Comments about ‘Second Amendment: History's lesson and warning’

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Published: Tuesday, April 2 2013 12:00 a.m. MDT

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Tyler, TX

People were commuting murder among other violent crimes long before guns came along. And if guns were wiped off the face of the earth they would commit them still. Wasn't' there a guy that went on a rampage with a knife and a crossbow nit that far back. Our time might. Be better spent helping good people stay good and putting bad people away long term.

Tyler, TX

If you add a provision for mentally ill what constitutes mentally ill? Would that eliminate every person who has been treated for say OCD, ADD, depression? There are people who seek treatment for depression in particular due to some type of trauma in their life and do not require permanent treatment. How does the government differentiate? And what about the ones who slip through the cracks?

The ones who are not known to have mental problems because they never sought treatment? When one of them go on a shooting spree then what? We all have to PROVE we're sane to own a firearm?

That still doesn't cover those who can beat a mental health evaluation. Which would cover just about anyone of average intelligence who is not completely off their rocker.

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

A little "history" lesson for the Tea-Partiers, including the Honorable Senator from Utah...

The Framers of the Constitution, who wrote said 2nd Amendment, did so with the understanding that modern human beings, with the most elementary education, would be capable of using some "Common Sense".

Therefore, they didn't feel a need to spell every stupid little possible scenerio that could happen over the course of history of this nation.

For example - "shall not be infringed" - does not automatically mean total unrestrained access of any and all types of "arms" not does it apply to children, the mentally ill, dangerously violent, or known Criminals.

That's where good old "Common Sense" is supposed to kick in, we use our God-given intelligence, think for ourselves, and we do the right thing to "insure domestic Tranquillity" (the other part of the Constitution you extremeists convienntly forget or sinisterly leave out to suit your political agenda.

Class ajourned.

Pheonix, AZ

"Either their is some room for interpretation or their is not."

There is no room for interpretation. It says 'the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.' That means everybody.

And it means all things that can be considered to be arms. Missiles and tanks are not arms. But hand-held rocket launchers and hand grenades are arms.

You have to remember why the 2nd Amendment was put in the Constitution. To overthrow a corrupt government, if necessary.

It is fairly obvious that the Amendment is outdated and should be reworked. And how is that done? There is provision in the Constitution for that exigency... Amendments by the US Congress.

Will there be an amendment? Not likely. Why? Because members of Congress are chicken and will do nothing to jeopardize their jobs. Any amendment would be extremely messy and complicated causing alotta consternation with the gun-owning constituency. Obviously, the mentally incapacitated shouldn't have guns. But how you gonna decide that? Inventory all guns in the country and test the mental capacity of the gun owner on a monthly basis?

Castle Valley, Utah

Sen. Mike Lee,

I have honestly tried to make sense of your opinion piece by reading it carefully three times. It makes no sense. You cite no history, as expected by the title, for one.

Worse, you have no argument. You have a shameless, unsupported rant about individual rights. Let me, as a layperson, bring some news to the self-declared constitutional expert: You cannot own a tank and drive it down America's Main Street; you cannot fly your own armed drones. I could go on forever to cite the number and type of arms you cannot bear - thank goodness to the modern interpretation of the 2nd Amendment.

Provo, UT

@Doogie -- Justice Scalia is a liberal? I think you are the first person who has ever made that claim. Got my entertainment for the night reading that comment.

Gregg Weber

It shows I had one word less.

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The 2nd Amendment isn't about sport, hunting, or even crime. It's about that last means, when all else fails, and that last incentive to tyranny, to regain our rights and freedoms lost from the Constitution and Bill of Rights.
TANGENT: Tyrants, criminals, ignorant, fearful, and possibly another group doesn't want armed good civilians. Which are you? If ignorant or fearful; learn. If that other group; please define.

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Gregg Weber

2nd Amendment not about sport, hunting, crime. It's about that last means, when all else fails, that last incentive against tyranny, to regain our rights, freedoms lost from the Constitution and Bill of Rights.
A tyrant wants no civilian armed, also a criminal so that they have advantage to intimidate citizens.
At some future time, when needed, and you're against some corupt vote, press, and politician; when the military just follows orders as in the Milgram Experiment, when they threaten the Church and your family to get submission, will a flintlock or less be enough to get back the Constitution and our freedoms?
For those that might say "God will do it. We don't need weapons or anything." may I remind you that Noah built an ark in preparation. He was acting under orders but his work provided the means of success. Were Utah War defenders wrong? Does the Lord want us to stand or submit to future tyranny under color of law?
TANGENT: Tyrants, criminals, ignorant, fearful, and possibly another group doesn't want armed good civilians. Which are you? If ignorant or fearful; learn. If that other group; please define.

The Scientist
Provo, UT

Lee's overly idealistic (and totally naive and dogmatic) opinion piece(meal) is on par with another conservative pundit who recently tried to assert that when the 2nd Amendment refers to "a well regulated militia...", ALL Americans ARE the militia! As if that poor argument automatically gives every US citizen the unfettered, un monitored, uncontrolled "right" to build up arsenals of weapons, pack any and all forms of "heat" everywhere he pleases, and brandish any form of weapon indiscriminately.

We, the People, have ordained and established a Government by which we regulate "arms" among us. Slathering together abstract patriotic-sounding platitudes, as Mr. Lee has done is empty rhetoric that does nothing to address the very real problems in our increasingly violent society, the regulation of which is our mandate. Mr. Lee's blather provides no comfort to families and friends of victims of gun violence, and gives no hope for turning the red tide in our nation.

