By Joe Wolverton, II - thenewamerican.com |
"Our swords and every terrible implement of the soldier are the birthright of Americans." - Tench Coxe, Pennsylvania Gazette, February 20, 1788
A sitting U.S. congressman declared on his House of Representatives website that the belief that weapons can and should be used to throw off a tyrannical government is "insurrectionary" and "betrays the actual constitution."
Representative Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) took to his official webpage - a webpage hosted and maintained through taxpayer funding - to set out his view of the purpose of the Second Amendment's protection of the right of the people to keep and bear arms:
"But the pervasive, dangerous claim that a self-appointed minority of the people have a right to use deadly force against elected representatives or the police betrays the actual Constitution and twists the Second Amendment into a pretzel of logical absurdity which blocks our ability to respond to the nightmare of gun violence in our society."
Raskin then goes on to associate the belief that the people have a right to use force of arms to resist tyranny is what motivated Timothy McVeigh to participate in the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City 28 years ago.
Tell me, Mr. Raskin, which is more an act of rebellion: to violate the Constitution or to insist it be enforced?
And then tell me which is truly more insurrectionist: to vote in favor of one bill after another that deprives the people of the United States of their lives, liberty, and property, or to be prepared to protect from tyrants the lives, liberty, and property of their friends and families, even by the use of arms, if necessary?
If anyone has invaded the United States, it is the army of traitors taking up space in the halls of the Capitol Building.
If anyone is guilty of insurrection and rebellion, it is the corps of congressman who daily do more to destroy the liberty of this people than any foreign foe ever has or ever could.
Still believing himself clever, Raskin goes on to take a shot at Patrick Henry, as well:
"When I have pointed out the Constitution's comprehensive rejection of insurrectionary violence, my GOP colleagues proudly invoke Patrick Henry of "give me liberty or give me death" fame. This is amusing because Patrick Henry was, of course, an anti-Federalist who voted against the Constitution. His slogans tell us nothing about its meaning."
It's true that Patrick Henry opposed the ratification of the U.S. Constitution, but to say that he knew nothing of its meaning is showing oneself to be ignorant of constitutional history and the history of the Second Amendment, as well.
Let me answer Mr. Raskin with another quotation from Patrick Henry, a man whose luster and patriotism are beyond the ability of Raskin or any other member of Congress to tarnish.
At the same meeting where Henry called on heaven to give him liberty or give him death, he also explained to his colleagues how he would judge the actions of the tyrants in London:
"I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided; and that is the lamp of experience. I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past.
History teaches us one thing: The only reason a government would seek in any way to disarm the people would be if that government was planning to do something that the people would need to be armed to prevent. Disarmament - for any reason and no matter how "reasonable" - is an act of tyranny per se and is a tactic whose trajectory is enslavement."
In the United States, moreover, the case is even clearer, as the Second Amendment expressly forbids federal infringement on the right of the people to keep and bear arms.
Furthermore, Mr. Raskin and every federal office holder swore an oath to "preserve, protect, and defend" the Constitution, that would include the Second Amendment.
If publishing a tirade against the Second Amendment and calling anyone who supports it an insurrectionist or "deranged" is not an open, hostile, and notorious violation of that oath of office, then I don't think I understand what "preserve, protect, and defend" means.
Finally, Raskin wraps up his screed by revealing even more fully his ignorance of history:
The fanciful claim that the Second Amendment exists to allow armed groups to overthrow the government is the basis for the equally deranged claim that the people must have an arsenal equal to the government's. But nothing in the Constitution guarantees any person a right to a military-style assault weapon, a tank or any other military-style weaponry.
Actually, Mr. Raskin, the Constitution doesn't have to guarantee anything to any American. Our rights are not to be found in any document. Our right to protect our lives, liberty, and property is a natural right that we enjoy as an endowment from our Creator. The federal government, on the other hand, has no rights. The government has whatever authority the people consent to grant to it, and the power to disarm the people in any way or of any weapon or on any pretext or prejudice is not among those powers. Period.
Mr. Raskin would do well to read my articles on the history of the militia and the Second Amendment and to refresh his memory of this statement from the Declaration of Independence concerning what Americans - and all men - have a right to do should politicians take it upon themselves to destroy liberty, rather than protect it:
Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, - That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
Clearly this fool has never read, let alone understood the Declaration of Independence.
Every city they take your right to self defense becomes a jungle. Authoritarians hate the Constitution because it limits their power.
The Patrick Henry Speech to Virginia Ratifying Convention, June 5, 1778
"Guard with jealous attention the public liberty.***
Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel.
Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force.
Whenever you give up that force, you are ruined.
The great object is that every man be armed.
Everyone who is able might have a gun."