Forearmed, For Now


The vote was 5-4. It should have been 9-0, but the nation’s most powerful jurists are going to straighten themselves out the same day Rebecca DeMornay knocks on my door with a bottle of Johnny Blue and Risky Business on Blu-ray. Two years after the Court ruled in favor of the Bill of Rights in D.C. v Heller, the majority again stood up for the Republic in McDonald v Chicago.

With the nomination of Elena Kagan looming—and likely—I’m not holding my breath for a more sensible Supreme Court. Nonetheless, five of the Big Nine managed to get it right late Monday morning, wrapping up their 2009-2010 calendar with an affirmation of the right of Americans to keep and bear arms.

Justice Alito, writing for the majority, pointed out that the 2nd Amendment serves as a guarantee of individual—as opposed to community—liberty, and its authority is bolstered by the 14th Amendment’s guarantees of due process. Simply put: Chicago, Oak Brook, Ill. and Washington, D.C., may not pass laws which abrogate the Bill of Rights.

Before anyone Outside the Asylum starts shopping for two-gun rigs, be advised: the other side isn’t giving up this firefight just yet. Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence (victims of knife, bat and/or legislative violence—you’re on your own) President Paul Helmke said in the aftermath of the decision: “lawsuits are never bad.” Translation: “This means war!” (Although one presumes it would be a “progressive,” firearm-free kind.)

But the Dems have not kept their proverbial powder dry. When Justice Stevens, in what will thankfully be one of his final acts from the top bench, dissented thus: “..the ability of militiamen to keep muskets available..” he said: “the Founding Fathers were talking about flintlocks.” As if one of the most esteemed assemblages of intellect in human history wouldn’t have considered the possibility of technological advancement.

Don’t bother to ask Stevens about other progress unforeseen by the Founding Fellas. Try to imagine his honor explaining Constitutional protections for partial-birth abortion to Thomas Jefferson. When Stevens suggested “..(gun rights as envisioned by the Framers) have only a limited bearing on the question that confronts the homeowner in a crime-infested metropolis today..” he was intimating: “Too bad you weren’t born in the 1760s.”

Tell that to someone who just watched the Crips unload a U-Haul across the street. Better yet, mention it to the Idahoan who just watched FBI snipers gun down his wife and child.

The fundamental flaw in the liberal argument against firearm ownership rights stems from their basic mistrust of everyone who isn’t them. Their ideology stands on the concept of governmental dominance of the people.

People who deny that ideology represent a threat. Armed people who deny their ideology represent something much worse: the indomitable citizen. But the indomitable citizen isn’t a threat; someone who’s a threat is a threat. And we already have laws to protect us from such threats.

We don’t bar Microcephalic Marvin down the street from owning a .50 cal. because the weapon might be inherently dangerous. We keep Marvin from owning the aforementioned hand cannon because he has an 850 cc cranium and wears a tinfoil hat. Perhaps if all the high-priced, self-important lawyers and politicians at the Brady Campaign helped to book Marv some quality time at a state-owned bed and breakfast, they wouldn’t have to worry as much about Marv opening fire on the space aliens in the duplex next door.

Because gun-ban proponents are guided by fear and emotion, not logic and reason, they react like teenage girls in a slasher flick—”Mr. LaPierre, is that you?” That visceral fear inevitably leads to: “Why do you NEED (big scary gun of choice)?” The question is moot. One might as well ask a woman why she needs 25 pairs of black shoes, or ask the DNC why they need Joe Biden.

When The Framers offered “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.” They were offering neither suggestion nor caveat. They were admonishing us all.

Tyranny is tyranny, whether it takes the form of the madness of King George or the obtuseness of President Obama. Forewarned is forearmed. Thanks to the Framers of the Constitution—and reaffirmed by the Supreme Court—we are both.

Personal Liberty

Ben Crystal

is a 1993 graduate of Davidson College and has burned the better part of the last two decades getting over the damage done by modern-day higher education. He now lives in Savannah, Ga., where he has hosted an award-winning radio talk show and been featured as a political analyst for television. Currently a principal at Saltymoss Productions—a media company specializing in concept television and campaign production, speechwriting and media strategy—Ben has written numerous articles on the subjects of municipal authoritarianism, the economic fallacy of sin taxes and analyses of congressional abuses of power.

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