Publius-Huldah's Blog

Understanding the Constitution

Gun Control, the Dick Act of 1902, Bills of Attainder & Ex Post Facto Laws

By Publius Huldah

The latest round of rubbish flooding our in boxes is an ignorant rant claiming that the Dick Act of 1902 (which respects our Right to be armed) can’t be repealed because to do so would “violate bills of attainder and ex post facto laws”.

Who dreams up this stuff? Does anyone check it out before they spread it around?

Of course we have the God-given right to keep and bear arms, to self-defense, etc., etc.  Our Declaration of Independence (2nd para) recognizes that our Rights come from God and are unalienable.

The 2nd Amendment to our federal Constitution recognizes that this God-given right to keep and bear arms is to be free from any interference WHATSOEVER from the federal government.

Our Framers were all for an armed American People – they understood that arms are our ultimate defense in the event the federal government oversteps its bounds.  See, e.g., what James Madison, Father of Our Constitution, writes in the second half of Federalist Paper No. 46!  The reason the Citizens – the Militia – are armed is to defend ourselves, our families, our neighborhoods, communities, and States from an overreaching, tyrannical federal government.

Accordingly, the federal government is nowhere in the Constitution granted authority to abridge, restrict, or infringe,  in any fashion whatsoever, guns, ammunition, etc. Thus, ALL such restrictive laws made by Congress, and ALL regulations made by the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, and Tobacco (ATF), are unconstitutional as outside the scope of the powers granted to Congress and to the Executive Branch by our Constitution. Restriction of arms and ammunition is NOT one of the “enumerated powers” delegated to Congress or the Executive Branch.

Furthermore, all pretended regulations made by the ATF are also unconstitutional as in violation of Art. I, Sec. 1, U.S. Constitution, which vests ALL legislative powers granted by the Constitution in CONGRESS.   Executive agencies have no lawful authority whatsoever to make rules or regulations of general application to The People!

In addition, the President and the Senate may not lawfully by treaty do anything the Constitution does not authorize them to do directly.   Since the Constitution does not authorize the federal government to disarm us, the federal government may not lawfully do it by Treaty.   See, http://publiushuldah.wordpress.com/2009/09/19/the-treaty-making-power-of-the-united-states/

But the assertion that one Congress may not repeal acts of a previous Congress is idiotic.

And the assertion that Congress can’t repeal the Dick Act because a repeal would “violate bills of attainder and ex post facto laws” shows that whoever wrote that doesn’t know what he is talking about. He obviously has no idea what a “bill of attainder” is, and no idea what an “ex post facto law” is.

This accurately explains what a “bill of attainder” is: http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/Bill-of-Attainder.htm

An “ex post facto” law RETROACTIVELY criminalizes conduct which was not criminal when it was done.

Say you barbequed outside last Sunday. That was lawful when you did it. Next month, Congress makes a pretended law which purports to retroactively criminalize barbequing outdoors. So, now, what you did is a crime (for which you are subject to criminal prosecution); even thou when you did it, it wasn’t a crime. That is an ex post facto law.

Now, say Congress passes a pretended law making possession of firearms a crime and ordering everyone to turn in their guns. Only if you do not turn in your guns will you have committed a “crime”.  That is not an ex post facto law because if you turn in your guns, you won’t be criminally prosecuted. The “crime” is the failure to turn in your guns – not the prior possession of guns.

Such a law would be totally UNCONSTITUTIONAL, because gun control is not one of the enumerated powers of Congress. Thus, the law would be outside the scope of the powers delegated to Congress.

It would also be unconstitutional as in violation of the 2nd Amendment.

But it would not be an ex post facto law.  See postscript below!

People shouldn’t sling around terms, the meanings of which, they do not understand. It is immoral.

If TRUTH spread as rapidly as lies, our problems would have been resolved long ago.  But if People can come to love TRUTH more than they love the ignorant rubbish they circulate, perhaps it is not too late to restore our Constitutional Republic. PH

Endnote:

In Federalist Paper No. 84 (4th para), Alexander Hamilton says re ex post facto laws (and of the importance of the writ of habeas corpus):

“…The creation of crimes after the commission of the fact, or, in other words, the subjecting of men to punishment for things which, when they were done, were breaches of no law, and the practice of arbitrary imprisonments, have been, in all ages, the favorite and most formidable instruments of tyranny…” PH

Postscript added Jan 17, 2014:  None of us are infallible – all of us must be willing to rethink what we think we know.  I have rethought this and now believe that such a law would be an ex post facto law in violation of Art. I, Sec. 9, cl. 3 of the Constitution (if the Congress passed the law) or Art. I, Sec. 10, cl. 1 (if a State passed such a law).  At the time a person acquired the gun, it was completely legal to possess it.  To then make it unlawful to not turn in your guns – or to do as Connecticut did and say you have to register all your existing guns or it’s a felony – makes unlawful something which was lawful when you did it.  So mea culpa, Folks!  And never shrink from saying you were wrong when you were wrong.

