Gun Issues page 26

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Originally posted by donseptico:

edit: and obviously, rights granted by such lawful process can be amended or even removed entirely at a later date by similar lawful process. As true for the 1689 document paraphrased above as the American constitution (including the bill of rights – over which, I note with interest, there was serious debate as to the validity and necessity of adding within the constitution).

I find that kind of unusual that a bill of rights can be written out of law so easily. It more or less makes the bill of rights null and no more than a privilege granted by the government. In your edit you say that it can be easily amended by your government as long as they follow a procedure. I would love to hear more about this. Do the people have anything to say about this?

There was a lot of debate on our Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The anti-federalists wanted the Constitution (which had already been written and signed by the convention members) to be rewritten, while the federalists didn’t want to have to have another convention, which was taxing on the members present at the first one. The point of contention was that nowhere in the Constitution was it guaranteeing the rights of the people. The writers maintained it wasn’t needed as the government would see to it the people were free and their freedoms would not be eliminated with the document. The anti-federalists didn’t feel as strongly and it was finally settled that if the Constitution was approved by the states another convention would be held to add the Bill of Rights as amendments instead of rewriting the whole Constitution.

As we have used this document as the rule of law for our country for about 250 years, it has served us well. If the Bill of Rights were not added we would have lost all of our rights over the years. This would be the biggest difference between your country and ours as rights go. England and it’s monarchy are the reason America exists. Our dissatisfaction with the laws and freedoms of England is why we chose a Representative Republic for a government.

 
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Originally posted by jhco50:

I find that kind of unusual that a bill of rights can be written out of law so easily. It more or less makes the bill of rights null and no more than a privilege granted by the government. In your edit you say that it can be easily amended by your government as long as they follow a procedure. I would love to hear more about this.

What makes you say it’s so easy? I didn’t see anything in his post saying it was necessarily easy (Which is also a little subjective), just that it could be done without having to worm your way around legal loopholes.

As we have used this document as the rule of law for our country for about 250 years, it has served us well.

Well there was that rought patch when we outlawed booze, but otherwise, yes, dead documents do tend to keep a country in a fixed point.

If the Bill of Rights were not added we would have lost all of our rights over the years.

And you know this as fact?

This would be the biggest difference between your country and ours as rights go.

So you’re basically saying that the UK has lost a lot of its rights over time… Okay, could either you or Don actually say what was lost for the sake of me and a few other users here who aren’t well versed in British government and history?

England and it’s monarchy are the reason America exists. Our dissatisfaction with the laws and freedoms of England is why we chose a Representative Republic for a government.

And John Locke, along with a few other government philosophers.

 
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Well, from what I gather from Don, they don’t have to go through any kind of conventions, only what the laws they have for changing any part of their documents. I’m waiting for him to give us more specifics. We have our conventions for a very important reason as you well know.

Yes, they really screwed up making prohibition an amendment instead of a law. It backed up hard on our government. Yes, I know loss of freedoms as fact. If we didn’t have the Bill of rights we would have given everything up by now. You know how our politicians work. How many laws have politicians made that were made null by the supreme court? It is not just the federal government that tends to overstretch either. Many states have had the same tendencies. You can go back to the civil rights era for blacks. Not all states were down on black rights, only some of the southern states. They had overstretched the powers they had in order to hold back a segment of people.

Yes, England has lost a lot of their freedoms and rights. Don even stated as much in comparison to Englands Bill of Rights I had posted. Here is his reply.

English Bill of Rights

Yes,
Yes,
Yes,
No – “That the raising or keeping a standing army within the kingdom in time of peace, unless it be with consent of Parliament, is against law” – an army may stand in peacetime if it is the will of parliament.
No – “That the subjects which are Protestants may have arms for their defence suitable to their conditions and as allowed by law” – (subsequently expanded to include other religions!) but people may own arms for their defence subject to any restrictions laid down in law by parliament.
Yes
No – “That the freedom of speech and debates or proceedings in Parliament ought not to be impeached or questioned in any court or place out of Parliament” – the only people with true freedom of speech ar members of parliament WHEN they are in parliament.
Yes (kinda)
Yes (kinda)

Before getting too deep into England’s freedoms and rights though, I would like to hear more from Don.

