Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

A history, the Right to “bear arms” meant to be part of an organized militia

Ken Melvin has an excellent post, Duplicitous Bastards. In it, Ken touches upon the right to bear arms as opposed to the right to vote and how the former who advocate the bearing of arms who advocate such are more than likely inclined to make it difficult for the latter who wish to practice their right to vote.

Forty three states are attempting to pass 253 laws restricting the right to vote and the state governments show no fear of those voters as opposed to the fear of those who support the right to bear any type of bullet-spewing-weapon.

Today, Professor of History Heather Cox – Richardson touches upon the supposed – absolute right to bear arms declared by those demanding such exists without any legal impediments necessary for safety, acquisition, etc.

Professor Cox – Richardson offers up a history of the NRA and how we got to where we are today. It is a good read, offering facts I was not aware of in the past.

Letters From an American, Heather Cox – Richardson

A history professor interested the contrast between image and reality in American politics. I believe in American democracy, despite its frequent failures.

Ten more people in Boulder, Colorado, died yesterday, shot by a man with a gun, just days after we lost 8 others in Atlanta, Georgia, shot by a man with a gun.

In 2017, after the murder of 58 people in Las Vegas, political personality Bill O’Reilly said that such mass casualties were “the price of freedom.”

But his is a very recent interpretation of guns and their meaning in America.

The Second Amendment to the Constitution is one simple sentence:

“A well regulated militia, being necessary for the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

There’s not a lot to go on about what the Framers meant, although in their day, to “bear arms” meant to be part of an organized militia.

As the Tennessee Supreme Court wrote in 1840,

“A man in the pursuit of deer, elk, and buffaloes might carry his rifle every day for forty years, and yet it would never be said of him that he had borne arms; much less could it be said that a private citizen bears arms because he has a dirk or pistol concealed under his clothes, or a spear in a cane.”

Bloody Sunday

Professor Heather Cox Richardson at Boston College details Bloody Sunday in her “Letters from An American,” how it relates to the SCOTUS decision in 2013, and the signing of an Executive Order by President Joe Biden “to promote voting access and allow all eligible Americans to participate in our democracy.”

Some of us were around in 1963 and would read the events of the day in the newspapers which were delivered to our door. At 14, I can not say I understood the issues associated with March 7th. I do remember at 18 watching the white foreman screaming at a Black tuckpointer when we were 20 or so stories up and on a scaffold. I still remember the hurt look on his face as he exited through a window. It was ugly.

The first line of Professor Heather Cox Richardson recital raises a point which is on the horizon for white America, “Black Americans outnumbered white Americans.” Minority Americans will outnumber White Americans in the near future. We had better learn to live with them.

This original recital of the events on March 7th is a good read.

“Black Americans outnumbered white Americans among the 29,500 people who lived in Selma, Alabama, in the 1960s, but the city’s voting rolls were 99% white. So, in 1963, Black organizers in the Dallas County Voters League launched a drive to get Black voters in Selma registered. The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, a prominent civil rights organization, joined them.

In 1964, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act, but it did not adequately address the problem of voter suppression. In Selma, a judge had stopped the voter registration protests by issuing an injunction prohibiting public gatherings of more than two people.

To call attention to the crisis in her city, Amelia Boynton, who was a part of the Dallas County Voters League but who, in this case, was acting with a group of local activists, traveled to Birmingham to invite Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., to the city. King had become a household name after the 1963 March on Washington where he delivered the ‘I Have a Dream’ speech, and his presence would bring national attention to Selma’s struggle.