Posted January 19, 2013; revised Jan 21, 2013; Jan. 17, 2014.

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January 19, 2013 - Posted by | 2nd Amendment, Bills of attainder, Bureau of Alcohol Firearms and Tobacco (ATF), Dick Act of 1902, ex post facto laws, gun control, Militia, Rulemaking by Executive Agencies | , , , , , , ,

55 Comments »

  1. Thank you for your honesty in revising and is exactly the way I would do it! You are still my number one source for constitutional information and reference!

    Comment by Beano | July 16, 2014 | Reply

    • Thank you, Beano! I am also trying to teach our People this Moral Principle: When an honest man makes a mistake, he either corrects it or becomes dishonest.
      But you already know that, I see.

      Comment by Publius Huldah | July 17, 2014 | Reply

  2. I get it now: “The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments…”

    Comment by Amy Skalicky | December 13, 2013 | Reply

  3. [...] As retired attorney and constitutional scholar, Publius Huldah, wrote in her paper titled, “Gun Control, the Dick Act of 1902, Bills of Attainder & Ex Post Facto Laws”:  [...]

    Pingback by Hey, Senate! Stop the Gun Control Nonsense NOW! | April 11, 2013 | Reply

  4. [...] As retired attorney and constitutional scholar, Publius Huldah, wrote in her paper titled, “Gun Control, the Dick Act of 1902, Bills of Attainder & Ex Post Facto Laws”: [...]

    Pingback by Hey, Senate! Stop the Gun Control Nonsense NOW! | American Clarion | April 11, 2013 | Reply

  5. Firearms Prohibitions and Domestic Violence Convictions:The Lautenberg Amendment
    Lets see if you can get the Lautenberg gun infringment gun ban unconstitutional..good luck. I have been trying for 16 years and not luck. Check out: CRS Report for Congress Firearms Prohibitions and Domestic Violence Convictions.

    Comment by Gary | February 25, 2013 | Reply

    • I have given up on the federal courts. And we must stop believing that 5 very fallen people on the supreme Court have the lawful authority to run our Country.

      I believe that we need to focus on fixing our States. To do that, we must educate our State legislators – b/c many of them have been indoctrinated into statism.

      Also, instead of focusing on the 2nd Amdt as the source of our right; We need to return to our Founding Principles that (1) Rights come from GOD – and it is GOD who gave us the right of self-defense; and (2) We delegated only Enumerated Powers to the federal government – and we did not delegate any power to restrict our arms.

      Comment by Publius Huldah | February 25, 2013 | Reply

      • You’er right and it will be a long hull, never give up I will fight and protect my God given rights and not legislators law. Thanks for the support.

        Comment by Gary | February 25, 2013 | Reply

  6. Proposed Missouri House Bill No. 545:

    You will have ninety days to turn in your “assault weapon” or large capacity magazine or you will be prosecuted with a class C Felony.

    It’s not just about “assault weapons” either.

    Semi-automatic rifle that has the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and has one or more of the following:

    • Pistol grip, thumbhole stock, protruding grip, folding or telescoping stock

    • A shroud attached to the barrel

    • Semi-automatic pistol, or any semi-automatic, centerfire or rimfire rifle with a fixed magazine, that has the capacity to accept more than ten rounds of ammunition.

    • Semi-automatic pistol that has the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and has one or more of the following:

    • protruding grip, folding, telescoping, or thumbhole stock

    • A shroud attached to the barrel

    • Semi-automatic shotgun that has one or more of the following:

    • A pistol grip or thumbhole stock, protruding grip

    • A folding or telescoping stock, fixed magazine of 5 or more rounds

    • An ability to accept a detachable magazine or revolving cylinder

    That just about includes them all.

    Since the re-election of Obama there has been constant pressure and threats toward our Second Amendment.

    I wonder if the Netherlands, France, and Spain would help us again.

    We shall see.

    Comment by Peabody | February 18, 2013 | Reply

    • Can The People of your State organize a lobbying effort to defeat this proposed legislation so that it is never passed?