On your last reply, could you be more specific in what you were meaning?

 
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Originally posted by jhco50:

Yes, I know loss of freedoms as fact. If we didn’t have the Bill of rights we would have given everything up by now. You know how our politicians work.

Oh right, I forgot that you assume you’re correct because reasons.

How many laws have politicians made that were made null by the supreme court?

You mean deemed unconstitutional? Yeah, I don’t keep track of that, if you find someone who does, though, I’d be happy to hear it.

Yes, England has lost a lot of their freedoms and rights. Don even stated as much in comparison to Englands Bill of Rights I had posted. Here is his reply.

Okay, this kinda goes back to how little I know about England’s government, but from what he said, it doesn’t look like they’ve lost a significant number of rights, as they never had it to begin with.

 
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I find that kind of unusual that a bill of rights can be written out of law so easily. It more or less makes the bill of rights null and no more than a privilege granted by the government. In your edit you say that it can be easily amended by your government as long as they follow a procedure. I would love to hear more about this. Do the people have anything to say about this?

Hmm, no takers on that, so I will try to enlighten you as far as I can.

I’ll start with a bit of background. After the execution of Charles I in 1649, the monarchy ceased to exist, and England effectively became a republic. When Oliver Cromwell died, he was succeeded by his son Richard, who was found wanting and dismissed after just a few months. That left a power vacuum and the inevitable power struggle. The restoration of the monachy was something of a compromise solution, but nonetheless Charles II took the throne with his father’s powers still largely intact. One important difference was that Parliament granted Charles enough money to live in considerable splendour, but not enough to build an army and wage a war. Foreign policy very definitely became Parliament’s prerogative. There were clashes, but Charles was no slouch as a politician himself, and a reformer at heart, so always managed to avoid a head-on collision with Parliament.

After his death he was succeeded by his younger brother James II. James’ big problems were that he was both a believer in absolute monarchy and a Catholic at a time when Catholicism was barely tolerated. After a brief and deeply unpopular reign, Parliament invited his daughter Mary and her husband and cousin William of Orange (a Dutchman) to invade England, drive James out and become joint (protestant) monarchs. James saw the writing on the wall and promptly fled the country.

Before they were crowned, the Bill of Rights was drawn up. It was to a large extent a curtailmemt of royal powers and a proclamation of the rights of Parliament. The bit about protestants bearing arms was just restoring a right which had been repealed by James II (the catholic one), and is probably the least important thing in there. It is one of the documents which form the British Constitution, which is not a single document but an amalgam of various Acts of Parliament coupled with legal precedents. As such it can be altered using due Parliamentary procedure, and has been many times since 1689. The elected Parliament is the supreme authority.

The recently created Supreme Court saw the final separation of the judiciary from government – until that time the supreme court of appeal was the House of Lords. But the legislature and executive remain intertwined. The largest grouping in Parliament after an election becomes the legislature, and the executive branches (the ministries) are run by candidates from that grouping.

I don’t know if that sheds any light or if you are more confused than ever. Shout or start a new thread if you want any more, as this is getting way off the subject of guns and doesn’t really belong here.

 
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I don’t think anyone really cares if this goes off subject. Especially since this is quite interesting. In school we were taught a few basics about the English, but not enough to make it understandable. Teachers pretty much just skimmed the subject, kind of like they do our history anymore. :)

I was always taught England has a history of keeping the common weapons out of the hands of the people. Swords, bows, etc. in the old days and more powerful weapons in more modern times. This is why they wanted the US to send personal weapons and equipment to them during WW2. I was under the impression that after the war, the government again destroyed many of the firearms in the hands of the people, including the ones sent to them by our country. I have heard of a small amount of the equipment being returned to the rightful owners, but very little of it.

