained and well motivated soldiers in at least one current theater of operations.

You can't have it both ways.

Re:grand-daddy's rifle (0, Offtopic)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175416)

Since when do mortars and automatic rifles count as "small munitions" in the context of our Second Amendment discussion?

Re:From my cold dead hands (1)

OmgTEHMATRICKS (836103) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175360)

Here's how they stay on the same level: Those without weapons work their way up the weapon food chain. If you have a knife and another guy has a pistol, you sneak up on him and kill him, then take his pistol. Then find someone with a shotgun, sneak up on them, bullet in the brainpan, take their shotgun. Someone with an automatic rifle? Wait for them to come by, blam, take the AR. It keeps going up and up and up. If done properly, people will have bombers, fighter jets, and missiles. The government will literally have to start lobbing nuclear warheads at its own territory. What good is it to rule a country if there is nothing left to rule? The brilliant thing is that soldiers are still technically the people so they'll have to start executing and 'neutralizing' their own children in this hypothetical war, and I'm sure even soldiers have their own limits. If a bomber pilot's target is the town of his own family, chances are he'll give his superiors the finger even if it means his own death(if he's worth a damn.)

Re:From my cold dead hands (1)

legirons (809082) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175388)

"Right, because your grand-daddy's rifle is really going to help against tanks and automatic weaponry."

It only needs to help against the police - if you're fighting for a true american cause, then your sons in the army will be back with their tank and automatic weaponry to fight with you...

besides, what part of the second amendment precludes you from owning tanks and automatic weaponry yourself? it doesn't mention any limit (and it's not like the people who wrote it didn't know about long range and crew-served weapons -- they chose not to add any such limits)

Re:From my cold dead hands (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175410)

And why shouldn't a citizen be allowed to own a tank?

Re:From my cold dead hands (2, Insightful)

OakDragon (885217) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175414)

I'm always amused that the implied argument here (or inferred, I guess) is that the 2nd Amendment does not go far enough; the right to own missiles and bazookas shall not be infringed!

Re:From my cold dead hands (1)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175428)

Right, because your grand-daddy's rifle is really going to help against tanks and automatic weaponry.

How many American soldiers would be willing to open fire on their hometown for any reason less than a full-blown foreign invasion? A lot less than 100%, I can guarantee.

Guerrilla Warfare (1)

fuego451 (958976) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175452)

The times when a group of civilians could contend with an equally numerous group of soldiers are long gone.

I don't think so. Guerrilla warfare seems to working just fine for Iraq's sectarian groups and insurgents, Hezbollah and Al-Qaeda.

Founding Fathers thought differently (2, Informative)

Average_Joe_Sixpack (534373) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175098)

Federalist 29 [yale.edu]

"What plan for the regulation of the militia may be pursued by the national government is impossible to be foreseen...The project of disciplining all the militia of the United States is as futile as it would be injurious if it were capable of being carried into execution... Little more can reasonably be aimed at with the respect to the people at large than to have them properly armed and equipped ; and in order to see that this be not neglected, it will be necessary to assemble them once or twice in the course of a year." - Alexander Hamilton

Federalist 46 [yale.edu]

"Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments,to which the people are attached, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms. And it is not certain, that with this aid alone they would not be able to shake off their yokes. But were the people to possess the additional advantages of local governments chosen by themselves, who could collect the national will and direct the national force, and of officers appointed out of the militia, by these governments, and attached both to them and to the militia, it may be affirmed with the greatest assurance, that the throne of every tyranny in Europe would be speedily overturned in spite of the legions which surround it."-James Madison

Re:Founding Fathers thought differently (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175192)

It's pretty obvious from the statement that it is an individual right. It says, "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." If it were only the militia, then it could have been shortened to something like "The right of the members of the well regulated Militia to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, being necessary to the security of a free state." Maybe with more commas.

Unless they are trying to expand Heinlein's argument from Starship Troopers (that only those who served in the military should have the right to vote; i.e. to be citizens) to mean that only those in the military are people, I think that this is just an exercise in tortuous logic or wishful thinking.

