Monday, May 16, 2011
Halbrook, Stephen P. (Ll.D.);
The Founders' second Amendment: Origins Of The Right To Bear Arms;
Ivan R. Dee (Publisher), In Association With The Independent Institute;
The above cited book is excellent for the following reasons:
1. It provides a deep and well documented (Original documents) review of the development of the Second Amendment to our Constitution and, more generally, of the Bill Of Rights and the Constitution;
2. The author presents both sides of each argument before and during the Revolution and during the development of the Bill Of Rights (Especially as to the Second Amendment) and the Constitution as they occurred and in a logical sequence.;
3. The "Conclusions" chapter are very apparently the opinions of Mr. Halbrook and honestly separated from the body of this history.
Those who teach materials as to the subjects covered in this work would be unprofessional if they do not read this book. "Misconduct In Public Office" would be the least accusation I would make against any law-maker or jurist who fails to do the same before dealing with gun related issues. Editors and publishers who fail to know the materials in this volume should be considered unprofessional if they fail to consider the facts presented and conclusions made by Mr. Halbrook before reporting or writing editorials on the Second Amendment.
The points I found very interesting are here listed.
1. "The Militia" (Or "general militia) is the whole body of adult-and-free citizens who have a Natural Law Right to own weapons and to carry them anywhere they please AND may have a duty to own weapons for defense of self and his State.
2. The "well regulated militia" noted in the Second Amendment is that part of the "general militia" as organized into companies (Often at a town or village level) and equipped with standard firearms, drilled in military skills and organized into larger units (Usually under officers appointed by the Governor of each State).
3. These (Both) militias were seen as necessary for the defense of each State AND, much more important to most of the founders of the USA, to provide a defense against the potential tyranny of an overly powerful Federal government.
4. The "blunderbuss" was an early type of very short barreled shotgun, much like the sawed-off shotguns. These weapons were, in fact, sought by the members of the short-of-weapons early, revolutionary, militias, This is in opposition to the Federal Court case (Citation needed) which ruled that such shotguns were not nor never a militia weapon.
5. Pocket pistols were carried by our Founding Fathers with no concern as to CCW permits.
6. British General Gage was specially concerned about the "back woodsmen" most specially skilled in accurate long range shooting being often dependent on such hunting skills for survival
7. Even at the time of the writing of our Constitution and Bill Of Rights there were persons who distrusted the People as to possessing arms.
From other readings I note that:
1. Abraham Lincoln was elected as an officer of his militia company in the "Black Hawk War"; And,
2. As late as 1856 The US Supreme Court noted (In the Dred Scott case) that only free citizens could arm themselves and then travel as they saw fit. this being a right of citizens at that time (And now)