When your country started passing the gun laws I was a bit surprised that the people even had guns. I was active in the fighting of legislation in this country at the time and was amazed as I watched the people give up there firearms, little by little. This is exactly what our country has tried to do for decades.

Your government is now considered a republic? We have always considered it as socialist light, with government owning most of the important industries. I feel comfortable with your input here so I will look at your government a bit differently. You might answer this for me. I watched a documentary on PBS one evening that made reference to the leaders of several countries being of the same bloodline. Germany, Austria, etc.

The operation of your Parliament and the monarchy is a bit confusing. What would you compare the parliament to, our congress? Could you post a copy of your bill of rights at present?

 
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jhco, Our congressional system was actually based on England’s parliament. The have a House of Commons and a House of Lords, analogous to the House of Representatives and Senate, respectively. I don’t believe they have a formal constitution or bill of rights.

 
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Originally posted by JohnRulz:

jhco, Our congressional system was actually based on England’s parliament. The have a House of Commons and a House of Lords, analogous to the House of Representatives and Senate, respectively. I don’t believe they have a formal constitution or bill of rights.

Makes sense, thanks for the information.

 
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Alright, you asked for it.

I was always taught England has a history of keeping the common weapons out of the hands of the people

Au contraire, in medieval times it was enshrined in law that every yeoman (landowner) was required to own a bow and attend archery practice. This was partly to ensure that there were always enough longbowmen available in times of war. Longbows were made from yew trees, which were frequently grown in churchyards where they could be protected from grazing cattle, which seemed to like chewing on them despite the leaves and cones being lethally poisonous. To this day, most churchyards have yew trees in them.

Men, and sometimes women too, were routinely armed until quite recent times. After the renaissance began to be felt here during Tudor times, duels became fashionable and were frequently fought, the last fatality being in 1845 – by which time they were already illegal. Famous duelists include William Pitt the Younger, George Canning and the Duke of Wellington, all of whom went on to become Prime Minister.

At the start of WWII the Local Defence Volunteers, later the Home Guard, was formed. It consisted mainly of those too old for service or medically unfit. Many were veterans of WWI. They had no weapons, and began training with broomsticks, pitchforks or anything else vaguely suitable. Orders were placed with the US and Canada for Lee Enfield rifles, an updated version of the main infantry weapon of WWI. I can well believe that some US citizens would have been keen to help by providing personal weapons, but having a wide assortment of guns requiring an equally wide assortment of ammunition and a vast array of spare parts would have provided no more than an extremely short term solution to our problem, so I doubt if that is much more than an urban myth. Certainly a lot of American equipment was left behind after the war and “unofficially claimed” by the locals, and that may have some bearing on your story.

The blanket ban on hand guns came in 1997 after the Dunblane massacre in Scotland, which was very similar to your recent school massacre. Even before that, it was difficult to get a license for a hand gun. Shotgun licenses are much easier to obtain – country folk use them all the time for pest control. If you have nowhere safe to keep it, it can be left at the local police station until you need it.

We were a republic from 1649 until 1660, when the puritan Oliver Cromwell, a farmer from Norfolk, became Lord Protector. With the restoration of King Charles II, we reverted to being a monarchy, and Parliament has nibbled away at royal powers ever since. Our present queen has very few powers left. For instance, no Act of Parliament passes into law until she has signed it, but if she refused for any reason, Parliament would simply circumvent her. So no, we are definitely not a republic now, we are a constitutional monarchy. The monarch is the Head of State, but all the power lies within Parliament.

I’m not sure where socialism fits into all this. Yeah, we’ve had socialist governments, and they have nationalised a few industries, such as the railways, which were no longer commercially viable. But what has that to do with the constitution or guns?

Royal families across Europe all tended to be closely related. They were expected to marry those of equal rank, and the pool of potential partners was very small. Even in 1936, King Edward VIII was forced to abdicate when he announce his intention to marry the American divorcee Wallis Simpson. It seems like a storm on a teacup now, but then it caused a scandal which threatened to bring down the government. Things are a bit more relaxed now, and the next two queens in line are both commoners. It does no harm to widen the gene pool a bit.

