Gut Rumbles

May 12, 2003

a bee in my bonnet

Jack, of the road not taken (goddam, fucked-up Blogger archives. Just look down the page and you'll find what I'm talking about.) takes issue with my stance on the Second Amendment. He lives in England now, where gun control has proven to be such a REMARKABLE success at stopping gun-crimes that his idiot government locks up law-abiding citizens defending their home and property while declaring that burglars have more rights than the people they rob.

He has this to say, as a way of sneakily kissing my Cracker ass before he goes bullshit in the brain.

I respect Acidman. I think he's dumb for thinking George Dubya Bush is anything more than a moronic puppet for the Project for the New American Century, he generally displays too much American jingoistic bullshittage for my liking, and he sure could do with putting himself in other people's shoes every so often, but I respect him because I know that he's the sort of guy who is capable of having a massive argument with someone who has a diametrically opposite view, during which a lot of very loud shouting happens and various insults about one another's IQ, appearance and sexual habits are exchanged, but not take it personally, and then finish the argument and go back to sinking beers and discussing which barmaid is the cutest.

I shit on your shoes and piss in your beer. Take THAT!

YOU are dumb for not recognizing a man who is a LOT SMARTER THAN HE SEEMS TO BE. That's actually an advantage. It's GOOD to deal with someone who THINKS he's smarter than you are when he isn't. You've got him by the balls from the beginning.

Bush may mangle speech sometimes, but he ain't no dummy. Go trade horses with a twang-talking hillbilly. Deal with a slow-speaking rednecked South Georgia farmer. Yeah, they talk funny, too, but they'll end up giving you the shit-end of the stick if you underestimate them. Ain't no flies on ANY of them, because they've been winnin' bets and makin' deals all of their lives.

And they eat smartasses like you for lunch.

In the United States, a big deal is made of the right of US citizens to own and bear arms. It's laid down in the Second Amendment to their constitution, right under freedom of speech and religion.

Or is it? The Second Amendment states (and I quote): "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."

Now I really AM going to piss in your beer. You're pulling out that stupid-assed "militia" thing and calling it the true meaning of that sentence. Did you ever diagram a sentence in school? Remember how? Diagram THAT SENTENCE and tell me what is the subject and verb! If you come up with "Well-regulated militia," you fail my English class.

Besides, you probably never studied a lot of American history, living where you do. If you read what the founders wrote when they were framing the Constitution, you would have NO DOUBT what they meant in the Second Amendment. Read this if you need proof.

Now, I do not believe that this gives US citizens a blanket right to own and carry weapons. Specific reference is made to a "well regulated Militia" and, to me, that does not imply that anyone who feels like owning an AK-47 should be allowed to do so. However, I do believe that it means that if a group of people form a militia, if they behave responsibly, if they liaise with the proper authorities and, as long as there are no fears that the militia will be used for any other purpose than to defend the freedom of the State, then those people should be allowed to keep and bear Arms.

That's about the most fuckwitted nincompoopery I ever saw on paper, except quotes from Diane Feinstein and Chuckie Schumer, both of whom would need and enema bag the size of the Goodyear Blimp to pump all the shit out of them. The entire idea behind the Second Amendment was to give American citizens the right to "liaise" with the government at the point of a loaded gun.

An armed populace tends to be a free populace. The Founding Fathers knew that fact.

I live up in the country. Wild animals sometimes visit me, and we've been known to have the two-footed kind running the woods. I have a gun in every room of the Crackerbox except Quinton's bedroom and the hall bathroom. I live where the truth is, "Call the Fire Department, call the police, call an ambulance and call Domino's Pizza. See which one gets there first."

My pizza will arrive before anybody else does. I can't depend on those people to take care of me, so I take care of myself.

On the other hand, if some kid walks into a gun store off the street with a handful of crumpled bills, I don't think he should be allowed to buy a gun.

That's my first point - that the Second Amendment does not give any fool off the street the right to keep and bear arms.

