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A Test of One’s Second Amendment Resolve

Via WESH:  Blind man acquitted in fatal shooting gets guns back

While Judge John Galluzzo said he did not want to return the guns to Rogers, he said it was the law.

Rogers’ guns were confiscated by law-enforcement officers after he fatally shot a man. He was later acquitted.

“I have to return property that was taken under the circumstance,” Galluzzo said. “I have researched and haven’t found case law to say otherwise.”

Galluzzo said he had no choice but to return Rogers’ 10mm Glock and a rifle that was used to kill James DeWitt, 34.

The shooting happened at Rogers’ home in Geneva during a fight in March 2012. Rogers spent time in jail and went to trial in January. He was granted immunity using the “stand your ground” law.

Rogers became blind after a construction accident and said he needs his guns for protection.

“It’s my constitutional right. I wasn’t carrying these firearms around. I was in my house on a private road in Geneva out of the way,” Rogers said.

On the one hand, the gun are his property.  On the other, is it wise for a person who is blind to have firearms?

(And yes, this is a Florida case).

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About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is Professor and Chair of Political Science at Troy University. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. He is the author of Voting Amid Violence: Electoral Democracy in Colombia and is currently working on a comparative study of the US to 29 other democracies. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging at PoliBlog since 2003. Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. Jim Henley says:

    OMG the comments on that WESH article! I should not have read them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  2. It should be noted that “legally blind” does not mean “cannot see at all”. If I take off my glasses I meet the definition of legally blind.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  3. @Stormy Dragon: That’s fair. However, check out the video, This guy wears dark glasses and uses s cane to walk.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  4. rudderpedals says:

    Because blind people are valuable warfighters whose ranks obviously fill the National Guard. No, thank you 5 wise Justices.

    FWIW, Geneva FL is historied town in Florida with a rather unsavory background of violent racism. It’s a hole in the wall town on the way to Orlando from Melbourne.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8

  5. @Steven L. Taylor:

    Other sites are reporting that he still has partial vision. We also don’t know how much the dark glasses and cane are because he needs them to get around and how much they are for social signaling (please don’t get offended if I bump into you, I can’t help it).

    I also notice a big difference between how he went around the corner at the end of the video vs. having seen how a former coworker of mine who was completely blind used to do it. Note Rogers doesn’t have to locate the edge of the opening he’s looking for with the cane, he just knows where to make the turn.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  6. Jim Henley says:

    So far as I know, Gunslinger Joe’s victim was also white, so this case let’s us see two things obscured by the killings of Jordan Davis and Trayvon Martin: the madness of Stand Your Ground even apart from its disparate racial impact; and the cultural sickness of gun fandom. For the latter, alas, you must indeed Read the Comments.

    Click through to the articles covering the case itself, and here is the story behind this successful invocation of Stand Your Ground:

    There was a party at Dude’s house. Everyone was drinking. Legally Blind Dude got into an argument with Other Dude. Legally Blind Dude went to his bedroom and got his rifle. Legally Blind Dude came back out to the living room and shot Other Dude dead. The shooting shocked the fvck out of everyone at the party. Legally Blind Dude previously (four years ago) faced accusations of shooting at his cousin. Legally Blind Dude said he should be immune from prosecution because he felt threatened. Applying the Stand Your Ground provisions of Florida’s self-defense law, the Judge accepted his argument.

    May I just say that if you are threatening a man who wears dark glasses and walks with a white cane and give him time to go to his back bedroom, get a rifle, come back and shoot you in the chest, that you are very bad at threatening.

    As pure common sense, Rogers’, the perp’s, self-defense case is self-refuting. Forget “no duty to retreat.” He already retreated. He left the living room. The supposed threat – his longtime friend and neighbor – let him go. Then Rogers unretreats! In a house full of other people – a house where he has already achieved physical separation from the supposed assailant – he doesn’t lock himself in the bedroom he has safely attained. He doesn’t use the time and space his supposed tormentor has granted him to call 911. No, the other party-goers call 911 after Rogers reappears and pops a guy.

    But the law is a ass is the law, so he gets away with it. It does no good, by the way, to argue that, well, the judge just obviously got this one wrong. If the judge can get it this wrong, that just shows how awfully confusing the provisions are. If he got it “right,” it shows how moronic they are.

    Now, the sickness in gun fandom. Read the comments. (I’m sorry. You must.) There’s a huge swath of people out there who, if you get shot, are going to become your murderer’s fan club so long as he says you threatened him. Because they are Walter Mitty and every one of their daydreams has someone like you bleeding out on the floor in front of them. What they hate more than anything is spoilsports who would ruin their reveries with cavils about the circumstances of compassion for the dead. Their tenderness is struck, not by the fact that a man killed his friend, however tragically, but by the anguished thought of a man and his weapon being put asunder. Their rage falls, not on the fact of murder or the transparent mendacity of the story that lets a perp walk, nor even on a tragic universe that necessitates violent, blameless misunderstandings, but on the arrogance of a judge even considering alienating a killer from his firearms.

    For these people, every Stand Your Ground case is fan-fiction and every killer is their Mary Sue.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 55 Thumb down 12

  7. michael reynolds says:

    Steven:

    As I’m sure you know, there is quite literally no argument, no fact, no data point that would change the mind of a gun cultist. Period, full stop.

    You might as well be arguing with an unmedicated paranoid schizophrenic about the nature of reality. From their point of view blind people should have guns, insane people should have guns, people in comas should have guns, quadriplegics incapable of actually holding a gun should have extra guns, Jeffrey Dahmer should have guns, children should have guns, babies still in their strollers should have guns, Hitler should have guns.

    These are people who are mentally unbalanced. NRA members, in other words, and southern congressmen.

    But we should still be making all the logical, rational points. Because between the gun cultists and rational people are a fair number of folks in the middle who may be at least somewhat susceptible to reason. In particular, young people not yet infected.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 27 Thumb down 24

  8. al-Ameda says:

    Our strong cult of gun ownership leads us to this kind of stuff.

