Orlando Shooting

Of Course the Second Amendment Protects an Individual Right

Correcting the record about guns and the Constitution.


Ratha Grimes / Foter.com

Does the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protect an individual right to keep and bear arms? Not according to liberal pundit Dahlia Lithwick. Writing at Slate, Lithwick says it is "a hoax," "a lie," "a falsehood" to claim that the Second Amendment protects an individual right. But thanks to the vile propaganda peddled by "exceptionally well-organized, well-funded interest groups," she complains, "the NRA's view of the Second Amendment became the law of the land."

What a tidy little narrative. Evil conservatives have hoodwinked a gullible nation! The problem with Lithwick's account is that it ignores the inconvenient fact that serious legal scholars from across the political spectrum have endorsed the individual rights interpretation of the Second Amendment. What Lithwick dismisses as "the NRA's view" is in reality a well-established and well-respected constitutional position that has found adherents in the highest reaches of the ivory tower. It's not a hoax, it's not a lie, and it's not a falsehood to understand the Second Amendment as a constitutional provision that secures individual rights.

But don't take my word for it. Let's hear from some liberal academics who helped to build the scholarly foundation on which the Supreme Court's 2008 decision in District of Columbia v. Heller was built. As I noted in my recent book Overruled:

For much of the twentieth century, the collective-right view [of the Second Amendment] proved dominant in elite legal circles. But that began to change in the last thirty years, first as conservative and libertarian legal scholars began researching more deeply into the amendment's text and history, and then as prominent liberal academics followed suit. A major turning point occurred in 1989 when University of Texas law professor Sanford Levinson, a leading liberal scholar, published an essay in the prestigious Yale Law Journal titled "The Embarrassing Second Amendment." The embarrassment, Levinson argued, came from the legal left's refusal to take the Second Amendment seriously. "I cannot help but suspect that the best explanation for the absence of the Second Amendment from the legal consciousness of the elite bar," he wrote, "is derived from a mixture of sheer opposition to the idea of private ownership of guns and the perhaps subconscious fear that altogether plausible, and perhaps even 'winning' interpretations would present real hurdles to those of us supporting prohibitory regulation."

Eleven years later, Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe, a respected scholar and teacher whose former students include a young Barack Obama, amended the new third addition of his legal treatise American Constitutional Law to officially endorse the individual-right interpretation of the Second Amendment. This was a marked change from the two previous editions, where Tribe had accepted the collective-right view. "My conclusion came as something of a surprise to me, and an unwelcome surprise," Tribe admitted to the New York Times after the third edition came out. "I have always supported as a matter of policy very comprehensive gun control."

Related: No, Justice Stevens, We Don't Need to "Fix" the Second Amendment

NEXT: Presidential Politics Pays Off for Cable News, But Networks and Newspapers Continue to Flounder

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  1. http://www.mediaite.com/online…..ying-guns/

    Vox’s Dylan Matthews disagrees. Jesus Christ look at that guy. Where do they find these people?

      1. The funny thing is he backed off after Greenwald pointed out to him that banning people on the watch list from owning guns would affect Muslims.

        So, after a Muslims murders 50 people, Mathews’ only concern about taking away gun rights is that it might result in Muslims being disarmed. You must have to attend Harvard to reach that level of stupid.

        1. Principals, not principles.

        2. Yikes. I’ve joked that liberals would back off from the watch list thing due to “disparate impact” to Muslims, but I never imagined a liberal would really say that. As many have been saying, these people really are beyond parody.

        3. You must have to attend Harvard to reach that level of stupid.

          If only.

          I can’t count the number of progtards who’ve gone from “Don’t blame Muslims, blame the shooter.” to “Pity the shooter, blame unrelated group(s) of privilege.” in times that would put race car owners to shame.

          1. Blaming Muslims is collectivizing guilt. Bad. Blame Christians, Republicans and the NRA.

            1. Christians objecting to gay marriage and bathing next to transvestites at the gym created the environment that caused that guy to think it was okay to murder gays. The Imams who said it was his religious duty to murder gays had nothing to do with it.

              That is actually what they are arguing.

              1. Seriously?

                Christians objected to gays existing. Pretending they never did a thing before gay marriage and trans in bathrooms is whitewashing history.

                1. You’re missing the point on purpose, right ?

                  1. I think maybe he really is that stupid.

                  2. @Mainer2
                    Yep, it’s called a “tangent”. People whitewashing history piss me off.

                    1. Yep, it’s called a “tangent”. People whitewashing history piss me off.

                      How many men did Nero marry? How many Christians did he feed to lions? How far back do we drudge before we’re not whitewashing?

                    2. How about “when sodomy laws are finally stricken from the books in every state”?

                      Based on Alabama’s track record on unconstitutional laws, it might be a while.

                    3. What laws are you referring to?

                    4. Yep, it’s called a “tangent”. People whitewashing history piss me off.

                      No dipshit. It is called lying and rewriting history. No Christian in this country ever murdered 50 gays in a bar and even at its most repressive, being gay was never punishable by death.

                      Beyond that, this guy did this because he was a Muslim and felt it was his religious duty. Christianity has nothing to do with it. Stop pissing on these people’s graves and excusing the ideology behind their murder you worthless fuck.

                    5. To be clear John, this is what you actually said: “Christians objecting to gay marriage and bathing next to transvestites at the gym created the environment that caused that guy to think it was okay to murder gays.”

                      There is not a single person blaming Christians for this that thinks that. Every single person blaming Christians for this have the history and context firmly in mind, the history and context that you are denying.

                    6. Just trying to keep up here……so there are people blaming Christians for a Muslim killing gays in service to ISIS. Again, just trying to follow the plot.

                    7. Yeah. I didn’t try to deny that. I was just pointing out that it’s not over cakes, it’s about a much longer, and much more serious, list of grievances.

                2. Well, “which” Christians? Because there are many, many, many different denominations of Christianity.

                  So, I would kindly ask you to:
                  (1) not stereotype every Christian
                  (2) provide specifics as to what denomination object to gays “existing”
                  (3) define “objection” to “gays existing”.

                  Thanks! Have a great day!

                  1. (1) I can point out the history and present without stereotyping individual Christians. And if hearing the accurate history of what Christians have done and continue to do causes you offense? Then your problem isn’t with me.

                    (2) No. I’m not interested in playing “No True Scotsman” here. You can google “anti-gay Christian preacher” as easily as I can. Heck, some made the news this week even for cheering on Orlando, and that’s just the ones that are willing go all the way.

                    (3) Support for capital punishment for gays. Support for sodomy laws. Support for conversion/reparative therapy (like Exodus international). Insisting that the only way gay people should live is either to marry a woman and think of baseball or be celibiate and shut-up.

                    For context, Southern Baptists and Catholic hit every item from sodomy laws onward within the last decade.

              2. That’s why I don’t bathe at the gym.

        4. Any gun control or crackdown on gun laws will have a disproportionate effect on minorities. It’s amazing how similar the “War on Guns” rhetoric coming from the left today is to the rhetoric at the beginning of the War on Drugs. They don’t see the parallels and realize it will have all of the same negative effects.

    1. at Vox, I think they breed them there.

        1. A Vox tube amp.

      1. They call it Voxsplaining for a reason…

    2. Imagine being so far up your own ass you can’t even recognize the obvious problem of giving one person authority to unilaterally strip people of their rights.

      Vox is full of such idiots.

      1. One moment calling for Obama to suspend the Constitution and in the next moment writing an article explaining how Trump wants to destroy the Republic.

        I really can’t imagine living with that kind of cognitive dissonance.

        1. You know how it is, when their guy does it it’s cool because they know their guy would never turn on them…

          1. Exactly. I know liberals who hated the government and opposed it having any power over their lives, only to turn and be all for it once “their” man got into office. They cannot help but see it as an opportunity to get their way and to force everyone else along their “shining path.”

        2. These are the same people who: (1) believed ObamaCare would decrease health care costs and (2) the Cadillac tax on ObamaCare wasn’t aimed at the unionized workers healthcare plans but on the rich CEOs.

          Yes. Old what’s his name – Ezra Klein – actually wrote this.

          My favorite article was when he swore on a stack of solar panels that Solyndra (contrary to rumors) was not going bankrupt.

      2. Because your political enemy would *never* use such a power against you.

        1. They’ll never be in power because every time “we” win it’s a Permanent Change In Political Views And We’ve Won Forever.

    3. Imagine being so far up your own ass you can’t even recognize the obvious problem of giving one person authority to unilaterally strip people of their rights.

      1. I’m imagining using gun rights to shoot squirrels.

        1. Not if those poor squirrels are endangered.

        2. Hmm, the second post was not identical to the first — the squirrels are getting creative.

    4. I visibly jumped back from my screen when I saw that picture. Yikes.

      1. That is not an attractive man.

      2. It is not his fault he is goofy looking. It is however his fault that he decides to deal with that by not shaving or washing his hair and putting on a goofy suit and glasses. It is like he looked in the mirror and said “I just don’t look creepy enough on my own”.

        1. No he’s just doesn’t care about appearances. So much so that he affects a look that is so goofy/creepy that it is bound to draw attention.

