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  1. #1
    Terminator's Avatar
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    Attorney argues 2nd Ammd't applies only to militia, not individuals

    In a case that could shape firearms laws nationwide, attorneys for the District of Columbia argued Thursday that the Second Amendment right to bear arms applies only to militias, not individuals.

    The city defended as constitutional its long-standing ban on handguns, a law that some gun opponents have advocated elsewhere. Civil liberties groups and pro-gun organizations say the ban in unconstitutional.

    At issue in the case before a federal appeals court is whether the Second Amendment right to "keep and bear arms" applies to all people or only to "a well regulated militia." The Bush administration has endorsed individual gun-ownership rights but the Supreme Court has never settled the issue.

    If the dispute makes it to the high court, it would be the first case in nearly 70 years to address the amendment's scope. The court disappointed gun owner groups in 2003 when it refused to take up a challenge to California's ban on assault weapons.

    In the Washington, D.C., case, a lower-court judge told six city residents in 2004 that they did not have a constitutional right to own handguns. The plaintiffs include residents of high-crime neighborhoods who want guns for protection.

    Courts have upheld bans on automatic weapons and sawed-off shotguns but this case is unusual because it involves a prohibition on all pistols. Voters passed a similar ban in San Francisco last year but a judge ruled it violated state law. The Washington case is not clouded by state law and hinges directly on the Constitution.

    "We interpret the Second Amendment in military terms," said Todd Kim, the District's solicitor general, who told the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit that the city would also have had the authority to ban all weapons.

    "Show me anybody in the 19th century who interprets the Second Amendment the way you do," Judge Laurence Silberman said. "It doesn't appear until much later, the middle of the 20th century."

    Of the three judges, Silberman was the most critical of Kim's argument and noted that, despite the law, handguns were common in the District.

    Silberman and Judge Thomas B. Griffith seemed to wrestle, however, with the meaning of the amendment's language about militias. If a well-regulated militia is no longer needed, they asked, is the right to bear arms still necessary?
    "That's quite a task for any court to decide that a right is no longer necessary," Alan Gura, an attorney for the plaintiffs, replied. "If we decide that it's no longer necessary, can we erase any part of the Constitution?"

  2. #2
    Andrewtx's Avatar
    Andrewtx is offline A little bit of soul
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    I think that politicians who believe that none of the citizens they represent should have the right to arm and protect themselves should forego their own armed personal protective details.

  3. #3
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    The militia referred to in the 2nd Amendment was not any kind of organized group. The concept was that if men owned weapons, they could come together for common defense when it was needed.

    The Amendment clearly states that its purpose is to ensure "the security of a free state..." Cities with gun bans have always had the highest crime rates in the country. It is not debatable, it is a fact that these kinds of laws endanger the lives of the people.
    "I'm not a coward,
    I've just never been tested
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    I would pass"
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  4. #4
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    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    Let me at this jackhole. I'd bury him in a debate.

    The commas seperate thoughts. Meaning a militia and the right to bear arms both shall not be infringed. If he thinks that it's just poor grammar on the part of our founding fathers, I wonder what other amendments, if any, he also thinks they "misspelled".

    Fuggin idiot.
    The virtue of spirit has no need for thanks or approval. Only the certain conviction that what has been done is right. -Jor El, as played by Marlon Brando

  5. #5
    Ducky's Avatar
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    So by his definition, should a militia become necessary, then one would not be able to be formed due to a lack of firepower?
    --------------
    From the American Heritage Dictionary-
    Militia
    mi·li·tia

    NOUN:

    1. An army composed of ordinary citizens rather than professional soldiers.
    2. A military force that is not part of a regular army and is subject to call for service in an emergency.
    3. The whole body of physically fit civilians eligible by law for military service.
    ------------
    If this country gets in a position to call upon the militia, that means we're in some deep shit on our home turf. It means the normal stores of weaponry may not be available. That ammendment was put in place for just such an emergency.

    Why can't they say what they mean, and come out with the fact that they don't want anyone (other than themselves, of course) to be able to appropriately defend themselves?

    But of course, it'll work. I mean, look at England. They're an island and can readily control anything that gets brought in. They have no gun crime, and they're working on that pesky knife problem. No offense to our friends over there at all, your politicians are just as clueless as ours are.
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    Jenna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhino View Post
    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
    I guess they didn't have much time to teach grammar in Founding Father School. Probably spent most of their time on firearms classes.

