Liberty, by Peter Mancus
71. As a result of the North winning the 1860-1865 Civil War, the U.S. Constitution was modified by three great "Civil War Amendments". These were the 13th [declared slavery to be illegal], the 14th [declared all citizens to have certain rights binding on the states], and the 15th [declared that no one may be denied the right to vote based on their race or previous status as a slave.]
72. The 14th Amendment was proposed, and ratified, in 1868, primarily because the victorious North loathed how southern racists abused freedmen [emancipated slaves] and their white sympathizers. It is well documented that one primary purpose of the 14th Amendment was to grant freedmen the individual right to arms so that they may better protect themselves from the Ku Klux Klan. [Read attorney Stephen P. Halbrook's Freedmen, The Fourteenth Amendment, And The Right To Bear Arms, 1866-1876, ISBN 0-275-96331-4.] [I have a trace recollection that several years ago, when researching this topic in a scholarly book, I found a statement to this effect: the JFK and LBJ administrations, at taxpayers' expense, gave away firearms to southern blacks to help them protect themselves against lynch mob whites. I have since not yet been able to find that passage. If my recollection is correct, think about the reversal in attitudes among modern liberal democrats who fancy themselves to be champions of blacks but who currently pass more victim disarmament laws that further disarm blacks!]
73. Here is a pathetic irony. The origins of victim disarmament laws in this nation has an ugly racist root. The root is this: the early slave owners in this nation, and southern racists, feared becoming victims of armed slaves in insurrection or of emancipated blacks shooting back at them in self-defense. Slave owners, and southern racists, therefore, passed this nation's early victim disarmament laws and sustained them in various forms. Initially, such laws were race specific, namely, on their face, they clearly specified slaves or Negroes or both. Later, when these laws were challenged as being in violation of equal protection, clever racists modified these laws and made them race neutral, so they, on their face, applied to people of all colors, whites included. This was a scam to circumvent the denial of equal protection argument. Now that the laws are race neutral, civil authority has made many whites allies of many non-whites. Inexplicably, liberal democrats who champion the underdogs, especially minority underdogs, continue to champion more race neutral victim disarmament laws. By championing wide-sweeping, race-neutral laws, liberal democrats have succeeded in severely alienating, unnecessarily, millions of voters. In the process, liberal democrats who champion such laws pay a price for such alienation at the polls. In jurisdictions where champions of such laws have a political lock, their oppression has approached the status of being insufferable. They now risk, at a minimum, massive covert or overt civil disobedience. Increasingly, they risk insurrection and civil war.
74. Should the right to carry a firearm [or any other hand held weapon] in a public place for lawful self-defense be a fundamental right binding on the states? Why? If not, how can one enjoy, or benefit from, any of the other rights deemed fundamental if one is wounded, maimed or murdered by a criminal?
75. The right to carry a hand held weapon for lawful self-defense and for lawful defense of others in a public place, without a CCW permit [other than the Second Amendment,] and without having to first get anyone's permission to do so, is a fundamental right. My reasons for this statement follow.
Fundamental, per Webster, where appropriate, means this:
1. Serving as, or being an essential part of, a foundation or basis; basic; underlying;
2. of, pertaining to, or affecting the foundation or basis;
3. being an original or primary source;
4. a basic principle, rule, law, or the like that serves as the groundwork of a system; essential part.
Right, per Webster, where appropriate, means this:
1.Something that is due to anyone by just claim, legal guarantees, moral principles, etc.;
2. that which is morally, legally, Constitutionally or ethically proper;
3. a moral, ethical, or legal principle considered as an underlying cause of truth, justice, morality, or ethics;
4. that which is in accord with fact, reason, or propriety;
5. the opposite of privilege.
- The fundamental law of this nation is the July 4th Declaration, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Legally, no one can get more fundamental than those laws.
- The July 4th Declaration declared the existence of inalienable rights which came from a Creator, not civil authority. Among these rights are the Rights to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. The logical corollary to these rights is the right to enjoy the pragmatic means to enforce these rights; otherwise, these great inalienable rights are a worthless sham.
- The right to self-defense is the right to preserve bodily integrity and to prevent trespass and harm to one's body. As a practical matter, preserving bodily integrity is the foundation, the platform of all rights.
- Dead people have no rights. It is impossible for a corpse to exercise any of the other rights already deemed to be fundamental by the U.S. Supreme Court and binding on the states.Rights are irrelevant to a corpse.
