Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Will Obama veto or sign?

The Second Amendment of the U.S Constitution is rather explict and clear. Ratified on teh 15th December 1791 its title is the "Right to Bear Arms" and states,
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.
Currently going through Congress and sponsored by Democrat Bobby Rush is the "Blair Holt's Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act of 2009"which will

prohibit a person from possessing a firearm unless that person has been issued a firearm license under this Act or a state system certified under this Act and such license has not been invalidated or revoked.
Now one could argue that havinmg to get a license for your handgun is not a removal of your right to own one. One could also argue however that the whole point of the 2nd Amendment is to protect against tyranny, thus the state issuing licenses to those it deems suitable does in fact infringe on the framers original reasoning for the amendment.

That, in a nutshell, is why the issue of gun control is such a big flaming red hot potato in the US. And that is why the "Blair Holt's" Bill could arguably be one Obama's first big tests. In my experience of Americans, the issue and principle of guns often transcends party lines.

Does Obama have enough political capital and momentum during his honeymoon period for such a big fight on one of the key wedge issues? If he did veto would Congress get the two-third majority to override it? Might that be an exit route where the law can pass but he avoids being the one to either condemn or condone it?


45govt said...

With all the mistakes he has made in his first month in office, if Obama has learned anything, it will be that this is a hot potato that he could very usefully let drop. The Dhimmicraps are so out of touch with the country on this issue, and so power-crazed with their current majorities, that they are certain to over-reach themselves, and this issue could be their undoing.
The Constitution is quite unambiguous, and Obama will be in as much trouble with his electorate as McRuin is with his, if he tries to challenge the founding fathers so soon, and with so many more pressing issues on his plate. I am frankly surprised that no-one in his party has leant on the ridiculous grandstanding Rush to cool it - but then they are not Dumbocraps for nothing.

Anonymous said...

No, but one can argue that the framers clearly had in mind "the people" (and not all people - after all handguns are not allowed in prison) and a "well regulated militia" and not any tom, dick and harry with a beef.

Anonymous said...

"The Second Amendment of the U.S Constitution is rather explicit and clear. "

I think that's rather missed the point about the ever ongoing debate. It's not clear and that's why there are continuing arguments.

Anon@ 14:12

Anonymous said...

A non-issue. The bill will never get through committee, and won't get within a million miles of Obama's desk.

45govt said...

Anonymi @ 14.12 & 14.26 - successive supreme courts have held so, and if you studied the history which I have and you clearly have not, the amendment was framed exactly because so many of the settlers of the new nation had come from oppressive countries and regimes, where those basic rights had been curtailed, and the founding fathers were at great pains to ensure that the fledgling republic could not sink into that anti-freedom abyss, and that any US govt would be unable to ride roughshod over their countrymen if the urge took them. That is exactly why our illiberal but self-concerned regime have disarmed us, and why it is the first resort of the despot. Do you think that anything like the EUSSR Constitution or Lisbon Treaty could be got through the US in defiance of an electoral promise to give a referendum?

It is QUITE clear. said...

I quite like 45gov's method of reasoning in this debate: "I have studied history, therefore I WIN!"

I myself don't really care about the ammendment, all I know is, despite the fact that I quite like American and wouldn't mind living there, I think their gun laws are absolutely insane. Michael Moore might be a derranged socialist, but I think he pretty much hit the nail on the head in Bowling For Columbine.

Anonymous said...

The 2nd amendment certainly isn't explicit or clear as the decades of debate over it have shown. Many argue that the right to bear arms only applies in the context of a regulated militia and is not a blanket free for all. Also the question is framed wrong. Obama doesn't have the power to interpret the constitution. That is reserved to the Supreme Court which would undoubtedly take up the first case involving the law and would then determine its constitutional legality. Historically the curtailing of the right to bear arms didn't start with bleeding heart liberals but in the 19th century wild west where sheriffs would require cowboys to hand in their weapons before entering villages and towns during the cattle sales. Its why the Earps had a shoot out at the OK Corral.

Anonymous said...


I can see why you think it's perfectly clear as it suits your argument but anyone without an axe to grind who parses the clause can see it's absolutely NOT clear.

Supporters of guns for all think it means all can have them and others that it applies ONLY for the purpose of a well regulated Militia.

I'm not for one side or the other.

But to say its absolutely clear is stretching it far beyond its meaning, whatever that may have been.

What the intent was can only be approached by debate. It can never be absolutely deduced as the meaning is NOT clear.

But put that aside, why not just approach the issue afresh? And work out what is best for society today?

The adherence to the Constitution in this nit-picking way is to lay yourselves open to the tyranny of 18th Century language and thinking.

Will Rees said...

I have long thought that the way to deal with this is a rational side step :Ration and License bullet ownership


It is better to bear arms than to arm bears.

Jabba the Cat said...

Nice Beretta but personally prefer 1911A's for mice eradication.

Forlornehope said...

One of the more bizarre aspects of this is legislation to protect gun manufacturers from product liability suits. McDonalds can get sued for serving a hot cup of coffee but gun makers are untouchable.

Anonymous said...

Gun manufacturers are not untouchable. And the context you use is absurd. McDonald's was sued because the purchaser of the coffee was injured due to the coffee being too hot when it spilled on her as she was driving, after getting the coffee at a drive-thru window. This would be analogous to a gun exploding in a gun owner's hand when fired. In that case the manufacturer would not be immune.The coffee equivalent of what gun manufacturers are immune from would be if the woman who was scalded had in fact thrown the coffee in the face of a third party who turned around and sued McDonald's.
And as far as the well regulated militia goes, the final regulator is a well amred populace. That is what is supposed to prevent the militia from being able to forcibly displace citizen's from their own homes for militia housing or forcing the citizens to house the military for free. The founding fathers didn't want the American government to do to American citizens what the British government did to British subjects living in the colonies.
It was, after all, Thomas Jefferson who claimed that the tree of liberty must be regularly watered with the blod of martyrs and tyrants. That would at least imply an armed populace willing and able to turn on its government and as last resort.

Ewan Watt said...

The 2nd Amendment is the fourth pillar in the checks and balances.

In addition, without the militia there may well have been a coup following the election of 1800.