The challenge of the Second Amendment: revisited

I jotted this piece down in 2012 after the Aurora, Colorado massacre. It is sadly just as relevant today as it was then and is eerily similar to what I wrote last week regarding the Orlando, Florida LGBT massacre. Notice that between then and now, the only thing that has changed is the volume of guns purchased by certain Americans. We have long passed the point of absurdity on our collective inaction. We need to move our political representatives to act. And if they don’t act, they must be voted out.

secondamendmentA week ago, some deranged lunatic in Colorado decided to take an arsenal in to a crowded theater and shoot a bunch of innocent people who were doing nothing other than trying to enjoy an evening at the movies.  It was a horrible tragedy and now that the collective national shock has subsided, as sure as the sun rises, the tried and true “gun control” debate has begun popping back up.  And as with any gun control debate in the United States, the Second Amendment gets bandied about by gun fanatics and gun control proponents alike.

By way of reference, here’s the Second Amendment to the US Constitution as a brief refresher to us all:

“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.”

Fast forward from 1791 to today, 2012 and let’s take a scan around the world to see how well the intention of the Second Amendment would fit in to a city needing to protect itself.

The Syrian city of Aleppo is under attack by the Syrian government; specifically, the Assad regime. The city [read its people] has been bombarded by artillery, tanks and helicopter gunships.  While the rebels in Aleppo seem to have held strong, the Assad regime’s bloodthirsty and indiscriminate shelling of cities and neighborhoods over the past several months have proven that the regime has no regard for civilian lives and safety.  So the only real recourse for the people of Aleppo has been to flee, en masse.

Here’s where we start to draw some distinctions. The Assad regime possesses a mere fraction of the sophisticated military firepower of the United States. Given that, what if the men, women, and children of Aleppo had a well regulated militia courtesy of their own Second Amendment? How well regulated and armed would this militia need to be if it were to withstand the government’s constant and ruthless bombardment?

In the United States, it’s ridiculously easy to go out and buy a handgun or maybe even a semi-automatic assault weapon, but how does a civilian populace needing to protect itself from a modern military force, go about buying a Bell AH-1 Cobra helicopter or an F/A-22 Raptor fighter jet or even a run of the mill FIM-92 Stinger surface to air missile?  Of course it’s meant to be a ludicrous question, but it is also meant to illustrate the painfully obvious point that the tools of warfare have far outpaced the ability of a well regulated militia of minutemen to guarantee the security of a free State.

As a student of history, I totally understand where the founders were given the age in which they lived, but in the modern age, the best defense against tyranny is no longer a “well regulated militia” armed with even the scariest looking AR-15s, but a well-educated populace (both men and women) armed with a vote.

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