      Comment by Publius Huldah | February 19, 2013 | Reply

      • I live in Florida.

        I posted this as a “heads-up” for our friends in Missouri. It’s up to them to take action.

        According to a Small Arms survey conducted in 2007 by researchers from the University of Geneva, 89 of every 100 civilians had a firearm. The survey estimated that 314 million Americans had 270 million firearms.

        However, gun sales have soared since Obama got elected in 2008.

        CNN reported that the number had risen to 310 million in 2009.

        ABC reported that 2012 has been a record setting year for gun sales. As of November, the FBI recorded 16,808,538 instant background checks for gun purchases for 2012.

        Note: The totals do NOT include the straw-man gun purchases instituted by Eric Holder’s Fast and Furious but the resulting gun deaths do, no doubt.

        Perhaps Obama should get the salesman of the 21st century award.

        Now that award would be earned!

        Comment by Peabody | February 19, 2013 | Reply

        • RE: “the FBI recorded 16,808,538 instant background checks for gun purchases for 2012.”

          Can the FBI regurgitate all 16,808,538 names, addresses and whatever other personal data that is submitted in each background check?

          In other words is the FBI keeping a list?

          Comment by Ed Bradford | February 19, 2013 | Reply

          • I expect they are.

            Comment by Publius Huldah | February 19, 2013

          • Can you ask your Senators to ask that question for the record?
            Seems like a simple request, doesn’t it?

            Comment by Ed Bradford | February 19, 2013

          • Oh, we may ask. And I expect we’ll get a form letter setting forth their thoughts about some other issue and they will say that they are considering all sides and weighing the arguments pro and con.

            Of course, the FBI is keeping records! THAT is the whole purpose of the background checks!

            Comment by Publius Huldah | February 19, 2013

          • The US Government Today Has More Data On The Average American Than The Stasi Did On East Germans.

            The US government has been quite aggressive in spying on Americans. It has been helped along by a court system that doesn’t seem particularly concerned about the 4th Amendment and by the growing ability of private companies to have our data and to then share it with the government at will.

            The US surveillance regime has more data on the average American than the Stasi ever did on East Germans. The fact that we have so much data about us in connected computers makes it an entirely different world. So, from a practical level, there’s a big difference.

            The ability of government officials to abuse access to information about you for questionable purposes is something that we should all be worried about. Even those who sometimes have the best of intentions seem to fall prey to the temptation to use such access in ways that strip away civil liberties and basic expectations of privacy.

            Unfortunately, the courts seem to have very little recognition of the scope of the issue, and there’s almost no incentive for Congress (and certainly the executive branch) to do anything at all to fix this.

            http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20121003/10091120581/us-government-today-has-more-data-average-american-than-stasi-did-east-germans.shtml

            The US Government Is Data Mining You.

            On March 22nd, 2012, Attorney General Eric Holder and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, Jr. signed off on new guidelines allowing the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), a post-9/11 creation, to hold on to information about Americans in no way known to be connected to terrorism—about you and me, that is—for up to five years. (Its previous outer limit was 180 days.) This, Clapper claimed, “will enable NCTC to accomplish its mission more practically and effectively.”

            http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/04/us-government-data-mining-storing-private-online-activity

            The government is going to need more data storage – lots more of it!

            The government has so much data that their problem has been with rapid searches of filtered data. They’re working on it – and you know that they will solve it.

            Here’s a little insight into a small segment of data storage solutions that have already been implemented.

            Google container data center tour

            Interesting facts about Google

            http://theultralinx.com/2012/05/big-google-infographic.html

            There are others too. Take a look at Yandex

            http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-04-19/with-yandex-at-cern-search-and-science-collide

            The story line of the television series “Person of Interest” is probably not too far from the truth.

            Comment by Peabody | February 19, 2013

        • States Being Pressured Into Gun Control.

          Joe Biden called Colorado Democrats before they voted on their state’s gun control proposals. His message “emphasized the importance of Colorado’s role in shaping national policy around this issue.” The Obama Administration failed in their attempt to demonize guns and pass gun control at the Federal level so now they are pressuring states into passing gun control.

          Colorado’s House has already passed magazine capacity limitations restricting rifles and handguns to 15 rounds and shotguns to 8 rounds.

          Another proposal is coming that would turn college campuses and stadiums into ‘gun free zones.’ Creating more of these gun free zones will give even more mass murder locations for the evil of our country.

          Now that the first state has stood up against guns, other states could quickly follow unless we stop them.

