"Mistrust those in whom the urge to punish is strong." Friedrich Nietzche

"Any and all non-violent, non-coercive, non-larcenous, consensual adult behavior that does not physically harm other people or their property or directly and immediately endangers same, that does not disturb the peace or create a public nuisance, and that is done in private, especially on private property, is the inalienable right of all adults. In a truly free and liberty-loving society, ruled by a secular government, no laws should be passed to prohibit such behavior. Any laws now existing that are contrary to the above definition of inalienable rights are violations of the rights of adults and should be made null and void." D. M. Mitchell (from The Myth of Inalienable Rights, at: http://dowehaverights.blogspot.com/)

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Gun Control

The purpose of the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was in part for self protection but it was also to protect the citizens against its own government.

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.-Thomas Jefferson

I ask, Who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers.- George Mason

Forty years ago, when the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British Parliament was advised…to disarm the people; that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them; but that they should not do it openly, but weaken them, and let them sink gradually, by totally disusing and neglecting the militia… . - George Mason

I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.- James Madison

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 inevitably ruined. - 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… . - Noah Webster

And, of course, Ben Franklin famously said this: Those who would give up essential Liberty to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

George Washington had this to say about governments in general: Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.

The point George Washington was making was that all laws are backed up by the use of force and deadly force if the govenment agents carrying out those laws feel deadly force is necessary. There are many laws on the books that are violative of the rights of the people. If you break one and resist arrest you could be shot and killed.

Then there is the issue of a government take-over. Most people believe it can't happen here, in America. They may be right. However, history has shown that all republics become empires and despotic. We are all humans and we are all liable to human desires. Can you not forsee a scenario when America is in deep trouble and a person much like Julius Caesar rises up and takes us from republic to empire?

But what did modern dictators have to say about guns in the hands of the people?

From Fidel Castro's public address of January 9, 1959: I appeal to the public to disarm the ambitious. Why are clandestine arms being stored at this very minute? Why are arms being hidden at distinct points of the capital? Why are arms being smuggled at this moment? I tell you that there are members of certain revolutionary organizations who are smuggling and storing arms. All the arms that were found by the rebel army are stored and locked in barracks, where they belong. What are these arms for? Against whom are they going to be used?

It's good to be a Communist dictator, disarm the people and rule how you want.

How about what the mass murderer Mao Zedong had to say: Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun. And the people of China have to look at the barrels of the guns of the government if they protest that government, because they have do not have a right to bear arms.

Then there's this from Vladimir Lenin: One man with a gun can control 100 without one.  I'm sure, that V. Lenin meant for the one man to be working for the government and the 100, to be the people who the government wants to control.

Hitler had this to say about arms in the hands of the people: History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subjected peoples to carry arms have prepared their own fall. Adolf Hitler, Edict of 18 March 1939

But what have a few famous Americans said about gun control?

Our task of creating a Socialist America can only succeed when those who would resist us have been totally disarmed. Sarah Brady, Chairman, Handgun Control Inc.Source: The National Educator, January 1994, Pg.3 (Ms. Brady's desire, then, is to conquer the free people of America. See the Hitler quote above.)

And we should -- then every community in the country could then start doing major weapon sweeps and then destroying the weapons, not selling them. Bill Clinton, President, sworn defender of the U.S. Constitution

Waiting periods are only a step. Registration is only a step. The prohibition of private firearms is the goal. Former Attorney General Janet Reno, also sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution.

 What good does it do to ban some guns. All guns should be banned.  Former Senator Howard Metzanbaum (D-OH), also sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution.

Maybe a totalitarian take-over of our government isn't possible, but that would be because millions of people own firearms and, so far, have the right to own them. There are those among us-- a former President, U.S. Attorney General, and U.S. Senator--who would gladly disarm the Ameriocan people. If that ever happens then our nation is doomed to become a socialist dictatorship because there would be no brakes on what power-hungry people could do. And the power-hungry are always with us. But, as it stands now, they have to sneak around and try to wear away our rights and liberties a little at a time.

It's rather like putting a frog in a pan of cold water and heating the pan slowly. By the time the frog realizes something's wrong, it's too late.

