Mission statement:

Armed and Safe is a gun rights advocacy blog, with the mission of debunking the "logic" of the enemies of the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

I can be reached at 45superman@gmail.com.You can follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/45superman.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Brady Bunch battle cry: 'Run away! Run away!'*

David Hardy has already discussed this (and anyone who reads my stuff without reading his has, to my way of thinking, some odd priorities), but he's not nearly as obnoxiously caustic as I am (I'll never claim to be the gentleman that Mr. Hardy is), so I figure I have something to add.

So, from what do the Bradys "bravely run away"? From their old position, that the Second Amendment does not protect an individual right (from the Brady Bunch's 2003 amicus brief at the district court--pdf file), to their new one, that of course the right it protects is individual, but that this right exists only in the context of service in a government sanctioned militia.

Here's an excerpt from the 2003 amicus brief:

By this action, Plaintiffs seek to contest long-settle precedent that construes the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution as protecting only the ability of the States to maintain a "well-regulated Militia." (p. 2), "The vast majority of courts have interpeted Miller as a rejection of any individual right to bear arms under the U.S. Constitution," (p. 7) and "The Framers of the Constitution did not intend to create an individual right to bear arms." (p. 12)/ They cited pure collective rights cases (pp. 8-10).
I can't hear that argument without thinking of this. The Bradys were so married to that argument that, as recently as May of this year, their legal director (Dennis Henigan) tried to pretend that the words "of the People" were not in the Second Amendment.

That video clip, with accompanying transcript, was until recently available on the Brady Bunch website, but in the finest Brady Bunch tradition of simply ignoring parts of history with which they are uncomfortable, they removed any evidence of having said that (by pulling it from their website, and even pulling the video clip from YouTube)--presumably because of the heat they took when this was pointed out. Luckily, I kept my own copy. Not to boast, by the way, but I'm pretty sure I was one of the first to point out Henigan's "edited" Second Amendment on the blogosphere. My little claim to "fame" (I didn't spot it first--a gentleman on the Illinois Carry forum pointed this out way back in May, and I didn't think to do anything with it until late October). Here, by the way, is a clip that contains not only Henigan's version of the Second Amendment, but some good commentary about his little omission (the folks who made and posted that clip on YouTube also beat me to the punch, by several months, but I only just found out about it--guess I can't really claim being first, after all).

Their new position is considerably different (some might say dramatically different):
"Thus, the Parker court concludes, "the right in question is individual.

The court, however, simply obscured the real issue. There is no question that the Second Amendment guarantees a right to "the people" -- that much is clear from the text. The issue is: What right does the Second Amendment grant to the people? Is it the right to possess and use guns for private purposes like hunting or self-defense, as asserted by the Parker majority, or rather the right to be armed for purposes related only to service in a government-organized militia?"
Leaving alone, for the moment, the utter fabrication that there is anything in the text of the Second Amendment that states that the right to keep and bear arms is contingent on militia membership (government-organized militia membership, no less), this is quite obviously a rather dramatic reversal, and might be seen as indicative of a realization that their old position was a guaranteed loser.

Don't worry, Paul (Helmke)--you don't have to call it a "retreat," if that sounds too . . . cowardly to you. You can always call it a "retrograde maneuver." Then again, could it be that you don't view cowardice with the same contempt that most Americans do?

*Like these guys.