  7. #7
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    markw76 is offline Guy behind the mic
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    Just another lawyer arguing his boss's fanciful delusions about who should be allowed to defend themselves. Should be ashamed.
    "Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible actions." ~ George Washington.

    A Dead Enemy Is A Peaceful Enemy - Blessed Be The Peacemakers.

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    Fine, then welcome to the LEF Malitia.


    Now GET OUTTA MY WAY

    "Stupid should hurt."

  9. #9
    BEB
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    "To preserve liberty it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them." -- Senator Richard Henry Lee, 1788

  10. #10
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    Even defining militia can expand the second ammendment's scope beyond that of an actual branch of the military:

    UNITED STATES CODE
    TITLE 10 - ARMED FORCES
    Subtitle A - General Military Law
    PART I - ORGANIZATION AND GENERAL MILITARY POWERS
    CHAPTER 13 - THE MILITIA

    &#167; 311. Militia: composition and classes

    (a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.

    (b) The classes of the militia are --

    (1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia;

    and

    (2) the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia.


    Still, even if we ignore outright interpretation of the 27 words that compose this ammendment, we can simply look at the views of the people who actually wrote this ammendment...

    Plenty of historical information is available that quotes Jefferson, Adams, Mason, Washington, and other key figures from the infancy of our government, and what their views were on the importance of firearms within this country.

  11. #11
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    How sad are we? We are so hungry for a debate, we are debating gun control- with nobody.
    The virtue of spirit has no need for thanks or approval. Only the certain conviction that what has been done is right. -Jor El, as played by Marlon Brando

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhino View Post
    How sad are we? We are so hungry for a debate, we are debating gun control- with nobody.
    Yeah, you can take the cop out of the fight, but you can't take the fight out of the cop.

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    Final Note

    Aside from the Constitution/Bill of Rights, one should read "The Federalist Papers" Note Number 46 written by James Madison.

    http://thomas.loc.gov/home/histdox/fedpapers.html

    I agree with the statement the issue was being debated without anyone to debate. Not much fun. You can be sure there are anti-gunners out there who are simply being quiet.
    Last edited by Magnum440; 12-11-06 at 01:47 PM.
    Facta non verba
    "The good Lord set definite limits on man's wisdom, but set no limits on his stupidity and that's not fair!" Konrad Adenauer,

  14. #14
    Pedro56's Avatar
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    Try to get mine, the first thing out the window will be my badge...
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  15. #15
    esfisher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro56 View Post
    Try to get mine, the first thing out the window will be my badge...
    Lol, keep your badge on, since you'd be defending the Supreme Law of the Land!

  16. #16
    BEB
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhino View Post
    How sad are we? We are so hungry for a debate, we are debating gun control- with nobody.
    We could change the debate to what weapons would you restrict.

    I'll start it off : Thermonuclear device ban. You can have anything else you can afford. Good luck buying an aircraft carrier.

    Take it down a several notches - how about machine guns?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by BugEyedBeast View Post
    We could change the debate to what weapons would you restrict.

    I'll start it off : Thermonuclear device ban. You can have anything else you can afford. Good luck buying an aircraft carrier.

    Take it down a several notches - how about machine guns?

    You can; if you obey the law.

    We are the thin blue line
    between you
    and all the money in the world.

    And no you can't have any.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by BugEyedBeast View Post
    We could change the debate to what weapons would you restrict.

    I'll start it off : Thermonuclear device ban. You can have anything else you can afford. Good luck buying an aircraft carrier.

    Take it down a several notches - how about machine guns?
    "NO MORE NUKES!! NO MORE NUKES!!" ... (sorry thought I'd play the "activist" role for a moment there, just for giggles and all).

    I think we'll be well served to restrict private ownership of nukes and VX/Sarin/Anthrax, etc.
    Last edited by Coloradocop; 12-12-06 at 01:54 AM.

  19. #19
    Pedro56's Avatar
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    Why? So only our enemies have it?
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    "I am the guy that keeps Mister Dead in his pocket." -'Mad' Max Rockatansky

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  20. #20
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    I think CHL holders fit the "well-regulated" clause in the 2nd admendment. So perhaps D.C. should be forced to allow CHL's - I would consider that a victory.

    I think the NRA will be getting in on this very quickly with massive legal support, if they have not already.

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