Why can’t I have landmines?

Our Constitution could not be more explicit – My right to bear arms shall not be infringed. No mealy-mouthed, gun-snatching liberals have the authority to limit my access to private firepower. That right descends straight from Jesus Christ to my basement arsenal.

I want my landmines and I want them now.

Currently, my home is vulnerable to a variety of unnecessary risks that could be easily remediated with carefully placed and marked “home security enhancements.” Unfortunately, the country has been duped by progressives who have convinced the public to exchange their Liberty for so-called safety. Nanny state oppression doesn’t stop at my seat belt or those bogus cigarette warnings. It extends all the way into my front yard.

Gang members, thugs, and Islamic terrorists (the only kind of terrorist, of course) can creep onto my lawn while my family sleeps. They can peer through our windows, exploring our weaknesses for future attacks. Thanks to state-sponsored oppression, I am powerless to obtain and deploy the counter-measures that would keep my family safe from this danger.

Would landmines pose a threat to neighborhood kids, dogs, and postal workers? Maybe, but what price are you going to place on my liberty? What ever happened to individual responsibility?

Sure, some kid might miss the skull & crossbones markers I place next to the sidewalk. They might drift into the wrong spot in pursuit of a stray Frisbee and lose a leg. It happens. Freedom isn’t free. How is that different from the school kids, movie-goers, cops and church members regularly gunned down by super-armed psychos using guns? That’s right, there is no difference.

If Americans didn’t possess nearly half the world’s total inventory of guns in private hands it would be harder for the occasional lunatic get his hands on a weapon and mow down a Bible study group. So what? We need those weapons to protect our liberty from the gangs of roaming thugs who want to oppress us. And from Obama.

America is the only country in the world that endures mass shootings on a regular basis in peacetime because we are the only country on Earth that truly understands freedom. Every decent person unclouded by progressive Communistic propaganda recognizes that there is one way to respond to incidents of random gun violence – arm ourselves even more.

If that church in Charleston had been ringed by landmines, and its doors defended by turret guns attached to heartbeat sensors, and each parishioner was armed with a pistol held on their hip, this tragic incident would maybe still have occurred, but it sure would have looked different. This is what happens when limp-wristed progressives take away our right to self-defense.

Would we be safer without all these weapons? Of course we would. Any idiot can recognize that. Safety isn’t what our God-given Constitution granted us. To be free from mass, random gun violence like every other free, civilized nation on Earth we would have to give up our special brand of Liberty.

So why can’t I buy rocket-propelled grenades, anti-aircraft guns, and landmines? Let’s face it, as many Americans are killed using firearms each year as in car accidents. Do you really think landmines will make this situation any worse? The only solution to any problem is more individual freedom.

Just like the Bible, the Constitution was written by the finger of God. It must never be interpreted or adapted, only explicitly followed in every literal detail. Thanks to the Constitution, meddling liberal know-it-alls in far off Washington have no authority to tell me how to defend my property. Give me landmines or give me death.

God bless America and get off my lawn.

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

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Posted in Gun Rights
97 comments on “Why can’t I have landmines?
  1. Neal dennis says:

    Lol love the patriotism I agree 100% that all terrorists are Islamic but watch out or they’ll come for u next lol. But that’s just another reason why we have guns

  2. […] the purpose of the 2nd Amendment is preserve my right to rebel against the government, why can’t I have landmines or tanks? How can I possibly expect to defend my family from Obama’s oppression if I have no hand grenades […]

  3. Tammy says:

    You’re an idiot…thank-you for trying to make Republicans and Conservatives look like moronic, violent, uneducated, brainwashed imbeciles… They are not, but I’m sure your “satire” (I say that loosely) fools plenty of unthinking, easily duped Progressives. Sigh.

  4. […] If my freedom to own an arsenal of deadly weapons with no insurance requirement, qualifications, or tracking is vital to the preservation of liberty, then why stop with assault rifles? What right does my government have to block my access to landmines? […]

  5. A message from the sane left… Chris, I really enjoy your blog. I do not always agree with you but find you to be a reasonable person who I could easily work with on 80% of the issues. The 20% we disagree on I suggest we put in a can and kick on down the road while putting our energy into the 80% that we do agree on. Thank you for the honestly that you bring to the conversation. You are correct that the foodies on the left are not interested in facts and that the noise in those arguments is becoming louder than the facts. So it goes. I’m less interested in ‘left’ and ‘right’ than I am with good ideas and not so much. Please keep your voice in the game.

  6. Anse says:

    The gun is a fun hobby for many, a fashion accessory for some, a sad scream for validated machismo for a lot of swaggering idiots. I like the folks who have fun with them. I find the militant John Wayne wannabes tiresome. I have this urge to test the limits of open-carry dolts’ emotional discipline. If you shoot a spit wad at ’em, is that grounds for use of deadly force? What if I just call the doofus an asshole and be done with it? They probably expect me to thank them for protecting the homeland or some stupid shit.