          Perhaps the most outrageous piece of gun control to date has been introduced in Missouri, and other states are copying the legislation. Minnesota has already copied the same bill; other states are sure to follow. Liberal anti-gun extremists have finally exposed their real gun plan:
          • Confiscate legal guns including those used for hunting.
          • Turn legal gun owners into criminals.
          • Arm all criminals so that only criminals have guns.
          • Leave Americans unarmed and unable to protect themselves and their families.

          One of the Chicago gangsters that shot Hadiya Pendleton to death had already been arrested for unlawful possession of a firearm in a city with some the toughest gun laws in the country.

          Yet he was given probation; free to roam the Chicago streets again where he killed young Hadiya Pendleton with another illegal firearm. But they want to turn law abiding gun owners into convicted felons.

          A Class C Felony in Missouri is punishable with up to SEVEN YEARS IN PRISON BUT THEY LEAVE THE CAREER CIMINALS ON THE STREET!

          The only way to counteract these threats is for law abiding citizens to stand up against them. We must let our State Governors know we do not support this proposed unconstitutional, illegal anti-gun legislation. We voted them in office, they work for us!

          Contact your state Governors and tell them not to sign any of these anti-gun bills in your state.

          Comment by Peabody | February 20, 2013 | Reply

          • We need to focus first on our State legislators and tell THEM to vote against all gun control.

            Comment by Publius Huldah | February 20, 2013

          • I did and I sent the following in an email to all my contacts.

            “If you support the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights please go here and Take Action Now.

            You do not need to Find Your Representatives since the Website will find them for you using your zip code.

            It’s easy, doesn’t cost you anything, and should only take a few minutes of your time, certainly the least amount of effort one could take to send a message supporting our Constitution and the Bill of Rights.”

            http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Category4_750001_750051_787655_-1_757992_757992_image

            The canned message goes like this:

            “Dear (Recipient),

            As a law-abiding citizen and a responsible gun owner, I am deeply saddened by the recent tragedies and I support efforts to curb violence in all forms. However, I do not support the efforts of Congress, the White House or any lawmaker who seeks to restrict my rights under the Second Amendment, or to impose new restrictions on me and other law-abiding firearm owners.

            Rather, I support a comprehensive approach to preventing violence in our communities through a thorough evaluation of the challenges we face. That review must include the enforcement of existing laws, the need for heightened security approaches, and greater consideration on how to better manage the acutely mentally ill.

            As a law-abiding citizen and a constituent, I ask that you represent me in these matters.

            Sincerely,
            (Your Contact Information)”

            If you would rather send a personal message then go to the link above to Find Your Representatives. You will be given the url to each of your representative’s web page. Select “Contact” to get his/her email address, compose your message and send it.

            Here’s my confirmation after I sent the emails:

            “Your message for “Preserving America’s Rights” was sent on 02/13/2013 10:05 AM to the following recipients: President Barack Obama (D), Vice President Joseph Biden (D), Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL), Rep. Dennis Ross (R-FL), Domenic Sarno, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Rep. Gus Bilirakis(R-FL), Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL), Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll (R-FL), Sen. Jack Latvala (R-FL), Rep. James Grant (R-FL), Atty. General Pam Bondi (R-FL)

            Thank you for taking action on this important issue.”

            Comment by Peabody | February 20, 2013

  7. [...] would highly recommend that Joe, Barack, and ALL of their mouthpieces read this little tidbit on the 2nd Amendment, from my friend, and a REAL Constitutional scholar, Publius [...]

    Pingback by The Crazy “Uncle” Speaks , An Ol' Broad's Ramblings | February 12, 2013 | Reply

  8. Good morning!
    I have read with interest your article:
    GUN CONTROL, THE DICK ACT OF 1902, BILLS OF ATTAINDER AND EX POST FACTO LAWS
    I did in fact get the embellished version of the e-mail you mentioned. In my desire to get some factual information on the topic I found your writing.

    I have two questions if you would be so kind as to address:
    You state the following:
    “Furthermore, the federal government is nowhere in the Constitution granted authority to restrict, in any fashion whatsoever, guns, ammunition, etc. Thus, ALL laws made by Congress, ALL regulations made by the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, and Tobacco (BAFT), are unconstitutional as outside the scope of the powers granted to Congress and to the Executive Branch by our Constitution.”

    Has this been tested in the courts? Results?

    And in the embellished e-mail it mentions “unorganized militia”. What is the distinction of this group, or is that just part of the embellishment?

