Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution - Bill of Rights

"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."

Preservation and Proposition

Our mission is to document the pivotal Second Amendment events that occurred in Frontier Mercersburg, and its environs, and to heighten awareness of the importance of these events in the founding of our Nation.

We are dedicated to the preservation of the place where the Second Amendment was "born" and to the proposition that the Second Amendment (the "right to bear arms") is the keystone of our Liberty and the Republic.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Power Corrupts and Absolute Power Corrupts . . . Absolutely

By JW Ross

Once again the Supreme Court (by a narrow margin) has affirmed the right of individual citizens to bear arms - this time in all 50 states. Many argue, and rightfully so, that of all the rights in the "Bill of Rights" the right to bear arms is not the most important. Why then does the 2nd Amendment draw such disproportionate scrutiny and polarity of opinion? It has always been so. In fact, the ink wasn't dry on the "Bill" before a number of signers to and writers of had second thoughts. After all, where in civilized history has a legitimate government guaranteed to its subjects the means and right (almost obligation) to, if dissatisfied with that government, secure its destruction by force. Never.
The right to bear arms has from the beginning been ascribed to our belief that it is to effect our right to "Life and Liberty". Arguments, as in the recent Supreme Court case, almost exclusively focus on the right to defend yourself from harm by a fellow human. Implicit, however, is the oft unspoken understanding that this right to possess a lethal instrument could be used to defend yourself from your own government, as well. It is not by chance that one of the first steps that tyrannical governments take in the process of "imprisoning" the population, is to disarm them.

Some historians argue that it is this right (the legal right to possess lethal force) in the hands of the citizenry of the United States that has served as the single most important deterrent (for the last 300+ years) to what, in that time, has become a powerful, highly centralized, intrusive, abusive, and sometimes voracious government. As a measure of the power of deterrents . . .  the concept of mutual deterrents has been the single largest factor in preventing world-wide destruction in the nuclear age. Although the stockpiling of nuclear weapons during the Cold War by both the US and Soviets was thought by many to be shear insanity, the contemplation of mutually assured destruction (or MAD) created a deterrent that insured a tacit respect and balance regardless of the presiding administrators of power or severeness of the provocation from 1947 to this day.

A similar lesson was not lost on our Founding Fathers, who, although they believed that in 1787 they had formed a more "perfect Union", had not forgotten the tyranity of their homelands and that any construct of government is of men, and not of God . . insuring that without a deterrent (the 2nd Amendment) . . . power (over men) corrupts, and absolute power corrupts . . ABSOLUTELY!

1 comment:

  1. I agree with everything you are saying here!