  7. 1mime says:

    OK, OT – but news scoop today in Chicago Tribune about Scott Walker….I think he’s gonna get some heat on this one…He can say that staff review wasn’t required on the $124 Million in grants he personally decided, but there’s this little pesky fact that He, Scott Walker, created the agency…giving himself unbridalled authority to hand out tax payer money with no review?

    What’s the news from Chicago on this Lifer since the Tribune broke the story?


  8. flypusher says:

    This would have been perfect for a few posts back about $ in politics, but this is the active discussion. Yet another reason we need 100% transparency concerning exactly where those donations are coming from:


    Am I starting to feel a bit of schadenfreude over the spotlight swinging towards this loathsome germ?

    Yes, yes I am.

    • 1mime says:

      So, TX taxpayers are subsidizing economic development aka border security to the tune of $800M for problems that the local Chamber and authorities say don’t exist, meanwhile creating an economic boon for local builders, truck vendors, sales tax coffers….while – potholes go unfixed, public schools remain under-funded, roads and bridges are neglected, Tx continues to lead the nation in uninsured, ER facilities don’t get dedicated tax revenue that is being to used to balance the budget – so we can spend $800M on border patrol and “by the way” economic development.

      Creative accounting at its best. So: this is how Republicans govern.

  9. flypusher says:

    End of the “Southern strategy”? That would be great, but I’ll believe it when I don’t see any of it for at least 2 election cycles.


    • flypusher says:

      “This mythology of manners is adopted in lieu of the mythology of the Lost Cause. But it still has the great drawback of being rooted in a lie. The Confederate flag should not come down because it is offensive to African Americans. The Confederate flag should come down because it is embarrassing to all Americans. The embarrassment is not limited to the flag, itself. The fact that it still flies, that one must debate its meaning in 2015, reflects an incredible ignorance. A century and a half after Lincoln was killed, after 750,000 of our ancestors died, Americans still aren’t quite sure why. ”


  10. BigWilly says:

    You know, I’m not the bomb squad. I don’t think I’m yet prepared for such loaded terminology. It’s definitely not good for the psychology.

    Always stick to Laissez-Faire I say, and you can’t go wrong.

  11. Thanks Chris for some ironic humor at a time when we all need humor!! I wish I were sure that everyone reading your comments would quickly see humorous intend.

  12. 1mime says:

    Sorry, OT but this is a valuable study of Democratic Party Infrastructure problems that will threaten the safety of the Blue Wall. Per the analysis, Dems have a lot of hard structural work to do structuring to solidify and build their base. Republican wins in ’10, ’14 were not accidents. Lots of planning and execution at the grass roots level. Republicans are taking the long view and they’re doing the work to maximize every advantage they have. We might like to think we have a better chance in ’16, but think about what the author is describing and you’ll see the problems. It’s a sobering wake up call.


    • Doug says:

      What do you mean “we”? This is a Republican blog.

      • Doug says:

        Sometimes I crack myself up.

      • 1mime says:

        Yes, it is, Doug. It is also a tutorial on politics in general, which is valuable to me. Lifer has never made me or anyone of any political stripe feel uncomfortable about participating in this blog.
        The article points out that the Republican Party has worked effectively to develop a strong organizational structure at the local and state level. This paid off mightily in 2010 and 2012. It should come as no surprise that Democrats have some catching up to do. As an old hand at grassroots politics, I know the value and work entailed in building an organizational structure vs banking it all on a charismatic candidate. If our two parties are going to be competitive in 2016, I think this article issues a warning of how much work needs to be done by the Democrats. The article is really a compliment to the efforts of the Republican Party in their grass roots organization and a wake up call for Democrats.

        I will let Lifer decide if I have been inappropriate in my remarks. He impresses me as a man who wouldn’t let something like this threaten him….but, if I wake up tomorrow and there is an elephant in my front yard, well, then, I guess I’ve gone too far….

      • objv says:

        You crack me up, too, Doug. That was funny.

  13. Stephen says:

    A few years ago I listen to a historian in St Augustine. Many of the things that we think were originated by English settlers were actually invented by the Spanish. One of these was homesteading. Basically the deal was if you maintain arms, trained and was willing to defend the Colony you were granted land to settle and that made you you a citizen and not a subject. This was the basis of our Second Amendment provision. As lifer has pointed out it is nuts to think this was so we could overthrow the government. No guys it was to protect the state.

    • Actually, Stephen, it’s based on English common law. Read your Locke. You are correct to point out that the Spanish originated homesteading

    • Crogged says:

      Exactly Stephen-there was no consideration of the inviolate right of an individual to defend oneself because they took that as self evident.

      So, there are ‘limits’ to this right-this court even said so, while leaving itself rather than the officials elected by the citizens as the ultimate arbitrator of such limits. So, we start with this, you have an inviolate right to one handgun in your home, no trigger locks necessary even if you have kids. Each gun after that-200 dollar license and a 100,000 insurance policy.

      And since for some reason,all of a sudden our conservative members took pains to realize that some of our poorer citizens may have some issues enjoying this inviolable right, I’ll let them write up the tax credit structure, which will resemble Obamacare, which we will need since every citizen needs a gun when walking the mean streets of Everywhere, USA.