    Regards,
    Steve

    Comment by Stephen B. White | February 4, 2013 | Reply

    • Excellent questions, Steve!

      1. Just over 100 years ago, Charles Evans Hughes, who later became an associate justice (and then chief justice) on the supreme Court, said that the Constitution means what the judges say it means. Hughes rejected the notion that the Constitution has a fixed meaning to which the supreme Court must conform; and disseminated the new notion that the Constitution is subordinate to the will of the supreme Court. The Progressives thought that was just a WONDERFUL idea!

      Here is an excellent article on this: http://bibowen.hubpages.com/hub/Hughes-Hubris

      What the author says about legal positivism and deconstruction is accurate and exactly what happened.

      [The author is, however, wrong about ascertaining "original intent". We can ascertain "original intent" by reference to The Federalist Papers, Madison's Notes of the Federal Convention of 1787, and other original source writings of the Founding Era. I demonstrate this all throughout my papers.]

      Now that you understand what happened to our federal courts, you can see that it doesn’t matter that in the Constitution, WE THE PEOPLE never delegated to the federal government authority to restrict our guns.

      Since the 1920s, a majority of judges on that court have been of the opinion that the federal government “should” restrict guns, and that’s all they need! Their precious personal views.

      Also, about the regulations made by the ATF: When I was in law school (over 40 years ago), rule-making by federal executive agencies was as accepted as that the Sun rises in the East, and sets in the West. There was no discussion of Art. I, Sec. 1, U.S. Constitution. Everyone just accepted rule-making by federal executive agencies as the norm. In fact, everyone thought it was just a WONDERFUL idea!

      And yes, the supreme Court has upheld rules made by federal executive agencies.

      2. For your reading enjoyment, I provide a link to the Militia Act of 1792.

      http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ampage?collId=llsl&fileName=001/llsl001.db&recNum=394

      Originally, the “Militia” was every able bodied male citizen of fighting age except for federal officials and employees. In the movie, “The Patriot”, Mel Gibson’s character commanded a militia company – they were volunteers who were farmers, shopkeepers, trappers, clergy, etc. – the male citizens who were not in the regular Army or Navy, but who volunteered to fight.

      With the Militia Act of 1792, Congress “organized” the Militia. Note that “each and every” able-bodied male citizen who was not exempt was REQUIRED to get a rifle, ammo, ammo pouch, etc. and train.

      Later on, we didn’t need “each and every” able bodied male citizen to be in the organized Militia – so the distinction arose between the “unorganized militia” [which is every citizen] and the organized Militia [the State National Guard, etc., who are "organized", meet and train.]

      Comment by Publius Huldah | February 4, 2013 | Reply

      • Oh my! You have given this old soldier turned farmer a lot to ruminate on. I am certain that I will be reading more of your writings. Thank you very much for the “understandable” nature of your work.
        Regards, Steve

        Comment by Stephen B. White | February 4, 2013 | Reply

  9. [...] him for? Shouldn’t he be out pushing more stringent gun control measures or something? Like repeal of the Dick Act (which itself isn’t perfect but still affirms the concept of citizen ownership of [...]

    Pingback by Obama Shooting Skeet Photo Modification « Propagating the Philosophy of Liberty | February 2, 2013 | Reply

  10. MRS. PH . where did the courts find justification to put restrictions on guns. Did the founders do that ? I doubt it .

    Comment by mike Davis | February 1, 2013 | Reply

    • If you were a SCOTUS judge, your thinking would be like this:

      1. Rights come from the Constitution.
      2. Article III, Sec. 2, cl. 1 gives me judicial power over all cases or controversies “arising under this Constitution”.
      3. The 2nd Amendment is part of The Constitution.
      4. Therefore, I have judicial power over the 2nd Amendment.
      5. Accordingly, I have power to determine the scope & extent of the rights granted by the 2nd Amendment.

      See?

      This is why I wish I could box the ears of every unthinking person who babbles the lie about “our 2nd Amendment rights”!

      B/c our rights to self-defense do not arise from the Constitution – a document written by men and adjudicated by men.

      Our right to self-defense is a gift from GOD himself.

      Alexander Hamilton warned of the dangers of a bill of rights in a Constitution ordained by POPULAR CONSENT which creates a civil government of delegated and enumerated powers only. See Federalist No. 84 around the 10th para. Hamilton warned us that a bill of rights would become a pretext to regulate for those inclined to usurp. And he was right!