- It is axiomatic that a pre-requisite to the ability to exercise any right is that one must first be alive . . . and preferably not maimed nor incapacitated by a criminal. Example: It is difficult to exercise free speech or kneel in church or go to a polling place when a criminal murdered you, busted up your face, or made you an invalid.
- One of the best ways to preserve these rights is to carry a sidearm for lawful self-defense and lawful defense of others. It is difficult to enjoy life and to pursue happiness when one is reduced to the status of being unarmed, vulnerable prey by oppressive laws that attempt to strip one of human dignity.
- Per this nation's fundamental law, all human beings are born with inalienable rights, which are a gift from a Creator to Man. This gift pre-existed the formation of society and civil authority. This gift also survives the formation of society and civil authority. Human beings retain these rights even after society and civil authority are formed.
- The Second Amendment's Right to Arms has a First Amendment Right to Freedom of Religion component. This is because the July 4th Declaration asserts that Man's inalienable rights are derived from a Creator, and the First Amendment guarantees Freedom of Religion. For those who believe that the ultimate source of their rights is a Creator, and that their Rights to Life, Liberty and to Arms are a gift from a Creator, civil authority's laws against carrying a weapon in a public place for lawful self-defense without a CCW permit are a Constitutionally infirmed infringement against Freedom of Religion in addition to being a Constitutionally infirmed infringement against the Right to Arms.
- Freedom of Religion has already been deemed to be a fundamental right. Atheists and agnostics cannot legitimately force their views upon those who believe that a Creator, and not civil authority, is the ultimate source of all rights.
- Per this nation's fundamental law, civil authority forfeits its legitimate authority, breaks the social contract, and becomes oppressive the instant it tries to deny Man the inalienable right to carry a weapon for lawful self-defense to preserve bodily integrity.
- No citizen has a legitimate duty to suffer any trespass against his or her bodily integrity nor to die merely to promote the alleged general welfare.
- The general welfare is not promoted by stripping law-abiding, competent citizens of their inalienable and Constitutional rights and coercing them to circulate in public as unarmed, vulnerable prey.
- Civil authority's power to promote the general welfare stops cold, 100%, at the Bill of Rights, and the Second Amendment's "...the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed." Hence, the right to self-preservation does not require getting anyone's permission or license first. The entire CCW permit concept and system, therefore, is 100% Constitutionally infirmed and totally illegitimate. That system is an unequivocally clear prior restraint infringement against the right.
- Any civil authority that purports to deny an otherwise law-abiding citizen who has no criminal history, no mental illness history and no recent history of substance abuse the fundamental right to carry a weapon in a public place for lawful self-defense, without a CCW permit, illegitimately transgresses upon that citizen's inalienable and Constitutional rights. That transgression substantially devalues U.S. citizenship. That transgression is tantamount to civil authority's attempt to reduce citizens to the status of property, bondage, and prey. That process involves this reality: Citizens are reduced to subjects which are further reduced to property which are reduced further to piss ants status. That process is insufferable. That process is a manifestation of civil authority's contempt for citizens, for their rights, for their status as human beings, for the dignity to which they are entitled.
- Per our nation's fundamental law, the right to lawful self-defense with a weapon in a public place is already codified in the Second Amendment.
- This is a right that belongs to the people, which civil authority cannot infringe with any prior restraint pre-condition on the exercise of that right. The Bill of Rights, with its Preamble, makes this point unequivocally clear. That Bill's rights are restrictions on civil authority, not on citizens. Hence, this right is in effect all of the time.
- In addition to these fundamental laws, we also have the significance of the 1868 14th Amendment. That amendment was designed to force the states to honor the Bill of Rights, which was part of the normal "privileges and immunities" enjoyed by each U.S. citizen, as explained by the U.S. Supreme Court in its 1856 Dred Scott case. Those who spearheaded the drive for the ratification of the 14th Amendment repeatedly made it specifically clear that they were trying to secure for the freedmen [recently emancipated slaves] all the rights enjoyed by Caucasians, among which was the right of a freedman to self-defense with a firearm in a public place. The 14th Amendment made the right to carry a concealable, hand held weapon, including a sidearm, a personal civil right to lawful self-defense in a public place, for freedmen and for Caucasians. [Read Akhil Reed Amar's The Bill of Rights, ISBN 0-300-07379-8, and Stephen P. Halbrook's Freedmen, The Fourteenth Amendment, And The Right To Bear Arms, 1866-1876, ISBN 0-275- 96331-4.]