    Of course this is in Florida, and I suppose that eventually Natural Selection is going to sort all of this out.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 9 Thumb down 11

  9. michael reynolds says:

    @Jim Henley:

    If I could plus 10 I would.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 14 Thumb down 8

  10. Jim Henley says:

    @michael reynolds: You honor me, sir.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 7

  11. stonetools says:

    Can we give up the pretense that the whole Second Amendment, “Stand Your Ground” thing has anything to do with reason, evidence, or logic. Frankly, what it has to do with is gun owner supremacy, -more specifically, white gun owner supremacy.
    What it means is that if you are a white gun owner, you can shoot anybody you like and can get away with it, so long as you can make even the most remotely plausible argument that you were in fear of injury. As the Zimmerman and Dunn cases show, if you shoot a black person, the presumption is that your fear of injury is well founded, whatever the facts . If you shoot a white person, you have to work a little harder, but you can still get there.
    In a rational country, ALL SYG laws and Florida’s in particular would be repealed but I expect the madness to continue.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 19 Thumb down 19

  12. @Stormy Dragon:

    how much they are for social signaling (please don’t get offended if I bump into you, I can’t help it).

    This does not give me a lot of confidence that such a person ought to be armed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 3

  13. @Jim Henley:

    For these people, every Stand Your Ground case is fan-fiction and every killer is their Mary Sue.

    Indeed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 4

  14. @michael reynolds:

    But we should still be making all the logical, rational points. Because between the gun cultists and rational people are a fair number of folks in the middle who may be at least somewhat susceptible to reason. In particular, young people not yet infected.

    Exactly.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 4

  15. steve s says:

    On the other, is it wise for a person who is blind to have firearms?

    Why do you hate freedom and america so much? Why don’t you go back to Liebralstan?

    /AllMyElderlyGOPCustomersAtTheHardwareStoreInTheSouth

    PS Do you want to confiscate all guns so you and Obama can do more Benghazis?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2

  16. rudderpedals says:

    Something like this happening inside the killer’s house wasn’t affected by the Stand Your Ground laws in that Florida(*) is a Castle Doctrine state, that is, absolutely no duty to retreat if it means leaving one’s home.

    The Movable Castle Doctrine/SYG laws are the evil demented laws that need to be terminated, stat.

    (*) IIRC most states in the South and West 30 years ago were and remain Castle Doctrine states.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 5

  17. Jim Henley says:

    @rudderpedals: Both the judge and the local media seems to believe SYG was relevant to the case.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 5

  18. PJ says:

    One should never ever visit Florida (or any other SYG state).

    If you have to, then:
    Maintain a safe distance of at least 10-25 yards from other people, if not more.
    Don’t ever invite people into your home or apartment.
    Never accept invites to visit other people in their homes or apartments.
    Stay away from places where people congregate like malls, churches, etc.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 11

  19. rudderpedals says:

    @Jim Henley: Obviously then I’m not privy to the court’s stated reasoning. I’m puzzled as to how SYG is relevant.

    Be that as it may, it was well-established law more than 30 years ago that you could do pretty much anything other than setting up passive traps (trap guns and electrocution grids for ex) to defend yourself in the confines of your home with near absolute immunity from the usual duty to retreat before using deadly force.

    SYG is the Castle Doctrine mutilated into a sort of Mobile Castle Without Walls Doctrine. Florida’s much more dangerous now. This event’s a better example of the foolishness of a universal right to modern weapons in the 21st century.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 6

  20. Jim Henley says:

    @rudderpedals: I hear you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  21. stonetools says:

    @michael reynolds: @Steven L. Taylor:

    But we should still be making all the logical, rational points. Because between the gun cultists and rational people are a fair number of folks in the middle who may be at least somewhat susceptible to reason. In particular, young people not yet infected.

    The problem here is that on the Internet, Basement Boy can always beat Fallacy Man by generating yet more fallacies, or by just repeating their fallacies.
    I mean, how many times have we heard “If guns are not outlawed, only outlaws will have guns” (slippery slope! false dichotomy!), ” The police are minutes away while intruders are only seconds away” (fallacy of the extreme case), “The Second Amendment guarantees my right to have any gun for self-defense”(just plain false, like 2+2= 5 false), “I have a natural right to defend myself with a gun (naturalistic fallacy even if you get past the fact that guns aren’t natural), etc. Not the mention the biggest myth of all-that lawful, responsible gun owners don’t kill people when the biggest number of gun crimes are committed by lawful gun owners like Deadeye Dick above.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 9

  22. michael reynolds says:

    @stonetools:

    That’s true. But we keep knocking down their absurdities. Which doesn’t convince the cultists, but eventually changes the way the majority sees things. The case for gay marriage was very similar. An endless number of fallacies, each countered in turn, and finally a collapse.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 5

  23. Well, you could live in the Commonwealth of Virginia where the Republican lawmakers defeated a bill which would have prohibited sex offenders convicted of a misdemeanor, domestic abusers, and stalkers from possessing or buying a firearm.

    The sex offenders convicted of a misdemeanor is especially hilarious when you consider that they’re considered so dangerous that they have to be placed on a public Sex Offender Registry and can be sent to jail if they fail to update their information when they move, get a job, etc.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  24. al-Ameda says:

    @Timothy Watson:

    Well, you could live in the Commonwealth of Virginia where the Republican lawmakers defeated a bill which would have prohibited sex offenders convicted of a misdemeanor, domestic abusers, and stalkers from possessing or buying a firearm.

    Please, don’t EVER post something like this while I’m drinking a glass of orange juice. I started laughing uncontrollably and almost gagged up the orange juice.

    Seriously, you can’t make this up. I’m sure the Republican reasoning was: “Why, if you can take guns away from sex offenders, the next thing you know the Feds confiscate the guns of regular law-abiding people with bad judgment.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  25. Jack says:

    @rudderpedals: Don’t start that whole, “The National Guard” is the milita crap. The Guard was founded in 1933, just a FEW years after the Bill of Rights.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4

  26. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jack:

    The National Guard is the successor to the various state militias. From Wikipedia:

    From its founding until the early 1900s, the United States maintained only a minimal army and relied on state militias to supply the majority of its troops.[3] As a result of the Spanish-American War, Congress was called upon to reform and regulate the training and qualification of state militias. In 1903, with passage of the Dick Act, the predecessor to the modern-day National Guard was formed. It required the states to divide their militias into two sections. The law recommended the title “National Guard” for the first section, known as the organized militia, and “Reserve Militia” for all others. During World War I, Congress passed the National Defense Act of 1916, which required the use of the term “National Guard” for the state militias and further regulated them. Congress also authorized the states to maintain Home Guards, which were reserve forces outside the National Guards being deployed by the Federal Government.[5]
    In 1933, with passage of the National Guard Mobilization Act, Congress finalized the split between the National Guard and the traditional state militias by mandating that all federally funded soldiers take a dual enlistment/commission and thus enter both the state National Guard and the National Guard of the United States, a newly created federal reserve force.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Guard_of_the_United_States