Re:Founding Fathers thought differently (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175364)

in 'check and balance' context, an unarmed populace is absurd

Oh, this should be cute. (4, Informative)

cprael (215426) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175102)

Even accepting their argument that the 2nd amendment applies only to militias, federal law is pretty black-letter on the matter: the unorganized militia is clearly defined in federal law, and includes pretty much the entire populace.

That being said, the 2nd amendment is the _only_ place in the Bill of Rights where "the people" are defined as a collective body, rather than individuals. And even then, only in the 9th Circuit's realm.

I've allways wondered about this ... (5, Interesting)

kryten_nl (863119) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175106)

... do you guys (/girls) have the right to walk around town with a japanese sword hanging on your belt?

Re:I've allways wondered about this ... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175240)

Unfortunately, no. Anyone can own one, but displaying it in public is considered by authority figures to be a threatening display of force.

The Second Amendment (2, Informative)

OmgTEHMATRICKS (836103) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175114)

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.

Re:The Second Amendment (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175290)

That next-to-last bit of the sentence is a supplementary definition of the preceding declaration, which specifies that the right is granted to an organized militia, so the primary subject is what's being made to not be infringed.

Re:The Second Amendment (1)

OmgTEHMATRICKS (836103) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175402)

Hm. To me, it seems that they're saying that "the security of a Free State" is the people's right to keep and bear arms. This militia of the People keeping and bearing those arms to keep our freedoms safe is necessary in order to keep that freedom going, and that militia shall not be infringed.

whats wrong with shirt sleaves... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175124)

if people want to bae their arms let them!

Thank God for that (0, Redundant)

Toby The Economist (811138) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175134)

The mass ownership of guns is one of the leading causes of terror and misery in our society.

It's a sign of how backwards we are in non-technological matters that our society considers it right and proper for everyone to be able to carry a device designed to kill other people.

The only society which would need such a right would be one which has already armed all its people, so that it becomes necessary to possess a killing device merely to deter those who would mis-used their killing device.

And how fucked up is that?

Re:Thank God for that (1)

future assassin (639396) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175186)

>It's a sign of how backwards we are in non-technological matters that our society considers it right and proper for everyone to be able to carry a device designed to kill other people.

WTF are you talking about? One day guns are banned. Wow I get into my car and run over the person I dont like. Better yet I stab them. Even better yet, I wii chuck them to death.

Re:Thank God for that (1)

Toby The Economist (811138) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175450)

It's a bit like having a calculator or a sheet of paper and a pen.

It's much easier to do math - and so you're more likely to do it - when you have a calculator in your hand.

If, on the other hand, you have to dig out the paper, the pen, and engage brain, you're less likely to do it.

So, we have a situation now where many people - especially in violent inner city areas - have in their hands a device which with the pull of a trigger can immediately kill at ranges from point blank to a few hundred meters.

Compare this to a situation where people don't have such a device - but have much less efficient devices, like cars (bulky, hard to maneover), knives (not much of a ranged attack, much less lethal, very messy) and Wii controllers (weak straps, could fail in use).

Re:Thank God for that (1)

OmgTEHMATRICKS (836103) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175194)

What's wrong with everyone having the right to equally defend themselves from criminals and others who wish to do them harm?

What?!@ (2, Insightful)

drewzhrodague (606182) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175210)

The mass ownership of guns is one of the leading causes of terror and misery in our society.

Really? How do you come to this conclusion?

I would think that assholes behind the wheel of the giant SUVs provide me with more terror and misery than anything else I can think of off hand. In fact, I get quite a bit of amusement out of shooting computers with my gun, not feelings of terror. Maybe the computers I shoot feel terror?

Re:Thank God for that (3, Insightful)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175212)

It's a sign of how backwards we are in non-technological matters that our society considers it right and proper for everyone to be able to carry a device designed to kill other people.

Close, but not quite. Our society considers it right and proper for everyone to carry a device designed to defend against other people killing us.

Re:Thank God for that (1)

Spetiam (671180) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175302)

It says something of the grandparent's personal character that when he sees a gun he thinks, "that's for killing" as opposed to "that's for safeguarding."