Saint George, UT

Thank you Senator Lee. As a government and civics teacher, I can assure you that there are more liberty loving students and parents then socialists. Kids want direction, structure, and the truth. America has always been the beacon of hope throughout the world because of its dependence on God, the Constitution, and Free Enterprise. Unfortunately, we are been drenched with propaganda about the virtues of socialism, government control, etc., and it has hurt us as a nation. Senator Lee believes in Liberty and is only defending our individual rights. There are far too many that don't even understand the concepts found in our constitution and why they are important!

Saint George, UT

Scientist: That 'blather' are my rights you so indiscriminately want someone else to manage. I only feel pity for those who want the 'government' to do something and refuse to do much, if anything, themselves to make our society less violent. Christ said 'help thy neighbor',not give all your liberty to a corrupt and powerful entity to whip people into helping 'thy neighbor'.

Heber City, UT

"TANGENT: Tyrants, criminals, ignorant, fearful, and possibly another group doesn't want armed good civilians. Which are you? If ignorant or fearful; learn. If that other group; please define."

What does this even mean? The unarmed are tyrants and criminals? Here's an attempt to define: It is precisely because I'm not ignorant or fearful that I feel no need to be armed. Only the fearful ("I believe the world is full of bad guys," even though most cops never draw weapons), the foolish ("Red Dawn is coming," and my AK can stop the black helicopters) and the faithless ("Turning the other cheek is meant for other Christians") need guns. But go ahead and keep them. I don't care, since you're more likely to thin your own part of the population than eliminate bad guys. Just don't claim your "right" to be "god-given" or without "regulation."

If you need a gun in America for reasons other than just wanting one (which is fine) please define. Gun ownership is evidence of foolishness, faithlessness or fear.

Deep Space 9, Ut

To "LDS Liberal" unfortunately we don't have any common sense legislation being proposed in Washington. The problem that we face with the mass murders is a mental health problem, and the politicians are going after the guns.

What they are doing is like taking away an alcholic's credit or debt card as a means to make them stop. It does nothing to address the underlying problem.

To "atl134" we already have laws to cover the private sales loopholes you claim. Utah laws prohibit selling firearms to people not allowed to have them. Maybe we can figure out how to enforce that law.

It is sad to see that you are willing to sell you freedom for a sense of security. Allowing government to regulate and limit your freedoms will never end well for anybody. In countries that have enacted strict gun control laws they have all experienced an increase in violent crimes. The people are put in more danger by removing the guns than be leaving them in the hands of law abiding people.

salt lake city, utah

"There is no room for interpretation. It says 'the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.' That means everybody."..I still think Utah needs a comprehensive overhaul of it's reading comprehension program. The constitution guarantees the "right" to bear arms, and says that "right" will not be infringed. It doesn't prevent the governmnent from restricting or regulating what guns are owned or even produced for public consumption, and it surely doesn't guarantee a completely unregulated process of gun ownership and use. As long as a restriction or regulation doesn't diminish the overall "right" to bear arms it's constitutional, and that's why we currently have Supreme Court supported restrictions on guns, and all you any gun, any time, any where, for anyone crowd are just plain wrong.

Restrictions on who can purchase guns, size of magazines, and even specific weapons does not "infringe" on the "right" to bear arms. It's still there just regulated..oh yea and that word regulated is in there too..right?

Los Angeles, CA

I think people should be able to own as many guns as they want, just as people can own as many cars as they want. But the true cost of guns should be paid by the gun owners just as the cost of automobiles are paid by car owners. I am tired of paying for the cost of gun violence (our emergency rooms are full of gun-related injuries). Therefore, if you own a gun you should buy an insurance policy to cover any mayhem that may occur as a result of that gun being in existence. Just as the cost of automobiles is spread over car owners, the cost of guns should be spread over gun owners.

John A Johanson
Murray, UT

What all the naysayers are saying is they don't want senators following the constitution, in my life (58) I have never seen such a srict constitutionalist. The founding fathers would be delighted in seeing Mike Lees character and his steadfast determination to do the right thing I for one am grateful that he represents me. By the way senators are just people and as human beings are want to do, make mistakes!!!

West Jordan, UT

I commend Senator Lee for his correct assessment of history and the purposes of gun control legislation, regardless of what the history revisionists and gun-grabbing progressives have commented to the contrary.

The irreducible challenge the Second Amendment poses to gun restrictionists is that it does not bestow upon the people a right they previously lacked. It proscribes the government from infringing upon a right the people already have. It is not that the people are allowed to arm. It is that the government is disallowed to disarm them.

The key fallacy of gun control laws is that such laws do not in fact control guns. They simply disarm law-abiding citizens, while people bent on violence find firearms readily available.

Liberty allows good people to do good and pursue happiness. It also allows bad people the ability to pursue their nefarious course, for which there are just laws and punishments inflicted for the violations of these laws ONCE THEY ARE BROKEN…not before.

Every act of government restricts in some way the liberty of the people. Careful deliberation is therefore required before the force of government is used to restrict liberty.

Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.

Craig Clark
Boulder, CO

Mike Lee has his interpretation of history. I have mine. I don't see why the framers of the Constitution would have said "a well-regulated militia" if what they actually meant was a well-armed mob. With so many in here sharing Lee's view of history, I shudder to think what they're not teaching in school these days.

Anti Bush-Obama
Washington, DC

Background checks will only bring about the 2nd coming of Al Capone. The Gun Manufacturers will just sell firearms to those who can't pass a background check, on the black market and it will be more violent than ever before. These people who sell the Guns, will grow very rich and buy off anybody who wants to arrest them.

Anti Bush-Obama
Washington, DC

Here is another history lesson for you all. Back in 1934, people were able to buy chain machine guns. Guess how many mass shootings they had in 1934? ZERO.

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