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 4

  27. Pinky says:

    Rogers invites a friend over to his house. The next morning, according to Rogers, the friend refuses to leave, and attacks him. (Rogers was pretty badly beaten.) Rogers gets his gun and kills the man, and it sounds like he did it with one shot to the chest. That’s exactly what guns are for, and Rogers handled the situation correctly. Of course he gets his guns back.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 11

  28. michael reynolds says:

    @Pinky:

    Sure. Killing someone is the point, after all. It’s the secret rush you’re all hoping for.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 5

  29. David M says:

    Good to know the death penalty is now the appropriate punishment for assault. Perhaps some other right wing gun cultist could be helpful enough to list the other crimes now subject to the death penalty?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

  30. rachel says:

    @Pinky:

    (Rogers was pretty badly beaten.)

    Can you point me to actual witness tesimony saying this? I haven’t found any.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

  31. Jim Henley says:

    @rachel: Yeah, this has a big [Citation Needed] sticker on it right now.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  32. Jim Henley says:

    In an incident four years ago, after another long night of drinking, Rogers fired 15 rounds from a handgun at Michael Rogers, who is his cousin and was his roommate at the time. Michael suffered minor injuries from a fight the two were involved in earlier that night, but was not hit by the gunfire.

    Rogers was charged with aggravated assault, but made a deal with prosecutors by pleading no contest to a lesser charge of unlawfully displaying a firearm. Rogers was placed on probation.

    But Rogers’ probation was revoked a year later and he spent 71 days in jail for domestic violence after he pushed and punched a woman.

    Man, Rogers just has the worst luck with needing to defend himself from friends, family and miscellaneous women. Lucky for him he’s got his guns…

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 2

  33. walt moffett says:

    @rachel:

    FWIW, heres a Sanford Herald article about the homicide arrest in 2012.

    In another fwiw, the entire Florida legislature is up for election this year with qualifying papers due 4/28. Now would be a good time to start talking up the issue, donating to suitable candidates, etc. These are the folks who can potentially change the law.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  34. al-Ameda says:

    @Pinky:

    Rogers invites a friend over to his house. The next morning, according to Rogers, the friend refuses to leave, and attacks him. (Rogers was pretty badly beaten.) Rogers gets his gun and kills the man, and it sounds like he did it with one shot to the chest. That’s exactly what guns are for, and Rogers handled the situation correctly. Of course he gets his guns back.

    LOL!
    What are “friends” for, if not for killing?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2

  35. Petulant Klown says:

    Wouldn’t denying a blind person the right to own a gun violate the Americans with Disabilities Act?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  36. rachel says:

    @walt moffett: But… the article you linked to doesn’t mention that DeWitt even laid hands on Rogers, much less beat him ‘pretty badly’. It says

    …[DeWitt] shot and killed another man following an argument (my emphasis)

    This isn’t the link I’m looking for. Pinky needs to step up.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  37. Matt says:

    Legally blind and actually completely can’t see anything but darkness blind are two very different things.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  38. @Matt: This is, of course, true, although as noted above, he does walk with a cane. That would indicate some serious visual impairment.

    But let’s play the game: how visually impaired is impaired enough that it would give you pause that a person would have firearms?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  39. Tillman says:

    @Stormy Dragon:
    @Matt:

    The statutory definition of “legally blind” is that central visual acuity must be 20/200 or less in the better eye with the best possible correction or that the visual field must be 20 degrees or less.

    From the National Federation of the Blind.

    Guys, I’m sorry, but I wouldn’t allow legally blind people guns. My sight isn’t that bad (I’m something like 20/80), and I wouldn’t trust myself with a gun at that level of impaired vision.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  40. Tillman says:

    @Pinky:

    That’s exactly what guns are for, and Rogers handled the situation correctly.

    How badly beaten was he if he could, while being legally blind, retrieve the gun from somewhere else in the house just to shoot the guy? He could’ve also called the cops since his friend just beat him in his own home.

    You can, in fact, call the cops on people who refuse to leave your house, and they will be very pissed off that you’re using police resources for this. So pissed off that they will talk down to both of you and badger you into resolving the situation amicably. Or, if Rogers was as badly beaten as is claimed before the shooting happened, they’ll arrest your assaulter.

    This is the sort of situation where a play-by-play would be really useful.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  41. JWH says:

    On the other, is it wise for a person who is blind to have firearms?

    MLB umpires have constitutional rights, too.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  42. john personna says:

    @Tillman:

    This is a real tangent, because this is about violent people having guns, rather than blind people … but in a quick google I found 20/200 (dominant eye) people shooting skeet, with a good pair of glasses.

    No, this should be more like how many incidents of violence should you have before your guns go … at a minimum into escrow until you complete counseling.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

  43. stonetools says:

    Don’t start that whole, “The National Guard” is the milita crap. The Guard was founded in 1933, just a FEW years after the Bill of Rights.

    Ah,the militia argument. Now rational discussion of the militia argument would begin by pointing out that the right to keep and bear arms is in fact based on a falsehood. No, Virginia,
    “A well regulated militia” is in fact NOT necessary “to the security of a free state”. We know because there are plenty of “free” (liberal, democratic) states around without militias , “well regulated” or otherwise. That’s a FACT, like 2+2=4 or the earth revolves around the sun. Unfortunately, we ignore that fact and ramble on about discussing what a militia is or what “well regulated” means.
    If we start by acknowledging that the RTKABA is based on on a faslsehood, then we can draw the logical corollary:

    “SINCE a well regulated militia IS NOT necessary to the security of a free state, THEREFORE the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall be infringed where there is a rational basis for it.”
    Now of course this argument isn’t going to win, based as it on reason and evidence, but I thought I’d just put it out there. Dispute it if you can. I’d like to see if the argument has any holes.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

  44. Jack says:

    @Rafer Janders: Yes, Wikipedia is the all knowing source that allows anyone with a computer to make an entry. Try again, cupcake.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

  45. john personna says:

    @Jack:

    Actually you make the unsupported claim, these days:

    there are no recent relevant studies showing that Britannica is more accurate than Wikipedia, besides research in 2005 by the journal Nature that found Wikipedia’s scientific articles had a similar rate of serious errors to Britannica.