Re:Thank God for that (0, Troll)

bongey (974911) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175244)

Anything can be used to kill people, guns don't kill people, people kill people. Ok you want the government to have all the power, so they will never do anything wrong... Ah Tiananmen Square, governments in action with the people having no way to protect themselves. The founding fathers put it in there for a reason... God dammit they were a hell of a lot smarter than you , so just shut up!

Re:Thank God for that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175262)

And if they re-interpret the second amendment, the criminals will happily turn in their firearms, right? Guns are used as many (or more) than 2.5 million times per year for defensive reasons. It people like you that would take guns away from law abiding citizens that will cause terror and misery in our society by making them easy prey. How about actually trying to educate yourself on the subject?

Re:Thank God for that (1)

DustoneGT (969310) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175306)

Yeah, you're right. In fact Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, and other dictators of history agree. What's going on in Iraq right now proves that a few yuppies with guns can keep an unwanted government out of control. If our government was to become tyrannical, it would be our only recourse.

Re:Thank God for that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175312)

What is fucked up is, in a disarmed society, expecting a frail 85 year old man to be able to defend himself against a 250 lb, 30 year old male criminal. The criminal will simply beat him to death and take is possessions undeterred and unopposed.

Introduce a gun into the hand of the 85 year old man, and things change. Its like Sam Colt inscribed on his 45's - "Fear no man, no matter his size. Just call on me, I'll equalize."

Re:Thank God for that (1)

nanolith (58246) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175344)

Riiight. Because the criminals who already have guns illegally would give these up as soon such a ban was passed?

We live in a dangerous world. It is the right of the people to arm themselves. We cannot expect the government to always be able to protect us from people who wish to do us harm. Such thinking is naieve.

Originally, the reason why this amendment was added to the Constitution was so the people could protect themselves from a corrupt government.

Re:Thank God for that (1)

chill (34294) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175396)

The Second Amendment has nothing to do with protecting yourself from criminals or with hunting and everything to do with keeping your government in check.

Re:Thank God for that (1)

Entropy (6967) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175418)

The mass ownership of guns is one of the leading causes of terror and misery in our society.
Hardly. There are far more uses of guns for self defense than ALL gun related deaths combined. Thats roughly 40,000 per year for gun related deaths and over a million DGUs annually in the US, stopping violent crime. The vast majority of DGUs aren't even a "shots fired" situation - the (would be)criminal sees that the victim is armed, and decides on a life preserving course of action. Guns in the hands of would be victims are the fastest criminal-mind changers around.
It's a sign of how backwards we are in non-technological matters that our society considers it right and proper for everyone to be able to carry a device designed to kill other people.
Unfortuneately, you're wrong. Our society doesn't do that .. not the way you portray. I only WISH that we had a stronger societal tradition of carrying for self defense. Anyhow, yes, guns are "designed to kill" - and they're very well designed for this purpose. So well designed in fact, a lone old lady properly trained can fend off a large number of young male hoodlums. I'd say that is "right and proper".
The only society which would need such a right would be one which has already armed all its people, so that it becomes necessary to possess a killing device merely to deter those who would mis-used their killing device.
Not at all true. If we did not have "the great equalizer" we would still have violence - in fact, I'd wager way MORE of it - as there would be no balancing to the aforementioned scenario (a group of young men preying on the otherwise defenseless.)
And how fucked up is that?
Whats fucked up is the attitude of blaming an INANIMATE OBJECT for moral considerations. The guns do not load themselves, aim themselves, and pull their own triggers. The guns do not choose anything, or act of any volition whatsoever. It is human beings who use them - and guns are only tools. The morality is entirely due to the human action. More to the point - what would you do - outlaw guns excepting the police and military? Would you really and truly trust the government with a monopoly on guns? And please remember, Bush is in office right now .. be careful what you wish for.

well-regulated militias (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175136)

I'm all for a "well-regulated militia" interpretation... one that includes the nutcase private militias out there that are standing by to overthrow the federal government. There may come a day when that kind of militia is necessary, and I'll want them fully armed for that contingency. In the meantime, they don't strike me as particularly threatening to public safety. Same for the licensed Bambi-killers: they're mostly harmless, perform an arguably useful service, and in the event that civilization collapses they'll be invaluable members of society.