You have to be 18 years old to buy a gun in Georgia, but your daddy can buy one FOR you when you're in diapers. Besides, what's wrong with the kid off the street with a handful of crumpled bills? That's how I bought my first .22 rifle. If the kid's not a felon, he has the right to buy a gun. Maybe he's worried about the gang-bangers terrorizing his mama. Maybe he's being terrorized himself. Maybe he just wants a gun because it's his right to own one as an American citizen.

I was set up for a robbery on the streets of downtown Savannah in 1978 by two black thugs as I was leaving the Red Lion Tavern at 2:30 in the morning after I played guitar there that night. I had a .22 derringer in my pocket. I saw one guy walk up to me and ask for a light and I heard his partner running up behind me.

I whipped out the tiny little gun and said, "I've got your light right HERE!" as I stuck it in his face.

He yelled, "The motherfucker's got a GUN!" and hauled ass. So did his partner. I didn't have to shoot at anybody. I'm glad that I didn't, too, because I had only two shots and I was going to pull both triggers on the lead guy and figure out what to do with #2 after that. That's one of those cases where a crime was not committed against an armed citizen just because the citizen SHOWED a firearm.

Yeah. That happens a LOT.

I drive a car. In order to drive that car, I had to pass a theory test, in which you are quizzed about the rules of the road, and a practical test, in which you demonstrate that you can implement the theory you have learnt and that you can drive safely and competently. If I drive dangerously, if I speed, if I drive while drunk, I'm liable to have my licence taken away from me.

I think it should be the same with guns. Unlike most Europeans, I've used a gun. They strike me as incredibly dangerous things. Their sole purpose is to injure or cause death. I'm a kind of jocular guy and I often joke and mess around with stuff, but when I'm around weapons, I stop messing around, because it's just too dangerous. I pride myself on having passed my weapons handling test first time, and I really, really don't like being around people who aren't competent or careful with weapons.

This is the most bogus, bullshit argument of all. I do not have the "right" to have a driver's license. That is a privilige. The states have the right to regulate what I do with a vehicle on public roads. The Constitution mentions NOTHING about my right to operate ANY KIND of vehicle.

But I have the RIGHT to own a firearm, or even a WHOLE BUNCH OF THEM, because the Constitution mentions that right SPECIFICALLY, to make sure assholes never take it away from me. Besides, I don't need a driver's license to operate ANY kind of motor vehicle on my private property. I can drive whatever I want to drive as fast as I want to drive it on my own land. Traffic laws don't apply on MY LAND.

I need a driver's license ONLY if I drive on public roads. But my Georgia driver's license is recognized as legitimate in all 50 states, even though the traffic laws are different everywhere I go. Why isn't my right to own a gun in Georgia recognized in Washington, DC?

Don't even start that driver's license shit.

And anybody who isn't careful with a firearm is an idiot. But a firearm is not evil all by itself. It's no more dangerous than a chainsaw or a ball-peen hammer if you handle it right. A gun is a tool. Learn to use it correctly, and you'll have no problems.

Third point - self defence. A lot of people make the argument that people should have guns for self-defence, because criminals have them. In American, the Second Amendment doesn't mention self-defence. It only mentions a militia, so, in my opinion, you can't say that the Second Amendment gives citizens the right to carry weapons in order to defend themselves against criminals.

So, remove the Second Amendment from the argument and it comes down to a straight question - if criminals use guns to commit crime, should law-abiding citizens be allowed to carry guns to defend themselves?

YOU ARE GODDAM RIGHT THEY SHOULD!!! I saved AT LEAST $4,000 worth of guitars and microphones, plus a severe asswipping and maybe my life by having a gun one night. Until you've been there, fuck you and that liberal-assed pap you're spouting.

YEAH!!! Law-abiding citizens should own guns. LOTS of guns. I let my son shoot the .22 rifle. I'm going to let him shoot the .22 target pistol soon. I keep the .38 revolver for ease of concealment and the noise that snub-nosed fucker makes. I like the 9mm semi-auto because it holds 15 shots and I have three extra magazines. I like the twelve gauge because the sound of the pump scares the shit out of people and you don't have to be all that accurate with it. It's hell on a rattlesnake.

I like my new derringer, too, because one of those may have saved my life one night when I was about to be robbed.