          1. Isn’t that how the Urban Dictionary defines “Hipster”?

            1. Most hipsters work meticulously to achieve that look.

              1. I’ll be out soon. I just have to wax my mustache and oil my beard, iron my skinny jeans and crease my fedora.

                  1. I’ll need to consult with Gilmore.

      3. Ditto. I am usually above such comments but damn he is ugly.

    5. Creepy authoritarians are creepy.

    6. Look at that fucking hipster…

    7. The problem with getting rid of due process is that it will affect minorities. Well. I mean, that is a problem, sure.

  2. “Shall not be infringed” is a difficult concept to wrap your head around when you can think of no crevice of private life that government can’t thrust its grasping fingers.

    1. If the courts can turn this into some sort of collective right that belongs only to the government, why couldn’t they do the same thing to every other provision of the Bill of Rights?

      You don’t have the right to free speech. The government can’t restrict the right of the states to run newspapers.

      1. Thanks. Dahlia Lithwick has a huge wide-on now.

      2. My growing fear is that is the end game. If they get away with this they can get away with a lot more.

        1. I think that is a valid fear. They are already trying to read the right to demand proof beyond a reasonable doubt in rape cases.

          1. It’s worse than they – they don’t even want alleged rapists to get a trial!

        2. I used to think that progressives are well-intentioned but mistaken about liberty, that they have no problem preserving freedom in principle even if they oppose certain aspects of it. I no longer think that’s the case. There seems to be an honest-to-God desire to be yoked to government like a draft animal. Not only are these people incapable of envisioning a life outside of bread lines and police beatings and strict curfews, they don’t seem capable of apprehending why anyone could even want to live a life of individualism. They’re either pants-wettingly fearful of the prospect or just so spiteful of others’ liberty that they’re willing to condemn themselves and everyone else to life under the boot.

          1. Its the difference between liberals and progressives. Your first sentence describes the liberal (current definition), but the progressive is just evil.

          2. Its the difference between liberals and progressives. Your first sentence describes the liberal (current definition), but the progressive is just evil.

          3. “Political tags ? such as royalist, communist, democrat, populist, fascist, liberal, conservative, and so forth ? are never basic criteria. The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire. The former are idealists acting from highest motives for the greatest good of the greatest number. The latter are surly curmudgeons, suspicious and lacking in altruism. But they are more comfortable neighbors than the other sort.”

            ? Robert A. Heinlein

            1. Always relevant.

          4. I believe that we’ve raised the last generation not only on self esteem and entitlement, but also that anything that needs done should be done by someone else. Never left outside by themselves, they were taught to always run to an authority figure when anything needed fixed.

            Now they’re adults, not everyone caters to them, sometimes they’re just plain ignored, and they can’t cope. They don’t know how to take care of themselves.

            1. “I believe that we’ve raised the last generation not only on self esteem and entitlement […]”
              I blame the parents.

              That said, take a look at who’s actually pulling the levers of power right now. Hint: it’s not folks in their 20s and 30s. You old foogeys are complaining about how the children you raised are all so horrible, while you’re the ones going around passing the laws you blame on us.

              1. So you’re one of them. That explains a lot.

      3. John, once upon a time pointing this out was an effective way to shut the gun grabbers up, but no longer. These days they have no problem killing any and all inherent rights, including that of free conscience. After all, hate speech isnt free speech.

        The left has gone full-on jackboot.

        1. The left has gone full-on jackboot.

          How else are you going to enforce your good intentions? After all, only people with bad intentions disagree with the left, and the jackboot is the best tool against people with bad intentions.

      4. Obscenity, public lewdness laws, blasphemy laws (still on the books in some states), and so-on.

        It’s really annoying when people throw out what they think is hyperbole.

        1. Holy shit.

    2. government can’t thrust its grasping fingers.

      Go on…

      /Dylan Matthews

    3. “The right of the people to …” obviously means “just the militia”, because shut up.

      It’s not like the Founders ever wrote about this stuff in the Federalist/Anti-Federalist debates, or in their letters.

      It’s not like the Supreme Goddamn Court went over it in detail in a recent, famous decision, footnoting back to the !@^% 17th Century on the contemporary meaning of “regulated”.

      Nope, nope.

      It doesn’t count because guns are scary so shut up.

      As God is my witness*, I’m sick of these people. Not so much because they’re wrong, but because they’re so bad at it, and so utterly self-assured of their natural rightness and how clever they are at the same time.

      (* I’m an atheist.

      But traditional language suits best.)

  3. To say nothing of the unusual move it would have been to have a “collective” right of gun ownership drafted in the constitution so soon after our own struggles with a tyrannical government.

    1. Exactly. Especially since the entire drive behind the BoR was that the constitution laid out the rights of the government but not the rights of the people.

      1. The whole point of the prefatory clause was to slap the idea of the State controlling “the militia” in the face, yes.

        As the original author would have known if he’d glanced at the Heller decision.

        But that’s, well, that’s just too obscure and irrelevant to look up, right?

  4. It is just so stupid.. yeah, the state and federal governments could already raise fighting forces from other parts of the constitution, but shit! we forget to say these armies and fighting forces could be armed so we needed the 2nd amendment.

    the closest thing to collective interpretation would be the militia is the individual people being able to organize outside of government institutions.. and these armed people organizing outside of government institutions IS what is necessary for a free country.

    1. Indeed. Take the progs at their word, that means my friends and I can form our own militia, and we have the collective right to own guns. We can drill twice a month to keep our militia well regulated, and it’s all good. You can already hear them saying, no no wait, I didn’t mean that either.

      The problem for the progs is simple. The Second Amendment has to mean something. So they tie themselves in knots trying to explain how it means something other than, well, what it plainly means.

      1. And you can also have crew-served weapons and whatever other military instruments of war you have need of to make sure your militia is effective and in good working order (“well regulated”).

      2. Some state should declare every able bodied adult over the age of 18 and doesn’t have felony conviction, member of the “state militia” and authorize them to own fully automatic weapons. The resulting butt hurt and shock would be awesome.

        1. “Some state should declare every able bodied adult over the age of 18 and doesn’t have felony conviction, member of the “state militia”

          I believe that is already the case. This is why the gun-grabbers try to claim that the state national guards have taken the place of the militia.

          1. Many states have official militias that are separate from the National Guard. Many others, such as Pennsylvania where I am, do not have active militias at the moment, but have had them in the recent past and reserve the right to reactivate them at any time. Notably, these militias are completely under state control, and cannot be deployed on order of the federal government, differentiating them from the National Guard.

        2. Militia implies a military action, but in some sense, when there is a natural disaster and people in the community respond (think people sandbagging and doing rescues with their boats in a flood), that’s in the spirit of the militia too. Citizens forming up and responding without the government.

      3. The problem for the progs is simple. The Second Amendment has to mean something. So they tie themselves in knots trying to explain how it means something other than, well, what it plainly means.

        That’s why they want to get rid of the Second Amendment so badly. To explain why its *actual* meaning is bad for society is too difficult for proggies because no matter how they argue it, people will have the right to do things they don’t approve of.

        So just get rid of it.

      4. We’d probably be better off if all gun owners did drill “once or twice a month”. Would cut down on people not realizing their guns are missing, reinforce what being a “responsible gun owner” means (hint: not leaving your gun where the toddler can grab it), and so-on.

        1. I bet you want cake. Would you like some cake?

        2. Form your own militia and the FBI and the SPLC will have you listed as an extremist hate group suspected of domestic terrorism before you can say “I hereby call this meeting to order…” the first time.

          Not that that’s a reason not to do it.

        3. This is a nation of over 300 million people, with hundreds of millions of guns in circulation, and the behaviors you’re talking about are so rare that they make the news when they occur.

          In other words…shut the fuck up, moron.

  5. Speaking of an individual right to self defence:

    In Airstrip One, a Labour MP was repeatedly shot and stabbed to death by a man screaming “Britain First”. One man tried to defend the MP and was injured. His attack was only stopped when witnesses formed a human wall between him and his target. The attacker was able to flee, uninjured after he gave up.

    1. They didn’t catch the guy? He is still on the lose? Unbelievable. That is horrible.

      1. He’s since been arrested.

      2. I think this is what we call “sleeping in the bed you made”

        1. Psycho does what psychos do, and only kills one person, and you read this as a policy failure?

          I get that you folks think gun control isn’t the answer, but the purpose of gun control has never been to stop all such incidents. It’s to reduce the frequency and severity.

          1. It’s to reduce the frequency and severity.

            The cult of technocracy. How many people have to be disarmed for each percentage point decrease?

            1. Don’t know, don’t care. You can recognize what the actual purpose of a law is (rather then the strawman version) without supporting it.

          2. Psycho does what psychos do, and only kills one person, and you read this as a policy failure?

            He only killed one person because he fled after killing a single person.

            If he’d wanted to, he could have killed a lot more. If being left at a psycho’s mercy and surviving merely because he stayed his hand is a “policy success”… This must be a definition of ‘success’ that I’m not familiar with.