    However Wikipedia does it, they match traditional encyclopedia accuracy.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4

  46. Jack says:

    @stonetools: If the RTKABA was supposed to be limited to militias, the the 2nd Amendment would have read: A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the militia to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. Since the ACTUAL word used was people, it is very clear what the framers intended.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  47. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: Do you have specific critiques of the information Rafer pulled from Wikipedia that you would like to share? Otherwise you don’t have an argument.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4

  48. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: The National Guard is not a replacement of the militia.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  49. stonetools says:

    One of the more pernicious results of the gun cultist’s war for gun owner supremacy was the bar they imposed on federal funding of studies on gun viiolence. Now that Emperor Obummer lifted that ban by executive order,there have more studies on the issue-and they have not been kind to NRA mythology.
    The latest:

    Having a Gun in the House Doesn’t Make a Woman Safer

    Wayne LaPierre, executive vice-president of the National Rifle Association, has argued that firearms are a great equalizer between the sexes. In a speech at the Conservative Political Action Committee last year, he declared, “The one thing a violent rapist deserves to face is a good woman with a gun.” But the empirical reality of firearm ownership reflects anything but equality, particularly when it comes to intimate partner violence. Such fights become much more frequent and lethal when firearms are involved, and the violence is nearly unidirectional, inflicted by males upon females. This relationship holds true not only across the United States, but around the world.

    A recent meta-analysis concluded what many people already knew: the availability of firearms is a strong risk factor for both homicide and suicide. But the study came to another conclusion that is rarely mentioned in the gun control debate: females are uniquely impacted by the availability of a firearm. Indeed, the study found that women with access to firearms become homicide victims at significantly higher rates than men.

    Those damned facts again! Tragically, that will not stop the NRA from continuing their propoganda campaign . But at least the truth is out.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  50. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: That is a positive claim. Excellent. On what do you base it?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  51. Jack says:

    @stonetools:

    A recent meta-analysis concluded what many people already knew: the availability of firearms is a strong risk factor for both homicide and suicide.

    Well Duh! The owner of a car is far more likely to be in an automobile accident than someone who does not own a car.

    Additionally, what your study refuses to reveal is that a lot of the guns they claim were “owned” were actually brought into the home by an intruder.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 5

  52. C. Clavin says:

    @stonetools:

    Now of course this argument isn’t going to win, based as it on reason and evidence

    You cannot reason with people whose position is not based on reason.
    You want to use logic.
    They are operating from emotion…a visceral “feeling”.
    Good luck with that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4

  53. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: If the National Guard is the replacement of the militia, and the national guard is run by the state, then the inference in the Bill of Rights, which was written to limit government, is that the state is allowed to bear arms. That is inherently a conflict as why would the framers need to say that a state can bear arms.

    Additionally, a “militia” according to statute, like 10 USC 311, which defines it as “all able- bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 13 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States.” Some state statutes define it as “able-bodied males” of different age ranges, such as 16 through 59.

    “I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials.”
    — George Mason, in Debates in Virginia Convention on

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  54. Jack says:

    @stonetools: The truth is, no one is forcing you to buy a firearm or have one in your home if you don’t want one.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  55. gVOR08 says:

    @stonetools: You’re not showing proper deference to SCOTUS decisions. They seem to find the whole “well regulated militia” clause just confusing, so they made an unannounced de facto decision to just to pretend it doesn’t exist>

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  56. Pinky says:

    I’m just going by the mug shot. His face could look like that from the night before, or he could have gotten knocked around by the police. I’m just guessing that those injuries are from the dispute.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  57. Jack says:

    @gVOR08: The didn’t

    make an unannounced de facto decision to just to pretend it doesn’t exist

    . They said is was an example as to why the people have the RTKABA.

    Example: A well educated electorate, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and read books, shall not be infringed.

    No one in their right mind would suggest the above means only the well educated or the electorate may keep and read books. The people reading books leads to a well educated electorate.

    Lesson concluded.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4

  58. rachel says:

    @Pinky: Or maybe his face looks like that from the accident that blinded him.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  59. Pinky says:

    @rachel: It doesn’t look like he has those marks in more recent pictures (although it’s tough to tell because of his glasses).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  60. Rob in CT says:

    Man, Rogers just has the worst luck with needing to defend himself from friends, family and miscellaneous women.

    Why, he’s oppressed, ‘e is!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  61. stonetools says:

    @C. Clavin:

    I think it’s very clear that feelings of masculinity have a lot more to do with the fervid defense of the right to have aand carry a gun anywhere than any sort of legal argument. “Having a gun makes me a man. If I can’t have a gun, I’m not really a man.” Can’t logic chop that.
    There’s also a lot of fantasy role play going on. If I have a gun, then I’m John Wayne in Hondo , Clint Eastwood in Dirty Harry or (fill in favorite action hero). Finally, there is ” I need a gun,because I may just have to shoot some uppity brown person.”
    Some or all of that plays a part.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  62. wr says:

    @Jack: Wow, you’re just a little font of NRA cliches.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  63. Jack says:

    @wr: And yet you can’t refute any of it. But thanks for playing, cupcake.

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  64. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: Jack, you address people as “cupcake” a lot. What does that epithet signify to you?

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  65. stonetools says:

    @Jack:

    Example: A well educated electorate, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and read books, shall not be infringed.

    No one in their right mind would suggest the above means only the well educated or the electorate may keep and read books. The people reading books leads to a well educated electorate.

    Well, that’s my point. It’s an example of argument fail. The evidence of the last 225 years proves that you really do need a free press in order to have free state (I.e.a liberal constiutional democracy). However, the evidence of the last 225 years also shows that there is really no need for a state to have the ability to raise a well regulated militia in order for it to be “free.” There are dozens of states, ranging alphabetically from Australia to Uruguay, that don’t have well regulated militias, so the RTKABA is based on a proven falsehood.
    BTW, if there is any doubt as to whether such a militia needs to be well regulated.i.e.closely supervised by the government, there is this:

    Two of three Georgia militia members arrested while allegedly trying to buy pipe bombs and thermite as part of a plan to strike at government agencies appeared in court Friday on federal charges.

