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November 6, 2017

I wrote the following today in response to a blog seeking commentary and repeat it here.


I see yesterday where a member of our well-regulated militia exercised his right to bear arms by mowing down worshippers in a church. The local sheriff this morning ascribes such an appalling situation to a pattern of conduct of the militiaman indicating mental illness, and in another show of mental illness, a president half a world away tells us the problem is mental illness, not gun laws, as though the two are mutually exclusive. If he wants to stick with that story, which deliberately confuses mental illness with unhampered means to kill, a classic NRA response, then perhaps he can tell us why his proposed budget cuts funding for mental illness in the face of the continuing and accelerated pace of slaughters of innocent Americans.
The idea behind the Second Amendment is found in its language on the right to bear arms as “being necessary to the security of a free state.” The horrid demonstration yesterday does not comport with such language; the victims and their families were neither secure nor free in real world terms under our current judicial language of the meaning of this Amendment. I can’t imagine that Madison and his cohorts envisioned that such as yesterday could ever have happened given what they had in mind when they laid out the language of this Amendment two years after adoption of the Constitution itself.
The Supreme Court got it right in 1939 when they found that militia meant militia, but the court abandoned such a finding later, and here we are > an NRA-sponsored society that demands licensing of beauticians and roof contractors but not terrorists and the psychotic who demand automatic weapons under the mantle of a constitutional right to bear arms which, by the way, is at odds with another constitutional right, to wit: the right to “life, liberty and property.”
Would that Madison could somehow be resurrected for a discussion among the “originalists” on the Supreme Court today as to what he and his fellow “originalists” had in mind when agreeing on the language of the Second Amendment. I am certain that it would not give license to homicidal maniacs to go into schools and churches and country music festivals to kill innocent Americans and then have politicians such as Trump pass it off as a mental health issue. Thus we have people killed by guns every day who are not deranged, like kids who find them in a drawer, people who use them in road rage situations, holdups, accidents while hunting etc. Mental health is not involved in thousands of such horrors every year, and speaking of mental illness, Trump should look in the mirror and apply the old dictum of “Physician, heal thyself.” When will this NRA-fed insanity end?


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