          3. Escher:
            The stated purpose of a politician is almost never the intended purpose.

            I am troubled that any rational human being could watch the enormous, egregious abuse of government power over the last 100 years and not immediately feel threatened by any attempt at gun control.

            Since the only thing people can agree upon over time is that absolute power corrupts absolutely; it seems rather deductively obvious that any form of gun control must be opposed vehemently.

            The purpose of gun control has always been to capitalize on people’s irrational fears after an appalling act of violence. The intension of gun control legislation is simply a power grab. Americans have no chance of reforming massive government until they realize there is virtually no benevolent intention by politicians. They are trying to enrich themselves in the only way they know how. Most are crappy business men and thus have to become pols.

            1. And when someone has to resort to a strawman to complain about a policy, they’re acting in bad faith.

          4. Huh.

            The purpose of gun control, per the people I see actually espousing it on Facebook, is “because we’re scared of guns and we wanna pretend we can be safe by passing a law”.

            Britain isn’t safe, and keeps trying to do things like ban pointed kitchen knives.

            If the “next step” after gun control is pointy knife control, we might as well just give up on this whole “liberal democracy” fling and go straight to police states, okay?

    2. If the Orlando shooting taught us anything, it’s that the Brexit crowd is solely to blame for this attack.

    3. After around 15 minutes, the shop owner said emergency services arrived and tended to her with a drip.

      Who was the drip? We’re talking about England here, that could be anyone on the continent!

      1. She was a senior member of Parliament and it took 15 minutes for the cops to show up after she was attacked. But there is no need to own a gun because that is the police’ job.

        1. This shooting would not have happened if Britain had stricter gun control.

          1. Apparently it was a homemade gun. Britain should have laws against homemade guns! What? They do? This entire attack is obviously a hoax, then.

      2. I was thinking more along the lines of the seen from Shaun of the Dead where Bill Nighy gets bitten by a zombie but keeps insisting to his wife “It’s fine! I ran it under a cold tap!”

    4. “The man stepped back with the gun and fired it and then he fired a second shot, as he was firing he was looking down at the ground.”

      A true Brit! Even he knows you don’t look your betters in the eye while shooting at them.

    5. And since Crusty is not here to say it, I will; Would.

        1. Would have.

    6. Actually, its looking like he didn’t scream any such thing and that it was actually a fight between him and someone else and she intervened.

      1. The person who reported the “shouting” was not a witness to the events and was passing on a rumor they’d heard as if it were fact.

  6. There was some dufus in the comments section of the Seattle Times arguing that cops don’t carry AR-15s, and even the Secret Service don’t carry military-style weapons, because they have no valid purpose.

    1. I’d like them to define what a non-military style weapon would be.

      1. Whatever the military doesn’t use currently. So, flintlocks. Maybe revolvers and Henry repeating rifles.

        1. No, not the Henry. It has that high-capacity tubular magazine clip and the hand-grip thing that goes up and down.

          1. Shit, you’re right, it’s a mass-killing assault-weapon Machine!

    2. It’s funny, for all the talk over here about militarizing the police and how armed-to-the-teeth Americans are, Europe is the only place I’ve just seen cops walking around carrying MP5s (I think, I’m not an expert) like it’s the most ordinary thing in the world. It could have just been a temporary measure (I was there just a month or so after the Bataclan attack) but I’m not sure.

      1. It depends. At the train terminal in Hoboken, it’s not unusual to see cops strolling around with K-9s and M4s.

        1. I live in NYC and have been seeing this everywhere for 15 years now.

      2. The first time I went to Europe as a kid (in the mid 80’s, so it’s been like that for a long time) I was fascinated by that. I had never seen anything like it in the US.

        I think part of it is that Continental police are organized on a different principle than US or British police who are more on the “community policing” model.

    3. That dude should have a look at the roof of the White House.

      1. He should merely look under the suit-jackets of the President’s Security detail.

        I still remember how jaws dropped when that Secret Service guy whipped out that Uzi from under his coat on live television.

        1. There are surface to air missiles on the roof of the White House.

    4. Every cop I know has an AR-15 in his patrol car.

      1. My department is Full Auto. M-4s and MP5s.

      2. Go to Anaheim, motorcycle cops have the stashed on the side of their bikes.

    5. “Patrol rifles? Those are MYTH. A pernicious NRA lie!”

      I like reminding such people that the AR-15 has been available over the counter since 1960, myself.

      And that the M-1 carbine was widely available surplus’d in the 1950s (see Malcolm X holding one in his famous poster).

      Yet somehow the Republic did not collapse into bloodshed and anarchy.

      Why, one might suspect that “a self loading rifle” is not the problem.

  7. Conversely, the right to free speech is an individual right that can be abridged if you form into an icky group like a corporation.

  8. Let’s just call it what it is: Second Amendment Trutherism.

    Is it just me, or have the gun grabbers really, realllly lost their shit this time around? I don’t recall ever reading people explicitly comparing the cause of gun control to the cause of abolitionism or civil rights. Not to mention it’s no fashionable for mainstream pundits and politicians to explicitly call the NRA and gun owners accessories to terrorism.

    I wonder if this is a concerted effort from the gun control lobby or if much of it is bona fide, organic nuttiness?

    1. I would guess a combination of the two.

    2. the cause of abolitionism or civil rights

      Every cause is exactly like the cause of civil rights. Every single one.

      1. Especially forcing Christian bakers to bake cakes for gay weddings and requiring that transgenders be allowed to use certain bathrooms and locker rooms.

        1. When bakers (regardless of religion) are no longer covered by public accommodation laws (regardless of the customer), then bakers baking gay wedding cakes won’t be a civil rights issue.

          But as forcing gay bakers to bake cakes for Christian weddings is a civil rights issue (and under the CRA, it is), then forcing Christian makers to bake cakes for gay weddings will also be a civil rights issue.

          And as much as some libertarians/Libertarians may be willing to get rid of public accommodation laws all-together, most of the people arguing against public accommodation laws that include gay people aren’t.

          1. Everyone is a hypocrite in way one or another. Not everyone is an authoritarian. Appeals to hypocrisy are the lowest form of argument. It is better to be a hypocrite than a consistent supporter of the jackboot.

            1. Anyway, there is no hypocrisy in advocating the right to free association, whether it is violated by Jim Crow laws or by public accomodation laws.

            2. You missed the point.

              Even if there wasn’t a single non-discrimination law in this country that covered gay people, baking cakes would still be a civil rights issue.

              So acting like it only became an issue with gay people? Ain’t honest.

          2. Yes, someone not baking you a cake is just EXACTLY like having dogs and firehouses turned on you because you object to segregation laws. That’s right, Jim Crow was a set of LAWS passed and enforced by the government, which violated the right to free association, dumbass. The derp is strong in you.

            1. When someone goes back in time and rewrites the 1964 version of the CRA, it’ll be fair to act like civil rights was just about blacks in the south.

              But with the timestream currently intact, it covered a lot more then that. So no, you don’t have to argue that discrimination against gays was equivalent to discrimination against blacks to argue that it’s a civil rights issue.

              1. Cakes are not a civil rights issue at all. For that matter, allowing people to use your water fountain was not a civil right either.
                The market would figure those issues real quick. I would have opened a store right next door offering gay cakes and black water fountains if they were in that high of demand.

                Once again, you are assigning validity in some attempt at benevolence. The validity in the CRA was simply that the government could not enforce discrimination that violated the bill of right/constitution, whatever. Forcing private businesses to do anything is a complete violation of that individual right.

                And don’t you know that if a gay cake maker said no to a straight guy, absolutely nothing would happen to him and better yet, he might get his own TV show.

      2. Especially the cause of protecting the right to arm yourself.

      3. Hell, gun rights is civil rights.

        Both because self defense is a civil (human) right, and because the historical black civil rights movement also depended on gun rights.

        Ask the Deacons for Defense about how black people should be disarmed for their own good, sometime.

    3. Is it just me, or have the gun grabbers really, realllly lost their shit this time around?

      It is not just you. I think they are losing their shit because the Orlando attack strikes at the heart of the contradictions of multiculturalism. Not only is one designated victim group murdering another, them doing so makes Prog claims that white men and Christians are the focus of evil in the world look ridiculous.

      Their world view cannot account for what happened in Orlando. The truth is the worst gun toating bible thumping, confederate flag waiving Trump supporter is a pretty nice and reasonable guy compared to the guy in Orlando. And Progs are having a serious meltdown trying to pretend that isn’t the case.

      1. I’m not convinced they are losing their shit anymore this time than they did after Sandy Hook, the South Carolina church shooting or when Giffords was shot. They lose their shit every time.

        1. But they seem to be particularly happy about these people being killed, giving them a little more… how do you say… “oomph” in their arguments.

        2. It is what they do. Its all they have. Its not like they have any reasonable arguments or facts.

        3. ^This^

          They’re bleeding hearts. No logic; no reason; no patience. Just raw emotion and reactionary rhetoric.

        4. I’m seeing normally “impartial” newsheads lose their shit on air in a way I never noticed before.

          1. Maybe it is worse. I’m sure there is some extra signaling going on so everyone can prove how un-homophobic they are.

            1. Yeah, this. Its the perfect opportunity to virtue signal on social media – you love gays, you love the Muslims, and you hate guns so very much. A three-fer. The extra tack on of blaming Christians, white guys, etc. is just an extra add-on because virtue is a positional good and so the extra virtuous have to take it a step father to get attention.