    According to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia, Brian Cannon and Cory Williamson appeared in federal court for preliminary and bond hearings. The men face federal charges of conspiring to receive and possess unregistered destructive devices, specifically pipe bombs and thermite devices. According to a federal complaint filed this week, the defendants sought to obtain the explosive devices as part of a militia operation against the TSA, FEMA and other targets

    Here’s a question: if you really believe in the Second Amendment, why shouldn’t the general public have unrestricted access to pipe bombs and thermite devices? Aren’t they “arms?”

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  66. @Jack:

    Example: A well educated electorate, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and read books, shall not be infringed.

    The interesting thing about this re-formulation, however, is that it clearly underscores that the policy goal of such a statement (as you yourself note) is rather obviously not on book ownership, but on “A well educated electorate”

    This is precisely the logic that many use in noting that the “well regulated militia” and not gun ownership, per se, is the focus of the 2nd amendment.

    You are not making the argument you think you are making. Likewise, when you quote the following:

    “I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials.”
    — George Mason, in Debates in Virginia Conventio

    You are pointing to the fact that focus of the amendment is the militia, not gun ownership by itself.

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  67. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: It is but one more example of WHY the people need to keep and read books. Just as a militia is one example of WHY the people need to keep and bear arms.

    The quote is on point because people say, “you are not in a militia, so you don’t need a gun”, but we are all memebers of the militia.

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  68. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: Would you prefer, Pudding?

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  69. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: It’s kind of you to ask my preference, but I was expressing curiosity, not passive-aggressively requesting you pick another form of address. Why “cupcake?” For the bonus round, why “pudding,” I suppose. What do you intend those terms to signify?

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  70. @Jack: Yes, but all that points to a conclusion that the 2nd Amendment was written not to create an individual gun right in and of itself, and was, in fact, written to focus on regulating the militia. It also places gun ownership in the specific context of militia membership.

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  71. grewgills says:

    @Timothy Watson:

    The sex offenders convicted of a misdemeanor is especially hilarious when you consider that they’re considered so dangerous that they have to be placed on a public Sex Offender Registry and can be sent to jail if they fail to update their information when they move, get a job, etc.

    No argument that the stalkers and domestic abusers shouldn’t have guns, but the misdemeanor sexual abuse encompasses things like 18 yr olds having sex with their 16 yr old boyfriend/girlfriends. That shouldn’t result in a permanent sentence of telling all your neighbors you are a sex offender or removal of other privileges for life. If the offense is violent yes or if the ages of the participants are too disparate yes, but not for teens being teens.

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  72. grewgills says:

    @rachel:
    The article does have a picture that shows clear bruising and his eye swollen shut. These are markings of a recent injury, not of something long past. The most reasonable conclusion is that he was punched at least once. He then retreated to his room where a reasonable person would have then called the police and had other party goers escort the man out. At that point he decided the better course of action was to get his gun and kill the man who upset him. In a reasonable world that would mean second degree murder or voluntary manslaughter and several lesser charges. In Florida it means something entirely different.

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  73. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: It does not put the entire 2nd amendment in the context of a militia anymore than my example was all about only a well educated electorate being able to keep and read books.

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  74. Jack says:

    @grewgills: Anyone that cannot be trusted to own a gun, cannot be trusted without 24/7 government supervision; be they sex offenders, spouse abusers, or murderers.

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  75. Grewgills says:

    @Jack:
    The laws, the courts, and the vast majority of Americans and an even greater majority of citizens of Western democracies disagree with you.

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  76. Jack says:

    This is what humans do to each other when angry, when under stress, when mentally ill.

    The woman was left paralyzed, and is lucky to be alive, at all.

    This is why some of us carry guns. Which one of you idiots wants to tell me to wait for the Po-lice…that I don’t need a way to protect myself, or my family?

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=545673892207062

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  77. Jim Henley says:

    This whole thread is about what humans do to each other when angry, under stress or mentally ill. As John Rogers proved, such people will even shoot their friends dead if they have a gun and are intoxicated enough.

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  78. mantis says:

    Jack doesn’t understand what context is, apparently.

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  79. Jack says:

    @Grewgills: What part of my missive do you not understand? If you are not a reasonable enough person to own a gun, then SOMEONE should be watching over you 24/7. A person should not be allowed out in society untrammeled if you are not stable enough to own a gun.

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  80. Jack says:

    @mantis: What a stunningly well thought out commentary. I guess that all of us will just have to bow down, accept your opinion as gospel, and do what you think is best. You are an expert in weapons/use of force, right? Silly me…You’re just some mental midget that works for Wal-Mart. Begone!

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  81. mantis says:

    @Jack:

    I understand having your stupidity pointed out gets you riled up, but you don’t need to project your employment insecurities onto others.

    The entire 2nd Amendment is written in the context of militia membership. If you doubt this, I highly recommend learning what context means.

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  82. Jack says:

    @mantis: I highly recommend you learn to read and understand the English language, Cupcake.

    Dependent Clause – A dependent clause is a group of words that contains a subject and verb but does not express a complete thought. A dependent clause cannot be a sentence.

    The first part of the 2nd amendment is a dependent clause, it DEPENDS on the second part or the

    Independent Clause – An independent clause is a group of words that contains a subject and verb and expresses a complete thought. An independent clause is a sentence.

    Without the independent clause it is an incomplete thought. If the framers wanted the militia to have guns they would have concluded the first part with, “the right of the militia to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed”. Instead, they said “the right of the PEOPLE to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” Nowhere else in the bill of rights does PEOPLE mean anything other than the individual.

    Lesson concluded. Class dismissed.

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  83. liberal capitalist says:

    For some light gun reading…

    Check out his three-gun former-living Darwin-Award winner today:

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/michigan-man-shoots-himself-demonstrating-gun-safety

    You can make an argument for gun safety, you can make an argument for gun availability…

    However, availability is leading to the never-ending stories of dead gun stupids.

    With ALL of them being law-abiding responsible gun owners… until they fuck-up.

    Art least this guy only took himself out.

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  84. @Jack: and yet, the author of the second amendment felt it necessary to include said dependent clause to modify said independent clause. Why might that have been? Because, as you rightly note, the independent clause by itself could have been rendered without any modifications.