Bill of Rights here

 
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Nice post. I never new all of this. While I like to delve into our history and Constitution, I never really paid much attention to England. I have know a lot of people from England, but never asked a lot of questions. The secretary at the lawyers office down the street is English and told me they had a North and a South UK. She said they were always fighting (not warlike) with each other.

What is your opinion on the blanket ban on handguns? Do you think it has made any difference in violent crime in your country? When our straight shaving forum was going strong, we would get a lot of foreign posters. We had chats every Monday (still do) and they would tell us not to give up our rights like they did. Then I found those videos and had to post them. The Dunblane massacre was well covered in our media at the time.

I would say most Americans have always considered England a socialist government because of the nationalization of so many industries. I compare the type of government with the freedoms available for the people. In my view, any government that takes over so much of the country is reaching for power. This is what our government under our current president is doing. Not all, but many of the presidents, including FDR, have been taking more and more power from the states, who are supposed to have more power than Washington. Our current administration has really sped up the power grab. This is why I don’t like him. Anyone who has studied our Constitution, even lightly, knows how the powers were proportioned in our Constitution.

I think our biggest scandal that I am familiar with was during the Nixon administration when they had burglarized the Democratic offices. If Nixon hadn’t resigned he would have been impeached. The second biggest scandal was Clinton. He actually was impeached, but never tried by the senate. In our form of government, the house determines impeachment and the senate does the removal from office proceedings. There were other scandals, but I’m not very familiar with them.

 
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What anyone thinks is irrelevant, when the facts are right there for the taking.

FACTS
MAP

 
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There is a certain north/south divide. The north was the home of heavy industry, which gave the robber-barons more oportunities to exploit people on a grand scale. Socialism flourished there, and it’s still the Labour Party’s heartland. But any fighting is political rather than physical, apart from football supporters of course.

Nationalisation is not synonymous with socialism. When Rolls Royce fell on hard times it was nationalised by a Conservative government. After a lot of restructuring it was re-privatised, and is now a huge success story, with over 60 billion pounds worth of orders on the books for aero engines alone. There are parallels with GM there. Nationalisation does have its place in the great scheme of things.

Now, back to guns. I wasn’t impressed by the blanket ban, because it was done with little thought and for all the wrong reasons. It was all about politicians showboating, trying to prove that they really cared. Firearms have never been a big issue here during my lifetime, and I doubt that banning handguns has made much difference to us. It’s just as easy to kill someone with a broken bottle, and much more personal too. The ban allowed more difficult problems like tracking and controlling handguns and their users to be brushed under the carpet, because officially the problem no longer existed. In reality, of course, it still does.

But that’s not to say that I don’t see the necessity of introducing widespread controls in America, where gun ownership in particular and violence in general are massive problems. The numbers don’t lie. America is one of the most violent places on earth outside of war zones. It’s not the wild west any more, you’re all grown up now and it’s about time you started acting like you are. I think the rest of us have proved that you don’t need to be armed to the teeth in order to feel safe while walking to the shops. You can take the kids to the park without worrying about hostile natives hiding in the bushes. Owning a gun is just too easy. It is a right when it should be a privilege, and that needs to be dealt with. The American Constitution is a big part of this problem, because it’s just too unbending. The part which gives everyone the right to carry a gun clearly isn’t working, but changing it requires a Herculean effort. But until someone does find a way, America is doomed to experience mass shootings on a regular basis.

 
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Originally posted by softest_voice:

What anyone thinks is irrelevant, when the facts are right there for the taking.

FACTS
MAP

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/oct/11/bbc-liberal-bias-inquiry

 
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From the link


Part of the review will cover the topics of Europe, immigration and religion. But the research evidence that we have does not suggest a liberal bias. On the contrary, it suggests a routine tendency for BBC news programmes to give more time and context to, and less interrogation of, establishment and elitist views.

