Friday, February 22, 2013

Grammar Granny

A brief trip through a bit of the United States Constitution...

Article I, section 8:

The Congress shall have Power

[... list truncated for space ...]

To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

To provide and maintain a Navy;

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, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;


To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repeal [sic] Invasions;

Amendment II

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.
Let's examine this language carefully. 
The congress is granted the power to create armies, a navy, and call upon "the militia".  What then, is the definition of "the militia"?  According to Webster,

a:  a part of the organized armed forces of a country liable to call only in emergency
b:  a body of citizens organized for military service
the whole body of able-bodied male citizens declared by law as being subject to call to military service

The 2nd Amendment states in its first noun phrase, "A well regulated militia". This is not, however, the primary subject in the clause.

Subsequently, the second phrase adjectively qualifies the first phrase as "being necessary to the security of a free state".  The first comma (between these phrases) appears to be completely superfluous.  Its absence would not change the meaning in any way.  Having a militia is deemed important to protecting the integrity of "the state" - which one can readily take to mean the country as a whole.

The third phrase (which is the second noun phrase), "the right of the people to keep and bear arms", presents itself strongly as the primary subjective material of the complete clause.

The fourth phrase, "shall not be infringed", is the predicate for the subject (in the third phrase).  Its separation from the third phrase by a comma also appears to be superfluous.

With the corrected punctuation, having no effect on the statement of the clause, we have the following:
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.

With that we can see more clearly the intent in the clause:
Because a militia affords necessary protection to the country, the people's right to own and possess arms cannot be curtailed.
Or in other words, to be able to have a militia, you really can't disarm the general population, and it's not lawful to do so through legal machinations or otherwise.

Furthermore, the use of the term "right" implies an inherent existence of the assertion;  it is not granted by authority nor descended from legislation or privilege.  It exists and stands axiomatically on its own, as an fundamental fact of human existence.

So, in my opinion, that would make the gun-grabber crowd to be a bunch of screaming idiots.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Share your Ignorance

Organizing for Action

Just got another creepy email from one "Jon Carson", aka "". It asks me:

"Why are you fighting to reduce gun violence?"

What a clever, presumptive title that places me immediately into one of two boxes!
  • EITHER:  I'm aiding these "control junkies" in their quest strip off rights and liberties of the general population "for a common cause",
  • OR:  I'm apathetic and unconcerned with violence (at best) and causing the deaths of my fellow citizens (worse). 
This stuff is exactly the kind of plainly-executed Orwellian nightmare fodder that would make someone like Joseph_Goebbels glow with pride.

Here's the message:
Maybe you've seen firsthand how gun violence can rip apart a family and a community.

Or maybe you're concerned by what you see on the news.

Whatever your reason, those in Congress who oppose sensible change need to hear from you: Share your personal story or views on why Congress should act right now to help protect our kids and reduce gun violence.

Notice how Jon's last paragraph says essentially nothing - except that you should help provide their propaganda operatives with more ideas that can be utilized to reinforce their agenda,  Nothing is said about what that agenda is, or how it is helpful.  So any cooperation you provide will be akin to writing a blank check for them.

It's right about one thing though.  What I see on the news does disturb me, quite often in fact.  But I don't think we're talking about the same events at all.

It continues...

Your story will inspire others to speak out and show legislators that now is the time.

President Obama said it: "More than a thousand birthdays, graduations, and anniversaries have been stolen from our lives by a bullet from a gun" in just the two months since the tragedy in Newtown.
Billions and billions to be served.
So why is our government buying up guns and bullets as fast as possible right nowIs this a new economic stimulus program?  Why are there ammunition shortages where the public is concerned?  It's hard not to think that their is a deliberate effort afoot to deprive the citizens of ammunition, possibly in advance of Something Big... like a total economic collapse, for example.  It would be advantageous for the showrunners to be the only ones with firepower in such a calamitous scenario, wouldn't it?  Oh, I know, I'm just being paranoid.  But 1.6B (yes, billion) bullets?

Each of those families deserves a vote by Congress on commonsense measures to help protect our kids.

But we need to demand it.

It's easy to share your story or point of view:
Blah blah blah ... instructions are provided next, supposedly to submit a story to be shared with your fellow citizens in a public forum... However, I'm sure my own would never be published, only ones which fit the right "mold" that supports the gun-grab agenda of the radical left in our country.

Notice, to submit anything you must provided enough information to be located and "subsequently corrected" if your thoughts are "wrong".

The email continues, imploring me to participate in their zombie horde:
Please share your story today:
Well gosh.  If you insist, team-Obama.  But instead of wasting space reposting the instructions to aid anti-constitutional traitors, I'm going "green" to save you some server bandwidth and carbon-credit.  I'll just go ahead and post my own story and point of view here.  I will make my demand known in very short and concise language, which I am more than happy to share with everyone:
"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."
You might recognize that from the Bill of Rights.  Or maybe not.
The needs of the many... or the one?
Then, Jon provides us with the courteous closing pitch, replete with the insipid and perfunctory "needs of the one outweigh the needs of the many" fallacy that we have come to loathe as much as any public statement by Dianne Feinstein ...