The Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, setting the stage for just who we, as a nation, would become. While they weren’t perfect–they were, after all, simply men and not gods–they managed an incredible feat. They created our system of government at a time when there was nothing like it anywhere else in the world.
In doing so, they provided a light to the rest of the world.
We know much of what they intended when they wrote those documents because of their own writings. We know, for example, how they felt about the private ownership of arms. They were fully supportive of it.
Which is why this headline made me do a doubletake: “Crisp: The Founding Fathers never meant to tie our hands on guns.”
The Constitution is brilliant, but it’s not perfect. Therefore we should be cautious about shaping — and limiting — modern American gun policy on the Founders’ belief in the necessity of a “well regulated Militia.”
The founders undoubtedly believed in the right to own firearms — for hunting, for sport and for personal protection. So do I. In fact, I’ve argued that the right to a firearm for personal protection is a “natural” right that precedes the Second Amendment and that it should be clearly established in a 28th amendment. Then we could stop forcing the Second Amendment through the dubious contortions required to protect that right.
But it’s hard to believe that the founders intended for the Second Amendment to preclude this nation, 230 years later, from protecting ourselves from the public health threat represented by modern weapons.
Did the founders actually intend for the Second Amendment to tie our hands on gun control and expect us to tolerate an unending succession of Columbines, Sandy Hooks and Uvaldes? I seriously doubt it.
Actually, yes, they did.
Again, we know from their own writings that they intended the population of this nation to have the means to not just resist foreign invasion, but also a tyrannical government. They wanted the government to be forced to respect the rights of the people, not just because of the courts or elections, but because if they went too far in trying to violate those rights, they’d face violent retribution from those they sought to rule.
The author can doubt anything he wishes, but without evidence to support his supposition, that the Founding Fathers actually would support gun control, then it’s just him projecting his own desires onto men too dead to refute it.
The Buckeye Firearms Association has a handy list of quotes from various Founding Fathers supporting our right to keep and bear arms.
If our intrepid author believes that the Founding Fathers would support gun control, then let him present his evidence of such.
I won’t be holding my breath waiting for it, though, because like most who write in support of gun control, they simply think the Founders agree with them based on little more than what the voices in their head claim.
At least the author seemingly knows he has no such evidence for his claim as he doesn’t try to present any and offers his thoughts as “doubts” about how they’d view things in our modern world, but that doesn’t negate the fact that he’s wrong.
The truth is that those same Founding Fathers had just put their lives on the line to break free from the most powerful empire in the world at the time. It’s unlikely such men would ignore that reality, especially when it’s clear that the problem isn’t guns, but people.