Re: Firearms, the backcountry and you?

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Posted by Dirty Harry on March 09, 2003 at 07:42:13:

In Reply to: Firearms, the backcountry and you? posted by Curious on March 05, 2003 at 00:05:02:

Hummm I wonder what our fore fathers would have to say on the matter?

Over 200 years ago they shook off the chains of tyranny from Great Britain by Divine call. Citing 27 Biblical violations, they wrote the Declaration of Independence providing liberty and justice for everyone. Here's what they also said about the Second Amendment:

"Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people's liberty teeth and keystone under independence. The church, the plow, the prairie wagon, and citizen's firearms are indelibly related. From the hour the Pilgrims landed, to the present day, events, occurrences, and tendencies prove that to insure peace, security, and happiness, the rifle and pistol are equally indispensable. Every corner of this land owns firearms, and more than 99-99/100 percent of them by their silence indicate they are in safe and sane hands. The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference -- they deserve a place of honor with all that's good. When firearms go, all goes -- we need them every hour."
-- President George Washington's address to the second session of the first Congress

"...[A]rms...discourage and keep the plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property. ...Horrid mischief would ensue were [the law-abiding] deprived of the use of them"
-- Thomas Paine (1775)

"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms...disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes...Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man."
-- Thomas Jefferson (1764)

"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them."
-- Richard Lee, Letters from the Federal Farmer, 169-170

"Resistance to tyranny is obedience to God."
--Thomas Jefferson

"Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force you are ruined... The great object is that every man be armed... Everyone who is able may have a gun."
-- Patrick Henry

"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword, because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretense, raised in the United States."
-- Noah Webster, An Examination into the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution (1787)

"A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives a moderate exercise to the Body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks."
-- Thomas Jefferson

"Americans have 'the advantage of being armed' -- unlike the citizens of other countries where 'the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.'"
-- James Madison

"God grants liberty only to those who love it and are always ready to guard and defend it."
-- Daniel Webster

"The Constitution shall never be construed . . . to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms."
-- Samuel Adams

"The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed."
-- Alexander Hamilton

"To disarm the people [is] the best and most effectual way to enslave them."
-- George Mason

"The right of the whole people, old and young, men, women and boys, and not militia only, to keep and bear arms of every description, and not such merely as are used by the militia, shall not be infringed, curtailed, or broken in upon, in the smallest degree; and all of this for the important end to be attained: the rearing up and qualifying a well regulated militia, so vitally necessary to the security of a free State. Our opinion is, that any law, State or Federal, is repugnant to the Constitution, and void, which contravenes this right, originally belonging to our forefathers, trampled under foot by Charles I. and his two wicked sons and successors, reestablished by the revolution of 1688, conveyed to this land of liberty by the colonists, and finally incorporated conspicuously in our own Magna Carta! And Lexington, Concord, Camden, River Raisin, Sandusky, and the laurel-crowned field of New Orleans, plead eloquently for this interpretation!"
-- Nunn v. State, 1 Ga. 243, 250, 25 ~ (1846)

"When the government fails to protect the people against robbers, kidnappers, and murderers, it is not only a legal right but an imperative moral duty, of the people to take their mutual defense into their own hands. And the constitution recognizes this right, when it declares that "the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed;" for "the right of the people to keep and bear arms" implies their right to use them when necessary for their protection."
-- Lysander S pooner "Address of the Free Constitutionalists* 25 (1860)

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