At base, the right of the people to bear arms is about the right of the people to protect themselves from an out of control government, however unlikely that may seem, and to overthrow that government when that government becomes abusive of the rights of the people.

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government....  Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. The Declaration of Independence.

Finally, I heard former U.S. Representative, Gabrielle Giffords, speak before a Senate hearing on gun control. Something she said struck a note. "Too many children are dying... ." She was referring to children killed by guns in the U.S. And I agree with her, althought the statistics show that the majority of the deaths occur among black children which might be a condition of socio-economic problems rather than of mere legal gun ownership.

But this new outcry for gun control came after the horrible murder of twenty childern and six adults at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conneticutt, a gun-free zone with no armed guards or armed teachers there to protect them. I wonder how Ms. Giffords feels about the approximately 178 children murdered in U.S. drone strikes. If she were still in Congress would she be for these drone strikes or vehemently against them? Would the possible killing of certain Taliban and Al Qaeda members take precedent over the lives of innocent children? Or, because they're just dirty little Pakis or Yemenis it really doesn't matter? I would like to think that Ms. Giffords' care and compassion would include those children in foreign countries murdered in our attempts to kill the bad guys and that she would want to stop that carnage, too.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Ms. Universe and Marijuana

I saw Olivia Culpo on Fox and Friends this morning. She's the new Ms. Universe. (I wonder how other sentient beings in the universe feel about that title.)

The thing I want to comment on is that she holds a position against legalized marijuana. She claims that there were serious consequences to its use.

Really? Are they as serious as the consequences to the use of alcohol? Alcohol, a true narcotic drug, is the number one violence-causing drug in America, probably the world, merely from it's use. Alcohol is the third leading cause of premature death in the world according to this article. Of course, smoking is worse, but I'm pretty sure Ms. Culpo is against smoking, too, but would she want Congress to pass laws making it illegal like marijuana?

Can a fifteen-year-old walk into a liquor store or grocery store and by alcohol? Of course not. Yet that same fifteen-year-old can, if he or she wants to, find someone to sell them marijuana. Like Pauline Sabine said when she testified before Congress about the harmful effects of alcohol prohibition:

"In pre-prohibition days, mothers had little fear in regard to the saloon as far as their children were concerned. A saloon-keeper's license was revoked if he were caught selling liquor to minors. Today in any speakeasy in the United States you can find boys and girls in their teens drinking liquor, and this situation has become so acute that the mothers of the country feel something must be done to protect their children."

If marijuana, and other presently illegal drugs, were sold legally in drug/liquor stores to adults upon proof of age, it would be harder for teenagers to get access to those drugs. As to adults, we don't jail them for drinking or smoking, even though alcohol and tobacco are dangerous and addictive substances. It's the right of an adult to decide if he or she wants to use one or both of those substances. It should be the same for the presently illegal drugs.

That is, it would be if we actually believed in the myth of inalienable rights, which obviously, we don't. The principle of inalienable rights states that some things cannot be voted on, that a majority has no legitimate power to negate a person's actions in certain situations. Under the principle of real and true inalienable rights then, an adult whose behavior does not violate the rights of others and does not threaten or endanger the rights of other, has an inalienable right to that behavior even if you or everyone else in the country believes that the behavior in question is immoral.

Immorality is a religious concept and religion should not control our laws. By advocating the illegality of marijuana, Ms. Culpo, you are advocating the imposition of religion into our secular laws. You are following in the footsteps of the relgious groups who lobbied Congress to make certain drugs illegal because they were immoral. That led to the Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914, which, to me, was a violation of the First Amendment's "establishment of religion" clause of the United States Constitution. The diminishment of inalienable rights has only gotten worse since then.

By all objective evidence, from the prohibition of alcohol to the prohibition of other drugs today, making those drugs illegal only creates more real crime and violence and allows them to be more available to minors.  I strongly suggest, Ms. Culpo, that you study this issue more and, hopefully, come down on the side of inalienable rights, the right of all consenting adults to use the property of their bodies and minds as they wish, just so long as they do not violate the rights of others in so doing. The legalization of marijuana would be a good first step.