    You are again notmaking the argument you think you are making.

    Also: your rant does not demonstrate an understanding of “context,” so mantis appears to have a point.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  85. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: Jack, still: “Cupcake.” Why “Cupcake?” You could have your pick of derogatory epithets but you keep going with that one, which we only understand as an insult from your tone. What does the term signify to you?

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  86. al-Ameda says:

    @Jack:

    The quote is on point because people say, “you are not in a militia, so you don’t need a gun”, but we are all memebers of the militia.

    The people are the militia, so, clearly “well-regulated” is relevant, and not to be dismissed.

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  87. mantis says:

    @Jack:

    I highly recommend you learn to read and understand the English language

    Ah, irony. Good one. You were supposed to learn what context is, though. Keep at it, champ.

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  88. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: They included the dependent clause as one of the many reasons why the people can keep and bear arms.

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  89. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: I could use any number of terms to describe Mantis and others here that routinely refuse to read my input on the subject but only look at the fact that I am a gun owner and choose to deride me because of it. I choose to use Cupcake, puddin’, dildo, and others to describe those that hate me for my position on the topic because it doesn’t fit in with their left leaning beliefs.

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  90. Jack says:

    @al-Ameda: Well regulated means properly functioning. It DOES NOT mean lets load a bunch of regulations on it so people will stop exercising this right.

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  91. Jack says:

    @mantis: Don’t question my right to defend my family with whatever gun I deem most effective, And I won’t question your stupidity and cowardice for failing to protect those you claim to love.

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  92. @Jack:

    They included the dependent clause as one of the many reasons why the people can keep and bear arms.

    That is utterly nonsensical. That clause is not some random example they plucked from the air.

    Again: you are making arguments and deploying examples that actually accentuate the militia issue, which logically draws attention to the phrase “well regulated.”

    Mostly you are just asserting popular pro-gun arguments without understanding them.

    For that matter, there is no need to resort to arguing over the first clause, since SCOTUS has clearly declared individual gun ownership as a right.

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  93. @al-Ameda:

    The people are the militia, so, clearly “well-regulated” is relevant, and not to be dismissed.

    This becomes the point, yes.

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  94. @Jack:

    Well regulated means properly functioning. It DOES NOT mean lets load a bunch of regulations on it so people will stop exercising this right.

    So, “regulated” means “properly functioning” and not “a bunch of regulations.”

    You have noted that “regulated” and “regulations” are practically the same word, yes?

    You might want to consult Websters for a definition of regulate:

    : to set or adjust the amount, degree, or rate of (something)

    : to bring (something) under the control of authority

    : to make rules or laws that control (something)

    That sounds like making rules, not keeping things functioning properly.

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  95. @Jack: BTW, the best way to demonstrate that someone’s argument in invalid is to provide sound reasoning and evidence, not by name-calling and personal attacks.

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  96. mantis says:

    @Jack:

    Don’t question my right to defend my family with whatever gun I deem most effective, And I won’t question your stupidity and cowardice for failing to protect those you claim to love.

    I don’t much care what you do, and you don’t know anything about me. You have, however, removed all doubt of your foolishness.

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  97. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: Jack, of course you could use any number of terms. That’s what prompts my question. What is it about “cupcake,” “pudding” and apparently “dildo” that make you choose them? I mean, if the tenor is “hate me for being a gun owner because of left-leaning beliefs,” the vehicles cupcake, pudding and dildo just do not, in themselves, contain that association. If I look at a real cupcake or bowl of pudding, I do not think, “Look, a thing that hates gun owners.” If I pick up an actual dildo, “This simulacrum of a penis holds left-wing beliefs” does not come unbidden to my mind.

    So it’s gotta be something else you value in those terms. What is it?

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  98. bill says:

    wonder if zimmerman got his gun back yet?

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  99. Grewgills says:

    @Jim Henley:
    Cupcake and pudding both have me thinking of something sweet I want in my mouth, perhaps Jack means the same.

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  100. Grewgills says:

    @Jack:

    If you are not a reasonable enough person to own a gun, then SOMEONE should be watching over you 24/7.

    So every person that has committed a felony and every person with any mental instability needs either to be watched over 24/7 or allowed to own as many of whatever type of weapon they want? What about 10 year olds?
    Can you really think of no class of people that don’t need 24/7 outside control and should not be allowed to own guns?

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  101. Tillman says:

    @Jack: If “all of the people are the militia, as you said, and “well-regulated” means “properly functioning,” as you said, in order for an individual to own a gun the entire populace needs to properly function according to the original wording of the Second Amendment.

    Not to pile on, but this brings up so many issues…

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  102. @Steven L. Taylor:

    the best way to demonstrate that someone’s argument in invalid is to provide sound reasoning and evidence, not by name-calling and personal attacks.

    Someone actually down-voted this statement. After all, who needs civility, evidence, and sound reasoning? ;)

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  103. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: You need to check the Webster’s Dictionary from 1776.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  104. Jack says:

    @Grewgills:

    So every person that has committed a felony and every person with any mental instability needs either to be watched over 24/7 or allowed to own as many of whatever type of weapon they want? What about 10 year olds?
    Can you really think of no class of people that don’t need 24/7 outside control and should not be allowed to own guns?

    Yes, everyone that has committed a felony either should get back the right to own a gun or they need 24/7 supervision. One or the other. If they have not been rehabilitated sufficiently to no longer be a danger to society, then they should not be released.

    Children cannot legally own firearms.

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  105. @Jack: Please, do share.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  106. Jack says:

    @Tillman: No, the entire populace does not have to be well functioning. Every member of society is effectively a militai of one. As long as that person is well functioning, there should be no barrier to weapon posession.

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  107. @Jack:

    If they have not been rehabilitated sufficiently to no longer be a danger to society, then they should not be released.

    Our prison system exists to punish, not rehabilitate.

    Beyond that, one is given a specific sentence as dictated by law and the courts. The prison system cannot keep you once your sentence is over.

    Also, you are making your own argument more difficult by making into a stark dichotomy between: between 100% gun rights for all or 100% you need to be under 24/7 watch.

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  108. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: As I stated, I have been personally attacked by others to include Mantis, Michale, and Al Ameda. Rather than get mad, I just call them names in return. You or they don’t have to like it, but you do have to accept that I have a right to return vitriol in the manner I choose.

