Saturday, January 23, 2010

A SMALL COUNTY IN MONTANA (AGAIN?) IS MAKING MILITIA NOISES:

SO I FERRETED THIS INFORMATION ABOUT THE MUCH MIS-QUOTED (IRRELEVANT) FEDERALIST PAPERS AND CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS OUT OF THE COMMENTS AFTER THE STORY (to the Montana militia members I apologize as this is probably more reading than you have done in a long time):

JNagarya
This is the most relevant portion of my most recent statement of the law concerning Militia -- and therefore of the Second Amendment. Read it carefully as concerns the anti-Constitutionalism fed these gun-/nuts by the gun industry via its propaganda arm NRA:
R. B----- says:
"All of the Bill of Rights refer to individual rights. Raving lunatics should read the Federalist Papers for further insight."
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Concerning the "Federalist Papers": the CORRECT title of the book to which refer[red] is "The Federalist". As well, "The Federalist," not having been enacted by a legislature, is both NOT LAW and IRRELEVANT for several reasons. First, they were written by Hamilton, Madison, and Jay -- only one of whom would later be a member of the first Congress, which WROTE the Bill of Rights, under the newly-ratified Constitution.
Second, the authors ADMITTED that their purpose was to SELL the CONSTITUTION -- which OBVIOUSLY means they were not OBJECTIVE: they were BIASED in favor OF ratification. Third, and most relevant, as the Constitution was framed, and then ratified, WITHOUT a "Bill of Rights," the only mentions of "Bill of Rights" in "The Federalist" are REJECTIONS of the "NEED" for one.
Fourth, "The Federalist" was written by THREE delegates to the Constitutional Convention -- out of over FIFTY delegates; which delegates agreed on very little. THREE is an INCONSEQUENTIAL MINORITY of OVER FIFTY delegates. And those three were balanced by THREE delegates on the OPPOSITE end of the political spectrum who OPPOSED ratification of the Constitution because it DIDN'T have a "Bill of Rights". One of those was Elbridge Gerry, about whom more below.
Fifth, with ratification of the Constitution completed, Federalist promotion of that outcome ENDED.
Note the following chronology:
1. Several states that ratified the Constitution, beginning with Massachuetts-Bay, included PROPOSED amendments with their Notices of Ratification.
2. Completion of ratification of the Constitution occurred on June 21, 1788.
3. SUBSEQUENTLY, Congress was established/organized under the newly-ratified Constitution.
4. Congress first "achieved a quorum on 6 April [1789]". "Creating the Bill of Rights" (Johns Hopkins, 1991), Veit, et al., at xiv.
5. Madison, the ONLY author of "The Federalist" to be a member of Congress, codified the several states' PROPOSED amendments into a RESOLUTION which he submitted to Congress for DEBATE on May 4, 1789. Id., at 1.
6. On May 25, 1789, Madison himself moved to POSTPONE consideration of the proposed amendments until June 8, 1789, which was agreed to by the Congress. Id., at 5.
7. Debate of the proposed amendments did not begin until August 13, 1789. Id. at 7. That's how "worried" the Founders/Framers in Congress were about there NOT being a Bill of Rights: they were in no hurry.
8. The debates of Madison's resolution in Congress were conducted by those who WROTE the Bill of Rights: the members of that first Congress.
9. Unlike "The Federalist" -- which as made clear is irrelevant to begin with -- the debates of those who WROTE the Bill of Rights are LEGAL AUTHORITY. It is to THOSE we refer when we want to know the intent of those who WROTE the Bill of Rights.
10. The debate which eventuated in the Second Amendment began with and was EXCLUSIVELY concerned with whether to have a standing army -- which the Founders/Framers considered a "bane of liberty"; a THREAT to CIVILIAN GOV'T -- or the alternative thereto: MILITIA. Elbridge Gerry summarized the issue during the debates of that which became the Second Amendment with this statement:
"What, sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty." Id., at 182.
He makes no mention of "individual". Becasue a MILITIA is OBVIOUSLY no more an individual than is an army. As well, and as obvious, PEOPLE is PLURAL, as in, WE THE PEOPLE. It is NOT "We the individual," or, "I the people".
11. That which became the Second Amendment was drawn from MILITIA clauses in the state constitutions/bills of rights of Massachusetts, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Vermont. "Bill of Rights and the States" (Madison House, 1992), Conley and Kaminski, at xviii.
12. Exactly as with the debates of that which became the Second Amendment, those four MILITIA clauses include the phrase "the right of the people [PLURAL] to keep and bear arms [as MILITIA]"; and that is directly associated with the phrase concerning standing armies being the "bane of liberty"*.
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*The US Constitution incorporates four references to MILITIA. The first (US Con. Art. II., s. 2, c. 1) reads:
"The President shall be Commander in Chief . . . of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual service of the United States."
And when the miltia is not in service to the United States, the commander in chief of it is the states' governor.
The second reference (US Con. Art. I., s. 8., c. 15) reads in relevant part:
"Congress shall have the Power To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, [and] SUPPRESS INSURRECTIONS."
Neither the President, nor the states' governors, are going to call out the militia to "defend against" themselves.
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These, in full, are the four state constitution/bills of rights MILITIA clauses from which was drawn the Second Amendment:
"Massachusetts Declaration of Rights, Article XVII. The people [PLURAL] have a right to keep and bear arms [as MILITIA] FOR THE COMMON DEFENCE. And as, in time of peace, armies are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be maintained without the consent of the Legislature; and the military power shall always be held in an exact subordination to the Civil authority, and be governed by it."
"North Carolina Declaration of Rights, Article XVII. That the people [PLURAL] have a right to bear arms [as MILITIA], for the defence OF THE STATE; and as standing armies, in time of peace, are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be kept up; and that the military should be kept under strict subordination to, and governed by the civil power."
"Pennsylvania Declaration of Rights, Article XIII. That the people [PLURAL] have a right to bear arms [as MILITIA] for the defense of themselves AND THE STATE; and as standing armies in the time of peace are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be kept up; And that the military should be kept under strict subordination to, and governed by, the civil power."
"Vermont Declaration of Rights, Chapter I., Article XV. That the people [PLURAL] have a right to bear arms [as MILITIA] for the defence of themselves AND THE STATE; and, as standing armies, in the time of peace, are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be kept up; and that the military should be kept under strict subordination to, and governed by, the civil power."
13. The first draft of that which became the Second Amendment read as follows, in full, the final clause being the ONLY "individual right" concerning that which became the Second Amendment that was debated by those who WROTE the Second Amendment:
"The right of the people [PLURAL] to keep and bear arms [as MILITIA] shall not be infringed; a well armed, and well regulated** militia [NOT "individual"] being the best security of a free country [NOT "individual"]: but no person [INDIVIDUAL] religiously scrupulous of [AGAINST] bearing arms, shall be compelled [INVOLUNTARY] to render military service [in the MILITIA] in person."
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**The third reference to Militia in the US Constitution (US Con. Art. I., s. 8, c. 16) reads in full:
"Congress shall have the Power To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers [this done by the states' governor and legislature] and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress."
As the Constitution stipulates that Congress shall make the laws, "to regulate" means in the form of LAW,
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OBVIOUSLY the final clause of that which became the Second Amendment was VOTED DOWN. AS OBVIOUSLY, as it is the ONLY "individual right" debated concerning that which became the Second Amendment, that it was VOTED DOWN means that the Second Amendment has NOTHING WHATEVER TO DO WITH "INDIVIDUAL" ANYTHING.
Asserting . . . NON-law -- "Federalist Papers" -- changes NONE of those facts, BEGINNING with the fact that the authors of "The Federalist," IN "The Federalist," which concerned ONLY the Constitution, REJECTED the "need" for a Bill of Rights; and the fact that the Congressional debates of those who WROTE the Second Amendment are _THE_ LEGAL AUTHORITY we consult to determine what those who WROTE the Second Amendment MEANT with the Second Amendment. And as unequivocally shown, it is SOLELY concerned with ensuring the states -- GOV'TS -- that they can keep their WELL REGULATED MILITIA.
14. The Bill of Rights, consisting of twelve proposed amendments, were submitted to the states' legislatures for consideration on September 25, 1789. The first two of the twelve were rejected.
15. Ratification of the Bill of Rights was completed on December 15, 1791.
16. The fouurth reference to Militia in the US Constitution reads in full:
"A Well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people [PLURAL] to keep and bear Arms [as that WELL REGULATED MILITIA], shall not be infringed."
17. SUBSEQUENTLY, on May 8, 1792, Congress enacted the "Militia Act" of 1792, by means of which to regulate the militia in accordance with the references to it in the Constitution -- including the Second Amendment.
One can either accept those clear and unequivocal facts and that they substantiate -- the Second Amendment has nothing whatever to do with "individual" ANYTHING -- or continue to talk anti-Constitutional ragtime.

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As Jim Hightower explains it, is that “the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans possess more net worth today than the bottom 90 percent of us combined. Worse, these privileged few and their political henchmen have structured a new economic ‘normal’ of long-term joblessness, low wages, no benefits or worker rights, miserly public services, and a steadily widening chasm between the rich and the rest of us.” We must restore sanity to this nation.