arma virumque cano (et alia)
The Constitution means precisely what five Justices say that it does. It is likely that the founders intended for the Constitution to be interpreted based on the current reality, and thus included a alternate means of revision, other than a formal Amendment.
The professor gets to express his opinion because of the document that he wants to get rid of. That document identifies some rights and recognizes that he has others. It tells those in power that they must respect his rights. If politicians violate the Constitution, they may get away with it for a while, particularly in time of war, but ultimately, the text is designed to draw them back in.
The ideals and principles of individual liberty, self-government, personal responsibility, freedom, and a government that promotes peace, trade and friendship with all nations are outdated. War, worthless money, corporatism, and rule by the Executive branch is the way to go.orlin sellers
Very funny. I suppose you mean personal responsibility unless you have a negligent discharge with your favorite fetish item. Then it's just an accident, right?
The Constitution is the only document that legitimizes our government. It is a contract between the States and the People to create, and limit, a central government. The words of a contract do NOT change their meaning over time. The founders included a means to change the Constitution, and that is the only means to legitimatly do so. What's the matter, not too sure you'd get an ammendment to pass? Those five judges can be checked by Congress and the President. Checks and balances are how our government is supposed to operate. The fact that they are not accomplishing what you want them to accomplish is just a shame, isn't it?
The Constitution was written in such a manner as to be read and/or understood by the "common" citizen.A law must be written in a way that the "common" citizen can understand it. If you can't get the essence of a new law down in one or two sentences, certainly in less than a paragraph, then it is a bad law.
That "being understood by the common citizen" sounds like bullshit to me. You either made that up or are repeating what someone else made up. Was Thomas Jefferson, a guy fluent in several languages and proficient in various fields of study, on par with your average colonial settler? Not by a long-shot. And when Jefferson wrote something, the "common" man would have been hard pressed to understand it.
Mikeb, people in that time were in many ways better educated than the average person today. They read Shakespeare and the Bible deeply; they attended speeches, and they read newspapers. All of those used language more sophisticated than a lot of writing that comes out now.
Not BS at all Mike. Think about it. If a law is written in a convoluted manner with all kinds of caveats and exemptions, the chances are pretty good of you breaking that law without knowing it.There are so many laws on the books now and they are so complicated, that you probably broke one just getting out of bed this morning. Where is the sense in writing a law that takes 1,000+ pages and your representative passes it without even reading it.A law should be written so that a person with a sixth grade education can understand it. The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were written in that manner.Jefferson and his peers understood that the common citizens weren't as educated as they were and wrote laws accordingly.
Greg, I watched Little House on the Prairie, I know how educated the kids were and that was a lot later. I suppose in 1770 and 1780 Colonial America they were all wiz kids.
Mikeb, are you trying to be funny by citing a television program? But I dare say you haven't spent much time talking to American school children these days, so perhaps you don't know.
Fortunately, we have the Constitution and it guarantees the good professor the individual right to speak his mind. While I disagree with his I fully support his right to express it. In fact, I find the ongoing efforts to suppress free speech to be flagrant violations of the first amendment (free speech zones on college and university campuses, for instance). It amazes me that some people really believe we could do away with the Constitution and remain a free people. As if the very principles that ensure individual liberty are somehow outdated. Preposterous.
You know how often you guys repeat this particular expression of generous magnanimity? Too often. I say, who gives a fuck if you "fully support his right to express it." Who are you to support his rights?
He's a citizen, and so am I. But the fact that you question the value of our support for rights shows the depths of your depravity. Do you hate rights that much?
I'm someone who recognizes what you apparently do not. That there are no rights with which we can dispense or which we can safely sacrifice upon the altar of the cause du jour and that when one of us becomes less free, we all become less free.
Is the violent felon less free because he can't own guns legally, and therefore all of us are? How about the 10-year-old.Those sweeping statements about freedom and rights are usually bullshit that you guys think sounds cool but upon inspection make no sense at all.
Straw man fallacy, mike. I accept that felons surrender some of their civil liberties...and that most states have in place a process whereby they can be regained after serving their sentence. Likewise, though it may vary from state to state, the ability to buy firearms is tied to the age of majority. Neither of these situations is analogous to what I had in mind. My hope is that you didn't realize that when you wrote your reply
Mike,If you are so inclined, you may read my more thorough response here: http://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=2588082931141893625#editor/target=post;postID=6213858113417347573
And felons have done something that actively harmed society--in many cases, at least. They have been through due process. Gun control seeks to restrict the rights of good citizens who have been convicted of no crimes.
Oh, is that your hope, really, RM? Your statement is an unnecessary insult. Your gun rights have always been restricted, and rightly so. This does not make anyone less free. The need to be more restricted with proper gun control. That will makes the society safer. "when one of us becomes less free, we all become less free," is one of the silliest pseudo-axioms I've ever heard in this argument.
First things, first. It was not my intent to be insulting. I apologize for wording my comments in a way that came across as an insult. Clearly, I need to be far more specific in my comments, so here we go:1)I recognize that we limit the rights of those who commit crimes. Such is the price for their behavior. We punish them for what they've done. We don't punish others for their actions.2)I further recognize the limitations we place upon those who are too young to exercise a right without adult supervision.3)While you may accept the idea that the loss of liberty can be accomplished without endangering other liberties, I do not. The things we do with the violent felon and the incompetent (whether by age or developmental delay) are not analogous to how we treat the competent adult who has committed no crime.4)Rights are exercised, not by society, but by the individuals who compose it. Likewise, it is the individuals in a society who are safe, not some nebulous mass.5)Freedom permits safety. Safety does not necessarily permit freedom.
You believe that to be silly? Curious. I said that when one of us loses freedom, we all lose freedom back when the PATRIOT Act was being written, when some Americans were attacking Muslims living in this country. I say the same thing when a gay man can't visit his partner in the hospital or has to fight the system to get the same survivor benefits that a straight widower would get.Please, try this for once: Imagine being asked to give up a right that you care about. How would you react?
RM, we don't only limit the rights of those who commit crimes or are too young, we limit every one else's too. You can't buy a machine gun without complying with extreme regulations. Isn't that limiting your freedom? Yes. Does that make us all less free? No.Your version of freedom does not increase safety, quite the opposite.
Mike, I was responding to your objections, nothing more. And yes, the limitations on buying a fully automatic weapon do, by definition, result in less freedom. The question on which you and I differ, i suspect, is whether this limitation and resulting loss of freedom is reasonable. It is my contention that it is not. The violence of that time was reduced, not by the NFA, but by the repeal of prohibition and some changes within the larger organized crime world.I do have a pretty high standard as to what constitutes a reasonable restriction on civil liberties. In my opinion it is best that the state have a significant burden to demonstrate the necessity of limiting a right before we, its sovereign masters, permit it to do so. I hold this opinion regarding all our civil liberties. As regards firearms, "free speech zones" and the provisions of the Patriot Act to name just a few, I've yet to see the state meet that burden.