- A right is something one can exercise in private, without having to get anyone's permission first, and without even having to disclose to anyone that one is, or is not, exercising the right. A right, and what one does, or does not do with it, is one's business and no one else's business. A right is also 100% immune from all forms of prior restraint and infringement. Civil authority can legitimately, and Constitutionally, punish, after the fact, behavior that is an abuse of the right. Civil authority cannot, however, legitimately, and Constitutionally, impose prior restraints on the exercise of the right. Such prior restraints reduce a fundamental right to a privilege.
- To permit is to control. To permit is to convert a fundamental right to a privilege.
- When civil authority insists upon reducing fundamental rights to privileges, which civil authority can, and does, arbitrarily, civil authority reduces a constitutionally limited democratic republic with certain guaranteed rights for all to a police state where all rights are in peril or are non-existent. That process does not increase citizens' confidence in civil authority. Instead, that process severely alienates well-informed citizens and those who value Liberty.
- How one exercises a right becomes a legitimate concern to civil authority only when one's behavior regarding that right actually harms another. Neither civil authority, nor anyone else, has any legitimate basis to complain about the responsible, non-harmful exercise of any right. This includes otherwise law-abiding citizens who merely carry a weapon in a public place for lawful self-defense without a CCW permit. The key is: what is the citizen's behavior, not whether he or she also carries a piece of government issued paper called a permit.
- Life is full of risks. Civil authority and citizens must be willing to take risks with Freedom, Liberty, and the Constitutional Rule of Law. The alternative is Oppression, Tyranny, and Any Rule of Law. The risks associated with Oppression, Tyranny, and Any Rule of Law outweigh those associated with Freedom, Liberty, and the Constitutional Rule of Law.
- It is axiomatic that lawful defense of one's self, one's family, one's loved ones, and one's fellow citizens, in a public place, is an innate right of all mammals, which is, and has long been, recognized throughout the world.
- Most animals come equipped with natural means of self-defense, e.g., claws, teeth, powerful tail, thick skin, keen senses, extreme agility. Human beings, however, lack such natural weapons. Thus, to deny to human beings the right to carry a suitable weapon to preserve bodily integrity is to deny human beings an ability already extended to dogs and other mammals and to reduce human beings to a status below animals.
- Civil authority's victim disarmament laws are illogical, counterproductive, dangerous and seriously Constitutionally infirmed. Example: Civil authority professes to believe that human beings are higher than animals and are entitled to equal protection of the laws. Civil authority, however, has out done itself by making a gross mockery of these concepts. This is because civil authority has inexplicably passed victim disarmament laws which have created a multi-tiered system of Authoritarian Elites and Citizens Reduced to Piss Ant Status. Example: Authoritarian Elites [law makers and senior law enforcement personnel, etc.] decide who is, and who is not, according to them, worthy enough to be trusted with a CCW permit to protect their hide with a firearm in a public place.
- To dishonor or to frustrate the basic, powerful, involuntary, human instinct for self-preservation is to dishonor humanity itself.
- Civil authority does not own citizens. Civil authority manifests a gross form of statecraft malpractice when it passes or enforces victim disarmament laws that rail against the inborn, powerful instinct for self-preservation. This is especially true when civil authority knows that it cannot assuredly protect citizens, and, to exacerbate matters, it protects itself by passing laws that make it immune for failure to protect citizens while purporting to deny citizens the right to protect themselves.
- The right to preserve one's life against aggression [unjust initiated force] is the highest and foremost right of any human being. This is underscored by the extremely powerful, inborn instinct for self-preservation. To make that right a pragmatic reality, one must have the right to use an effective tool to preserve life against aggression. A person who carries a sidearm has one of the most effective tools for preserving one's life against aggression [which is precisely why cops carry sidearms.]
- To deny, to compromise, or to infringe upon a person's right to carry a sidearm is to undermine or to eliminate that person's ability to enjoy, in a meaningful way, the right to preserve his or her life and to prevent illegal transgressions against his or her bodily integrity which can have grave, long lasting consequences. No one, repeat no one, and no civil authority, has the legitimate right, nor power, to undermine nor to eliminate an otherwise law-abiding citizen's right to preserve his or her life.
- Since carrying a weapon concealed tends to improve a person's likelihood of successful preservation of one's life, concealed carry is included within the general right to be armed.