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  109. @Jack:

    Every member of society is effectively a militai of one.

    That rather vitiates the notion of militia, well regulated or not.

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  110. @Jack: This issue is not whether I like it or not, the issue is whether it makes for an efficacious argument. It does not.

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  111. mantis says:

    @Jack:

    Every member of society is effectively a militai of one.

    There’s another word you don’t seem to know the meaning of.

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  112. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: There are two types of people, those that can be trusted with a gun and those that cannot. Those that cannot have some innate inability to handle a gun and are likely a danger to themselves or others; therefore, they should have a mionitor 24/7.

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  113. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: Do I have to be a member of the press to exercise my first amendment? NO? Then I don’t need to be a member of a formal militia to exercise the 2nd.

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  114. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: The 1776 definition of well regulated meant properly functioning. I seem to recall Ben Franklin or Thomas jefferson making a comment about a “well regulated mind” in one of their writings. The author obviously did not mean

    : to set or adjust the amount, degree, or rate of (something)

    : to bring (something) under the control of authority

    : to make rules or laws that control (something)

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  115. Jack says:

    @mantis: The Army touts in their commercials “An army of one”. Catch up.

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  116. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: And yet, I don’t see you chastising them. So STFU about it or be consistent.

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  117. @Jack:

    The Army touts in their commercials “An army of one”. Catch up.

    Actually, that was their slogan quite a while ago (making your “catch up” order a bit amusing).

    But, of course, that was a recruitment slogan, not to be taken literally.

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  118. @Jack:

    And yet, I don’t see you chastising them.

    Actually,
    mantis said:

    Jack doesn’t understand what context is, apparently.

    This is not an insult, although I will concur it was a bit snarky (although also accurate).

    You came back with:

    What a stunningly well thought out commentary. I guess that all of us will just have to bow down, accept your opinion as gospel, and do what you think is best. You are an expert in weapons/use of force, right? Silly me…You’re just some mental midget that works for Wal-Mart. Begone!

    That is answering a snarky, but reasonable, statement with a personal attack.

    That is poor argumentation.

    So STFU about it or be consistent.

    And your charm offense continues unabated.

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  119. @Jack: Could you provide, you know, a citation.

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  120. @Jack:

    Do I have to be a member of the press to exercise my first amendment? NO? Then I don’t need to be a member of a formal militia to exercise the 2nd

    I never said you had to be in the militia to own a gun. You are, actually, the one who brought in the militia issue in the first place, when you would have been better off to have simply stuck with the SCOTUS view on the subject.

    The dependent clause is important, however, because it does suggest that there is a place for some sort of regulation of gun rights (and does raise the question of why the clause was inserted in the first place, because if the goal was simply personal gun ownership rights to the extreme, why not just say so?)

    And even the 1st amendment, which states that “Congress shall make no law” prohibiting speech is still regulated in some instances by Congress. Press rights are not absolute, either, to address your example.

    I am not opposed, per se, to gun ownership. I am opposed to the notion that it is a right that cannot be regulated.

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  121. Tillman says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: What? But I can be an Army of One! A militia is just a crappy army, after all.

    Edit: Damn it, this has already been covered…

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  122. Tillman says:

    @Jack: How is society to judge whether someone is capable of bearing arms without some form of regulation? Say, a regime of examinations you have to pass in order to prove you are competent at using a gun safely? A DMV-like agency for the gun-owners, perhaps? State gun owner registries, like car owner registries? It’s one thing to espouse only properly-functioning individuals should be capable of owning or carrying guns (a statement I perfectly agree with), and it’s another to oppose any common-sense regulation that would bring us closer to that ideal.

    These laws are opposed by the NRA, by the way.

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  123. mantis says:

    @Jack:

    As I stated, I have been personally attacked by others to include Mantis

    You initiated the personal attacks, joker.

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  124. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: The following are taken from the Oxford English Dictionary, and bracket in time the writing of the 2nd amendment:

    1709: “If a liberal Education has formed in us well-regulated Appetites and worthy Inclinations.”

    1714: “The practice of all well-regulated courts of justice in the world.”

    1812: “The equation of time … is the adjustment of the difference of time as shown by a well-regulated clock and a true sun dial.”

    1848: “A remissness for which I am sure every well-regulated person will blame the Mayor.”

    1862: “It appeared to her well-regulated mind, like a clandestine proceeding.”

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  125. Grewgills says:

    @Jack:

    Children cannot legally own firearms.

    Children are people and capable of self direction for age dependent periods of time and you did say

    If you are not a reasonable enough person to own a gun, then SOMEONE should be watching over you 24/7. A person should not be allowed out in society untrammeled if you are not stable enough to own a gun.

    So either you don’t consider children people, think they should be under 24/7 supervision regardless of age, think they should be allowed to own firearms, or there is a flaw in your logic.
    I notice also that you ignored the rights of the mentally handicapped to own firearms.

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  126. mantis says:

    @Jack:

    Do I have to be a member of the press to exercise my first amendment?

    The 1st Amendment explicitly details freedoms beyond that of the press, such as speech and religion. Try to keep up.

    The Army touts in their commercials “An army of one”. Catch up.

    Does all of your knowledge come from dumb marketing campaigns? Do you think the US Army is actually several hundred thousand individual entities? What happens to chain of command?

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  127. @Jack:Those are example, not definitions. First, many of those examples still encompass the definitions I gave, and b) this does not prove the meaning as applied in the second amendment.

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  128. Jack says:

    @Tillman: I too am against state-run lists of registered gun owners. You need only look at CA and NY to see that they mad previously law-abiding citizens criminals by passing new laws. Afterwards they began going door to door and confiscating weapons from those they knew had them or believed should not be allowed to have them anymore.

    However, I am not against ALL regulation. I have no problem with NICS checks for purchasing a firearm. VA actually has an additional state check beyond NICS. I do, however, have a problem with limiting the size of magazines as this can be found in no peer reviewed evidence to reduce violence. Additionally, who is to say what is the right amount of ammunition needed for selfe defense. A state legislator? Why 10? If 10 is OK, then why not limit it to 7? Or 5? Or 1?

    In my opinion, the public should have access to the same type of hand held weapons (Rifles, handguns, etc) as the military. When the 2nd amendment was written, the military had muskets and the civilians had muskets. Up until 1968 (I believe), civilians DID have access to the same weapons as the military to include automatic weapons. Was there a large amount of civilian mass killings with automatic weapons before 1968? No.