      The supreme Court has used the 1st Amendment to ban Christian speech from the public square; and at least 4 of the judges now on the Court want to use the 2nd Amendment to disarm us. If Scalia, Alito, Thomas, or Kennedy die, and obama replaces them, they will vote to disarm us.

      SO! Our People need to learn that The Constitution is NOT the Source of Our Right to keep and bear arms. That our rights pre-exist the Constitution.

      Comment by Publius Huldah | February 1, 2013 | Reply

      • Mrs PH . I think if the court voted to disarm us, i believe the states would refuse to abide by that ruling . because as you know a court can not ban the 2nd amendment . At least not legally .

        Comment by mike Davis | February 3, 2013 | Reply

        • They don’t seek to “ban” it – they say it doesn’t “give” individuals the right to have arms – it only says the national guard can have them. There are 4 judges on SCOTUS who take this position. With obama’s next appointment, there will be 5 who take that position.

          Comment by Publius Huldah | February 3, 2013 | Reply

          • But they would be wrong saying that, the militia were regular citizens (historical documents do not support that stance), the militia brought their own firearms to the revolution. “the right of The People to keep and bear arms….shall not be infrindged”…. If the Supreme Court ever does rule as you say they could then, the States should nullify that ruling as well, because it is unconstitutional and wrong. If I understand the Supreme Court’s original intent by the founding fathers, then the Court was only supposed to be ruling on disputes between States, not as they are doing today.

            Comment by Mike | February 3, 2013

  11. Saving this to my Gun Control file on desktop for future reference.

    Comment by henrymoore | January 28, 2013 | Reply

    • Glad you like it.

      It is so simple: In Our Constitution, WE THE PEOPLE never gave our “creature” (the federal government) authority to regulate, restrict, etc. guns, ammo, etc. Thus, whenever the federal government does it anyway, their acts are UNLAWFUL and WE THE PEOPLE must refuse to comply.

      Comment by Publius Huldah | January 28, 2013 | Reply

  12. From the Grapevine:

    A NOVEL APPROACH TO THE GUN OWNERSHIP ISSUE

    Vermont State Rep. Fred Maslack has read the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, as well as Vermont’s own Constitution very carefully, and his strict interpretation of these documents is popping some eyeballs in New England and elsewhere.

    Maslack recently proposed a bill to register “non-gun-owners” and require them to pay a $500 fee to the state. Thus Vermont would become the first state to require a permit for the luxury of going about unarmed and assess a fee of $500 for the privilege of not owning a gun.

    Maslack read the “militia” phrase of the Second Amendment as not only the right of the individual citizen to bear arms, but as ‘a clear mandate to do so’ He believes that universal gun ownership was advocated by the Framers of the Constitution as an antidote to a “monopoly of force” by the government as well as criminals.

    Vermont’s constitution states explicitly that “the people have a right to bear arms for the defense of themselves and the State” and those persons who are “conscientiously scrupulous of bearing arms” shall be required to “pay such equivalent..”

    Clearly, says Maslack, Vermonters have a constitutional obligation to arm themselves, so that they are capable of responding to “any situation that may arise.”

    Under the bill, adults who choose not to own a firearm would be required to register their name, address, Social Security Number, and driver’s license number with the state. “There is a legitimate government interest in knowing who is not prepared to defend the state should they be asked to do so,” Maslack says.

    Vermont already boasts a high rate of gun ownership along with the least restrictive laws of any state … it’s currently the only state that allows a citizen to carry a concealed firearm without a permit. This combination of plenty of guns and few laws regulating them has resulted in a crime rate that is the third lowest in the nation.

    “America is at that awkward stage. It’s too late to work within the system, but too early to shoot the bastards.”

    This makes sense! There is no reason why gun owners should have to pay taxes to support police protection for people not wanting to own guns. Let them contribute their fair share and pay their own way.

    Sounds reasonable to me! Non-gun owners require more police to protect them and this fee should go to paying for their defense!

    Comment by Peabody | January 26, 2013 | Reply

    • Thank you, Peabody!

      What you posted and the news therein is just GREAT!!!!!!!

      Comment by Publius Huldah | January 27, 2013 | Reply

    • Peabody, The Tennessee Constitution has a similar provision which allows the TN Legislature to fine any able-bodied male citizen of fighting age (except for members of established pacifist churches) who refuse to bear arms in the State Militia.

      Thank you for an informative and useful post.

      Comment by Publius Huldah | February 16, 2013 | Reply

    • And in Vermont, of all places. And to think, people say there is no God.

