Thursday, June 6, 2013

Second Amendment Logic - If A = B and B = C, then C = A...

Logic.  It’s a course you can take in college.  There are a lot of sophisticated rules to make things work out to a realistic conclusion.  I wonder, can we apply these principles to the Second Amendment (2A)?  Logic would say that, if A = B, and B = C, then it is logical that C = A.  Where the rub comes in, not all can agree on the various premises that come in to play.

However, I have never drawn back from traveling in places where angels fear to tread; therefore I will give this a “shot.”  Yes, the pun was intended.

Assuming the Founders meant what they wrote in the 2A, then the operative portion (Heller v. Washington D.C.) is, “…the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”  The courts have stated repeatedly that the first place to look to understand the meaning of any statute is the statute itself.  Illinois v Holmes, states, “The best evidence of legislative intent is the language used in the statute itself, which must be given its plain and ordinary meaning.”  We will designate the 2A as, “A” which is the “supreme law of the land.”

In McDonald v Chicago, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) stated that the 2A applies/incorporates against and/or to the states.  Therefore 2A applies to the states becomes “B.”  Therefore “B” is now the “supreme law of the land” for Illinois.

Now, assuming that Pike County is a subdivision of the state of Illinois; and further that the “supreme law of the land” is operative here we can conclude that the operative phrase of the 2A, “…the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” applies in Pike County, designated as “C.” 

Now let’s check our statement: 
  • 2A is the supreme law in the US, “A,” is equal to, “B” which states that 2A is the supreme law of Illinois, since Pike County is a division in Illinois the 2A must be the supreme law of Pike County, “C.” Therefore Supreme law of Pike County "C," is equal to, "A" the supreme law of the US.

The question then becomes; “If the 2A is already the law of Pike County then why would making it an official part of the code create any change in liability to the County?”  

Now let’s assess our Chicago Attorney Victor’s statement.  Mr. Victor spoke to the Pike County Board at the last meeting, May 30th, 2013.  He stated that passing an ordinance which duplicated the operative portion of the 2A would be unconstitutional.  The part he left out was he gave no supporting documentation to show how incorporating the operative portion of the 2A could conflict with any constitution.  The ordinance would create no new law, it would not supersede any law but simply copy it to the code of Pike County.

He said it might create confusion but didn’t explain how.  He could give no scenario that would create liability but simply stated, "It will expose the county to enormous legal liability, enormous financial liability.”  He further stated that the County cannot presume to interpret the law or constitution.  I can see no attempt to interpret the constitution in this most simple of ordinances.

Perhaps he could elaborate further.  Perhaps another attorney would care to comment.  Would we be having this discussion if the operative portion of the ordinance stated, "Therefore be it enacted that the right of the people to free expression shall not be infringed?"

We can even take this further by interjecting Article VI of the US Constitution, which contains the supremacy clause.
  • "This Constitution ...  shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding."
Article VI adds a whole new potential to our equation.  "Apparently all the laws of the state of Illinois must comply with our US Constitution.  Can any of these lawyers tell me in simple terms how the government can comply with 2A and require the People to get permits (permission slips) to exercise of fundamental right to keep and bear arms.  I would like see our Chicago Machine rulers try that logic out and make it work and still pass logic 101.

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