One of my biggest concerns about America today is the erosion of Liberty envisioned by the Founding Fathers. This erosion is being exacted by the American Left dedicated to transforming the USA into a State controlled socio-political culturally humanist paradigm. This means the termination of Religious Liberty, Free Speech, Free Thought and the Right to Self-Defense that America has experienced largely thanks to the political institutions set into motion by America’s Founders.
In this editorial Justin Smith looks inalienable Right to self-defense that exists not because of a man-made document, but rather exists by the Will of God.
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A Right Granted Us By God
Gun Control Laws Are Illegitimate
By Justin O. Smith
Sent 2/25/2019 8:47 PM
“False is the idea of utility that sacrifices a thousand real advantages for one imaginary or trifling inconvenience; that would take fire from men because it burns, and water because one may drown in it; that has no remedy for evils except destruction. The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes.” ~ Cesare Beccaria, 18th Century Italian jurist
American culture and this society have become so pusillanimous, that they have incredibly fought to tamp down and suppress the God-given right to the lawful act of self-defense and bearing arms to properly defend one’s person, family and property. More often we see both Democrats and so-called Republicans urging some manner of control over people already doing everything right, with the Democrats offering the harshest measures. It is as if they somehow imagine that limiting law-abiding citizens’ right to keep and bear arms will stop criminals and gun violence, which is akin to cutting the horns off a water buffalo as an answer to lion attacks.
Not the federal government, not the state governments, not any majority group of voters and certainly not any government official, elected or otherwise … none of the aforementioned have any legal authority to impede or infringe upon anyone’s God-given right to keep and bear arms, by any means or any measure or any arbitrary “rule” they color with the illegitimate use of the word “law”. A right granted Us by God as seen through Natural Law cannot be legislated out of existence.
[Blog Editor: On a personal I lean to the belief in the existence of Natural Law: viz., Law originating from God. But in full disclosure concepts of Natural Law and Natural Rights philosophically have a bit of controversy. So here are some titles to stretch your mind – perhaps you can locate yourself:
- What is “natural law”? How is God fundamental to it? Rediscover – Archdiocese of St. Paul & Minneapolis; © 2006, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
- HOW ARE GUN RIGHTS GOD-GIVEN AND INALIENABLE? By AWR Hawkins, Ph.D.; The Daily Caller; 5/10/2012 12:01 PM
- Natural Rights, Self-Defense, and the Right to Own Firearms; By TIMOTHY HSIAO; Public Discourse; 10/31/18
- Blackstone’s View of Natural Law and Its Influence on the Formation of American Declaration of Independence and the Constitution; By Kent Schmidt; Sullivan-County.com; © Oak Brook College of Law and Government Policy All Rights Reserved.
- Natural Rights and Natural Law; By James A. Donald; Jim.com; (N0 publication date but an interesting bibliography)
- JOHN LOCKE and theNATURAL LAW and NATURAL RIGHTS TRADITION; By Steven Forde, University of North Texas; Witherspoon Institute’s online center for Natural Law, Natural Rights, and American Constitutionalism; (No publication date)]
America currently has numerous states from California to Hawaii, Illinois and Vermont to Washington, New Jersey, Florida and Oregon trying to limit their citizens’ right to bear any weapon of the same sophistication as the U.S. military carries. Normally reticent as I am to quote the Supreme Court, as an example, due to its judicial activism, it is important to note that even the Court held this to be a God-given right that pre-exists government and the Constitution, in the majority ruling on Heller v. District of Columbia 2008. [Blog Editor: Bill of Rights Institute summary]
And yet, one more of the most egregious gun “laws” has just reared its ugly head in Ohio, without any more understanding of the Constitution than other pieces of legislation that have done nothing in L.A., New York or Chicago to stop gun violence.
Ohio House Bill 228 [PDF download] passed in December 2018, and it was largely intended to clarify when shooting someone in self-defense is legally justified; however, due to a HUGE drafting ERROR by the Legislative Services Commission and a misplaced provision regarding the Mossberg Shockwave shotgun, thousands of people will be turned into instant criminals overnight when this bill takes effect on March 28th 2019.
