Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Fake gun quotes.

You know how I keep saying that if you actually have a brain, can do research, and go and cite check those pro-gun quotes out there, that they usually are inaccurate and misleading.

Gawker has a few of these, but I particularly like this one:

"Arms in the hands of the citizens may be used at individual discretion for the defense of the country, the overthrow of tyranny or private self defense."

TRUTH: A version of this was even used by the NRA for several years. Because what Adams—federalist, signer of the Sedition Acts, and perennial pessimist about human nature—really liked was armed mobs. In fact, this is a bastardization of a longer quote in defense of the Constitution, which says something very different—namely, that armed untrained citizens in mass posed a threat to liberty and constitutional government:
To suppose arms in the hands of citizens, to be used at individual discretion, except in private self-defense, or by partial orders of towns, countries or districts of a state, is to demolish every constitution, and lay the laws prostrate, so that liberty can be enjoyed by no man; it is a dissolution of the government. The fundamental law of the militia is, that it be created, directed and commanded by the laws, and ever for the support of the laws.

I've already posted a link that showed most people were appalled by the anarchy which followed the War for American Independence (with a few exceptions, such as Jefferson).  Things like Samuel Adams  statement that "the man who dares rebel against the laws of a republic ought to suffer death."

Abigail Adams wrote about her anxieties for Massachusetts and her disappointment in the behavior of some of its inhabitants n a letter to Thomas Jefferson from 29 January 1787:
With regard to the tumults in my Native State which you inquire about, I wish I could say that report had exaggerated them, it is too true Sir that they have been carried to so allarming a Height as to stop the courts of justice in several Counties. Ignorant, restless desperadoes, without conscience or principals, have led a deluded multitude to follow their standard, under pretence of grievances which have no existence but in their own imaginations. (3)
According to Abigail Adams, the grievances of those closing the courts in Massachusetts

Abigail snappishly dismissed the demands and grievances of these "mobish insurgents" who were "sapping the foundation, and destroying the whole fabrick" of the state:
Some of them were crying out for a paper currency, some for an equal distribution of property, some were for annihilating all debts, others complained that the Court of common pleas was unnecessary that the sitting of the general court in Boston was a grievance. By this list you will see the materials which compose this rebellion and the necessity there is of the wisest and more vigorus measures to quell & suppress it…(4)
She firmly believed that "these people make[?] only a small part of the State." Time and attention to the true causes of the problems by "the more Sensible and judicious" residents would resolve the situation.

Benjamin Franklin had no sympathy for "the mad attempts to overthrow" the Massachusetts Constitution or "the wickedness and ignorance of a few, who, while they enjoy it, are insensible of its excellence." Franklin, like Samuel Adams, had little patience for those who he believed sought to undermine or overthrow a government constituted by and for the people.

I've also mentioned that James Madison said:

 "There never was a government without force. What is the meaning of government? An institution to make people do their duty. A government leaving it to a man to do his duty, or not, as he pleases, would be a new species of government, or rather no government at all."
Additionally, the Constitution makes it pretty clear in Article III, Section iii what it thinks of waging war against the United States.  And despite your bullshit to the contrary, the Second Amendment really doesn't explicitly repeal that section of the Constitution.

I know at least one of you doesn't understand the meaning of this passage, but I will quote it again anyway:
Whatever theoretical merit there may be to the argument that there is a “right” to rebellion against dictatorial governments is without force where the existing structure of the government provides for peaceful and orderly change.–Dennis v. United States, 341 U.S. 494 (1951)
I think Abagail Adams pretty much sums up the situation in regard to using the Second Amendment to justify insurrection:
Ignorant, restless desperadoes, without conscience or principals, have led a deluded multitude to follow their standard, under pretence of grievances which have no existence but in their own imaginations.


  1. Yeah, but they were slave owners . . .

    Seriously, the Founding Fathers were a complex mix of men w/ differing views on matters. How do you feel about Sam Adams views of Catholicism? Or the disagreement between Burr & Hamilton? Washington committing a war crime by executing Benedict Arnold's British liaison?

    Many (dare I state most) of the Founding Fathers (and their wives) were classists/elitists. Hello land owning requirements to vote. It was generally the lower classes involved in the rebellions during America's infancy.

    "where the existing structure of the government provides for peaceful and orderly change."

    This is question begging. Many a third world dictator holds "free" elections. Before the war for independence our Founding Fathers could have went to the House of Lords and/or the House of Commons to plead their case. Or go to King George (again).

    And anarchy did not ensue after The War for Independence!

    Laci & Mike - how would you have handled the men who initiated the Battle of Athens TN:

    And anarchy do not ensue after the War of Independence!

  2. And who, exactly, is arguing in favor of insurrection against a government that provides for peaceful and orderly change?

    The arguments I've seen here have concentrated on the idea of a recourse in case of a government that tossed that possibility out.

    Are we arguing against a straw man, Laci? Or against the small number of white supremacist insurrectionists who want a race war and to overthrow the government?

    If the former, have fun beating up that scarecrow. If the latter, I think you'll find that the commenters here agree--their attempts are criminal and should be met with full force of law, and if they do band together in enough numbers to start an actual insurrection, they should be squashed by the militia.

  3. Oh, and such squashing should be by the militia and not by strategic weapons, no matter how much you might enjoy that.

  4. Laci, you're always going after strawmen, but you should read the quotations that you provide. Did you notice how Adams acknowledges "private self-defense" as a legitimate reason for people to be armed?

  5. The point is, as I understand it, that you gun nuts often repeat nonsense that you've heard on the internet that you think sounds cool. It turns out that much of that nonsense is just not true.

    1. As if statist control freaks don't do the same - it's the internet. Rather than deal w/ the sentiment you would rather get in some tangent argument. Truth is there are plenty of legit quotes by the Founding Fathers that affirm much of what you detest . . . and you know it.