But what I do consider a public threat - one that isn't counter-balanced by any kind of public good - are all the completely un-regulated firearms out there, not only those in the hands of bank robbers and gang-bangers, but those in the hands of paranoid homeowners and in the hands of kids who think they're toys. I'm not saying they should all be denied any kinds of weapons... just that they shouldn't have the same "right to bear arms" that the better-regulated folks do, and should have to put up with bans on assault weapons, registration, etc.

the right of the people to bear arms... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175304)

shall not be infringed.

'Nuff said.

Organized, regulated groups.. (3, Funny)

xtal (49134) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175148)

I'm assuming then, the NRA meets that definition nicely. :)

well, of course the text doesn't support individs' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175156)

"right to bear arms":

"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."

Plus that's "the people," as in "the people of texas vs. that negro mothafscka."

This comes about two centuries too late, no ? (2, Insightful)

dargaud (518470) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175184)

They should have wondered about this a long time ago, before there were weapons all over the country, no ? And BTW, for those who think that the ammendments are untouchables, here are the answers to the question: "Do the US constitution amendments still matter?":
1. Sort of
2. Sort of
3. Yes
4. Nope
5. Nope
6. Sorry, no
7. Not sure
8. No
9. Not sure
10. Technically yes.

Re:This comes about two centuries too late, no ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175350)

1. Sort of
2. Sort of
3. Yes
4. Nope
5. Nope
6. Sorry, no
7. Not sure
8. No
9. Not sure
10. Technically yes.
Examples? Citations? Anything?

c0m (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175188)

Windows, SUN 0r (7000+1400+700)*4

More guns for the US (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175190)

As a non-American I am all in favour of lots of guns there. Because of the huge number of shootings the GSW medical tech has improved immensely. Doctors from all over the world go to the US to learn about it. If they don't get shot they return home with valuable skills. Of course there aren't so many shooting at home but still could come in handy. So keep that 2nd Amendment, I say.

Military vs. Sporting use (3, Insightful)

Spetiam (671180) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175198)

i think there's little argument that the 2nd amendment was articulated to guarantee the ability of a free people to defend themselves against and even overthrow an unjust aggressor or ruling entity.

Which is fine...except that if the ruling entity--or those on its payroll--is the only one with weapons of war, then the 2nd amendment doesn't mean diddly to the commoners. Why do we have the "bill of rights," anyhow? It certainly isn't there to protect the rights of the rulers over their subjects. The 2nd amendment is meaningless unless it guarantees the right of private citizens to "keep and carry arms wherever they [go]" (quoth the majority in Dred Scott, horrified that blacks would be able to "keep and carry arms wherever they went" if they were recognized as citizens).

Re:Military vs. Sporting use (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175424)

Why do we have the "bill of rights," anyhow? It certainly isn't there to protect the rights of the rulers over their subjects.
I have neither the stamina nor the incentive to get involved in a second amendment debate. But I will say this: democracy, like every other system of government, is simply a system of government. And a government is a way of regulating society, such that the masses do not overly interrupt the work of the important. Telling people they have a role in the world - indeed, giving them a role, however ineffectual it may be- is a great way to get a docile populace. And it works: America has survived over 200 years, with only major insurrection (the Civil War) which was, greatly simplified, caused by the South not believing it had any power (since Lincoln was elected without any southern states).

But let's not get into the illusion that democracy exists to empower the people because some philosopher decided, "oh, everyone should have an equal voice." People are not equal, and trying to make them equal is idiotic. But giving everyone the illusion of equality, you can get all the people who would normally cause fusses to step out the way and let those who are more-equal-than-everyone-else get their work done.

Basic English, please (4, Insightful)

Quila (201335) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175208)

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.


