Friday, January 21, 2011

Anachronisms in the U.S. Constitution

1. The Three-fifths Compromise.

Following the Civil War and the abolition of slavery by the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution (1865), the three-fifths clause was rendered moot.

2. The Second Amendment.
No explanation needed.

3. The Third Amendment.

The "con" is it isn't truly necessary anymore as we are a nation with a standing military and have bases, barracks, and a military that is field deploy-able. It is an anachronism.
What's your opinion? Did I miss any?

Please leave a comment.


  1. First, to clarify what the Bill of Rights is - it does not grant any rights - The rights it enumerates are pre-existing are not dependent on the document. The Supreme Court has made this abundantly clear in many, many cases.

    The Bill of Rights was written as, and remains a list of LIMITS on the Federal Goverment from infringing on the rights of the people.

    So just because our military has its own bases and such, does that mean that the people's right to not be forced to house soldiers in their homes is gone (the 3rd Amendment)? Of course not! Does the abundance of books in our society mean our freedom of press is outdated? Does the proliferation of TV and Radio media mean our freedom of speech is anachronistic and no longer needs to be protected? Just because our rights don't currently NEED protecting (such as the 3rd Amendment) doesn't mean the right is outdated or just goes away.

    Suggesting the 2nd Amendment is also anachronistic is a fallacy, considering the tens of millions of people murdered by their government just in the last century alone AFTER their governments deprived them of their right to keep and bear arms. At THIS point in OUR nation's history, we the people may not NEED arms to protect ourselves from foreign or domestic threats, but you can't accurately predict what the future may hold, can you?

    I'm sure none of these people thought their governments were going to murder them, either:

    To think that OUR government is benevolent that it wouldn't turn against its people is refusing to learn from the lessons of history.


  2. O: I've heard this "grant" as opposed to "enumerate" argument many times. It's really a distiction without a difference.

    THe 3A is an anachronism. BTW, you may wish to read up on histories of Valley Forge to see that Washington believed it an anachronism in his time.

    Re your 2A comments, they're all nonsense. Germany actually loosened gun control. Cuba currently has a civilian militia system similar to Switzerland where citizens keep military-grade weapons. And Iraq, under Saddam, was awash in firearms--even automatic weapons.

  3. O: Additionally, how do you reconcile the 2A with Article III Section 3 of the Constitution?

    Do you seriously believe the Founders, who specifically note treason against the US, would then turn around and say in the 2A that citizens should be armed to commit that treason?

  4. Orygun'r wrote: "To think that OUR government is benevolent that it wouldn't turn against its people is refusing to learn from the lessons of history."

    I'm in agreement with Jadegold on this one. I believe a standing militia was intended to be supplementary to a standing army, a volunteer army, to defend against threats to the country (or parts of it). The ballot box is a perfectly adequate means of making any changes that are necessary.

    It concern me that such a significant percentage of people polled, far more on the right than center or left, believe that it is justified to commit that violent treason against THIS current government,not just a theoretical government. Some of our fellow citizens not only do not recognize it as treason, they flatter themselves that it is patriotic to hold those views.

    Given the extremes of division and polarization, it also concerns me that our properly elected members of government at all levels, and our judiciary, both elected and appointed, are selective targets for injury and assassination. Not just from apparently crazy people like Loughner, but sane people like Charles Alan Wilson,who was perfectly sane, and had owned a legal gun, and owned a carry perit as well.
    Or the men who were just arrsested as threats to Congressman McDermott or Senator Bennett.

    I think many of us NOW have qualms if not outright fears about attending public gatherings of our political representatives - both because of the raw level of hostility, but also for fear of SANE people with extreme or polarized views, who embrace violence - with legal guns.

  5. OT but ... ya know, inconvenient and all: Penn Study Asks, Protection or Peril? Gun Possession of Questionable Value in an Assault

    “Those possessing gun in assault situation 4.5 times more likely to be shot than those not possessing one”

  6. @Jadegold: Just because you don't believe the facts doesn't make them nonsense.

    It's common practice for governments to disarm those they wish to slaughter before starting genocide and mass murdering the undesirable segments of their population.

    You who do not learn from the past are doomed to repeat it.

    You can choose to dismiss the "grant vs. enumerate" argument, because it throws a big monkey wrench in your belief that the right to keep and bear arms is disposable. Why don't you go ahead and find ANY Supreme Court case that says ANY of our rights (enumerated in the Bill of Rights or not) are GRANTED?

    See, this is how I'm open minded on the issue: I'm asking you to prove your point and back up your opinions and rhetoric with actual facts. Show me ALL the facts (not the half-baked junk statistics and propaganda that the Brady Campaign and their supporters cook up), and if I'm proven wrong, I will bow graciously and admit I was wrong.


  7. Southern Beale: “Those possessing gun in assault situation 4.5 times more likely to be shot than those not possessing one”

    Correlation is not causation.