          2. Maybe part of it is the way their shit-losing stopped working.

            Gun rights keep getting more popular.

            More people, men and women, black and white, own guns and don’t think they’re Scary Devils That Make You A Monster.

            Who’ll save The Children, if the shit-losing stops working?

      2. Put that way, I think I’d like to hang out with that gun totin’ etc guy. He’ probably got a nice truck we could take to the range, some cools guns to mess around with, and afterwards go four-wheelin’ or go fishing in his bass boat. You know, the kind of stuff a man like Dylan Matthews likes to do in his spare time.

        1. Who would you rather spend an evening with, the staff of Vox or the cast of Duck Dynasty? I think I would rather spend an evening in a Turkish prison than an evening with the staff of Vox.

          1. +1 gladiator movies

            1. And one Jason Borne movie.

          2. Hey, at least in a Turkish prison, someone is getting some action. The thought of an evening with the staff of Vox is giving me erectile dysfunction

          3. Who would you rather spend an evening with, the staff of Vox or the cast of Duck Dynasty?

            Will I be prosecuted for my actions afterwards?

          4. “Have you ever seen a grown man naked?”

          5. No question. Duck Dynasty. But then again, Monroe, LA is a beer drinking town.

          6. Can I go for the Sweet Release Of Death instead?

      3. There’s no contradiction once you realize that the murderer in Orlando was possessed by the spirit of the gun he owned. He was the first victim of the attack. Which is especially tragic because he had already been victimized so much by racist US society.

        1. Hmm.

          Maybe my AR-15s (etc.) are *defective*.

          Because mine never possess me and make me even fire them, let alone kill people.

          I should demand my money back.

  9. When you try to argue plain text reading of the constitution, progs always go to “bbbut precedent and case law” even when the case law obviously contradicts the plain text. When case law disagrees with them, progs argue plain text and always get it ass backward.

    1. Whenever progs cite precedent and case law I like to bring up the Dred Scott decision, confirming that black people were property.

      1. They love the majesty of the courts as long as it is convenient.

        1. Plessy v. Ferguson is a good one, too.

      2. I’m sure Citizens United would be a good one as well.

        1. Those guys, I prefer to ask “so you approved of the Government censoring unions and nonprofit activist groups?”

          Because they’re also “corporations” under the relevant law.

      3. Too many of them (and the Right does this too, not just Progressives) confuse “things I like” with “constitutional” and “things I dislike” with “unconstitutional”.

        The two are not logically even related (unless one is a strict Constitutionalist, then it’s tautological), let alone identical.

        Unless you exactly misunderstand how a Constituting Document is meant to work…

    2. Another thing of interest about the Second Amendment is that it simply reads a “well regulated militia.” Of course, that’s how the left construes the right to keep and bear arms to not be individual. But why does “well regulated” have to refer to state control. Imagine a country full of Michigan Militia style groups. Most of them would be well regulated.

      1. They think the National Guard is the same thing as the militia. The National Guard is a federal creation. The states can borrow it if they want to pay for it, but the President can federalize them and take them back if he wants to.

        The militia is entirely a state entity. We don’t really have them anymore but we could. States if they wanted to could require citizens to be liable for militia service and show up with their own equipment in the event of an emergency. I kid about a state allowing its citizens to own automatic weapons to be used in case their service in the militia was needed, but I think they could. I think states could require people to own automatic weapons. Tell a prog that sometime and watch their head explode.

        1. The militia does not necessarily imply control by the state, or that it be a state entity. The state entity would be a special militia, as opposed to the general militia.

          I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials.”
          ? George Mason, in Debates in Virginia Convention on
          Ratification of the Constitution, Elliot, Vol. 3, June 16, 1788

          “The militia, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves, … all men capable of bearing arms;…”
          ? “Letters from the Federal Farmer to the Republic”, 1788 (either Richard Henry Lee or Melancton Smith).

          “Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man against his own bosom? Congress shall have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birth-right of an American … The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the People.”
          ? Tench Coxe, 1788.

          1. Too few people realize that even today, under the latest version of the Militia Act, this is basically true.

        2. ” Tell a prog that sometime and watch their head explode.”

          Disclosure: I’ve been called “prog”, “tulpa”? and so-on here, so you just did.

          And personally? I’d really love it if some state tried that. Or more likely, a county, municipality or city within the state. And I’m not talking about Kennesaw GA, which is symbolic and not enforced.

          Why? Because it would be a test of the “what we really need are more guns” mantra that gets pushed by the NRA after every mass shooting. Preferrably, it would happen in a town that’s demographically and criminally representative of the country as a whole (to better isolate the effect of the policy), but any decently sized town would do (towns with populations in 4 digits or less won’t tell us much).

          I mean seriously, say what you want about “progs” who are “coming for our guns”, at least they’re trying to actually push their solution. As long as I’ve heard the NRA’s “more guns” approach talked about, no one, not even Texas, is really willing to commit to it.
          ?From context I can see it’s an insult meant to dismiss someone, but I still don’t know what it actually means.

          1. I mean seriously, say what you want about “progs” who are “coming for our guns”, at least they’re trying to actually push their solution.

            This isn’t necessarily a good thing. You know who else at least pushed his “solution”?

            As long as I’ve heard the NRA’s “more guns” approach talked about, no one, not even Texas, is really willing to commit to it.

            Gun ownership has steadily increased in the US over past decades, and more and more states are becoming “shall issue” and even constitutional-carry states (no permit slip needed from anyone to carry). All the while violent crimes and murders in all categories have been steadily decreasing.

            But those are just real-world facts, so they obviously don’t mean much.

            1. “This isn’t necessarily a good thing. You know who else at least pushed his “solution”?
              Correct. But what can I say? Someone that’s willing to put their money where their mouth is will always seem more sincere then someone who’s all words and no action.

              “Gun ownership has steadily increased in the US over past decades, and more and more states are becoming “shall issue” and even constitutional-carry states (no permit slip needed from anyone to carry). All the while violent crimes and murders in all categories have been steadily decreasing.”
              Guns per capita has been increasing, but gun owners is mostly flat. So all those liberalized gun laws? Are affecting the lives of current gun owners, not expanding gun ownership.

              And the crime statistics follow for states that have tightened and liberalized their gun laws.

              Which is my point. No one talking about gun control/rights is actually doing much of anything to become a fully (or even mostly) armed populace. Make life easier for gun owners? Sure. Try to make it so that there’s a gun in ever household and someone trained in it’s use? Nothing.

              1. You don’t need to have a gun in every household. You just need to have a gun in some households. The criminal doesn’t know which houses are armed and thus is risking his life every time he tries to victimized someone.

                1. John, don’t start a vaccination thread…STAY ON TOPIC!


              2. I’m for free speech rights possibly even more broad than those we have.

                Doesn’t mean I want to compel everyone to speak.

                I’m for protection from unlawful search and seizure.

                Doesn’t mean I want to prevent people from consenting to searches.

                I’m for repealing the National Firearms Act and selling machineguns at hardware stores again.

                Doesn’t mean I think people should be made to own a gun if they think they ought not.


                “Not all that is a right should be mandatory”.

                Indeed, nothing should be mandatory except not attacking people.

              3. You can’t force people to own guns just like there should be no law forcing people to either give up their guns or have no right to self defense with one.

                Freedom means that even some psychos can get their hands on one. It is up to society to then become less loathsome.

                It also should mean that the stupid american populous should stop electing war mongering psychos to embroil us in never ending and bankrupting wars which are not solving problems but are arguably exacerbating them.

                1. @Sigivald & timbo
                  You know, I think it’s kind of telling. Someone says “it’d be nice to have some policies that actually encourage gun ownership” and you guys immediately leap to “you can’t force […]”.

                  Or, to put it another way… when someone immediately jumps to the worst-case scenario in response to someone suggesting we actually try to do what they claim they want, it’s pretty fucking suspicious.

          2. As long as I’ve heard the NRA’s “more guns” approach talked about, no one, not even Texas, is really willing to commit to it.

            A: the people themselves will tend to buy more after the shooting, no good numbers on how many are first time buyers. B: places in fact have taken it up and passed expanded carry, constitutional carry and repeal of gun-free zones. They just get little publicity becaus it happens slowly, and the shooting has fallen from the news cycle (plus it’s not in keeping with the main media narrative).

            And we’re all Tulpa here.

            1. Gun ownership rates have been largely flat over the last 40 years. So sure, guns per capita have spiked enormously over the years, but the vast majority of those are existing gun owners to buy more guns, not first time gun owners.

              And yeah, you always see a spike in gun sales when there’s a publicized shooting, or when a Democrat is elected to office (seriously: the NRA must secretly love Obama), but again, overall rates of gun owners in this country are largely unchanged.

              So all those liberalized gun right laws? They’re mostly effecting existing gun owners, not encouraging new gun owners.

              1. So all those liberalized gun right laws? They’re mostly effecting existing gun owners, not encouraging new gun owners.