And when I say "tackle that problem head-on", I mean it. I think gun crime should be tackled very aggressively. Here in the UK, there's been some debate and tabloid headlines about the police shooting and killing people who've turned out to have been brandishing replica guns. People say that the police should be more careful, et cetera, et cetera. I say fuck 'em. If you're stupid enough to go waving something that looks exactly like a gun at the police and you don't put it down when you're told to, then you deserve to be removed from the gene pool.

Aw, BULLSHIT! You people are locking up law-abiding citizens and letting criminals run wild. Does "head-on" mean "Head up your ass?" Seems like it to me.

I conclusion, I'd just like to say that I'm not against gun ownership in principle. I thought it was really, really bad that the backlash after the Dunblane massacre led to a ban on sporting target pistols. British Olympic shooting competitors now have to go abroad to practise because their weapons are illegal in this country. That is just dumb.

MY BRAIN!!!! Cognative dissonance has set in and is pecking like a buzzard on my skull. Jack waxes eloquent about gun control, then concludes "That is just dumb."

I rest my case.


Just to rub a little more salt in Jack's wounds from your well deserved tongue-lashing, he, as well as 99% of today's sorry lot of folk, misreads the word well-regulated. When the amendment was drafted, that was taken to mean: well-drilled, as regulated used back then refered to training.

Posted by: MommaBear on May 12, 2003 07:30 PM

I think this would be in your "Head up your ass" catagory A-Man.

An eldery Brit has been in prison for 3 years for defending himself in his own home...

Posted by: tk73 on May 12, 2003 07:54 PM

A-man, i just have to respond to this one. i used to live in Europe and it is so goddamn stupid. law abiding citizens cannot own guns, but the criminals sure do. the UK is behind the times, for sure..i know, i was there. the right to bear arms is essential, because if you don't have one, the asshole that is going to rob you sure does. i live in Oregon now, which has very liberal gun laws...there is not even a waiting period, you walk in, plunk down your cash, they call the State Police to make sure you are not fucked up..and you walk out with your new .44. i am in a rural area, too...and my gun has saved me several times. fuck the whiny "guns are bad" crowd.,..guess they have never had to defend their fucking property or lives or family before. to them, i say..if you do not like handguns...move to the UK., will get your wish.
excellent post, acidman

Posted by: tony on May 12, 2003 08:35 PM

Tony, all you have to do is SHOW IT sometimes, and the goblins run away. I've been there and done that.

Probably should have shot the fuckers anyway, but I didn't.

Posted by: Acidman on May 12, 2003 08:46 PM

... and you read this bullshit WHY?

Good grief.

Send the little shit my way. Not literally. One glance inside my gun safe would cause him to have a heart attack. And that's just the "Knife" section, that is. (Long knives are also banned in the U.K.)

Posted by: Kim du Toit on May 12, 2003 08:51 PM

Why would anyone think that the 2nd amendment is there to defend the freedom of the State? Yikes! It's there to defend the freedom of the people, and sometimes that means defending the people from the State.

Posted by: z on May 12, 2003 09:17 PM

Ye gads. First, it's a little presumptious for a Brit to be telling me what my constitution says.

But! If he insists, like so many brain-dead libs, that the word 'people' in the 2nd Amendment refers to 'state-approved organization' and not 'you, me and Joe down the street,' then I recommend he (& any who agree with him) go through the Bill of Rights and substitute 'state-approved organization' for 'people,' wherever 'people' occurs.

Here's Amendment IV revisited:

The right of state-approved organizations to be secure in the persons of their approved personnel, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place belonging to the state-approved organization to be searched, and the state-approved personnel or things to be seized. This restriction on the federal government does not apply to actions taken by the federal government against individual persons.

Whaddya think? Did it change the meaning? Are ya skeered?

Me, too.

Posted by: Marie on May 12, 2003 09:18 PM

I prefer the "cold, dead fingers" approach.

Posted by: Acidman on May 12, 2003 09:43 PM

I guess he'd never move to Kennesaw, GA, where you are required by law to own a gun.

FYI, the home invasion crime rate in Kennesaw dropped 80% the year after that law was passed.