    Did it occur to you that people that engage in risky behavior and/or in dangerous areas may have more need to carry firearms?

    Here is the flawed logic broken down:
    A high crime area results in more people carrying guns.

    A high crime area results in more people being shot.

    Therefore, people carrying guns results in more violent assaults...?

    Besides, the National Crime Victimization Survey has solid statistics that people with a firearm that resisted their attacker had less chance of injury or death than victims that resisted without a weapon.

    The study you linked to doesn't seem to include any other sorts of injuries except gunshots... Since most criminal attackers DO NOT use guns, a gun in the hand of the victim most certainly puts superior force in the victim's hands, and in over 95% of the time a gun is used for self defense, the attacker runs away without any shots being fired...


  8. O: No, they are nonsense.

    If we assume that gun control leads to genocide and Govt tyranny--how do we explain Saddam's Iraq and Castro's Cuba? After all, neither were or are exactly shining examples of democracy.

    I'm sure you're aware of Don Kates--why does he admit "the Holocaust was not an event where guns would have mattered; the force was overwhelming."

    Re granting rights v. enumerating rights--if we assume you're correct, who enumerates them? IOW, where did they come from? Did they come from the burning bush? Were they delivered via prophecy? No. They came about because a Govt. decided them based on politics and expediency.

  9. Orygunner, seriously, The myth of guns would hav prevented genocides.

    Too bad this one isn't as well publicised as it should be:

    Gimme a break dude, the insurrection theory is pure bullshit, which you would have sussed.

    ...if you had a brain.

  10. @Laci: What crap is that you're linking to? I'm interested in facts, not editorial pieces of trash talk and illogical, emotional guesswork.

    You expect me to use my brain yet I haven't seen you post any intelligent facts yet...

    Say, why don't you name ONE genocide attempt that was even remotely successful where the people the government was trying to kill were allowed to have guns? Just one country or region? Surely if it's a myth, you can debunk it?


  11. @JadeGold,

    What does Iraq and Cuba have to do with anything?

    Not every country that bans guns is going to commit genocide against its people, and not every government that attempts genocide against its people is successful. However, the one thing in common that almost every (mostly) successful genocide has in common is that the government tightly restricted or prohibited guns from the people it was trying to murder.

    You haven't proven your "nonsense" claim by any stretch of the imagination... Your link only supposes that if the Jews had not been disarmed, it wouldn't have mattered, but it doesn't contest the fact that they WERE disarmed. Don't forget this quote from Hitler: "The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing." - Adolf Hitler

    Would you care to provide some facts instead of opinions?

    As far as where our rights come from, the source is really irrelevant, whether it's from God, or the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or whether we just HAVE them because we are human beings... The belief varies from culture to culture, but if we agree we have the right to life and liberty, then we must also have the right to defend it, shouldn't we?


  12. Orygunner, Your government is not coming to "slaughter" you. The prospect is laughable. The fact that you're preparing for it is laughable.

    The main point of my post, which guys like you will not budge an inch on, is that the Constitution is not some kind of Sacred and Infallible document which represents the final word on a complicated debate like gun control. It's a cop-out to refer to the 2nd Amendment as a sort-of clincher in the argument.

    Guns are bad news in America and the more there are the more bad news there is, especially since you gun owners resist any and every attempt to regulate and control them.

  13. @Mikeb,

    I don't expect my government is going to come slaughter me. I'm sure the Jews didn't think the Nazis were going to slaughter them either. Just because you don't think it's going to happen doesn't mean things could change for the worse several decades from now.

    Those that do not learn from the past are doomed to repeat it.

    The 2nd Amendment merely prohibits the government from infringing on the right that exists. The framers of the Constutition stated that our rights pre-date and exist independent of the Constitution, the Supreme Court has stated that our rights pre-date and exist independent of our Constitution, and yes, that even includes the right to keep and bear arms.

    I resist the attempts to control and regulate them because it's never been proven to actually work. Nobody has provided evidence for any city, state, or country in the world that gun control laws significantly or consistently reduce violent crime rates involving firearms in the years following the implementation of the gun control laws.

    Can you?

  14. I have answered that question, which Joe Huffman likes to ask over and over. Maybe you're like him, you like to ask the questions that are more like statements, but when an answer is provided you either ignore it or say it doesn't count for some reason. I've actually answered this perticulay pseudo-question a few times, here's one of them.

  15. Joe Huffman is a dishonest simpleton.

    For the life of me, I can't understand why he repeats his "one question" time after time after time and then ignores the many answers he gets.

    He's like a child, riding in the backseat of a car, who insists on asking "Are we there, yet?" every 10 seconds.

    Perhaps, he's attempting a variation of the "shotgun" approach to bedding women--the theory being that if you ask enough women to bed, maybe one will agree.

    Regardless, Huffman is dishonest.