      • 1mime says:

        ….every citizen needs walking the mean streets….

        Don’t forget they’ll need to pack their gun and their Bible when attending church….

      • Crogged says:

        ‘reductio ad absurdum’ is independent of political persuasion.

      • pbasch says:

        I’m not sure why poor people should have gun ownership subsidized just because it’s a constitutional right. Speech, another constitutional right, isn’t subsidized… rich people can afford more speech than the poor, since $=speech. Why not the same for guns? Money is good because it lets you buy stuff.

  14. objv says:

    “The Washington Post reported 22-year-old Christon Scriven, a black neighbor of gunman Dylann Roof, said that during a recent night of drinking, Roof said he wanted to open fire on a school. At another point, Roof talked about shooting up the College of Charleston, according to the newspaper.”


    The church was not Roof’s first choice. The college and schools had too much security. The church had none.

    Lifer we can joke about the need for landmines (and moats and rocket launchers) but armed security IS a deterrent and saves lives. I feel much safer knowing that guns are common in my neighborhood and that an intruder would have to think twice before trying to break in.

    • objv says:

      “twice as many people die in violent incidents on religious property as die in school shootings. Why aren’t we more aware of this fact?”


      I always thought churches were a safe place to be. My current church is downtown. Homeless people often wander in during Sunday School, have a doughnut and some coffee, and stay as long as they like. One man who joined us clearly had mental issues. Others have problems with alcoholism or drugs. Churches want to serve those who need help most. Many churches will have to rethink ways to make their properties more secure.

      • Yes, churches will have to rethink security. There was an incident in Colorado a couple of years ago that ended somewhat differently than the current tragedy, but only because of an immediate armed response: http://www.policeone.com/officer-shootings/articles/5468179-Church-murderer-killed-by-off-duty-officer-was-on-early-release/

        It would be nice if we really could *prevent* maniacs from doing that thing they do via early intervention, but the entire history of humankind strongly suggests that’s a stretch goal, at best. Securing facilities against unauthorized entry should be first and foremost on every church’s security list. The reason for this is simple: once the bad guy is in, the only thing that will stop him is an armed response. Since secure entry is very difficult to maintain during services, the only viable alternative is a discreet armed presence. Fortunately, cops go to church, too, and it’s a rare congregation that doesn’t count LEOs in its membership. So the solution to the problem is built-in.

        These aren’t happy thoughts to think about, but they are thoughts that should be going through every responsible congregant’s head. To paraphrase Aurelius, look things in the face, and see them for what they are. God helps those who help themselves.

    • flypusher says:

      A properly executed background check would have made it hard too.

      Seems like quite a few people heard about these murderous intentions beforehand and laughed them off. Maybe we all shouldn’t be doing that any more.

      • Fly, the NICS program is almost as much a technological marvel as healthcare.gov. Read the following and weep: https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/bjs/grants/239272.pdf

        To summarize 2010 NICS stats:

        6,037,394 instant background checks
        72,659 denials
        4,732 referrals for investigation
        40 prosecutions

        Bear in mind that simply falsifying information on a 4473 background check form is a felony. From this one can readily ascertain that the primary purpose of NICS is to harass, intimidate, and inconvenience lawful firearms purchasers. The law enforcement value of NICS is so vanishingly small as to approach nullity. Law enforcement and criminals alike tacitly acknowledge that the professional bad guys aren’t going to be purchasing their weapons from Bass Pro, much less duly filling out 4473’s. So nobody who actually matters in the LEO/bad guy equation pays much attention to the damn thing. They leave that to posturing pols and braying gun grabbers.

      • flypusher says:

        “Law enforcement and criminals alike tacitly acknowledge that the professional bad guys aren’t going to be purchasing their weapons from Bass Pro..”

        But it looks like Roof did just that, purchased that gun from a legal dealer, despite a pending felony case. I definitely want to get the whole story on that.

        I will agree with you on one point, it’s not efficient. That’s why I want to see licenses for gun use just like you must have a license for car use. And if that classifies me as a “gun grabber”, so be it.

      • Fly, I don’t think *oof counts as a professional criminal; rather, he’s a criminally insane, homicidal maniac. NICS probably would be useful in catching those who are too insane, or too stupid, to understand what NICS does. That’s an astonishingly small number of people.

        In this particular instance, I would hazard a guess that the paperwork just hadn’t caught up. Give it a couple of months more, and *oof would have been denied. Note that it’s glaringly obvious he would not have been prosecuted as a result. Nor would that denial have stopped him from buying a gun; he would have just done so through illegal channels.

        Tell you what, I’ll submit to being licensed to have a gun when you submit to being licensed to exercise free speech, worship in the manner you choose, seek redress from the government, or peacefully assemble. What’s sauce for the 2nd Amendment goose is certainly sauce for the 1st Amendment gander.

      • flypusher says:

        “Tell you what, I’ll submit to being licensed to have a gun when you submit to being licensed to exercise free speech, worship in the manner you choose, seek redress from the government, or peacefully assemble. What’s sauce for the 2nd Amendment goose is certainly sauce for the 1st Amendment gander.”

