Monday, February 23, 2015

Truth and Scholarship Matters

The National Association for Gun Rights has recently undertaken a campaign to smear hundreds of thousands of great patriots around the nation that are responding to the clarion call of the founders to use the single most powerful tool given to us to save our nation. This group contemptibly refers to the lawful, orderly, and Constitutional process in Article V as “snake oil”. 

It is very important for us to understand that the Article V Convention of States process was specifically inserted into our Constitution on September 15th 1787, just two days before the draft was completed because of a flaw discovered by the great Virginian, George Mason. Mason observed that the states might someday require recourse from an “abusive” and “oppressive” (his words) national government and successfully argued for the insertion of this self governing process. Contrary to what those that fear-monger this process tell us, the framers gave us this process intentionally to defend the Constitution when its words would become twisted and perverted from their original meaning to expand the scope and jurisdiction of the federal government. 

While this group purports to defend the 2nd Amendment of the United States Constitution. Its smear campaign and fear-mongering of the Constitutional process designed to defend the 2nd Amendment calls them into question. It is precisely the inaction and fear of using the “check” designed to resist growing government power that will truly be the undermining of our 2nd Amendment liberties. The Article V Convention of States effort is precisely the tool needed to stop the staggering power drunk and ever growing leviathan federal government that will inevitably undermine not only our 2nd Amendment liberties but all of the rest of the bill of Rights. 

In the National Association for Gun Rights most recent mailing, they hold up a statement from former Chief Justice Warren Burger speaking out against the use of an Article V Convention of States. I have to wonder if they are either ignorant of whom Chief Justice Warren Burger was or if they are intentionally trying to deceive their readers and followers. Burger is responsible for presiding over the 7 member majority Supreme Court opinion in the most abhorrent Supreme Court ruling in our nation’s history (Roe v Wade), the decision that has left us with 60 million butchered unborn children. That decision was the most radical departure from Originalism in the history of the Supreme Court. So this group to holds up Warren Burger as their anti Article V poster child, one of the most radical, left wing SCOTUS Justices in our nation’s history that twisted and perverted the Constitution in order to arrive at the most abominable decision a court could make under our Constitution. Thinking people would ask why a Judge, whose normal mode of operation was to subvert the Rule of Law and pervert the Constitution...thinking people would ask why would he NOT oppose the use of Article V by the states since it's very use would potentially strip him of his power to pervert our Rule of Law? 

They also invoke the names of men like James Madison and Benjamin Franklin, and they refer to the date of the Philadelphia Convention as being 1789 when in fact the Philadelphia Convention was held in 1787. Now some might excuse that as a simply typographical error, but we would submit that in a discussion of a serious matter like this that involves matters of grave national importance, scholarship matters. The invocation of Madison’s name to somehow imply that men like James Madison would oppose this effort is nothing short of preposterous if not disingenuous. It was James Madison himself in a letter to Edward Everett in August of 1830 that told us “Should the provisions of the Constitution as here reviewed be found not to secure the Government and rights of the States against usurpations and abuses on the part of the United States the final resort within the purview of the Constitution lies in an amendment of the Constitution according to a process applicable by the States.”. Madison knew that the Article V COS process was the rightful remedy for an out of control federal government. 

Missouri COS State Director Keith Carmichael really said it best when he recently wrote that scholarship matters in an Article V discussion. 

"Scholarship is important. We tell our kids that it is important. We tell them to do their homework, study hard and pay attention on things that matter. Responsible and informed parents who want to foster success actually go a step further when they demand that their children apply themselves because learning is important – Knowing the difference between the truth and fiction is important. 

Those that wrote and signed the Constitution believed that it was essential for this document to be able to be amended peacefully by the states in order to maintain federalism or a balance of power. On September 15, 1787, they voted unanimously to give the states’ equal power in the process along with Congress. They saw this then as a ‘life or death’ issue for the republic. That has not changed – it still is one today. 

In a discussion about our Constitution – specifically Article V which is the part which allows the document itself to be amended, we can’t afford to not do our homework. We must resist the temptation to trust some of the inaccurate, incomplete, and agenda-driven scholarship that has been regurgitated for so long on this topic. Those unwilling to make an honest, complete investigation into the most recent, more reliable, serious scholarship on this issue place their own credibility at risk”. 

The Supreme Court decision in Heller was a razor thin 5-4 majority upholding the original intent of the 2nd Amendment as being an individual right. This decision could have easily gone the other way and eviscerated the 2nd Amendment in one fell swoop. It is time to rein in the federal government using the wisdom and courage of the founders. By opposing the states rightful use of Article V, the National Association of Gun Rights opposes the Constitution and the most powerful “Check” given to the states by the founders. This group and others like them stand resolutely for the progressive and growing tyranny of the status quo. 

For a more in-depth and scholarly look at this issue that explains most if not all of the common misrepresentations of Article V and the Convention of States please read this article that I wrote a few months ago. 

You will not find anyone more “2nd Amendment” than myself and it was a bill that I singlehandedly wrote in 2013 that restored much needed liberty in South Carolina’s CWP statute. This bill (S 308) was strongly supported by the NRA who dubbed it the “restaurant carry” bill.

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