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View Diary: Now nutcase 'killing people' guy says he's 'assembled an army' (525 comments)

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  •  The Constitution allows for the issue of (6+ / 0-)

    Letters of Marque (aka privateering), and that doesn't make much sense unless you allow individuals or groups of individuals to own armed ships, i.e. the largest weapon the government had in the late 18th century. Of course, even merchant ships were regularly armed with dozens of cannon in those days.

    So it is not unreasonable that people 250 years ago thought that a private individual could own whatever weapon was available. What is of course unreasonable is thinking that what applied 250 years ago still applies today.

    Repeal the 2nd amendment.

    by Calouste on Thu Jan 10, 2013 at 05:48:16 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  not so clear (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      randallt, vcmvo2

      Letters of marque applied to the sea only. It's not clear to me that one can extrapolate from that to all armaments.

    •  Don't know the history (0+ / 0-)

      Individuals could own and operate warships?

      48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam, help the hungry.

      by randallt on Thu Jan 10, 2013 at 07:04:53 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  No. (0+ / 0-)

      Letters of Marque were used to disrupt commerce not attack warships.  They were generally small, speedy craft that were lightly armed, able to take on slow commercial shipping.  They were also called privateers, and considered by many to be one small step away from pirates.  They would not have been given grant to arm a ship in anything like the manner of a navy.  Even Britain, which made extensive use of Letters of Marque, was very leery of allowing any that approached the size of a frigate.

      The idea of a private army would have been anathema to most of the framers of the Constitution, seeing as they had just been confronted with Shay's Rebellion immediately prior to the Philadelphia Convention, and would have been quite leery of unregulated paramilitary forces running amok.  The Second Amendment was a response to the threat of unregulated force of arms, not an enabler of it.

    •  Federalist 46 (0+ / 0-)

      it's all in there.

      The point of the 2nd actually IS for the Citizen Militia to retain the arms need to match, and defeat, a standing Federal Army.  It wouldn't be toe-to-toe, it would be guerilla warfare, more like Libya was a Quaddafi fell, or the way Syria is now.

    •  But nobody has such a letter: (0+ / 0-)

      The issue isnt whether the government can allow you to arm yourself. The issue is whether it can make any prohibitions.

      One piece of free advice to the GOP: Drop the culture wars, explicitly.

      by Inland on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 05:57:57 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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