                Since legal gun owners are not criminals, those laws haven’t put more guns in the hands of criminals have they?

                Way to score one on your own goal there pal.

                1. Way to score one on your own goal there pal.
                  I’m curious what you think my “goal” is.

                  1. “I’m curious what you think my “goal” is.”

                    Concern trolling with sniping, semantics and goalpost shifting on behalf of a belief system you don’t even have the balls to articulate.

              2. “Gun ownership rates have been largely flat over the last 40 years”

                I dunno about you, man, but if someone calls me on the phone (or is in person working for the government and taking notes) I’m not telling them “I own a gun”.

                Because it’s none of their business and I don’t wanna get robbed.

                There aren’t good numbers for that reason, but man have I ever heard a lot of people mention buying their first gun…

          3. Every piece of data out there says more guns equals less crime and a safer society.

            1. I’m curious how you look at the international murder rates and come to that conclusion. You can argue what’s the real driving factor there, but claims that it’s unambiguous? Pretty out there.

              1. Utterly and completely. There is an entire book on it called “More Guns Less Crime”. You should try reading sometime.

                While the US has a higher murder rate than some places in Europe, it has on the whole a much lower violent crime rate. Your chances of being in a live break in or being assaulted in a gun free paradise like London are much greater than virtually anywhere in the US. The reason for this is that in London criminals know their victims will not be armed and in the US breaking into homes while the people are there requires a death wish.

                There isn’t a single bit of evidence that shows gun control does anything to keep guns out of the hands of criminals. And even if it did, a disarmed society is nothing but a society ruled by those who are the strongest and most violent.

                You want to know what a society without guns looks like? Try the middle ages. There, a class of trained and armed thugs basically did anything they wanted to anyone, except of course each other, and there was nothing anyone could do about it. Before guns society was ruled by young violent men.

                But since you obviously don’t read or know much, you wouldn’t know that or understand that.

              2. And in places like Israel and Switzerland private ownership and carry of military rifles is part of military service and being in the reserves. There really are more guns there but it is not a problem.

                That is because owning a gun doesn’t make someone into a criminal. You think it does but they are not magic fire sticks.

                1. … you keep making assumptions about what I think. They’re wrong.

                  So here’s some of my positions.

                  Broadly speaking, I’m in favor of artillery control, but I’m persuadable on that because the cost of ownership would limit the chances of abuse.

                  Regarding gun control, I’m pretty ambivalent. I think most gun control laws are pretty pointless, but I also think that accross-the-board opposition to anything is a terrible strategy if you actually want to persuade people. Shaking your rifle and shouting about how you need more guns after a shooting is an idiot move unless your goal is just to rile up people who already agree with you.

                  Throw in the accross-the-board opposition to even researching smart guns (and yes, the NRA was opposed even before New Jersey’s law) that you find among gun-rights folk, and the “movement”, such as it is, leaves a big distaste in my mouth.

                  More generally, I think that states that allow concealled carry but ban open carry, and vice versa, are pretty absurd.

                  And in the end, I think this is all going to be moot because 3D printers and drones are going to so radically change the game that whether you can buy any given gun immediately or a 3-day waiting period is going to be irrelevant.

                  In short: just because I disagree with you on some things doesn’t mean I disagree with you on all things.

                  1. Translation: troll la lol lol troll.

                  2. Ironically, cannons are just as legal today as they were in 1789: completely, at the Federal level, as long as they’re muzzle loaders.

                  3. The only argument that is valid in any of this is that gun control laws will be completely futile when they happen.
                    Black markets get things for people that want them. It is a surety that most criminals come about their guns illegally. That is why these laws are completely pointless and proposed for emotional reasons only. none of them are an attempt at getting something done other than for pols to take credit for some other pointless government growth initiative and job program.

                    Gun control is probably coming however and it will take a relatively benign appearance at first and will be the beginning of the slippery slope like all regulation. Americans have no chance for education until they realize that all political topics are the beginning of an agenda to see what government can get away with. Name any other famous regulation that did not go too far.

                    1. “Name any other famous regulation that did not go too far.”
                      13th Amendment.

          4. Marvin: So, ha ha ha? Marvin’s dad is a criminal? I’m not an expert in white-collar crimes, but could someone tell me how he could profit from bogus purchase orders?

            You haven’t really been following the dramatic liberalization (in the original sense) of carry laws throughout the country over the past several decades? It wasn’t long ago that Vermont was an outlier with “Consitutional Carry” (no permit required). Now there are something like a half-dozen states that have made that law, and all but a couple more have gone from either no concealed carry or “may issue” to “shall issue.”

            We’re seeing the “more guns” reality all over the country. Crime rates have declined, and every week I see stories featuring people who have defended themselves with guns.

            1. And I have no idea how that comment from another thread got pasted into the top of my reply….

        3. The NG is a federally recognized state militia(s) on paper, though in practice it’s organized and mostly funded by the Feds. Many states do have their own non-federally recognized militias. See the Wikipedia article on state defense forces. I’ve linked to it before but I’m on a phone and that’s a pain in the ass.

      2. Because they either don’t understand or just simply lie about the fact that “well regulated” as used at that time simply meany “in good working order”. A watch that kept good time was said to be well regulated. In context it meant that people should take their militia duties seriously and have sufficient weapons and ammunition and practice so that they could be effective as a militia if the need arose. It did not mean regulated by the government as we understand it today.

        1. True. Although most colonies had muster days which were the product of the legislatures.

          1. Sure, to encourage people to participate and take it seriously.

    3. Really? For me they always go “but well-regulated militia! Militia! Militia! Woob woob woob woob, brblblblblblbl..”

      I think that’s what it is, anyway. I pretty much tune out everything after well-regulated.

  10. All it takes is a quick read of Federalist 29 to see exactly what the founders were trying to accomplish with the 2nd Amendment.

    Whether the 2nd Amendment is still relevant in 2016 is an argument on which reasonable people may disagree, and there is a mechanism in place to change or abolish it if it is deemed necessary to do so by a sufficient majority.

    But the notion that the 2nd Amendment does not guarantee a right to individuals is plainly absurd.

    1. All you have to do is understand what “militia” meant in 1789. Every state required free men over the age of 18 to show up with their own weapon and serve in the militia when it was necessary. The 2nd Amendment was written to prevent the federal government from banning the ownership of guns and effectively disarming the states by depriving them of a militia.

      1. Not even that. All you have to do is be able to understand the English language. As written, the prefatory militia clause places no limitations whatsoever on the operative RKBA clause. To the extent the prefatory clause serves any purpose, its to highlight the importance of the individual right to a healthy society.

        1. The militia clause explains the purpose of the Amendment. It doesn’t in anyway restrict the scope. The amendment says “because states need a militia, the federal government cannot infringe upon the right to keep and bare arms”. It is really that simple.

          1. Good point. It is similar to if the 1st amendment read “A literate and informed population, being necessary to a free state, the right of the people to speak and to publish, shall not be infringed.”

            1. Ah, but your climate change denierism is mis-informing the population, therefore not protected.
              Also speaking just means with your voice, unamplified or broadcast in anyway.
              Also publish means with the technology at the time it was written, the founders could not envision the internet and the damage one person could do with it’s unfettered ability to spread illiterate mis-information.

              1. Of course the proggies will backtrack if you suggest applying their restrictive standard to say the NYT or MSNBC.

                1. And then back-back track when it comes to Fox or the NRA podcast.

    2. “The right of the people? That doesn’t mean a right of any person! That’s CRAZY, because GUNS!”

      I’ve never understood how anyone could think that one with a straight face, but people evidently do, in all seriousness, really manage to think a collective right “snuck in” with all those individual rights, and that “the people” cannot mean “each one of the people”.

      (Collectivists, I guess.)

  11. Of course the Second Amendment does not grant you a right to carry a firearm into your local nightclub. “Well regulated” = There are rules, like it or not.

    1. Why did you go full troll? Was there a specific trigger?

      1. Why did you go full troll? Was there a specific trigger?

        1. Nice come back. You’re doing great.

          1. I’m guessing he is actually a twelve-year-old. Or maybe just retarded.

    2. No this is true, seeing that it was already regulated that no one should be allowed to carry a firearm in an Orlando night club where alcohol was being served.

      1. That is the law but I do nothing think it is consistent with the language of the amendment. It says keep and bear arms not just keep.

        1. My point was that there are rules that essentially barred Mateen from carrying a firearm in the Pulse nightclub, but apparently the signage didn’t work.

          1. Let me get my surprised face that a murderous lunatic wasn’t deterred by a sign.

            1. Oh stop it, John, one more law, only one more law(!), would have prevented him from acting on his murderous impulses!

              How can we find that law when we are forbidden to experiment and try out the many possible laws? How can we obey strictures on the law that were intended to permit people to own things like heavy cannon which are far less dangerous and deadly than modern weapons? What if it is the shoulder thing that goes up that is the difference between life and death and we never know because people insist on obeying outdated imperialist doctrines set down by slave owners like Benjamin Franklin?