So it actually says the exact contrary to the accusation in the headline – they’re more rightwing than they are leftwing. Even if it didn’t though, what does the BBC have to do with his point? Softest’s links are all from the guardian.

 
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“There have been virtually no rigorous studies that concluded that the BBC was either “objective” or biased to the left. Almost every single study undertaken since the earliest, by the Glasgow University Media Group in the 1970s and 1980s, concludes that elite perspectives dominate the news."

from your source. So the bbc is not biased to the left what’s your point? Are you just not reading your links or are you suggesting we should take what the BBC is saying and look at it from a more to the left point(that means that the truth is more liberal than what the bbc reports)?

 
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Originally posted by beauval:

There is a certain north/south divide. The north was the home of heavy industry, which gave the robber-barons more oportunities to exploit people on a grand scale. Socialism flourished there, and it’s still the Labour Party’s heartland. But any fighting is political rather than physical, apart from football supporters of course.

Nationalisation is not synonymous with socialism. When Rolls Royce fell on hard times it was nationalised by a Conservative government. After a lot of restructuring it was re-privatised, and is now a huge success story, with over 60 billion pounds worth of orders on the books for aero engines alone. There are parallels with GM there. Nationalisation does have its place in the great scheme of things.

Now, back to guns. I wasn’t impressed by the blanket ban, because it was done with little thought and for all the wrong reasons. It was all about politicians showboating, trying to prove that they really cared. Firearms have never been a big issue here during my lifetime, and I doubt that banning handguns has made much difference to us. It’s just as easy to kill someone with a broken bottle, and much more personal too. The ban allowed more difficult problems like tracking and controlling handguns and their users to be brushed under the carpet, because officially the problem no longer existed. In reality, of course, it still does.

But that’s not to say that I don’t see the necessity of introducing widespread controls in America, where gun ownership in particular and violence in general are massive problems. The numbers don’t lie. America is one of the most violent places on earth outside of war zones. It’s not the wild west any more, you’re all grown up now and it’s about time you started acting like you are. I think the rest of us have proved that you don’t need to be armed to the teeth in order to feel safe while walking to the shops. You can take the kids to the park without worrying about hostile natives hiding in the bushes. Owning a gun is just too easy. It is a right when it should be a privilege, and that needs to be dealt with. The American Constitution is a big part of this problem, because it’s just too unbending. The part which gives everyone the right to carry a gun clearly isn’t working, but changing it requires a Herculean effort. But until someone does find a way, America is doomed to experience mass shootings on a regular basis.

I appreciate you honesty and informative posts. You are a breath of fresh air on this forum.

Because all of our rights as American citizens are centered around our Bill of Rights and the fact that they are indelible, there is very little chance that the loss of any of those ten amendments will be taken without a serious fight. I feel if we lose one, any one of them, the rest will follow shortly. Our government has gotten to a point where the American people don’t trust them. The Congresses popularity is basically zero and the president’s is way low. I was really surprised that he managed a second term. I guess the liberal side of our politics wanted another four years of what we have endured in the last four.

I will be honest with you now. We firearms owners are not going to go down without a major fight and I would not be surprised if it didn’t turn to violence. I don’t really relish the idea, but it is a very real possibility. One of the differences between the UK and America is the independent attitude held. It is how our country started and it is why we grew so powerful so fast. Our Constitution was made strong because of our founding fathers distrust of government. That is why we chose a Representative Republic instead of the other choices we had. Next to China, we have the largest population of any country and of course we are going to have some problems others don’t. If I am wrong and we lose any of our rights under the Constitution, we will slip into a tyrrany and the great experiment that is America will be over.

 
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Originally posted by jhco50:

Because all of our rights as American citizens are centered around our Bill of Rights and the fact that they are indelible, there is very little chance that the loss of any of those ten amendments will be taken without a serious fight.

Doesn’t Article V of the Constitution make this “fact” false?

 
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There have been several amendments to the US constitution so changes can be made and they don’t cause the instant downfall of the US. By the way India has 4 times more people in it then America.