        Your gander sauce analogy makes sense if you can demonstrate how someone can quickly and easily massacre a lot of other people via speaking, or assembling, or worshiping, or petitioning the government. One of these things is not like the others.

    • Stephen says:

      I live in the country and a common sound are people target shooting on their properties. That is perfectly legal where I live. We know how to use guns and the culture is strong on gun safety and never using firearms to settle arguments. But the slaughter rate of people with guns over all in this country is indefensible. Way, way higher than any other advanced country. Surely we can preserve the right for competent and sane people to own and use guns while keeping them out of the hands of the incompetent and insane. To my mind we have a serious problem with in our culture to tolerate this extreme gun violence. And changing that is where we need to start to solve this problem.

    • bubbabobcat says:

      “Scriven also told NBC News that Roof may have changed his plans after deciding the college campus was a harder target to access.”

      Nowhere in the article was there any mention that was what Roof specifically or directly told his friend. It is speculation by an acquaintance and you lapped it up as your personal wingnut Rorschach test.

      He was a blatant raging flaming racist and he “only chose a historically significant Black church because it was a 2nd or 3rd choice softer target.

      Riiiiiiiiiight. Red Kool Aid tastes sehr gut.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Bubba and OV, instead of speculating, maybe someone should just come right out and ask Dylann Roof why he chose a church, while he’s still alive. No better way to find out.

      • 1mime says:

        Maybe Roof just “happened” upon this particular church….even though he had to drive 100 miles to get there…and maybe Roof just “happened” to arrive exactly at Bible study time which had a very small gathering…And, maybe, Roof really planned this whole thing premised upon his racist views with encouragement from his BNF in the CCC and the benign dismissivenss of those who witnessed him moving into very dangerous thinking. Maybe in February of 2015, when Roof shared his racist manifesto with the world on FB – maybe someone could have intervened.

        For me, this is a recurring nightmare that keeps repeating itself….which it will until the American public changes. Sadly, that will take generations; hopefully, our young will lead the way. Until we get there, expect more attacks on innocent Black people, more funerals, more grief. Now is the time to intervene on a personal and societal level. There have been too many deaths and too much momentary pity. That’s not solving the problem.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I will add to the speculation and guess that maybe he chose a church because it is supposed to be a sanctuary, literally, and it sends a message of terror, that the Black community is not safe anywhere, not even in a place as sacred as a church.

      • objv says:

        And here I thought I was going to get brownie points for quoting something out of Raw Story…

        Yes, it was Roof’s friend that was speculating, but there seems to be no doubt that Roof told his friend that he wanted to target a college or school. What made Roof change his mind is unknown now. Like Tutt, I think that someone should ask Root while he’s still alive. Hopefully, the truth will come out during the trial.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        So NOW you flip flop on a dime and blithely claim ” what made Roof change his mind is unknown” OV?

        When your original credulity defying post CONCLUDING why is still up for all to see?

        objv says:
        June 22, 2015 at 4:56 pm

        “The church was not Roof’s first choice. The college and schools had too much security. The church had none.

        Lifer we can joke about the need for landmines (and moats and rocket launchers) but armed security IS a deterrent and saves lives. I feel much safer knowing that guns are common in my neighborhood and that an intruder would have to think twice before trying to break in.”

        Yeah “unknown” to you. Whatever.

      • “…he chose a church because it is supposed to be a sanctuary, literally, and it sends a message of terror, that the Black community is not safe anywhere, not even in a place as sacred as a church.”

        Tutta, I think you nailed it. And if that is not the very face of evil, I don’t know what is.

      • 1mime says:

        As the investigation proceeds, it will be interesting to see if there are links to white supremacist organizations that specifically directed Roof to this particular church. I don’t know how the law would treat such a relationship but hopefully the categorization of the crime will allow a broad range of options for going after these puppet masters who are culpable but have escaped punishment.

    • objv says:

      Stephan wrote: Surely we can preserve the right for competent and sane people to own and use guns while keeping them out of the hands of the incompetent and insane.


      Bingo! That would be my wish as well. Clearly, Roof’s killings were racist in nature, but he seems to have carefully planned to kill African-Americans in a place where there would be little resistance.

      In a way, Roof was similar to Elliot Rogers who tried to time his killings to maximize the presence of the type of people (frat boys and sorority girls) he wanted to shoot, torture, and maim.

      Young men often have issues with anger and those prone to violent mass killings have psychological problems to some degree. They tend to fixate on an issue (race in Root’s case) and feel that killing would send a message to the world.

      It would do much good to try to identify problems and try to head off tragedy by treatment and involuntary commitment (if necessary) to a mental treatment facility. Often parents can’t do much with an unstable adult child if that child won’t seek therapy on their own. Roof gave many indications that he would go on a rampage. The trouble was that no one took him seriously.

  15. I refer the gentle reader to District of Columbia v. Heller: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/07pdf/07-290.pdf

    Pay especial attention to the definition of “arms.” That’s why you can’t have land mines, Chris. Q.E.D.

    • BTW, for the attention-span-challenged, that would be pp. 7-8.

