Dear gun-rights folk:

I kinda see from where you're coming. You believe the 2nd amendment is a free pass, right? That it’s your right to do whatever you want in regards to guns.

Guess what? You’re wrong. And here’s why:

(more below the orange swirl of goodness, pew-pew reference included)

There are plenty of places in society where ‘rights’ do not trump public safety. For one: the first amendment’s protection regarding freedom of speech. It’s a tired yet true example: you do not have the right to scream “FIRE” in a theater. You can, but expect to be arrested for inciting public panic.

Another example: the first amendment’s right to freedom of religion. You are welcome to practice your religion…to a point. If you claim your religion demands human sacrifice, guess what? You can’t do that. Why? Because common sense and public safety supersedes your right to said ‘freedom.’

Another example: the right to unlawful search and seizure. Two words for you: Patriot Act. The government, whether right or wrong, can  at this point in time, pretty much do whatever they want to gather intelligence on you under the guise of ‘national security.’

My point?

The Bill of Rights is not sacrosanct. It is not infallible. It is not a freaking shield that gun-rights folk get to merely murmur and suddenly gain full protection of the law. The amendment, when written, was to guarantee the STATES the right to arm their citizens to protect against the tyranny of the federal government. They had just finished a war against a king, and they were terrified of central authority. So, they ensured their citizenry was ready to stand up to such an incursion.

Guess what? That world no longer exists. And if you think it does, then you are a conspiracy theorist. The government is not coming to get you. It is not a tyrannical force hell-bent upon your destruction.




My point: I don’t care if you think semi-assault guns are fun to shoot in a responsible setting. It might be fun to scream “Fire” in a theater and watch everyone run (in a sick, sadistic sort of way). But that doesn’t make it right. Nor does it mean you have the right to do it.

As of RIGHT NOW, we have restrictions already in place regarding our rights (the first amendment being one of many). And, in regards to the 2nd amendment, we ALREADY have restrictions in place. For example: you can’t own nuclear weapons. You cannot own a missile launcher. You cannot own an Apache helicopter. Are they not “arms?” Do you not have the “right” to “bear” them? A line has already been drawn. An entirely, inefficient, deadly line has been drawn in the wrong place.

When the 2nd amendment was written, the concept of semi-automatic weapons, automatic weapons, high-capacity magazines…they didn’t exist. It’s like asking Benjamin Franklin what his opinion might be on Facebook’s privacy concerns. Or the Jersey Shore and…well, I’m pretty sure what his opinion on that would be. But on most modern issues, he, or ANY of the founding fathers, would be flipping clueless. Just as you would be as to the proper way to wear a powdered wig.

This world? This world is different. And to cling to a single sentence written 250 years ago (which, by the way, was interpreted as a collective vs. individual right until a lone SCOTUS decisions a few years back) as the gospel to sensible legislation now…?

It’s flipping insane.  

The 2nd amendment isn’t a pass to do whatever you want, to own whatever you want, to shoot whatever you want. It’s a part of our Constitution that has become obsolete as time has gone on. Like the 3/5th’s compromise and the codification outlawing a woman’s right to vote. You know…those minor things.

Hey, America. Guess what? The Constitution is not infallible. Don’t pretend it is just cause you like to pew-pew bullets faster than you can chug a six-pack of Coke or Budweiser. The safety of my 5-year-old daughter and 8-year-old son says otherwise.

Originally posted to R.T. Kaelin on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 08:11 AM PST.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA).

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