      Comment by egbegb | February 16, 2013 | Reply

      • Vermont has been an anomaly of the Northeast for years.

        Vermont’s motto, “Freedom and Unity”, is about the idea of balancing two seemingly opposite ideals: the personal freedom and independence of the individual citizen, with the common good of the larger community.

        Writer and Vermont resident Dorothy Canfield Fisher (1879-1958) wrote the following about her adopted state: “the Vermont idea grapples energetically with the basic problem of human conduct – how to reconcile the needs of the group, of which every man or woman is a member, with the craving for individual freedom to be what he really is.”

        “Gun Control” erodes the fundamental right of individual liberty.

        For those who do not remember:
        Hitler first registered the guns – then he took them away.
        Then he registered the Jews – then he took them away.

        According to http://www.gun-nuttery.com/rtc.php

        Right-to-carry in the United States 1986
        Constitutional Carry (unrestricted, open or concealed carry, no permit required) = 1, Vermont

        Shall issue = 8, Washington, Indiana, Maine, New Hampshire, Mississippi, Massachusetts, North Dakota, South Dakota

        May Issue = 25

        No issue = 15

        Right-to-carry in the United States 2011
        Constitutional Carry (unrestricted, open or concealed carry, no permit required) = 4, Alaska, Arizona, Vermont, Wyoming.

        These states continue to issue licenses on a “shall-issue” basis for the purposes of inter-state reciprocity (allowing residents of the state to travel to other states with a concealed weapon, abiding by that state’s law).

        Shall Issue = 37

        May Issue = 8, New York, California, Delaware, Maryland, Hawaii, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Rhode Island

        No Issue = 1, Illinois

        It appears that there is no hope for Illinois. Perhaps the states should secede from Illinois and leave it to the gang-bangers and progressives.

        Comment by Peabody | February 16, 2013 | Reply

        • I think the people with brains in Illinois should do a John Galt and move out of the State. Abandon it to the jackals.

          Comment by Publius Huldah | February 17, 2013 | Reply

        • Oh Dear. There must be a lot of mass murders in VT and it is the liberal press the suppresses the news. I’ll have to search twitter to find the news of all that mayhem in Vermont.

          Comment by Ed Bradford | February 18, 2013 | Reply

  13. Here’s who the government is coming after on kristallnacht.

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/jan/17/west-point-center-cites-dangers-far-right-us/

    I believe it was the Department of “Homeland Security” that had a “study” with similar results a few years ago.
    It appears that the “clingers-on” are the only ones concerned with the Constitution now.

    Comment by Jeff Edelman | January 19, 2013 | Reply

  14. Excellent article and you are right. That is all any thinking American needs to know.

    Comment by egbegb | January 19, 2013 | Reply

    • Why don’t they accept simple clear Truth? Nothing could be more simple and clear and True than what I said!

      But The People hunger & thirst for a secret conspiracy – a “little known fact” which they discovered – something arcane and intricate and convoluted which only “people in the know” know.

      If anyone who reads this understands why The People are like this, please explain it to me. is it nothing more than that most despicable of sins, “Pride”?

      Comment by Publius Huldah | January 19, 2013 | Reply

      • I heard a caller on a talk radio show describe her day with 3 kids a job and the amount of time she had to listen and learn. It was limited to 30 minutes per night and that was with one of the the networks.

        Only after she learned what was being left out did she stop and seek other channels. That is a toughy to change. How do you talk to the low info voter? How do you even make contact. Most aren’t stupid. They are simply involved in things that have very little to do with their political presense or future.

        Comment by Ed Bradford | January 19, 2013 | Reply

        • There is so much rubbish distributed by ignorant people of all stripes. I don’t know how the low information voter is to decide how to spend the precious 30 minutes a day.

          For every wise article which is put out, are millions of bits of lying trash. Yet the Ignorant ones keep churning out the trash.

          Comment by Publius Huldah | January 19, 2013 | Reply

      • Simplicity is actually more difficult to confront (actually seeing what’s really there) since complexity is more “interesting”. Let’s face it, one has to work hard to see the basic truth of a thing. We, as humans, all suffer from this malady.

        In addition, people have a very low confront of evil; witness the democide of 260 million citizens killed by their governments in the 20th century. They also operate with a limited survival dynamic as in a school of fish. “As long as they don’t come after me, I’m good!”.

        Great things are more often done by an individual. Keep up the good work Publius. Many are listening and many more are coming on board!