 
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Originally posted by jhco50:
Our government has gotten to a point where the American people don’t trust them.

If this is the case, why did Obama get a second term?

 
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Originally posted by Twilight_Ninja:
Originally posted by jhco50:
Our government has gotten to a point where the American people don’t trust them.

If this is the case, why did Obama get a second term?

Come on! Liberal socialists are not true Americans.

You really should know better.

 
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Originally posted by Twilight_Ninja:
Originally posted by jhco50:
Our government has gotten to a point where the American people don’t trust them.

If this is the case, why did Obama get a second term?

Because he’s actually the anti-Christ and everyone who voted for him was actually not part of the American populous, who also happen to be mainly of conservatives and people who don’t trust government.

 
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Grrr… silly real life things getting in the way of online time.

Thanks for stepping up to the plate Beauval.

As we’re being honest, do you not see that it’s comments like…

“I will be honest with you now. We firearms owners are not going to go down without a major fight and I would not be surprised if it didn’t turn to violence. I don’t really relish the idea, but it is a very real possibility.”

… that make people have little or no sympathy for the gun lobby?

True you don’t live in a ‘democracy’ but yours is, theoretically, a democratic country… IF the majority speaks and your laws are changed in a way you (collectively) don’t like then, well, tough.

By all means IF the government suggestions scrapping the second, for example, fight it (politically) to the limits but if it comes to violence then you (collectively again) gain nothing but engender support for the anti-gun lobby.

If a ban is introduced, you can always lobby for it to be overturned, etc…

Basically I believe the ‘pro gun’ lobbyists are best served by dialling back the rhetoric, strongly supporting a peaceful ‘anti-change’ campaign and disavowing themselves (and responsible gun owners) from the ‘lunatic fringe’ (I’m sure you know the sort… the ’out of my cold, dead hands brigade).

NB – of course there’s rhetoric, etc from the other side too… but I’ve never heard an ‘anti-gunner’ talk about making the streets run red if a ban is not bought in (slight exaggeration, but I trust you get the point I’m trying to make).

 
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Originally posted by tenco1:

Because he’s actually the anti-Christ and everyone who voted for him was actually not part of the American populous, who also happen to be mainly of conservatives and people who don’t trust government the Illuminati.

Ah, yes, I’d heard that whole anti-Christ thing through an email once. Makes sense. Thanks for clearing that up.

 
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there is very little chance that the loss of any of those ten amendments will be taken without a serious fight.

Why? What’s so difficult about accepting that what worked in the eighteenth century doesn’t necessarily work in the twenty-first? You’re not pioneers any more, you’re not a newly independent country trying to protect that independence. Times have changed, and so has America. The law needs to change to reflect that.

I feel if we lose one, any one of them, the rest will follow shortly.

Again why? If it takes years of work and a monumental effort to change one clause in the Bill of Rights, how can it possibly follow that the rest will fall like dominoes? Why would changing the law on gun ownership mean the imminent loss of free speech or the threat of being executed without trial? (yes, I have read the damned thing). This is tin foil hat territory again. It just doesn’t make any sense.

Our government has gotten to a point where the American people don’t trust them. The Congresses popularity is basically zero and the president’s is way low.

Welcome to the club. Did you really think that other countries’ governments are universally popular. A government can’t do anything without upsetting somebody, and the numbers soon begin to mount up. Gordon Brown, our last Prime Minister, was so universally despised that the people were prepared to take any option to get rid of him, even if it meant putting into power a coalition of the discredited Conservatives and the ridiculous Lib-Dems. They are pretty unpopular at the moment. Government and unpopularity go hand in hand.

If I am wrong and we lose any of our rights under the Constitution, we will slip into a tyrrany and the great experiment that is America will be over.

