Required reading for Americans – The Bill of Rights

Bill of RightsThere is a great deal of discussion today about gun control, gun rights, gun ownership, ammunition and many other aspects of the Second Amendment. What seems to be lost in all the debate is the actual wording of the US Constitution, as amended:

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.

Our founders crafted this Second Amendment clearly, concisely, and quite intentionally. It is expressed in plain English; people without a law degree can understand its meaning. It ends with the simple phrase, “shall not be infringed.”

According to the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, this means that the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be contravened, breached, intruded upon, compromised, undermined, limited, weakened, dminished, disrupted, curbed, violated or destroyed. Despite all the protestations that they are for our own protection and good, “gun control” laws do all of those things.

The Constitution itself provides ways in which the American people may amend the document. If someday we decide to change or remove the Second Amendment entirely from our governing document, so be it. Until then, however, all discussion about restrictions on gun ownership by free citizens must be colored by an understanding that this is among our God-given rights, expressed and defended by our Constitution. The language specifically prohibits our government from eking away at our right to own guns.

Thomas Jefferson, third President of the United States and key leader in founding the Democrat party, famously said of these first ten changes to the Constitution:
A Bill of Rights is what the people are entitled to against every government, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference.
We the people, he argued, are entitled to protection from unreasonable and unnecessary government interference in our daily lives. Jefferson and his contemporaries wisely saw these provisions as protection from what they correctly believed could become an intrusive Federal government. The Second Amendment, they stated, must not be infringed upon by the government.
And in case you don’t recall what the other nine amendments are:

Congress of the United States
begun and held at the City of New-York, on Wednesday the fourth of March, one thousand seven hundred and eighty nine.

THE Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.

RESOLVED by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, two thirds of both Houses concurring, that the following Articles be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States, as amendments to the Constitution of the United States, all, or any of which Articles, when ratified by three fourths of the said Legislatures, to be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of the said Constitution; viz.

ARTICLES in addition to, and Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, proposed by Congress, and ratified by the Legislatures of the several States, pursuant to the fifth Article of the original Constitution.

Note: The following text is a transcription of the first ten amendments to the Constitution in their original form. These amendments were ratified December 15, 1791, and form what is known as the “Bill of Rights.

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Amendment II

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.

Amendment III

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment VI

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

Amendment VII

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Amendment VIII

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

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4 thoughts on “Required reading for Americans – The Bill of Rights

  1. Excellent post. The problem is people always know better. This is modern times, we are more enlightened, more sophisticated, more compassionate. I would like to posit that we need the wisdom of our founders, more today than ever. We may think we are the smartest people to ever inhabit the earth. Each generation thinks that to some extent, but the present one is more arrogant than most. We lack one of the greatest, yet most basic necessity ever bestowed on mankind by our Creator, Common Sense! We have become so filled with self, that we are committing the same sin as Lucifer, Pride! And like him this generation is shaking it’s fist in the face of Almighty God and shouting we will not serve. Foolishness and stupidity personified. As a child who is told to hold the hand of a parent. But knows better and angrily pulls away and darts into the street in front of a car and getting killed. We refuse to take the hand of God after numerous warnings, and it is we who suffer. Seems that people never learn.

  2. Pingback: A message for law enforcement and military | Resist Tyranny

  3. Pingback: A message for law enforcement and military (Do Not Help The Tyrants Disarm the Citizens!) | New York City Guns

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