Sunday, June 21, 2009

Something we tend to forget

Atom Smasher over at Men are Not Potatoes mentions something that tends to get forgotten in the 2nd Amendment debate.

"I think the Framers would have been far more comfortable with the locals having an Abrams and a Mark 19 and an F-22 than with the government having one. Hell - they didn't even want a standing army, let alone one that could run roughshod over the citizenry." [emphasis mine]

That's important to remember when someone throws out the old "it only applies to the militia" argument. The founders did not want a standing army. This is mentioned in many of the constitutions of the original 13 states. For example, Section I, Article 13 of the Virginia Constitution:

"That a well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the proper, natural, and safe defense of a free state, therefore, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; that standing armies, in time of peace, should be avoided as dangerous to liberty; and that in all cases the military should be under strict subordination to, and governed by, the civil power." [emphasis mine]

The founders had a deep distrust of standing armies, and they didn't want one - they wanted a militia made up of ordinary citizens, that could organize into an army if a war occurred, because they knew it a militia made up of the people could not be easily turned against the people.

So why would they restrict the right to keep and bear arms to a select few in a standing military?

(On another note, Men Are Not Potatoes has been added to my blogroll. Welcome!)

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