Posted by: Ravenwood on May 12, 2003 10:26 PM

Don't waste your breath trying to explain the 2nd to these euro-pinheads. Their type is so used to being told what to do and how to do it by the government, they'll never understand why anyone would ever want to own a firearm.

Posted by: Mr. Lion on May 12, 2003 10:31 PM

Where in the h3ll did you find this cr33p?
Not only is he totally ignorant of our right to bear arms, but he's presumptive to lecture on why the americans are hated. But what really chapped my @$$ is when he started crowing about buying into wireless and how he is going to crack it...and just from the description he gave he knows nothing about the fact that wireless is totally insecure and doesnt need cracking! I guess he's never heard of wardriving around with a laptop and pringles can. And this guy calls himself an ex-hacker...I can see why...he's never cracked anything including his own @$$.

Posted by: quark2 on May 12, 2003 10:39 PM

Ahh, an Englishman who doesn't know his rights as an Englishman. Mr. Lion is right: don't waste your breath.

Posted by: Ron on May 12, 2003 10:42 PM

I cannot own a gun, but I have to say there sure are times when I would have made good use of one.

Posted by: Dave The Australian on May 13, 2003 05:13 AM

MommaBear - Uhm, good point, I hadn't thought of that. I shall investigate old definitions of the verb "regulate".

TK73 - I admit that I don't think Tony Martin should have been sent to prison. The world's not perfect. I would rather see the introduction of legislation that really deterred crime (rather than giving criminals a holiday at Her Majesty's Pleasure in prison that looks more like a 3-star hotel), than legislation that allowed every Tom, Dick and Harry to own a gun.

Tony - I'd rather face unarmed criminals without a weapon than face armed criminals, even if I had a gun.

Kim Du Toit - I'm a captain in the British Army reserves. Nothing you could show me... Uhm, let me rephrase that. Nothing in your gun safe would scare me. :-)

Marie - First, I'm not a Brit. You should be careful. Some of my countrymen would shoot you if you called them a Brit. Second, why does the Second Amendment mention the concept of a "well-regulated militia" if it's meant to apply to individuals?

Ravenwood - Did the gun crime rate in Kennesaw go up or down?

Mr Lion - One word: hunting. :-) I've never been hunting with a gun, but I'd sure like to try it...

Quark2 - You're a moron. No offence, like, but you are. :-)

Ron - I'm not an Englishman.

Dave the Australian - Couldn't we all! This morning on the Tube there was this asshole who pushed in front of me and I... Ahem. I digress. :-)

Posted by: Jack on May 13, 2003 06:01 AM

I'm reminded of the well trained sniper who came under scrutiny after shooting the asshole that was dangling the baby off a bridge. If I were that good with a gun, and close by, I would have done the same. Now, Jack, if that were your baby being dangled over a bridge, wouldn't you hope SOME ORDINARY CITIZEN was close by to come to the resque? I would.

Posted by: PW101 on May 13, 2003 06:30 AM

PW101 - I'm not familiar with the case you mention. Got any links to news stories?

Posted by: Jack on May 13, 2003 06:48 AM

Jack, this project will call for some familiarity with American jurisprudence, but here's what I want you to do:

1. Read our Constitution and flag all places where the phrase "right of the people" appears. In every single instance outside of the Second Amendment, you will find that a "right of the people" is an individual right.

2. Read up on historical American "militia" practices. You will find that the militia has been defined as "the whole people, other than a few public officials." You might also want to look up posse comitatis. Only in the latter half of the last century has there ever developed the view that the "militia" in the Second Amendment could be defined as an organized arm of the government -- at the same time that our National Guard units have increasingly become subject to federal control -- thus contradicting any notion of those units as militia under the Second Amendment.

3. Kiss my ass.

Feel free to skip #3 if the first two give you a clue.

Posted by: McGehee on May 13, 2003 07:20 AM


Eugene Volokh has done some rather lengthy research on the phrasing of the second amendment. Turns out that in several state constitutions & various other legal writings of the time, the explanatory clause/operative clause structure was not uncommon.

