Time to look at relevance of basic right

Published 5:55pm Thursday, December 27, 2012

No matter how hard you try, politics always find a way to creep into family conversations during the holidays. This Christmas, my family was no exception.

After getting everyone up to date on who’s expecting a baby and how old everyone’s children are, the tragedy in Newtown, Conn., of course, became a hot topic.

Some family members voiced their favor for the right to bear arms while others expressed a higher need for gun safety. Some of my relatives who are educators themselves said the tragedy especially affected them and caused them to consider the notion of having armed police officers in schools at all times for increased protection. Everyone seemed to have a definite opinion on the matter — everyone except me.

To be honest, I’ve never paid much attention to the second amendment, the right of the people to keep and bear arms. I’m not a hunter and I don’t collect guns, so this right has never directly affected me. However, tragedies such as the one that took place at Sandy Hook Elementary and incidents like what happened at Selma High School just a week ago cause me to consider this right on a more personal level.

Should we limit who can and who can’t purchase a gun? Should we even sell automatic weapons to non-military citizens? By taking away one’s right to purchase certain firearms do we contradict our basic freedoms our nation was founded on?

These are all undoubtedly tough questions to answer, and to thoroughly address these issues, I think a solid understanding of the Bill of Rights is necessary.

The second amendment, adopted in 1791, was established so citizens could protect themselves and their homes from any enemies or intruders. This amendment was also established during a time when English settlers still had memories of what it was like to live in fear of English parliament, who could disarm them without question at any time.

As a nation, we have evolved in so many ways since the second amendment was originally written. We have confronted many obstacles and tried to find the best solutions so society can move forward and thrive. As a nation, I think it’s time we looked at this amendment again and consider how it fits into today’s society.

When James Madison sat down to write the Bill of Rights in 1789, he didn’t have an iPhone he used to text all his friends in Congress, and I doubt he had knowledge of the high power, automatic weapons that the United States would have available to the average citizen more than 200 years down the road.

Is our basic right to protect ourselves beginning to pose a lethal threat? If the answer is yes, then I think it’s time to reevaluate.


  • http://www.facebook.com/kimesha.alvarado Kimesha Houston Alvarado

    I totally agree with her personal assessment! The article was about old antiquated laws! Thanks young lady and don’t let people’s opinion second guess your thought process!!!

    • popdukes12

      Sunshine, so making untrue statements like, “automatic weapons that the United States would have available to the average citizen”, and leading people to believe that the 2nd amendment should only be concerned with hunting (“I am not a hunter”), and leading the reader to believe that personal protection isn’t as necessary as it was 200 years ago (“as a nation, we have evolved”) without doing any research on the facts to back that up is O.K. with you? I know you identify yourself as an “activist”, but unlike an “activiist” reporters have to maintain a level of creditability so they won’t remain in an entry level position for the remained of their career. They get paid to do the research that you hate so much. And, they can’t resort to calling me a “racist” to stop my opinions and observations, like you do. pops
      P.S. Sunshine: If you would care to continue this, please IM me on FB.

  • popdukes12

    Sarah, Several of your statements in this article are not only misleading, but show you are very naive concerning gun control. Some examples: 1) “I am not a hunter”–nowhere in the second amendment is “hunting” mentioned. Liberals are making every attempt to use this phrase in an attempt to put an undesirable face on those effected by any new gun control activity, and mislead the public as to the consequences. 2) Automatic weapons are not available to every citizen as you so incorrectly stated (this too is misleading). Thousands of dollars are required, along with educational requirements, FBI background checks, Federal licensing, bonding, and the list goes on. 3) “as a nation we have evolved”—really? Look at the murder rates over the past 100 years, The murder rate among blacks is just over 26 per 100,000 and 8 per 100,000 among whites. Researching an article would add credence to your position. 3) The English Parliament would pale by comparison to the actions of our current President. American citizens have been targeted and killed by American drones while abroad and jailed indefinitely without trial. Realizing you are “fresh out of college” you may have had campus cops guarding you as you slept, but these don’t exist out in the real world. As far as having an I-phone as a deterrent, you could always throw it as a mugger. pops

  • Acourtland

    Sad. And wrong.

  • MO-OF-IT

    First of all automatic weapons are not available to the “average” citizen. Few own these weapons and they must have a class 3 license which equires an exhaustive background check. Cost of fully automatic weapons are not for an “average” person either with cost ranging into thousands and tens of thousands of dollars as these weapons have not been imported for individual sales for years. Semi automatic weapons are available but require a trigger pull for every shot.

    Second the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. Simple as that.

    Selma evidently has lots of bad guys with guns as everyday there are multiple headlines about shootings. Perhaps rather than controlling honest citizens who are protecting themselves the focus needs to be on capturing and caging the bad guys like the savages they are.

    Lastly only tyranny follows gun control. Look at every country that established gun control and execution of average citizens that followed. James Madison knew this to be true as did all of our founders. Guns in the hands of honest citizens save lives and property and, yes, gun-control laws adversely affect ONLY the law-abiding citizens.

    Take note my fellow Americans, before it’s too late!
    With guns, we are ‘citizens’. Without them, we are ‘subjects’.

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