Dean Rieck, head of Buckeye Firearms Association, had worked closely with legislators on this legislation. He observed that many bills were flying about at the time, with Democrats firing off their own amendments and lobbyists and protesters adding to the chaos. The confusion of the day made an environment ripe for human error.
While everyone involved is saying this was an “honest mistake”, it is highly suspect that it occurred during a lame-duck session of the state legislature. Even more suspect, the error wasn’t caught, until after the bill was passed. This just shows how incompetent or devious leaders of the day can be.
Who were the proofreaders? Who signed off on the final draft?
Don’t lawmakers read a damn bill these days, before signing it? Obviously or conveniently not.
On March 28th 2019, any firearm of at least twenty-six inches and approved for sale by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms under the Gun Control Act of 1968, that is somehow not regulated under the National Firearm Act (NFA) of 1934, will be classified as “dangerous ordnance”. This turns an AR15, a thumbhole stock rifle, flash suppressors and other cosmetic features into dangerous ordnance and a felony to possess.
I submit that even a tax on firearms is illegal and unconstitutional, since it too carries an impediment of sorts to owning weapons. And here one must note, the NFA was held to be constitutional as a tax revenue measure. No entity has ever stated the federal government, or any government, has the power and authority to ban firearms of any type; this also is equally applicable to ammunition.
Many citizen groups and activist leaders, such as Jeremy Deter, have joined in protests, that forced the legislators to take heed and move for an immediate emergency fix, after initially stating they would have to wait 90 days before they could do anything. The Ohio State Legislature met on February 19th to enter a fix, at the urging of Senator Kristina Daley Roegner, who took a stand for the citizen groups, who introduced Bill 53. And predictably so, Democrats are now pushing back against any fix, as they contend no damage to firearms owners’ rights will result from Bill 228 as written, despite proof to the contrary.
Regardless of just how much damage it will or won’t do, without the proper correction to the error, the new “law” will be UnConstitutional as written, anyway one wishes to view it.
One option is to fix the error in the state budget, which will be introduced March 15th and passed into law on July 1st. This delay was called “unacceptable” by Chris Dorr, director of Ohio Gun Owners.
Senator Cecil Thomas, a retired police officer and a Cincinnati Democrat, noted that this all results from rushing through legislation in a lame duck session. Thomas said, “It’s just a bad way of doing business now, and mistakes are made …”.
Addressing the legislators, Eva Silvers, an advocate for the Second Amendment, called the law “unconstitutional” and exclaimed: “You took a constitutional oath to protect the people of this country. Will you enforce an unconstitutional law?”
Understanding the gun-grabbers will do everything in their power to keep this egregious “law” on Ohio’s books, calls have one out across the nation to meet on March 28th in an armed protest at the State Capitol Building. Ohio is currently an “open carry” state, and the reason for having the protest the day after the bad law goes into effect, is to show it is an unenforceable law. But, they are also getting county sheriffs on their side, who have already acknowledged they do not plan to enforce it as it stands, and if the fix is passed in the meantime, everybody will still meet on the State Capitol steps in Columbus, in celebration.
The Declaration of Independence states: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” The Second Amendment helps Americans defend and protect Our Life and Liberty, and that makes me happy.
All patriotic freedom-minded Americans must rush to the aid of their countrymen in Ohio and any and all the other states and stand firm, tough and ready in the face of illegitimate and illegal legislation, by way of all manner of protest and petition.
Wherever Our God-given Rights, the Bill of Rights and the Second Amendment are under heavy assaults by those who seek not to govern, over a sovereign nation of Free Born Americans, as their fellow patriot and brother in Liberty, seeking instead to rule as their lord and master, in a manner that reduces all to serfs of the state, We cannot allow it — We must not allow it, for it bears the name “tyranny”, and it will not reign over my children, their children and their children’s children, so long as there remains breath in my body, a rifle in my hand.
“The right to bear arms has always been the distinctive privilege of freemen. Aside from any necessity of self-protection to the person, it represents among all nations power coupled with the exercise of a certain jurisdiction. … It was not necessary that the right to bear arms should be granted in the Constitution, for it had always existed.” ~ John Ordronaux, Constitutional Legislation in the United States 241-242 (1891)
By Justin O. Smith
Edited by John R. Houk
Text embraced brackets as well as source links are by the Editor.
© Justin O. Smith