The 2nd Amendment states a right (keep and bear arms) that cannot be infringed. That's it -- no infringement, period. The introductory phrase states a reason for stating this right, but "shall not be infringed" is an absolute. Note it doesn't grant the right; it considers that right, along with "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects" and others to be inherent, above government powers, and says the government will not infringe on them.

Re:Basic English, please (2, Insightful)

jay2003 (668095) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175368)

So government can not stop you from owning nuclear weapon? A nuclear device is an arm and if you have an absolute right to bear arms, you have a right to nuclear weapons. Not mention tanks, F16s, etc. I feel safer already.

Of course if we combine your view of an absolute right with originalist interpretation of the Constitution you only have a right to a musket but not a modern rifle. I don't see how an expansive (to modern weapons) absolute interpretation could not include nukes.

The reason your argument if flawed is there are no extra words in the Constitution. It's an extremely terse document and you are interpreting "well regulated militia" to mean nothing.

Re:Basic English, please (1)

buzzn (811479) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175392)

Correct, the right to bear arms shall not be infringed, under any circumstances... so then, it is clear that we have the right to carry around nerve gas, dirty bombs, nuclear weapons of all shapes and sizes, cruise missiles, howitzers, heavy machine guns, tanks, bazookas, battleships, chemical and biological weapons, as well as box cutters... whenever, and wherever we please. And if the feds get in our way, then they must be a dictatorship and we can open up a can of whoopass on them. Oh, but none of those things were invented when the Constitution was written, and some sort of limitations seem absolutely reasonable, don't they? Hm, that is a bit of a dilemma, isn't it... maybe instead of blindly applying the language, we ought to interpret it in the of the social and technological context of the modern day.

Colonial Militia... (4, Insightful)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175220)

Jerry Pournelle mentioned in a panel debate at Baycon 2006 that the colonial government provided guns and ammo to the citizens (whether they wanted it or not) in case self-defense against a common enemy was needed and that was the original definition of "a well regulated militia". If so, maybe the government today should require every 18-year-old to serve two years in the military and let them keep their gun after their service. You kill three birds with one bullet: everyone in time will have the proper training for using their gun (which should reduce accidents), be armed for self-defense (which should reduce crime) and the whole stupid 2nd Amendment will be gone. Just an idea.

Re:Colonial Militia... (1)

bigdavex (155746) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175430)


If so, maybe the government today should require every 18-year-old to serve two years in the military and let them keep their gun after their service.

I'm going to guess that you're over 18.

I don't think it's right to require a person to put his life on the line for a commander-in-chief he didn't even get a chance to vote against.

Personal safety (5, Informative)

MSG (12810) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175222)

That is bullshit, and I'll tell you why. The courts have established that "Police Have No Duty To Protect Individuals" [firearmsandliberty.com].

Just reading about the case history behind this makes me spitting mad. It takes a stong constitution to even read that entire compilation.

Everyone has the right to defend their safety. In my eyes, everyone has the responsibility to defend their safety.

well regulated (4, Interesting)

gorehog (534288) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175226)

In the phrase "A well regulated militia" regulated = equipped.

The idea was that in the event of tyranny or invasion the people could form up and defend themselves. We are guaranteed the right to pursue life, liberty, and happiness. To pursue life one must be able to defend it. That is why we are guaranteed the right to keep and bear arms.

By now I would have expected the noise about gun control to die down. It's a losing issue for democrats, and gun ownership may well be the only thing that recently stopped the USA from falling into fascist totalitarianism.

Re:well regulated (1)

Timesprout (579035) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175332)

gun ownership may well be the only thing that recently stopped the USA from falling into fascist totalitarianism
By fascist I assume you are referring to the Neo-Cons but would you care to explain how you came to the conclusion that it was guns and not the US electorate which influenced things.

Re:well regulated (1)

buzzn (811479) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175442)

and gun ownership may well be the only thing that recently stopped the USA from falling into fascist totalitarianism

Oh, that must be why Democrats have been running around the halls of congress with M-16s...

