In this note we will not again emphasize the tragic damage to life and civilized society by the persistent misreading of the Second Amendment, whether reductionist or intentional. Those who are willing to consult our Colonial History, know that in Europe, nobles traditionally had their own private standing armies. When our Federal Republic was created, we had no noblemen to contend with, but many of the several colonies (States) did have private militias. The founders agreed, as part of the negotiations leading up to the formation of our new nation, that the people’s militias would not be eliminated or incorporated into the federal army, but would continue to be recognized as legal and independent entities, with the right of these armies of “the people”, to bear arms.
Issues concerning disputed meaning and application of legislation have been, and still are, resolved by reference to the factually expressed intention of the legislators. It is shameful that so many citizens ignore factual history (as well as societal responsibility) and have made a veritable religion of gun ownership. It appears that any religion, by its intrinsic nature, existentially, needs to reject empirical fact. However important and unjust this phenomenon may be, this note is not about correcting history. We are here concerned with the nature of the bizarre human desire to own lethal equipment, from a moral and psychological view and what it may reveal concerning man’s persona.
Homo sapiens received many generous gifts from evolution, among which was an advanced brain and evolved hands, the latter featuring an opposable thumb and flexible fingers. Gun worshippers, it would appear, would like us to believe that one of these useful digits was anthropologically pre- destined to serve as a trigger finger.
We do, admittedly, possess a small pocket knife, which happens to be useful for cutting string and fishing line, for whittling, for slicing meat or fruit and other pacific functions. The entire array of possible applications of a gun is limited to only one use, to kill. Religionists know that the most drastic admonition in the Ten Commandments is, “Thou shalt not kill.” Apart from the legal societal considerations, it appears impossible for us to fathom the mentality of those Americans who see themselves as moral and societally upstanding, yet adamantly and shamelessly, demand the franchise to own a death dealing instrument. Many of such citizens incidentally, carry the religious banner of “Right to Life.”
Are there extant, any rational Americans who could sincerely maintain that our philosophically, peace-loving Founders sought to create a democratic republic where “equality under the law” was inclusive of the right of every citizen to be a gunslinger? Can the desire to possess equipment capable of committing homicide, be more essential and justifiable than the sacred preservation of life?
America’s High School Students, have recently shown that they have the right answers.