        Comment by Peabody | January 27, 2013 | Reply

  15. The 2nd Amendment (and much of the rest of our Constitution) is like a bucket of diamonds buried in the back yard, its value resting without benefit, as it is confounded by the question of when or under what circumstances it can or must be used. It’s purpose is to preserve, protect and defend the free state that was established by We the People.

    We currently have a Federal government out of control. Our putative president is clearly ineligible for the office he usurps. Numerous agencies formed outside the boundaries of the Constitution trample our God given rights with impunity. Voter fraud is obvious and rampant. All the while our Senators, Representative, Judges, and Generals sit quietly or are complicit in our demise. Our States, likewise, are reluctant to speak out to fully defend its core lest they are refused some of the bounty stolen from their own people with the aid of their own agents.

    The Constitution, like any other contract, it is only as strong as the character and honor of those who bind themselves to it. Yes, the above mentioned servants posture and primp before the crowds, but too many obvious breaches go unquestioned or are merely set ups for a “compromise” that only results in the further deterioration of our condition.

    So, what are We the People to do? ….. We have become the farmer who hesitates to hold his own dog culpable for the chickens missing from the hen house even though he knows he’s killed the fox. We have become like the business owner who has delegated his authority to the point that he no longer controls is own company.

    The last time we used the 2nd Amendment may have been the “Battle of Athens”. I’m beginning to think that the government let this little episode fade away – there were no prosecutions for the citizen’s attack on the court house – because it emphasized the true nature of the 2nd Amendment. In today’s vernacular, along with the Commerce Clause, and the Elastic Clause, it would be known as the “007” Clause.

    Perhaps now is not the time for arms. But, if it isn’t the time for arms, it must be the time to speak, print, and educate. It must be the time to enter the political process at whatever level we can so that at least one man at each meeting can stand for the Constitution. It must be the time to form grand juries and bring these folks under indictment and to remove unworthy servants from their positions of public trust. It must be the time to recognize that the Constitution was and is the “compromise” and that it is the document from which every Act or Bill must originate. And, except through its amendment process, no other compromise is acceptable. And, even then, we must always remember that our unalienable rights remain regardless of governments or men or even ourselves and that it is our duty to preserve, protect and defend them against all enemies foreign and domestic – including ourselves.

    If it is not the time for arms, perhaps it is the time to dig up those diamonds and polish them for market.

    Comment by FiddlerBob | January 19, 2013 | Reply

    • Wonderful analogy of the Constitution being like a bucket of diamonds buried in the back yard! Beautifully poetic and True!

      But civil government holds the Sword. Not the citizens. So forget this stuff about “citizen grand juries”. Really, it is wrong, legally ineffective, and causes people to waste their time on battles which they will lose.

      The problem isn’t the politicians – the problem is the morally corrupt people who keep electing corrupt politicians. People wanted a government which would STEAL for them.

      The other problem is the astonishing Ignorance which plagues our Land.

      Comment by Publius Huldah | January 19, 2013 | Reply

      • Hopefully, through this medium and writers like you we will be able to break through the ignorance and reveal again he blessings of liberty and the beauty of our Constitution which I firmly believe was inspired.

        Thanks also for the wise advice.

        Comment by FiddlerBob | January 19, 2013 | Reply

  16. Nice post as always….

    God bless

    MK / Sapient

    “The prohibition is general. No clause in the Constitution could by any rule of construction be conceived to give to Congress a power to disarm the people. Such a flagitious attempt could only be made under some general pretense by a state legislature. But if in any blind pursuit of inordinate power, either should attempt it, this amendment may be appealed to as a restraint on both.” -William Rawle, A View of the Constitution 125-6 (2nd ed. 1829)

    “The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered, as the palatium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them.” – Joseph Story, father of America’s Jurisprudence, Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States; With a Preliminary Review of the Constitutional History of the Colonies and States before the Adoption of the Constitution [Boston, 1833].

    “I ask, sir, what is the Militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials.” “To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.” – George Mason, the father of the Bill of Rights

    “Congress has no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American… The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state government, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people” – Trench Coxe, Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788.

    “Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any bands of regular troops…” -Noah Webster, An Examination of Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution, 1787

    “…but if circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude, that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people, while there is a large body of citizens, little if at all inferior to them in discipline and use of arms, who stand ready to defend their rights…” -Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 29.

    “Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?” – Patrick Henry, 3 J. Elliot, Debates in the Several State Conventions 45, 2d ed. Philadelphia, 1836

    Comment by sapientstudy | January 19, 2013 | Reply


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