Now you’re really getting paranoid. The gun issue is proving how extremely hard it is to change the Constitution. In a way that is good for the rest of us. Whatever crappy decisions our governments make, whatever slippery slopes they get on to with regard to loss of freedoms, the American Constitution will always be there, steadfastly unchanging, providing a last bastion of democracy for us to fall back on to. It’s good for us but bad for you, because it is turning America into a lethargic leviathan becoming marooned in the past, finding it increasingly difficult to keep up with an ever changing world.

 
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Originally posted by beauval:

there is very little chance that the loss of any of those ten amendments will be taken without a serious fight.

Why? What’s so difficult about accepting that what worked in the eighteenth century doesn’t necessarily work in the twenty-first? You’re not pioneers any more, you’re not a newly independent country trying to protect that independence. Times have changed, and so has America. The law needs to change to reflect that.

I feel if we lose one, any one of them, the rest will follow shortly.

Again why? If it takes years of work and a monumental effort to change one clause in the Bill of Rights, how can it possibly follow that the rest will fall like dominoes? Why would changing the law on gun ownership mean the imminent loss of free speech or the threat of being executed without trial? (yes, I have read the damned thing). This is tin foil hat territory again. It just doesn’t make any sense.

Our government has gotten to a point where the American people don’t trust them. The Congresses popularity is basically zero and the president’s is way low.

Welcome to the club. Did you really think that other countries’ governments are universally popular. A government can’t do anything without upsetting somebody, and the numbers soon begin to mount up. Gordon Brown, our last Prime Minister, was so universally despised that the people were prepared to take any option to get rid of him, even if it meant putting into power a coalition of the discredited Conservatives and the ridiculous Lib-Dems. They are pretty unpopular at the moment. Government and unpopularity go hand in hand.

If I am wrong and we lose any of our rights under the Constitution, we will slip into a tyrrany and the great experiment that is America will be over.

Now you’re really getting paranoid. The gun issue is proving how extremely hard it is to change the Constitution. In a way that is good for the rest of us. Whatever crappy decisions our governments make, whatever slippery slopes they get on to with regard to loss of freedoms, the American Constitution will always be there, steadfastly unchanging, providing a last bastion of democracy for us to fall back on to. It’s good for us but bad for you, because it is turning America into a lethargic leviathan becoming marooned in the past, finding it increasingly difficult to keep up with an ever changing world.

Because our government is no longer trustworthy. They are supposed to represent the people and they don’t. They represent themselves. This is exactly why we split with England, we had no redress of our grievances. We have the same situation now. All our politicians are worried about is getting reelected and grabbing as much wealth and power they can. Why do you thing they have such a low popularity rating?

The bill of rights is off limits to our politicians, but they would like nothing else than to either do away with them or control them any way they desire. If they could get their fingers into our bill of rights they would be gone in a flash. If any of our bill of rights becomes vulnerable, they all become vulnerable. This is easy to understand when you realize the many times politicians have tried to usurp one of them and get their hands slapped by the SC. A few years ago they passed a bill to control the information the public could get about elections. It basically protected the incumbents and the amount of money people could give to the candidate of their choice. It was challenged and the SC made the whole legislation null and void. They have tried to go arouond the SC decision for a couple of years now and haven’t succeeded.

I never really despised our government until after President Reagan was gone. I haven’t been happy since as they all have a lot of baggage to sling at us. I remember hearing about Mr Brown. I was hoping our people would see Obama’s agenda, but they evidently didn’t and we go on with the same ‘o’ same ‘o’ non-recovery. I guess we get what we ask for.

I think you are misjudging America’s ability to be a world leader, which we still are for the moment. You must admit it is America that all other countries depend on for military and economic help. How many billions and billions of taxpayer dollars do we send to almost every country. Now we actually borrow it to send to them. How much food do we send to 3rd world countries, not to mention medical help. Do you really think we are backwards when we do these things? If the world is changing for the better, why are all of these countries on the brink of bankruptcy? This includes us of course. The world is in a mess and I don’t consider this as changing for the good, I see it as deterioration of our civilization. I’m sure we will someday come out of this, but not until our leaders start using their heads for something besides a hat rack. I don’t see America recovering as long as Obama is in the White House.