      • objv says:

        Thanks, Tracy!

      • Well, objv, Chris is applying a false reductio ad absurdum argument. Somebody needed to call him on it lest some of the more credulous denizens of this venue take his canard seriously.

        Since the earliest glimmerings of English common law, personal “arms” have been understood to conform to two criteria: 1) Arms are those weapons that are borne by an individual. 2) Arms are those weapons that actively and consciously wielded by one individual against another individual.

        Bludgeons and edged weapons obviously meet both criteria. Projectile weapons such as thrown rocks, spears, slings, bows, crossbows, and all varieties of firearms, excepting fully automatic firearms, i.e. machine guns, also conform to both criteria – such weapons are aimed at a singular target. (Of course, depending on the situation, the wielder may find him or herself serially engaging multiple individuals.)

        There are a variety of man-portable weapons that conform to the first criteria, but not the second. These include weapons like Molotov cocktails, grenades, RPGs, bazookas, flame throwers, sawed-off shotguns, machine guns, shoulder-mounted missiles, etc. Such weapons are man-portable, and may be aimed to an extent, but they are intended to deliver destruction indiscriminately on a broader scale against multiple individuals, or against structures or vehicles.

        Lastly, there are a plethora of weapons that meet neither criteria, including Chris’ landmines, and ranging all the way up to nuclear weapons.

        Chris’ example is simply silly; it would be a shame for anyone to lend it credence.

      • johng and unarmed, leave it to you two to extract the most tortured, out of context interpretation possible. Good Lord, read the whole thing.

        FYI, every class of arms I listed has been used in war, and that includes every type of firearm ever devised, including gas operated semi- and fully automatic rifles, of which the AK-47 is just one example. The gas operating system has been around since 1887; there hundreds if not thousands of of rifle and shotgun models based on this mechanism; it’s utterly ubiquitous. I own three different gas operated semi-automatic rifles (none of them an AK) and a gas operated semi-automatic shotgun.

        Is your plan to eliminate all semi-automatic gas operated rifles simply because you don’t like the cosmetics of the “evil” AK-47? Because I hate to break this to you, but there’s not a lick of difference between the functional operating characteristics of the semi-auto version of the AK-47 that you can legally purchase and those of the Remington 7400 that I hunt with. So, I’m sorry, but that’s just totally unacceptable. And to anybody who knows *anything* about firearms, it comes across as simply insane.

      • flypusher says:

        “Well, objv, Chris is applying a false reductio ad absurdum argument. Somebody needed to call him on it lest some of the more credulous denizens of this venue take his canard seriously.”

        And the next thing you’ll educate us poor naïve souls about is that Jonathan Swift really didn’t advocate cannibalism. Thank you so much. The rhetorical device here is pretty damn obvious, but you went for that rather than try any rebuttal of the real point of the post.

      • Turtles Run says:

        “Chris’ example is simply silly; it would be a shame for anyone to lend it credence.”

        Yet, we have had someone here and a tea party congressman Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL) argue that people should be allowed to armed themselves like a modern infantryman. That includes assault-rifles, mortars, shoulder launched, SAMs, TOW weapons, large caliber machine guns, grenades, grenade launchers, automatic grenade launchers, claymore mines, and other assorted weapons available to any combat arms soldier. The argument is valid because there are people in our society that would if given the opportunity to purchase these types of weapons.

        The issue I see with your argument is that it ignores the collateral damage caused by the weapons you define as similar. The AK and your Remington rifle may share similar internal operating systems but that is where the similarities end. One is a hunting rifle, Remington, meant and designed to hunt game. The AK is meant to fire rounds quickly and with a high rate of fire anda capacity of ammunition at a given time. You like many other gun nuts seem to forget that bullets fired often do not hit their intended target and potentially can kill innocent bystanders, we do not need to have weapons that have a greater capacity to cause collateral damage. No one is ever going to confuse the purpose for each of these weapons and to try to claim they are similar demonstrates (IMHO) a complete lack of respect for firearms.

      • Turtles, are you comprehension-challenged today? Which part of “not a lick of difference” do you not understand? My Remington has exactly the same rate of fire as a semi-auto AK. It fires a round every time I pull the trigger, just as fast as I can pull that trigger. And it’s chambered in a cartridge half again more powerful than the wimpy round the AK fires. As I’ve pointed out before, were I a crazed nutball intent on killing a bunch of people, I’d take the Remington over the AK any day of the week. Aside from the real difference in cartridge power, there is functionally absolutely no difference between the AK “assault” weapon and my Remington “hunting” rifle. The distinctions between the two are completely arbitrary and entirely cosmetic.

        I’ve already pointed out the differences between arms that can currently be legally owned by civilians, and those that cannot. Basically, these distinctions were recognized back in 1934 when the foundational framework of current gun law was structured and passed. I happen to believe those distinctions and the law based on them are reasonable. I would not support Rep. Yahoo’s bill.

        That said, pretty much every gun passed since 1934 is bilious nonsense that unduly infringes upon our 2nd Amendment rights without producing any offsetting benefit to society. In other words, the reasonable compromises *have already been made.* Thus far, and no further.

