The Second Amendment, as some have so misbelieved, has no limitations. However, as we all know, there are limits to our First Amendment freedom-of-speech rights. For example, one cannot yell “FIRE!” in a crowded theater. It is reasonable, therefore, that limitations should similarly exist for the Second Amendment, some of which already include denying firearm ownership to convicted felons, and those who are mentally unstable.
As some have come to so interpret it, the purpose of the Second Amendment is to empower citizens with the ability to overthrow a despotic government – not to hunt wild game. If that be the case, one mustn’t be intellectually dishonest about the matter, and must acknowledge if that interpretation is at least accurate in part, then the Second Amendment was written to give citizens the right and authority to kill their governmental leaders.
Regarding how the spirit of the Second Amendment might be honored while simultaneously providing sane regulation to prevent tragedies as we have most recently witnessed, I offer the following.
The Second Amendment reads
“A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”
• People who own firearms – particularly military style assault weapons – should be required to, as part of their ownership – be active members in good standing of “a well regulated militia.”
• Individuals who only own hunting firearms could be exempted from militia participation requirements.
• All firearm owners should be required to pay a federal tax upon acquisition of the firearm, no matter the type.
• All firearm owners should be required to submit to a federal background investigation and security clearance, including fingerprinting.
• Military style firearms could be subject to an acquisition tax, the amount of which could be the equivalence of the purchase price, or more – similarly to the tax imposed upon fully-automatic weapons.
• Annual accountability for all firearm owners – essentially asking the legal status of the individual, e.g., whether they’ve been arrested, or convicted of any disqualifying crime or behavior, and performing mandatory annual background checks with federal, state & local Law Enforcement Agencies.
• Lying or attempting to deceive to obtain a firearm by deliberately misleading would be a federal crime, the punishment of which could be determined – perhaps even including a ban on ownership for a set period of time, up to and including a permanent lifetime ban.
Ford, Carter, Reagan Push for Gun Ban
May 05, 1994|WILLIAM J. EATON | TIMES STAFF WRITER
WASHINGTON — Three former presidents endorsed legislation Wednesday to ban the future manufacture, sale and possession of combat-style assault weapons as a closely divided House neared a showdown today on the hotly controversial issue.
Gerald R. Ford, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan sent a letter to all House members expressing their support for the measure, effectively joining President Clinton in urging approval of the ban.
Together, the four make a formidable lobby, stretching across Read the rest of this entry »