The reality of the new math of the 21st century is that guns are not really all that essential to preventing government overreach. Just ask Aaron Swartz and Bradley Manning. Just ask the folks who stood by and watched Occupy Richmond get bulldozed to the ground in the wee hours of the morning.
The U.S. Government doesn’t use flintlock rifles and muzzle-loaders — they just use muzzles. They don’t march in and openly declare war — they use drones and courts and psychological warfare.
Let’s say you get to keep your Bushmaster rifle complete with drum magazine. If you can’t assemble, communicate without being under secret surveillance, move around without being tracked, or have a free and open internet, how are you going to resist? Who exactly are you going to shoot? The alleged terrorists in Pakistan who are getting droned out of existence (along with hundreds of innocent women and children) have plenty of guns, but they haven’t got anybody to shoot. Don’t forget that drones have been approved for use on U.S. soil. Are you going to shoot the drones out of the sky? Are you going to shoot the innocent guy who shows up to serve you a summons to appear in Federal court?
By all means, let’s not surrender our 2nd Amendment rights. But in the end, which is the more powerful right — your 2nd Amendment Right to bear arms, or your 1st Amendment right to peaceably assemble? Or your 5th and 6th Amendment rights to a speedy, fair, and public trial by your peers?
Let’s put our social differences and the finer details aside and come together — Tea Partiers, Anarchists, Libertarians, Leftists and Centrists — and fight for those rights that matter most in a 21st Century world.
Here’s the list of Constitutional Amendments from Wikipedia. Take a look a look at this list and see if you think we have our priorities straight.
|#||Amendments||Proposal date||Enactment date||Full text|
|1st||Protects freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of the press, as well as the right to assemble and petition the government||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|2nd||Protects an individual’s right to bear arms||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|3rd||Prohibits the forced quartering of soldiers during peacetime||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|4th||Prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures and sets out requirements for search warrants based on probable cause||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|5th||Sets out rules for indictment by grand jury and eminent domain, protects the right to due process, and prohibits self-incrimination and double jeopardy||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|6th||Protects the right to a fair and speedy public trial by jury, including the rights to be notified of the accusations, to confront the accuser, to obtain witnesses and to retain counsel||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|7th||Provides for the right to trial by jury in certain civil cases, according to common law||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|8th||Prohibits excessive fines and excessive bail, as well as cruel and unusual punishment||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|9th||Protects rights not enumerated in the constitution.||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|10th||Limits the powers of the federal government to those delegated to it by the Constitution||September 25, 1789||December 15, 1791||Full text|
|11th||Immunity of states from suits from out-of-state citizens and foreigners not living within the state borders. Lays the foundation for sovereign immunity||March 4, 1794||February 7, 1795||Full text|
|12th||Revises presidential election procedures||December 9, 1803||June 15, 1804||Full text|
|13th||Abolishes slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime||January 31, 1865||December 6, 1865||Full text|
|14th||Defines citizenship, contains the Privileges or Immunities Clause, the Due Process Clause, the Equal Protection Clause, and deals with post-Civil War issues||June 13, 1866||July 9, 1868||Full text|
|15th||Prohibits the denial of suffrage based on race, color, or previous condition of servitude||February 26, 1869||February 3, 1870||Full text|
|16th||Allows the federal government to collect income tax||July 12, 1909||February 3, 1913||Full text|
|17th||Establishes the direct election of United States Senators by popular vote||May 13, 1912||April 8, 1913||Full text|
|18th||Establishes prohibition of alcohol (repealed by Twenty-first Amendment)||December 18, 1917||January 16, 1919||Full text|
|19th||Establishes women’s suffrage||June 4, 1919||August 18, 1920||Full text|
|20th||Fixes the dates of term commencements for Congress (January 3) and the President (January 20); known as the “lame duck amendment”||March 2, 1932||January 23, 1933||Full text|
|21st||Repeals the Eighteenth Amendment and prohibits violations of state laws regarding alcohol.||February 20, 1933||December 5, 1933||Full text|
|22nd||Limits the number of times that a person can be elected president. A person cannot be elected president more than twice. Additionally, a person who has served more than two years of a term to which someone else was elected cannot be elected more than once.||March 24, 1947||February 27, 1951||Full text|
|23rd||Provides for representation of Washington, D.C. in the Electoral College||June 16, 1960||March 29, 1961||Full text|
|24th||Prohibits the revocation of voting rights due to the non-payment of poll taxes||September 14, 1962||January 23, 1964||Full text|
|25th||Codifies the Tyler Precedent; defines the process of presidential succession||July 6, 1965||February 10, 1967||Full text|
|26th||Establishes the right to vote for those age 18 years or older.||March 23, 1971||July 1, 1971||Full text|
|27th||Prevents laws affecting Congressional salary from taking effect until the beginning of the next session of Congress||September 25, 1789||May 7, 1992||Full text|