      • 1mime says:

        Tracy, I’m going to recommend you to the Board of Directors for the NRA. You would make a stellar addition.

      • 1mime, I appreciate the sentiment, but you have to be a member to make a nomination. Here’s where you sign up: https://joinnra.nra.org/join/join.aspx

        Welcome aboard! 🙂

    • johngalt says:

      How does one define “weapons that were not specifically designed for military use and were not employed in a military capacity”? This is exceptionally vague. I see little civilian need/use for automatic weapons, so-called “assault rifles”, and the like. What really separates these from grenades and shoulder-launched rockets? Semantics? I really do not see how this ruling prevents banning high-capacity guns.

    • unarmedandunafraid says:

      In this case Scalias opinion matters and mine does not, but I think the conservatives opinion in Heller is wrong. Talk about judicial activism. They rewrite the 2nd right off the bat, adding self-defense into it. We all agree we have the obvious right to self-defense, but it isn’t in the 2nd amendment. I just saw a comment somewhere from a NRA official stating “it’s not about hunting or self-defense”. I’ll try to find it. Aaaacckk.

      Got that out of the way. In the “what are arms” section.

      “The term was applied, then as now, to weapons that were not specifically designed for military use and were not employed in a military capacity.”

      Interesting. So, AK’s how would they fit here.

      • Doug says:

        unarmed, they were explaining that the term arms *also* applies to non-military weapons. Read about four sentences past your quote.

      • unarmedandunafraid says:

        Yes, right again Doug. Don’t let be a habit.

    • Crogged says:

      This opinion is fascinating, the fear of a standing army in the late 18th century which resulted in the right of the state to have a regulated militia means we now have courts deciding which weapons a municipality can allow. Freedom!

      You want a gun, I have no problem with that, but the idea that your right to a gun comes from a long line of considered judicial decisions from when men made fires to keep the bears away as ‘conservative thinking’ is hogwash and bullshit.

      • Crogged says:

        And when a court uses judicial interpretation of a legal system which is partly founded on monarchy-it’s as dangerous as that there law of sherbert, I mean, sharia. So we need to pass a law such that there will be no monarchists or ice cream eaters making havoc in our judicial system, just pure, American, nothing else in this world law!

  16. pbasch says:

    For a second, I thought you were throwing your hat into the GOP presidential ring and decided to shimmy right!
    Here, just for fun, is my non-snarky, perfectly serious rewrite of the Amendment in question as it is currently interpreted:
    The right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed. (As an aside, this may be useful in the administration of a well-regulated Militia, which is a very good thing.)
    Of course, to interpret the Amendment this way, one must ignore the grammatical structure, which I understand to be the ablative absolute. I have only the vaguest memories from my 5th and 6th grade Latin, but thanks to the Interwebz I now know that this construction is used to define the circumstances or situation in which the action of the main verb occurs. Since the founders (to put it hilariously mildly) were better-educated than most of us, at least in terms of their Latin, Greek, and Hebrew, they would have understood this.
    So, taking the Latin grammar into consideration, the condition under which the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed is their membership in a well-regulated (i.e., with rules of civilian origin; so, National Guard yes, Posse Comitatus no, KKK no) militia. I read in a comment stream once (so… reliable?) that in some states every man of a certain age is automatically a member of the state militia and can presumably be called up at any time. As far as I’m concerned, that counts, as long as there is a genuine administrative structure in place to do that. In other words, regulation.
    There are perfectly good arguments (I don’t agree with them, but they’re not terrible arguments) that being as armed as you like should not depend on membership in a well-regulated militia or anything else. It is thought-provoking that in the parts of the Islamic Empire that had non-Muslim citizens, there was plenty of freedom of worship, but they were disarmed. So I’m not blind to the effect of disarmament on subjugation and control.
    On the other hand, there is the much more powerful effect of advertising on subjugation, but that’s a whole different discussion. As is the power of cheap fat, salt, and sugar to subjugate a poor population. And the denial of collective bargaining… I seem to have gone off the rails there. So, call me a big liberal…

    • Crogged says:

      These kinds of exercises I think are good for the brain, but not very enlightening when it comes to what we do right here, right now, with writing our own laws when it comes to guns.
      Start with the “The rights of the people……..”

      The author’s had a very different definition from your own when it comes to ‘people’, those landed men in powdered wigs were ‘people’, everyone else, not so much. Women were not ‘people’, nor were slaves, nor were any of the indigenous population. Men with jobs, they were kind of sort of, ‘people’.

      Not that they were bad…….people, but, this original intent horseshit flies into the face of why these same men rewrote the Articles of Confederation. Government is for the living, the dead have their own issues.

      • flypusher says:

        You also have to wonder how they might have changed the wording if they could have seen some of today’s firepower.

        What do people realistically use firearms for these days? Hunting. Target shooting. Personal defense against the criminal element. What sort of firepower is reasonable for these purposes? That what I’d be looking at in drawing the line between what’s military only and what’s for civilians.