Look at it this way, the first part, about the militia, explains WHY we have the second part about the people bearing arms.
More or less they were thinking that an armed populace would be a good defense against foreign &/or domestic tyranny. Plus it would eliminate the need for a standing army which they saw as a hinderance, rather than an asset to liberty. So the second amendment did have defense of the state from the federal government in mind, as well as defense from foreign invaders & if need be from the state itself. defense against criminals went without question, as did hunting.
One thing that should be pointed out: the second amendment, like the rest of the Bill of Rights, does not grant us anything. It ACKNOWLEDGES Rights that pre-exist the government. Specifically the Right to Arms, which is a necessary derivitive of the Right to Self-defense, which itself derives from the Right to Life.

But before ya'll get too into trashing England & Australia lemme point out two things:
Bush supports renewing the assault weapons ban.
HR 2038 was introduced last week. It not only renews the assault weapons ban, it adds to it. It includes assault weapons as defined by the '94 ban, as well as guns made to comply with the assault weapons ban, virtually all semi-auto's especially of a military design, semi-auto shotguns, & bans the import of magazines that hold more than ten rounds.
To put it bluntly, they're going after the Ak's, Garands & duck guns.

So we ain't far from being in the same boat as England or Australia. Most Republicans, who we think are on our side, see this latests bullshit as nothing more than 'reasonable restrictions' on an individual Right. & most Democrats will be happy to vote for a tax cut IF they can expect a 'yes' on HR 2038.

If ya wanna find out more about this latest it's on my blog. It'll be front page for a few days at least.

Course, one other thing that most Europeans (Swiss excepted) don't seem to understand is that if this &/or any other gun prohibition is passed, we'll all happily comply. They are more than welcome to take our guns if they want to. Only thing is they'll damn sure be empty when they do. :)

Posted by: publicola on May 13, 2003 08:31 AM

I have invited Jack, since he seems offended at your debating tactics, to discuss the topic at length.

I've STUDIED this topic since 1995 in depth and detail. If they offered degrees in this subject, I'd qualify for a PhD, IMHO.

Jack's main hindrance is his European worldview, where government is seen as a benificent, benevolent force, and the solution to all problems. As opposed to the American view where government is generally the source of most problems and whenever government is used to fix a problem, it either makes the problem worse, and/or creates entirely new problems through unintended consequences.

I hope he takes me up on the offer....

Posted by: Kevin Baker on May 13, 2003 11:03 AM

Jack, you do not get it. i lived in the UK, too, you know. just because Her Majesty bans guns you think the criminals go "wow, we need to get rid of them and find something else to pillage with". get real, banning only takes them out of the hands of law abiding citizens. the criminals are already breaking the law, so like they care? Jack, you ever walk in Brixton at night? or travel the tubes at night? i did...and i got nicked from several times. a gun just puts a different perspective on things from a law abiding citizens point of view. jesus, i am glad i live in Oregon now. and listening to you makes me even gladder.

Posted by: tony on May 13, 2003 09:58 PM

I may be a moron in your opinion, and you have one just like you have an a@@hole. I will reteirate, you presume to conclusions about Americans when you are an alien not a citizen of this country.
But, when you find yourself being robbed, mugged, ripped off, attacked by someone who has the advantage of the situation by being armed, you can feel righteous about being an unarmed complying citizen.
Being a responsible citizen who owns guns is a deterrent, against the criminal influence.
So I don't mind being a moron, because that means I live in a country that still allows the private citizen to own and bear arms. I'll think about you the next time I have to kill one of our local water mocasins or cotton mouths.

Posted by: quark2 on May 13, 2003 11:47 PM

Quark2 - I'm not calling you a moron because you're American. That would be racist. I'm calling you a moron because you said that wireless doesn't need cracking. You obviously don't have a clue what you're talking about.

Can you decrypt WEP packets in your head? Do you even know what WEP stands for?

Posted by: Jack on May 14, 2003 03:42 AM

---I'm not calling you a moron because you're American. That would be racist.

Sorry to nitpick but,
I didn't know American was a race. A better term would be nationist.

BTW, Jack, do you know anything about