- All living organisms evolve to some degree. Evolution is an on-going modification and adaptation to changed circumstances. In that sense, evolution is a form of self-defense. The inherent need to adapt, to survive, to defend, is an indisputable fact of life. Adaptation is indispensable to the survival of any living thing and any living species. These facts are true of one-celled organisms and of multi-celled organisms. Life, via evolution, prolongs itself by defending against external threats. Biological mechanisms involuntarily pass this self-defense mechanism on to their descendants.
- Nature does not draw arbitrary lines and impose arbitrary standards. Only foolish human beings pass laws that rail against one of nature's strongest instincts: the instinct for self-preservation. Nature has allowed most species to develop, and to perfect, ingenious methods of self-defense for survival, individually and as a species. Human beings, as a higher form of life, have developed more sophisticated tools. Among these tools are laws and weapons, including sidearms. Without both [laws and weapons], human life is easily defeated.
- Humans need weapons to defend life when laws fail to deter crime that threatens human life.
- Weapons carried in public will always be needed to defend human life because criminals, who, by definition, do not obey laws, will always exist and will always commit criminal acts, especially against those they perceive as being unarmed and vulnerable to plunder.
- When human life is defeated, human life is killed, evolution stops, and extinction occurs.
- Defense of one's self, one's family, and one's possessions, with any tool available, is totally consistent with eons of life-sustaining evolution. Thus, lawful self-defense with any weapon is truly fundamental for survival as is a hospitable environment, nourishment, and propagation.
- A concealed defense is normal in nature as is any other life-sustaining capability. To deprive an organism of a concealed defense equates with deprivation of food or air. Rattlesnakes, honey bees, squids, mushrooms, and ordained ministers all have concealed defenses that are not readily visible to the casual observer. Concealed defenses are among one of nature's ways of deterring, and, if necessary, defeating, an assailant.
Additionally, all of the following is also true:
- There is no correlation between concealed carry and criminal intent nor criminal behavior.
- One can carry concealed without criminal intent.
- Concealed carry gives law-abiding citizens three major advantages over those who harbor criminal intent: the advantage of surprise; the ability to defeat an attack once initiated; and the advantage of deterrence because criminals do not know who is armed and prefer to plunder those who are disarmed.
- Society, law enforcement, and civil authority reap substantial benefit from law-abiding citizens who personally shoulder the responsibility of lawful self-defense with a sidearm.
- John R. Lott, Jr. is one of this nation's best criminologists, with special expertise in CCW laws and their effect. Professor Lott, who is not affiliated with the National Rifle Association, in the conclusion of his More Guns Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun Control Laws, ISBN 0- 226-49363-6, wrote:
"...nondiscretionary concealed-handgun laws are ... the most cost-effective means of reducing crime. ... the deterrent effect of nondiscretionary handgun laws is largest for violent crimes. ... Concealed handguns also appear to be the great equalizer among the sexes. Murder rates decline when either more women or more men carry concealed handguns, but the effect is especially pronounced for women. ... Providing a woman with a concealed handgun represents a much larger change in her ability to defend herself than it does for a man. The benefits of concealed handguns are not limited to those who use them in self-defense. Because the guns may be concealed, criminals are unable to tell whether potential victims are carrying guns until they attack, thus making it less attractive for criminals to commit crimes that involved direct contact with victims. Citizens who have no intention of ever carrying concealed handguns in a sense get a 'free ride' from the crime-fighting efforts of their fellow citizens. ... No statistically significant evidence has appeared that the Brady law has reduced crime. ... Preventing law-abiding citizens from carrying handguns does not end violence; it merely makes victims more vulnerable to attack. ... In the final analysis, one concern unites us all: Will allowing law-abiding citizens to carry concealed handguns save lives? The answer is yes, it will."
- Thus, per Professor Lott's scientific statistical survey [the largest and best to date], we enjoy a splendid fact: Professor Lott's scientific statistical survey confirms, validates, and re-enforces the Framers' profound wisdom: "...the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed." Reformulated, our nation's fundamental laws work—they are effective!
- The bad news, however, is this: We suffer from too many Authoritarian Elites who have broken faith with the Framers' wisdom.
- These champions of victim disarmament laws have perverted the real law to our severe detriment.
- The Authoritarian Elites who function, and who think, unconstitutionally, are dangerous and lethal—to you, to me, and to our Constitutional Republic. They are Public Enemy No. 1.
- Citizens have a right and a duty to oppose Public Enemy No. 1.