      • Crogged says:

        The US constitution doesn’t ban a felon from owning a gun, so why are we doing it?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Crogged, a good way of learning to appreciate one’s civil rights is to look at those who have lost them — like convicted felons, who lose the right to vote, to serve on juries, and to bear arms, although it seems some of these rights can be recovered a certain number of years after their release from prison and under certain circumstances.

        I take issue with felons who have served their time FOREVER losing the right to vote and to serve on juries.

        There are Constitutional purists out there who do object to these rights being lost, even by former felons, since the Constitution does say these rights shall not be abridged.

      • Crogged says:

        As with everything else in this world, the question is whose ox is getting gored and the assumptions which lay underneath nearly all political positions. Some are convinced illegal aliens will automatically and forever support whichever party gives them a path to citizenship (which is why most of our black citizens register as-wait a minute-next) , all felons must be Democrats and Jefferson Davis and the rest of the Southern leadership of the 1850’s/60’s weren’t such bad guy’s, once you got pass the murderous, slave holding racism.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Pbasch, I would say that in order for the citizenry to be ready to form a militia of any size, at any given moment, each citizen would have to be armed and know how to use a firearm. The right to bear arms would not be contingent upon an actual, existing militia, only on the potential need for a militia. The need for a militia might never arise, but the citizenry would have to be prepared just in case. Even a militia of one, ready to defend the smallest parcel of land.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Participation in a militia of any size would be optional, of course. The right to bear arms is a freedom and should not be mandatory.

      • unarmedandunafraid says:

        Tutta – It doesn’t seem to me that the writers of the 2nd amendment thought that participation in the militia would be voluntary. From the link below. “The major law that regulated the tradition in the postwar era, The Militia Act of 1792, required that male citizens between the ages of 18 and 45 enroll in a militia—a locally administered force that the President should be authorized to raise when necessary”


        Doesn’t it seem the writers were more concerned that they could muster armed bodies to go put down a tax rebellion or two? Or fight off European royalties again. After all there was no standing army. The 2nd amendment is a vestigial sentence from a different time and situation, IMO.

        I see no reason why the government could not show up at your house tomorrow and order all men between 18 and 45 in the house to show up at a muster point for a week or two of training. Tomorrow. And bring a gun. Borrow one if you don’t have one.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Unarmed, you open up a whole can of worms with the question of the Constitutionality of the draft. I used to believe that you had to do whatever was necessary to protect your country, but now I look at this with new eyes.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        To be clear — what I meant to say was that I used to believe you had to give yourself in the name of serving your country, and that a draft was totally legitimate, because fighting to protect your country was rightfully mandatory. I question that view now.

  17. vikinghou says:

    “Every decent person unclouded by progressive Communistic propaganda recognizes that there is one way to respond to incidents of random gun violence – arm ourselves even more.”

    Yes, every American has a Constitutional right to live in fear.

  18. flypusher says:

    OT- rumor has it that SC Governor Nikki Haley will announce this afternoon that the Confederate Flag near the Capitol will be taken down.

    I say “Good!” but I can’t help indulging in a little cynicism and wonder how many CEOs objected.

    • flypusher says:

      And now it’s been said, though not without a whole lot of a grandstanding intro. But it’s the 1st step in the right direction.

  19. Crogged says:

    You can have my landmine when you pry it out of my finger-less hand and hook.

  20. csarneson says:

    This sounds like it was written by one of my Wyoming office-mates. Only they are dead serious and have no sense of humor.

    • goplifer says:

      In fairness to your office-mates, their argument is at least consistent. If it’s OK for me to own a slightly modified AK or a Barrett (both of which are a hoot to play with by the way) then it’s difficult to understand why I can’t own a tank or an RPG. The logical basis for one is inseparable from the other.

      The logical problem exists upstream from the point at which everyone seems to be engaging this argument. Why do we need massive unregulated private arsenals? The answer emerges out of a very dark history that no one on either side seems very comfortable talking about. So we stay on this ridiculous path.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Well, if we want to be consistent, a land mine is not a good analogy, since the user would not have control over this particular weapon and it could go off indiscriminately. Self-defense implies control and a specific target.

      • flypusher says:

        The whole gotta-be-ready-to-overthrow-the-gov’t undercurrent would be laughable except there’s too many folks who are dead serious about it, even though nobody’s actually oppressing them. You don’t like who’s in the White House??? Cry us a freaking river and join the club. That eventually happens to every person who participates in our political system long enough. I sure as hell hated 8 years of GW Bush, and epic fail that is Iraq will put him near the bottom in Presidential rankings, but I was never one to cultivate some culture of armed rebellion. You suck it up and work towards the next election. You use your words, not your guns. America has a very fine tradition of peaceful transfers of power, except for some sore losers back in 1860.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Fly, the way I understand it, with regards to being anti-government, firearms are seen only as a LAST RESORT.

        If we have issues with how we’re being governed, the first and easiest “weapon” at our disposal is the right to free speech — just say no, protest, blog, write letters to the editor and members of Congress, etc. As you said, “you use your words, not your guns.”

        After that comes the right to vote. If we don’t like who’s in power, vote them out.

