About guns and the Constitution

Nothing in the document links the right to bear arms with government tyranny

The author, a Paradise resident, is a wildlife biologist with 50 years of field experience.

When I looked at statistics of where the U.S. stands worldwide in educated comprehension (31st in math, 25th in science and 21st in reading), I found them hard to believe. But this lack of knowledge, comprehension and common sense is particularly evident in the views of the pro-firearm community, particularly those who don’t understand the Constitution, its history or its evolution.

A recent CN&R letter writer indicated that she, [like many of] “us who don’t trust the government … fear the confiscation of our guns so that [its leaders] can enforce martial law or install a dictator.” Really? I’d wager that next to her NRA bumper sticker is a “Support our troops” sticker—the very troops the government would call upon to enforce martial law.

Does she really believe that the military would turn tail when faced with citizens wielding rifles, shotguns and handguns?

The writer rightfully indicates that the fear of tyranny was discussed by the framers. However, that talk related to whether there should be a federal standing army or state militias. A lot of other things were discussed that didn’t get into the Constitution: the right to own slaves (several presidents did); the right to vote, which is never explicitly ensured; and the presumption of innocence.

But, Article I, Section 8, did get into the document and it specifically indicates Congress is required “To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions.” And Article III, Section 3, specifically states: “Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them [the government].”

“Insurrection” is a violent uprising against an authority or government. So, I beg of you, show me the passages in our Constitution that specifically spell out that “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed” was specifically intended to allow the citizenry to rise up against our government it has accused of tyranny.

If you can find it, I’ll buy you a beer.