    3. It does if the owner of the nightclub has no objections.

      Granted, even if you were the world’s greatest Second Amendment purist, that would probably be a very unwise policy to have in your nightclub, so I don’t see it as relevant as a suggestion for preventing incidents like what happened in Orlando. But in any case, “well regulated” in the 2A context refers to the militia not the firearms themselves or ownership thereof, so your post is something of a non-sequitur.

      1. You obviously missed Judge Nap’s late night rant.

      2. I agree. Someone suggested designated CCW, like a designated driver. I guess the owner could put a “do not serve” wrist band on people who want to carry.

        1. What, you mean like the armed guards the club hired?

          1. I don’t know you so I’ll temper my response. I’m talking about a right to carry a firearm in general, not to the Pulse shooting specifically.

          2. What is your point? As far as I know, Pulse didn’t have armed guards, unless maybe you have a link/citation showing otherwise?

            1. What is with Reason commentors refusing to google their own question?

              And yes, when people assume that the Pulse didn’t have armed guards, it’s pretty relevant to point out that yep, they were there.

              1. Not really. There was a single off-duty police officer working security in the parking lot, who may have traded shots with the nameless asshole before said asshole entered the club. The floor staff and doormen at Pulse were carrying no weapons.

    4. NO. The militia clause doesn’t define the scope of the Amendment. It just sets forth the purpose. The amendment gives you the right to keep and bear arms. You just have the right to keep a gun in your home, you also have a right to bear or carry that gun in public as well.

      1. The amendment gives you the right to keep and bear arms.

        No. It recognizes that right. We have that right regardless of if the government recognizes it or not. Nothing in that amendment grants anything. It recognizes a natural right and tells the government to leave it alone.

    5. Of course the Second Amendment does not grant you a right to carry a firearm into your local nightclub. “Well regulated” = There are rules, like it or not.

      I think the owner’s preferences are pretty biased now (and shouldn’t count any more than me wanting to ban garbage disposals after a garbage disposal accident).

      Any indication of his preference beforehand aside from ‘Obeying the law’?

      1. I wonder if any of the unarmed victims would have liked to have been able to effectively defend themselves?

        1. The answer to that question would a) seem to be self-evident and b) be irrelevant if the club owner (freely) exercised an opinion one way or the other.

    6. Idiot troll too stupid (ignorant, dishonest?) to understand the meaning of “well regulated”. Let me find my shocked face.

    7. True, if the nightclub wishes to ban you from doing so.

      (Well regulated does not mean what you want it to, nor would it affect this application in any case.

      Go ask the Heller decision how a prefatory clause works.)

  12. I also like how the AMA is punting on the whole mental health issue.

    Not that I want them to ‘solve’ the mental health ‘issue’ but, we’ve had individual psychoanalysts, profilers of all flavors, and mental health professionals licensed out the wazoo for… half a century(?) and we’re still unable to tell a deranged gunman/knife-weilding maniac/suicide bomber from your average person until after the fact.

    If only we had more TOP MEN doing more research… If only it were plausible that government-funded science could be done apolitically…

    1. This is about CDC funding. They want the CDC to do the research on gun violence. And of course the CDC wants the budgeting.

      It’s hard to express how infuriating that proposal is when there are actual communicable diseases to be beaten.

      1. And women to get interested in science.

      2. This is about CDC funding. They want the CDC to do the research on gun violence. And of course the CDC wants the budgeting.

        Right but, overarchingly, what’s the CDC gonna do? It’s pretty well established that we can’t conduct mental health screenings on an hourly basis in order to prevent attacks of any kind. How is looking at patterns in the use of weapons gonna mean squat one way or the other? Unless you, rather transparently, don’t give two shits about science and just want to get your State on.

        It’s hard to express how infuriating that proposal is when there are actual communicable diseases to be beaten.

        And actual mental diseases that people would like to overcome.

        1. On NPR this morning, the director of the AMA couldn’t answer that question. He said they would merely put the gun violence data on the table, and let policy makers figure that out.

          1. I heard that too and almost laughed. As if policy makers make policy based upon data. No, they make policy and try to find data that justifies it. If the data doesn’t justify the policy, then they ban the data.

          2. Bingo. The CDC lends credence, deservedly or not, to their arguments in favor of gun control. The lawmakers and lobbyists can turn around and say “SEE, EVEN THE CDC SAYS WE SHOULD BAN GUNS”.

            Of course, the CDC’s study outcome is baked in because it’s overseen by political appointees.

        2. It’s pretty well established that we can’t conduct mental health screenings on an hourly basis


          1. Agreed. But ‘in order to prevent attacks of any kind’ being key. Even if you called them in every hour and probed them with ‘Are you gonna kill a bunch of people?’ questions all you do is generate larger mountains of data to (not) sift through and make *them* better able to lie to you.

      3. This is why the CDC has no money for the Zika virus.

      4. I am disgusted by the people complaining – see Facebook – about “the evil NRA won’t let people even do sciencey sciences on guns!!”

        They don’t know – because they couldn’t be bothered to use the Internet for five seconds or read outside of Vox – that the whole goddamn reason the CDC is forbidden from using Federal cash to do that “research” is that, as Reason has pointed out, it was making propaganda, not science.

        They wouldn’t restrict themselves to “science” so they got their toys taken away.

  13. I love how much this has exposed the hypocrisy of Democrats and progressives. When Republicans filibuster a bill or just vote against what Obama wants (or for something he doesn’t want), then they’re nihilist obstructionists impeding the governance of the country. When Democrats hold up the business of the Senate until they get what they want on gun control, well then they’re just heroic modern day abolitionists who won’t give in to injustice.

    1. They’re the good guys because they have good intentions. Republicans are the bad guys because they’re trying to thwart the Democrats’ good intentions, which means they have bad intentions. Bad intentions are the only explanation for disagreeing with well-intentioned Democrats. If you oppose gun control then you want people to die. There is no other explanation. Guns kill people, so if you don’t want to take them away from people then you support murder. You’re evil. If you don’t want government-controlled heath care then you want no health care at all. You want people to die in the streets. You’re evil. There is no other explanation.

      1. It’s just common sense.

        1. It feels true if you don’t think about it.

  14. One of these days there is going to be a person in one of these “gun free zones” that has a gun in violation of the law and stops one of these mass shootings with it. And the Progs will want the poor bastard hanged for violating the law.

    1. The only reason it hasn’t happened already is that these kinds of shootings are so rare, despite what the media and politicians want us to believe.

    2. That’s how it works in the UK.

  15. Individual Right? Well clearly we need to look at it in context. Like, the context that 2A and it’s nine best friends are collectively called the Bill of Rights. And almost entirely focus on individual rights.

    But yeah, it’s clear that 2A was simply intended to allow gun rights for a collective militia and not for individuals… if you squint your eyes, hold your nose for a while, and tilt your head just right.

  16. And it’s not a hoax, a lie, or any sort of falsehood to say that the “individual right” interpretation of the 2nd Amendment is a relatively recent thing.

    Anyone insisting that the 2nd Amendment is clear and unambiguous is delusional and trying to whitewash history to support their narrative.

    1. I know I shouldn’t do this but….

      Actually for most of the history of this country, it was simply taken as given that free men had a right to arms. Hence,, for example, the fear that freed slaves, if recognized as full citizens, would be able to bear arms. The “collective right” theory is actually the more recent thing.

      1. He knows this, he’s just dishonest.

      2. You’re right, I should have pointed out that it comes in waves.

        My main point though was that as much as some people now might not like the “prevailing wisdom” of thirty years ago, it doesn’t change that thirty years ago, the “it’s just so obvious” conclusion was quite different.

        Or, to put it another way… in 1900, there was no question that miscegenation laws were legal and constitutional. Today, just about everyone agrees that’s crazy. Acting like people in 1900 were incompetent idiots for not understanding what was plain before them does both you and your ancestors a disservice.

        In the case of gun control/rights, we’re closer to the edge of when the legal consensus changed, but it’s the same issue. Pretending that your opponent is not just wrong, but crazy? Is not honest. And that’s true regardless of which side you’re arguing from.

        1. Thank Jah you’re here to help us argue honestly.

        2. My main point though was that as much as some people now might not like the “prevailing wisdom” of thirty years ago, it doesn’t change that thirty years ago, the “it’s just so obvious” conclusion was quite different.

          Yes and that was wrong just like the prevailing wisdom you list after this. You just made our point for us. Thanks.

          1. The “point” of the article was how “obvious” the 2nd amendment was, and anyone that didn’t understand it was evil/retarded/etc.

            This article has done nothing to advance any arguments on the merits. It is, in fact, an appeal to popularity that’s dependent on current mores.

            1. Huh. Even when I try to include a link, it fails. Just google “Pulse armed guard” and you’ll find a bunch of articles.

              1. Dammit, this comment is in the wrong spot.

    2. I think the text describing our right to life and liberty is pretty clear, but case law on how that applies to black people has been…mixed. Am I delusional or did generations of judges simply supporting their racist narrative?

      1. Am I delusional or did generations of judges simply supporting their racist narrative?
        Little of column A, little of column B. On one hand, when the early laws (including the constitution) of the land were written, the idea that women, blacks, Indians and other minorities would be equal to white men wasn’t part of their context.

