2/6/2013 12:18:00 PM Letter: 2nd Amendment - no gray areas
Ron Woerner's Jan. 28 letter re-writes history and reality. It is wrong at all points.
Chronologically: Our rights are, in fact, "endowed by our Creator" specifically so that government cannot change them at will. The founders had just won precious independence from a mercurial tyrant and were not about to let new tyrants rule by whim. The USSR had lots of "rights;" they came and went annually and saw six complete re-writes of their constitution in 70 years, before Soviet socialism collapsed.
The Second Amendment has no "relative phrase" that "modifies" the law. Like all laws, its preamble ("A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state") offers one possible reason for the law; in this case, "security," i.e. defense. "Well regulated" means "practiced and responsible" (for safety and effectiveness). Second Amendment author George Mason wrote "the militia" is "the whole people." To claim that the newly-freed founders wanted literal, governmental "chains of command" is just senseless. Finally, a preamble does not change the meaning of its law.
The law is, "The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed." This means, "the God-given, inviolate privilege of the people to own and carry a variety of weapons shall not be interfered with." Mason chose the non-limiting term "arms" rather than "musket" (or the superior, civilian, Pennsylvania rifle) specifically to ensure parity with the infantry of any potential usurper.
No one endorses WMDs in the hands of civilians in neighborhoods. But limiting the rifles, shotguns and pistols that the people may choose, or the ammunition that they can prepare, is clearly an infringement. Usurpers know that without ammo, a rifle is just a stick. Both Virginia Tech and Sandy Hook were committed with pistols using low- and standard-capacity magazines. Those and all recent shooters chose "gun-free zones" to avoid any armed resistance.
Woerner's ideals, "Government... limiting the size, power and number... of arms" and "for the Government to pass... limits on... your arms...," precisely define "infringed."