Trust me on this, I’m not going to get political in this post, it’s simply a summary of a conversation Studly Doright and I had this afternoon in regard to the Second Amendmendent to the United States Constitution.
First, here’s that amendment:
“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.”
Normally Studly and I don’t discuss gun issues. We own a couple of guns, but the only time we plan to carry them is when we go to the shooting range to learn which end to hold and which to point.
In other words, we have no plans to run around carrying weapons of deadly force in public. Ours are for snake killng, period.
But there are a whole lot of folks in this country who advocate for open carry of firearms. This gives me the willies for a couple of reasons. 1) how do I know this gun toter is sane and 2) how do I know this gun toter is sane. I could add more reasons, but they’d look just like reasons 1and 2.
The simple answer is there’s no way to know for sure, but in Texas now police officers are not allowed to ask a gun toter if he or she has a permit to carry. That seems counterintuitive: There exists legislation requiring gun owners to have proof of licensing, but the officers who are sworn to uphold that law are not allowed to make sure it’s being followed.
This is where Studly comes into the conversation. I read an article about the new Texas law aloud to him, voicing my concern.
“Well,” said he, “I really don’t see what the problem is as long as the person is obeying the law. Once they step outside the law then police officers can take action.” Then he topped this off with, “It is a second amendment right after all, “‘to keep and bear arms.'”
That always infuriates me when someone isolates that phrase from the amendment, but instead of getting pissed, I said, “Arrgh!!!” Okay, maybe I got a little pissed.
“What?” Studly asked. “That’s what it says, right?”
Patiently I read the entire amendment to him. To me it’s black and white. The well regulated militia is key to the whole argument. But Studly believes that the phrase “well regulated” has more to do with the registration and licensing than with an actual organized militia.
Sigh. This seems to be the cause of much misunderstanding. Not just in my home, but in the nation. I’m not comfortable with folks carrying guns in public. I know all the arguments for and against. I know the propaganda and the emotions involved.
I just wish we could evolve past the Wild West mentality.