At the end of the article... (1)

Exsam (768226) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175246)

They ask the question, "If we decide that it's no longer necessary, can we erase any part of the Constitution?" The answer is, Yes. The constitution was made to be altered, revised and rewritten as needed by the society that it governed. In that way it could continue to be relevant and not just a piece of paper. Does that mean that we should abolish this particular amendment? I personally think no, not at this time. At some point in the future however when we have all reached a more enlightened state it may no longer be nessesary to have an armed population. I also find it quite comforting to know that no leader in his right mind would want to invade a country where the amount of firearms available outnumbers the population by a factor of three or more. (thinks of Iraq) My point stands.

Leave it to DC (0, Troll)

hsmith (818216) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175282)

Leave it to DC with NO gun rights and one of the highest crime rates in the nation to want to attempt to redefine the 2nd amendment. I wonder if these judges would turn over their sidearms which they carry for personal protection? Oh wait no they won't because they need them for safety. How dare the common folk want the same!

biznat3h (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175286)

Don't walk around are aatending a EFNet servers. Track hof where is dying.Things

Misspelling (1)

Tx (96709) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175316)

The 2nd Amendment was actually supposed to confer the "right to bare arms", and was actually intended to protect the tee-shirt and tank top industry. See how important spelling is now, kids?

hrmm (1)

Danzigism (881294) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175356)

I've thought long and hard about this.. and as a bleeding heart liberal, i can understand perfectly fine why it wouldn't be good to ban guns.. first of all you must realize that banning guns, is not going to solve the problem of people getting shot.. the bad people will still get their guns, and people will still die regardless.. i agree that regulation on legitimately owning a firearm should probably increase a bit.. in order to truly compromise here, i think that we're going to have keep guns legal, but make it hard to actually obtain one.. i took the hunter's safety and gun safety course when I was fucking twelve years old.. maybe even eleven.. just because i did that, i don't think it really qualifies me to own a firearm without just a little more knowledge and experience on how to use this weapons..

the fact of the matter is, parents are really fucking stupid.. guns will never magically disapear one day, so we're obviously going to need to just properly educate kids and even adults on why everyone doesn't really need to own a gun.. but if you are, here's how to be safe about it..

continuing my thought about the existence of guns being inevitable, i wouldn't want to ban the right to protect myself in anyway.. 3 years ago i would of said fuck guns and anything related to them.. but the world doesn't seem to be getting any safer.. whether its the people, or the government that want to kill ya..

it's the COMMA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175376)

the writers didn't put that important comma in the text for nothing. Penn and Teller's Bullshit!, Season Three, makes this argument clear. It is exactly because ANY and ALL governments tend to become police states over time (e.g. there are armed people, employed by the government, in uniform, all over my city, my university campus, etc.) that the people have the right to arm themselves. It is an explicit right to remind the government that they work for us. I think the police state currently has the upper hand in the US, I hope it changes over time. For example, none of the states or counties that are permitting concealed carry have had any incidents like the Ok corral (which the anti-gun fanatics predicted over and over). Guns in the hands of decent people greatly reduce crime, empower the people, and might give the police state and government something to ponder before abusing the populace. Outlawing guns makes no difference to a criminal, except it gives them peace of mind that their next victim will probably not have a gun.

My proposal (3, Interesting)

jay2003 (668095) | more than 7 years ago | (#17175444)

Each state (and Washington DC) should able to interpret "well regulated militia" itself. A well regulated militia in Texas might be any private citizen wanting own a firearm. In New York, a well regulated militia might be the national guard only with no private ownership of firearms. If you want to want to own guns, you would have to live in a gun friendly state.

I think solves the underlying problem nicely. Firearms are a problem in major urban centers but not a big problem in rural states. Each state crafts its own rules. There will be states with tight rules and loose ones.

What a good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17175454)

If you democrats out there want to keep power for more than one term you better get this shit shot the fuck down as fast as possible. Remember what happened the last time you tried to fuck with gun owners? Don't think it won't happen again.

And I just want to see the sad motherfucker they send to disarm me. AFAIC any attempt to disarm me in any way is an act of tyranny that must be combated with every resource available to me.
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