        Only after the right to free speech, the right to peaceful assembly, the right to vote, and other fundamental rights are lost would there be any reason to use firearms for defense against the government.

        Firearms would be the absolute LAST resort, not the first, at least in theory.

      • goplifer says:

        Tutta, you raise an interesting point. However, if my right to own private firepower “shall not be infringed” then what difference does it make how indiscriminately lethal that firepower might be.

        And keep this in mind. It’s possible to own and maintain a pistol in a manner which is relatively secure. It is also possible to own and maintain a simple pistol in a manner that is no more secure than a landmine. Run a Google search for children under 10 who kill someone by accident and you’ll see what I mean.

        We don’t make any meaningful legal distinction between the responsible ownership of firearms by people who understand the implications and take that right seriously, and random dumbasses who leave pistols laying on their nightstands.

        That’s why I suggested an insurance requirement as a way to start getting a handle on our firepower problem.


        It wouldn’t ban guns, but it would provide a private mechanism to begin sifting the responsible owners from the dangerous idiots.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Lifer, I understand your point. Any attempt to regulate weaponry, no matter how slight, is seen as an infringement. The argument is “gave them an inch and they’ll take a mile.”

      • flypusher says:

        “It wouldn’t ban guns, but it would provide a private mechanism to begin sifting the responsible owners from the dangerous idiots.”

        Which is extremely reasonable, but there’s enough people with enough clout who put forth this false dichotomy that you’re either a red-blooded patriotic 2nd Amendment-backing real American, or you’re a Commie-Socialist gun grabber. Your suggestion, no matter how reasonable, makes you the latter.

      • flypusher says:

        “Firearms would be the absolute LAST resort, not the first, at least in theory.”

        All the rhetoric from the take-our-country-back crowd makes one question their priorities here. I did see a few lefties express such a sentiment during the Bush years ( and I scolded some for being too melodramatic), but they never came close to the level of the righties these days. I see saying that as the mark of a NJ, be they RW or LW.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Lifer, I don’t know what the numbers are, but I would say that even though there are people in the US who don’t have a problem with gun ownership in general, who either own firearms themselves or respect the rights of others to to keep firearms as long as its done responsibly, there are some who are totally opposed to gun ownership, who if given the chance would do away with it completely, who’ve called for the repeal of the second amendment, and if necessary would do away with it gradually.

        I think it’s the last group of people who truly worry the second-amendment supporters.

      • goplifer says:

        I think the problem faced by the hard-core, “from my cold dead hands” bloc is not their fear of anti-gun extremists. The problem they face is that they cannot openly acknowledge the real rationale behind their position. As a consequence, they cannot engage in a sincere debate over potential solutions. It is necessarily an all or nothing proposition.

        They can’t acknowledge what really animates them because it is entirely discredited. We are a massively armed nation because private violence was the essential key to sustaining white supremacy. We inherited the notion that our “liberty” was protected by the ability to resort to organized private violence. And in the south, that was absolutely true.

        Those days are over, but cultures change slowly. Ask people and they will still allude to this need though the smarter ones will avoid talking about black people. The dumber ones will immediately start talking about black people and Baltimore, and Ferguson and so on.

        We don’t make one inch of progress on this deadly problem until we come to terms with its source.

      • flypusher says:

        “We are a massively armed nation because private violence was the essential key to sustaining white supremacy. We inherited the notion that our “liberty” was protected by the ability to resort to organized private violence.”

        Popcorn futures, I need to invest in those.

        I would pay top dollar to see a debate where the GOP candidates actually had to address that. No evading, no deflecting, no changing the subject. Address that point, and on the assumption that you completely disagree, put forth your defense. Mr Cruz, you allegedly have such mad debate skillz, you go first. Give it your best shot.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Lifer, I think progress involves coming to terms with racism as the source for a great many people, but also acknowledging that that’s not the case for everyone.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I don’t know, Lifer. Maybe I haven’t seen enough of the world, maybe I’m idealistic, but from my vantage point as a naive outsider with little interest in politics,I try to be objective, to see all sides of an issue, and maybe I make the mistake of giving everyone the benefit of the doubt.

      • 1mime says:

        Tutta, I don’t think one ever errs by trying to look at all sides of an argument. The discussion on this topic has been interesting, but, for me, it all boils down to the issue of control – whether the means are personal weapons, political position, gender dominance, or wealth. Yes, I realize the topic is guns – but guns merely provide the “means” of control for individual power. We live in a nation of people who have stopped believing government is good or necessary. The only verifiable strength is individual. How do you change this?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Mime, your comment about control is excellent and suggests a clear way of expressing the crux of the argument:

        Is possessing firearms truly a means for “defense of oneself” or is it actually about the “control of others?”

      • tuttabellamia says:

        “Individual power” turned inward, for protecting one’s individuality and autonomy; or “individual power” turned outward, to be imposed upon others?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Mime, I don’t see anything wrong with individualism, with a healthy skepticism of government, and with the desire to protect one’s individual rights and freedoms, in and of itself, as long as it’s not actually a means of imposing one’s power on others.

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