        Or, to put it another way… the founding fathers also thought sodomy, obscenity laws, miscegenation laws, blue laws, adultery laws and blasphemy laws were fully compatible with the constitution. Our current interpretation throws most of those out (we still have obscenity laws and blasphemy laws, but obscenity cases are pretty difficult and I doubt a blasphemy one would even be tried).

        So I’m not sure what point you were trying to make here. Even when the laws don’t change, our legal understanding of them, even when in direct contradiction of the original intent, does.

        1. our

          Not mine.

          1. Then in thirty or forty years (if not sooner), I’m sure there will be some issue on which you’re the crazy person who can’t plainly read the constitution and are spitting in the wind.

            1. Appeal to popularity? You’re really digging from the bottom of the barrel.

              1. Seeing as this entire article is an appeal to popularity, I assumed you were okay with the tactic.

        2. Consider this:
          All those examples you cite are where the new ‘interpretation’ recognizes an unenumerated liberty that was being infringed upon.

          The leftist view of the 2nd stands in contrast as a new interpretation that seeks to justify infringing upon long accepted liberties.

          1. The leftist view of the 2nd stands in contrast as a new interpretation that seeks to justify infringing upon long accepted liberties.
            Only if you skip over the part where thirty years ago the “long accepted liberty” was that gun control was largely okay.

            Laws and understanding changes. Pretending that any given interpretation is the only interpretation, and that anyone that disagrees with you must be crazy or dishonest, will always be dishonest itself.

            1. With the job of government being to protect our rights, recognizing the ways rights were being infringed upon previously by government and correcting those infringements is right and proper. Constitutional amendments are (generally) not necessary to correct these infringements because The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people
              Basically, stop doing things you should not have been doing anyway.

              The way the left treats the 2nd is in contrast to this.
              They seek to pervert (and for about sixty years were successful at) a recognition of individual rights into a justification to infringe upon those rights. “Reinterpreting” the 2nd amendment to not be a protection of individual rights is to effectively amend the constitution without getting consent of 3/4 of the States.

              The 2nd is not the only right in danger of revocation by reinterpretation unfortunately. Both the left and right are in their own ways quite hostile to the 1st, 4th and 5th as well.

              1. Look, this is pretty simple.

                Do we tar and feather the founding fathers or not?

                Because if we’re not willing to tar and feather them with their long list of sins and their 200-years out-of-date morality, then why should I tar and feather someone for holding a view that’s, at best 30 years out-of-date?

        3. Are you agreeing with me that the current interpretation is more correct than “30 years ago” regardless of time span? I’m arguing that merit counts more than recency bias.

          Also, I don’t swallow your implication that from 1776 to circa 1986 gun rights were curtailed regularly until the supremes suddenly changed course.

  17. Does it still matter? I mean it strikes me that the left has gone full retard on this one. To the point where, even somewhat educated leftists are saying shit so stupid that they should be embarrassed for themselves. And I’m not just talking intellectually incoherent. I’m talking about getting basic facts wrong. And throwing full-fledged tantrums when you correct them. If you can’t even have a coherent conversation about simple, physical, facts, I don’t see where you’re going to be able to get to the level of abstract notions like rights.

    1. It is folly to try to talk about abstract notions with lefty types. They can’t see the unseen, and they are guided by emotion instead of thought.

      So a rational conversation is simply impossible. At some point you will trigger their fragile emotions, and at that point the conversation is over. Not only that, but if you persist, or continue to violate their fragile emotions in future conversations, then they’ll refuse to converse with you. And why should they? You are a mean person with bad intentions. Why else would you insist upon putting them in an emotional state with your mean-spirited debate?

      1. And if they have to react violently, well that’s on you. Look what you made me do !

      2. Yeah, but I’ve kind of realized your point for a while. But, they’ve gone even further down the derp corridor than just resistance to abstraction. They’re increasingly fact-resistant.

        I’m not talking about abstract facts. I’m talking basic things like what an assault rifle is. And when you tell them that there aren’t really very many assault rifles in circulation, that weapons capable of automatic fire are heavily regulated, they flip their lids. Literally, when I pointed this out to one this morning, I was accused of “mansplaining”, whatever the fuck that is supposed to mean.

        1. I was accused of “mansplaining”, whatever the fuck that is supposed to mean.

          It means explaining the obvious in a patronizing way. The way you say it hurts their fragile emotions, therefor what you actually said no longer matters. Again, you hurt their feelings which means they won the debate.

          1. If the obvious needs to be explained, is there any way to do so without being patronizing?

            1. No. Because heads they win, tails you lose. Because feelings.
              Do you see?

              1. Because heads they win, tails you lose. Because feelings.


            2. If the obvious needs to be explained, is there any way to do so without being patronizing?

              “When a mommy gun and a daddy gun love each other very much ….”

              1. wait – is a mommy gun one that fires other guns?

          2. The late Christopher Hitchens once said that when someone says “I’m offended” his instinctive reaction was, “I’m still waiting for your argument.”

          3. “While having a penis”.

            If you condescendingly explain the obvious while having a vagina, or do it to someone with non-Left politics while having any genitalia, that’s just speaking truth.

        2. I’ve been told that pointing out the difference between fully- and semi-automatic is just a technicality with no actual relevance. After all, lots of people got killed no matter what type of gun it was.

          1. Hey, they look the same. They both instill the same emotional reaction. Who cares if they actually function differently? That doesn’t has no effect on the emotional reaction, so it’s irrelevant.

            1. doesn’t

            2. Or it’s a not-so-thinly-veiled ploy to ban all semi-autos, whether they look scary or not.

              1. They want to ban all guns, but won’t be honest about it. So they go in baby steps. First scary-looking semi-autos. Then whatever was used in the next mass shooting. Then whatever was used in the next mass shooting. Until they’re all banned.

                1. Worked in England.

                2. Banning the AR [15, 10] AK, FAL, and similar guns will only set a precedent.

                  They are highly effective and ergonomic as weapons go, but account for a very very very small fraction of actual gun related homicides, and in spite of pablum to the contrary they are not necessarily the “gun of choice” for mass shooters. Cases in point, Cho used a Glock 19 and a Walther P-22 at VA Tech, and Alexis a Remington 870 shotgun at the Navy Yard.

                  Going forward, when these and other weapons are used [along with air liners and pressure cookers] there will be call to “do more” and take those out of circulation until we model what Australia did [where compliance is estimated to be about 19% by the way].

          2. Okay!

            So they’re for repealing the National Firearms Act, right?

            I approve.

            1. This is the main problem for Liberty lovers: the battle was ceded long ago. We should (and can) make the argument that any firearm can be owned by a citizen, but even libertarians hold up the full auto ban as a sign they agree with 2A infringement at a certain level, which kneecaps the resistance to further infringement.

        3. My MIL and I had an argument on facederp. She says she knows an “assault weapon” and what is a non “assault weapon” rifle when she sees one. Wouldn’t listen to reason; got sullen and quiet after I linked to an article explaining the differences between assault rifle,s assault weapons, & semiautomatic children killers.

          1. Look on the bright side, t. You probably won’t have her visiting anymore.

            1. No, she’ll be visiting. My future wife loves her! But when she visits, unlike the time she visited my girlfriend during our courtship, the MSNBC will *not* be on the TV 16X7. That shit does not fly at chez tarran.

          2. This is when you show her a picture of three almost identical AR-15 pattern guns and ask her which one is the “banned-without-permit since 1934 assault weapon”, which one was the “banned in 1994 for a while assault weapon” and which one is “completely never banned”.

            (Hell, I couldn’t tell the first two apart if I couldn’t see the FCG markings.)

        4. I don’t bother with “assault rifle” anymore except to point out that it’s a cosmetic definition, not functional.

          (Because “assault rifle” literally does mean what they want it to, in certain actual extant laws, that still hold force.

          It’s not the proper Military Science use of the term, but English doesn’t care.)

  18. Let’s say that the Second Amendment is purely a “states rights” provision by which the federal government cannot disarm the state militias.

    Of course, even under that interpretation, the feds couldn’t disarm the individuals who are members of those militias, whether they’re in active service or not.

  19. Eleven years later, Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe, a respected scholar and teacher whose former students include a young Barack Obama, amended the new third addition of his legal treatise American Constitutional Law to officially endorse the individual-right interpretation of the Second Amendment. This was a marked change from the two previous editions, where Tribe had accepted the collective-right view. “My conclusion came as something of a surprise to me, and an unwelcome surprise,” Tribe admitted to the New York Times after the third edition came out.

    I guess I’ll give him some credit for amending his views on the subject after studying and thinking about it rationally, even though it forced to make a conclusion contrary to his feelz. Something far too few “respected scholars” are willing to do.

    1. You can lead a respected scholar to the text, but you can’t make him think.

  20. If only England had strict gun control, this sort of terrible, awful, thing wouldn’t….oh, wait….


  21. Fuck off Facist. No really


  22. Nice driving. Where’s HIS attempted murder charges.


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  24. “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, and by which the militia officers are appointed, 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.”
    Federalist No. 46 ? James Madison

  25. “I ask, Sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians.” ? George Mason, co-author of the 2nd Amendment.

