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The Insidious Erosion of the Second Amendment

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I’ve been asked these questions many times. For my part, I am stunned at how many people who think they understand the principles behind our Bill of Rights summarily concur with the parameters government has set (and revised many times) concerning the restrictions on firearms.

In answer to these questions, first let me pose a few of my own by way of edification:

What constitutes a “felon?”

What constitutes “mentally ill?”

Who makes those designations?

Can they be trusted to do so?

These are questions we should have asked many decades ago when laws that had the potential to dilute the Second Amendment were proposed.

My answers to the last two of the questions I posed are

  • government officials, and
  • emphatically, no

With regard to those who are adjudicated as mentally ill: Given the political climate today in particular, do you trust the government (local, county, state, or federal) not to designate persons as mentally ill for reasons of politics, agenda, or retaliation?

If the response is “no,” you have your answer. If it is “yes,” you’re an idiot.

Then there’s the question of felons. What is a “felon,” anyway? All the dictionary tells us is that a felon is “someone who has committed a felony.”

Great. Then what qualifies as a felony?

To which American dictionaries (both standard and legal) answer (generally): A felony is an offense “of graver character than those called misdemeanors, especially those commonly punished in the U.S. by imprisonment in excess of one year.”

Which of course says nothing about the nature or severity of the respective offenses at all.

Ah. So a felony is a crime for which they can incarcerate you for a year or more … ?

Well, no. Felonies are generally crimes for which statutes suggest at least one year in prison, but not all crimes for which one can be incarcerated for a year or more are felonies. It depends on the crime and, more importantly, the jurisdiction.

But all felonies involve a weapon of some kind … ?

Well, again … no.

Then all felonies involve violence … ?

Sorry … no.

Many crimes, even some misdemeanors that do not involve any form of violence or weapon can forever bar a person from owning or possessing a firearm in the United States of America. In fact, the related federal statute (18 U.S.C. § 922 : US Code, Section 922: Unlawful Acts) says that it is unlawful for any person to own or possess any firearm or ammunition if that person “is under indictment for, or has been convicted in any court of, a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year … ”

“Under indictment for” means that if you’ve been charged with a crime and not yet tried or convicted, but you could be, and might be sentenced to prison for a year or more, you’d better get rid of your guns.

Is that asinine or what?

Here’s my favorite part: “punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year … ”

This means that if you’re convicted – by plea or trial – of any crime on the books anywhere in the U.S., and a judge could have had you incarcerated for 365 days or longer, your Second Amendment rights are gone … forever. Doesn’t matter if you got six months’ probation and no jail time. Doesn’t matter if it was a misdemeanor. Doesn’t matter if it was nonviolent and there was no weapon of any kind involved.

By the way, the same statute is equally draconian with regard to certain other people. Say you’re a recovered narcotics addict who’s been clean for 25 years … no guns. Doesn’t matter if it was heroin or Vicodin, either; according to the statute, “any controlled substance (as defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 802))” qualifies, so any past or present narcotics addiction torpedoes your right to own or possess a firearm. Forever. And if we get into what constitutes a “narcotic” under U.S. statutes, we’ll be here all month …

So … sorry, Brett Favre (who became addicted to narcotic painkillers the team doctors gave him early in his career); no guns for you…

How about the teenage girl who was very briefly committed to a psychiatric hospital by her parents for severe depression and a suicide attempt after being raped..?

No guns for her. Not ever. According to 18 U.S.C. § 922, she’s a “mental defective.”

The simple solution that both preserves Second Amendment protections and ensures public safety (inasmuch as it can be ensured) is a multi-tiered process involving panels of psychiatric professionals, attorneys, and judges participating in proceedings that examine individuals’ mental capacity or criminal offenses on a case-by-case basis. It would involve layers of bureaucracy, but the protection of our rights is among the few things that justify such expense and redundancy.

We’re well aware that millions of Americans don’t have even a nodding acquaintance with our nation’s founding principles; thus, they simply cannot comprehend the sanctity of the Second Amendment. The Second Amendment was crafted by people who had risen up to overthrow a tyrannical government by force of arms. It exists so that if We The People ever need to do so again, we will be equipped to do so.

Yes, America has the highest per capita gun ownership, but isn’t it strange that the nations with the highest per capita murder rates are all heavily socialistic countries with stringent gun control, rather than the United States?

If we are going to abrogate anyone’s Second Amendment protections, we’d better have a damn good reason, and plenty of fail safes to prevent government abuse. We’ll never have a perfect system, but we’ve gone too far in the other direction, with the various strata of government each taking a little piece of the Second Amendment and leaving none left for the citizenry.

In the final analysis, what Americans should have immediately acknowledged with regard to the victims at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina is that which was evident in relation to the Carol Browne tragedy: If they had been armed, their chances for survival would have been exponentially greater.

You can read more Rush articles at Constitution.com

Rush puts very succinctly the flaws and errors that permeate throughout gun controls flawed logic.  And in such a way that even someone with a puerile brain should be able to wrap their mind around.  Yet apparently gun controllers can’t even get that far on the cognitive logic train.

And as we, as a people, continue to vote gun controllers into office, the harm that they do will continue to mount.  One need only look at Carol Browne to see they effects of “successful” gun control.

To hearken back to the initial definition I listed at the beginning of this article, the insidious plan is gun control, the insidious enemy are gun controllers, and the insidious disease is the mental disorder of liberalism.

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