    “A militia, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves.” ? Richard Henry Lee.

    “Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people’s liberty teeth and keystone under independence.” ? George Washington

    “The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed.” ? Alexander Hamilton.

    “I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery.” ? Thomas Jefferson.

    “To disarm the people is the most effectual way to enslave them.” ? George Mason.

    “Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed, as they are in almost every country in Europe.” ? Noah Webster.

    “Americans have the right and advantage of being armed, unlike the people of other countries, whose leaders are afraid to trust them with arms.” ? James Madison.

    “A free people ought to be armed.” ? George Washington.

    “No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.” ? Thomas Jefferson.

    “The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere restrains evil interference ? they deserve a place of honor with all that’s good.” ? George Washington.

    1. It is clear what it meant. Since the militias are the creation of the people and are supposed to stand as a bulwark against a tyrannical federal government, how is it constitutional for the federal government to incorporate militia units (now the National Guard) into the federal army without the consent of those in the unit and the state government they serve?

      I think the Dick Act of 1903 and the National Guard Act of 1916 are completely at odds with the Second Amendment.

  26. The more interesting question about the 2nd Amendment is what does the purpose clause really mean. That shouldn’t be read out of the Amendment even though it doesn’t restrict the scope of the individual right. The Amendment says “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State,”. Understand this is a restriction on the federal government. Also understand that the “militia” is a creature first of the people but secondarily of state and local governments. Militias traditionally belonged to the states. Before the Dick Act of 1903, the federal government could not call the state militias into federal service unless it was to quell a invasion or insurrection. And even then the governors claimed that state militias were not authorized to operate outside of their state borders. In all of the US wars before 1903, the US relied on “volunteer militia” units that were volunteered into federal service by their governor.

    The Dick Act federalized the state Militias into the National Guard. The federal government can federalize the state militias into the federal army.

    Given that the 2nd Amendment says that states have a right to have a militia and the feds can’t take away that right by banning the individual bearing of arms, how then is it constitutional for the Federal Government to deprive a state of its militia by federalizing it without the consent of its government?

    1. The feds dangling money and “free” equipment to the states for their militias was probably part of it. And a compliant supreme court probably didn’t hurt the cause either. Btw, when was the last time congress actually bothered to declared war?

      1. Not really. The states were never behind the ability of the President to federalize the state militias. The feds just did it.

        1. Well, the bill was enacted into law by congress and signed by the president. And, this was before the direct election of u.s. senators. Seems to have been a give and take situation. Of course, as always, the feds gradually tightened the noose. Now the national guard units are basically just reserve army units that can be called up whenever…

          1. They have been that since 1916. And just because the states elected senators doesn’t give the feds the right to exceed their powers.

            1. I agree completely. Politicians never seem to ask themselves the basic question: Is this proposed law constitutional? They all take an oath of office and most are in standing violation of that oath.

    2. The same way it’s constitutional for the federal government to do thousands of other things it is not empowered by the constitution to do. Because FYTW. Once it was widely accepted that the constitution meant whatever the fuck 9 partisan lawyers wanted it to mean, regardless of the actual meaning of the words at the time they were written, the game was over.

      1. The Constitution is sufficiently vague to insure that you can argue it from just about any perspective; unfortunately it can also mean anything damn thing whomever in power wants it to mean, or be amended to “keep up with the times.” I’ve seen more than a few recent articles calling for that very thing.

        It’s only a republic for as long as enough of us can maintain it. Short of that, and given a very stupid electorate, it’s only a document of historical significance.

        1. I’ve never found the Constitution the least vague. Unfortunately, there’s no limit to the deliberate obtuseness and malice of statists intent on misreading the words for their own purpose.

          How does “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

          Turn into the FCC, the FEC and an unnavigable, pit-filled labyrinth of campaign finance laws?

  27. Of Course the Second Amendment Protects an Individual Right

    I don’t think it does. This is why there’s so much of a controversy.

    The 2nd amendment text reads as follows: “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.”

    I agree that the Supreme Court at least twice has interpreted this to mean individual right. But a different configuration of judges can easily rule the other way.

    We should add an amendment that clearly states that individuals have a fundamental right to defend themselves. This would cover various types of protection including guns, body armor, etc.

    1. Yes they could, if they are willing to ignore the history and context of the amendment along with the explicit statements of the drafters. They could read it any way they wanted to. That doesn’t make it reasonable however.

    2. All that is needed is for Her Hideousness to win the election and further pack the USSC with like minded judges. Then the Constitution will be re-interpreted accordingly.

      That giant flushing sound will be some of your cherished rights on their way to the cesspool of history.

    3. But a different configuration of judges can easily rule the other way.

      Which is a completely different issue. Judges, as we know, issue wrong rulings all the time.

      We get into these tangles because people are ignorant/stupid/dishonest.

      The basic Constitutional scheme is this: The federal government has limited powers (which don’t encompass much of any kind of gun control whatsoever), and it may not exercise even its limited powers in ways prohibited by the BOR.

      The first challenge is finding an actual, explicit power of the federal government to enact gun control (say, requiring background checks). Its arguable, I suppose, that its a regulation of interstate commerce, but note that the definition of interstate commerce that prevailed pretty much until the New Deal would have not allowed background checks.

      Now, is a background check requirement an infringement of your right to keep and bear arms? Applied at the point of purchase to prohibit you from acquiring arms, I would say yes. A right to keep arms implies the right to acquire them. Nobody would say a woman has a right to an abortion, for example, but that doesn’t mean she also has the right to get one from a third party.

    4. Fuck off, fascist.

      1. This…this fuckktard claims to be a libertarian.

  28. “Of Course the Second Amendment Protects an Individual Right”

    If it didn’t, it logically follows that the Constitution *grants* rights.
    Therefore, since it isn’t listed, you have no right to breathe.

  29. For much of the twentieth century, the collective-right view [of the Second Amendment] proved dominant in elite legal circles.

    A sad comment on the intellectual bankruptcy of “elite legal circles”.

    1. Yes it is. And it wasn’t even so much that they were wrong. It was that they didn’t even bother to consider the issue.

      1. I have never understood how anyone could look at the text (a whole sentence) and believe it grants only a collective right.

        1. Me either. But I have never understood how someone could look at a document whose entire purpose was to balance state and federal powers and then think the drafters would have written the commerce clause as a trap door where all of the restrictions on federal power and compromises dropped out of the bottom of the document.

  30. The left’s new tactic is to say the purpose of the Second Amendment was to protect slavery and now that we’ve abolished slavery, we don’t need the Second Amendment and the only people who want to keep it around are people who want to restore slavery.

    1. Well, it might not be a new tactic, but it’s what I’m seeing on the leftist FB now.

    2. Meanwhile, they are ushering in a whole new slavery…

    3. Of course, the first gun control laws were intended to keep the black man down after slavery ended.

      Ask your proggy friends how many other Jim Crow laws they support.

      1. minimum wage?

        1. Beat me. Gotta refresh.

      2. poll taxes and literacy tests to vote ?

        1. “A skill test or mental health test obviously can’t be used as a backdoor to ban guns, you paranoid!”

          “Yeah, and a literacy test can’t keep a black man from voting, right?”

      3. Minimum wage laws?

      4. Cheap available abortion?

      5. Can spell management without the man trying to keep you down.

    4. I’ve also seen the argument that it was to give pioneers the means to fight indians. no more frontier, no need for the second amendment. easy peasy.

      1. if they taught history and not howard zinn’s garbage, people would know the revolutionary war started because of gun control, when britain tried to seize our arms and powder from the militas

        1. To be fair, that was the immediate trigger, but it woulda come anyway from various other issues, boiling down to “treat us like actual Englishmen with rights or screw off; we’re not your permanent serf tax farm”.

      2. other than this:

        “What country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance. Let them take arms.”
        – Thomas Jefferson, letter to James Madison, December 20, 1787

    5. Remember Chief Justice Taney’s “parade of horribles” passage in his Dred Scott opinion, explaining why black people were not citizens.

      Recognizing black people as citizens, Taney said, “would give to persons of the negro race, who were recognised as citizens in any one State of the Union, the right to enter every other State whenever they pleased…and to keep and carry arms wherever they went.”

      1. But how can that be, if the Second Amendment was always a collective right up until a few years ago?!?!

  31. I was just looking at the Beretta Pico – what a nice little pocket gun. If they made those things in fancy colors, they could sell millions to the Gay Community.

    1. They are actually called the “Pink Pistols” and right now are accounting for the biggest surge in sales of AR platform rifles.

      As for the PICO, Guns and Ammo did a review of a number of small 9mm pistols last Fall; the Beretta pretty much fell apart before the end of the trial, whereas the Glock, Walther, and Taurus all excelled.

      You can buy the Taurus 709 Slim or the Millenium G2 for $200 on internet sites. Bought the G2 for one of my daughters and am very impressed with it.

  32. “The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…. Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.”

    1. oh yea, forgot:

      – Thomas Jefferson, Commonplace Book (quoting 18th century criminologist Cesare Beccaria), 1774-1776

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