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  129. Jack says:

    @Grewgills: Mentally handicapped can/are a danger to themselves and others and I have no problem limiting their acces to a firearm. If you can’t read, understand and follow the instructions, then you shouldn’t own a firearm.

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  130. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: So definitions from the time before and after the writing are irrelivant? This is what SCOTUS has said the definition of regulated means in Heller v DC.

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  131. @Jack: *sigh*

    To repeat myself: “Those are example, not definitions. First, many of those examples still encompass the definitions I gave, and b) this does not prove the meaning as applied in the second amendment.”

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  132. Jack says:

    @mantis:

    The 1st Amendment explicitly details freedoms beyond that of the press, such as speech and religion.

    Yes, but the courts have also said it is perfectly reasonable for members of the public to record (audio/video) public officials because the content may be newsworthy. Prior to then, that was normally something limited to the press.

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  133. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: Those were definitions from Oxford dictionary. If a dictionary does not provide a definition, then where is it I should be looking?

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  134. @Jack: Those aren’t definitions. They are examples of usage.

    If you can’t tell the difference between a definition of a word and examples of usage, how can you possibly be taken seriously in a complex discussion of gun policy (or any policy)?

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  135. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: Sorry, I don’t own a dictionary from the time. Examples of usage are all I can find.

    The phrase “well-regulated” was in common use long before 1789, and remained so for a century thereafter. It referred to the property of something being in proper working order. Something that was well-regulated was calibrated correctly, functioning as expected. Establishing government oversight of the people’s arms was not only not the intent in using the phrase in the 2nd amendment, it was precisely to render the government powerless to do so that the founders wrote it.

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  136. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: Jack, speaking of definitions, again: What’s up with “cupcake” (and “pudding” and “dildo”)? Your Webster’s surely does not define those terms as meaning someone whose left-wing views make them hate gun owners. So what associations were you going for with those epithets?

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  137. @Jack:

    Sorry, I don’t own a dictionary from the time.

    Then don’t make definitive claims that suggest you have evidence to back your position.

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  138. Jack says:

    Yet you want to make definitive claim that well regulated means lots of government regulation. Although the current usage is drastically different than the usage of the time the 2nd amendment was written. If you are going to be a shill for the left, at least admit it.

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  139. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: It’s more polite than f*&ktard. Does that do it for you?

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  140. @Jack: The problem becomes that you have demonstrated a lack of understanding of basic terms like “context:,” have shown that you do not understand the way definitions work, and have stated that you are making claims without actual evidence you stated you had, among other things.

    You also don’t understand that several of your militia-linked claims undercut your own position.

    This all seems to render the notion of a useful conversation moot.

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  141. @Jack:

    It’s more polite than f*&ktard. Does that do it for you?

    Moot, indeed.

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  142. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: Based upon the definitions you wrote:
    : to set or adjust the amount, degree, or rate of (something)--by someone: to bring (something) under the control of authority–by someone: to make rules or laws that control (something)--by someone

    You are suggesting that the framers, who were writing the Bill of Rights to limit government power, would, by using well regulated in the 2nd amendment, invite more government power over them. Because if we use your definitions, someone else must perform the regulation, it cannot be self-regulated.

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  143. @Jack: You appear to be unaware of the fact that all of our rights, even the five freedoms in the 1st Amendment, are regulated by the government.

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  144. mantis says:

    @Jack:

    If you are going to be a shill for the left, at least admit it.

    Add “shill” to the list of words Jack doesn’t know the meaning of.

    Yet you want to make definitive claim that well regulated means lots of government regulation.

    How about “strawman?” Do you know what that one means?

    You are suggesting that the framers, who were writing the Bill of Rights to limit government power, would, by using well regulated in the 2nd amendment, invite more government power over them.

    The Bill of Rights, insofar as they were written to limit government power, were not written to render the government powerless, as you seem to think.

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  145. mantis says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    This is not an insult, although I will concur it was a bit snarky

    I think the snarkiness was justified, though I admit I sometimes use it a bit liberally. Probably because I’m a shill.

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  146. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: Nope! Because, again, there are a lot of terms more polite than “Fvcktard.” You chose three terms – “cupcake”; “pudding”; “dildo” – out of all of them. Why? You’re answering everything but the question I’m actually asking. What does “cupcake” connote to you? What associations does “pudding” have? And “dildo”: what do you imply by it?

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  147. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: I never stated I have evidence. I never said I had perdonal letters from the framers addressed to me indicating why they used this word or that. I extracted from documents submitted to the court for the Heller Decision.

    Show me one post where I said I HAD evidence.

    My militia claims were in response to an OP by Rudderpedals suggesting that membership in the National Guard, which apparently superseded the militia, is necessary to possess a weapon. Other posts were in response to others that stated that Militia and well regulated must

    U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (2007): The Amendment does not protect “the right of militiamen to keep and bear arms,” but rather “the right of the people.” The operative clause, properly read, protects the ownership and use of weaponry beyond that needed to preserve the state militias.

    This happened before Heller and helped create the lower circuit split that brought us Heller.

    In Heller: In the majority opinion authored by Justice Antonin Scalia, the Court first conducted a textual analysis of the operative clause, “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” The Court found that this language guarantees an individual right to possess and carry weapons. The Court examined historical evidence that it found consistent with its textual analysis. The Court then considered the Second Amendment’s prefatory clause, “[a] well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,” and determined that while this clause announces a purpose for recognizing an individual right to keep and bear arms, it does not limit the operative clause. The Court found that analogous contemporaneous provisions in state constitutions, the Second Amendment’s drafting history, and post-ratification interpretations were consistent with its interpretation of the amendment. The Court asserted that its prior precedent was not inconsistent with its interpretation.

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  148. Jack says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: First of all, that doesn’t mean government should be regulating our rights, it just means that we the people have accepted, for some reason, intrusion by the government. Second, no other rights are regulated in a Prior Restraint fashion. People will always bring up the 1st amendment relative to shouting fire in a crowded theater. It is not ILLEGAL to shout fire in a crowded theater…If there is in fact a fire. It is only illegal to shout fire in a crowded theater to cause panic when the actor clearly knows there is no fire.

    However, because it is illegal to yell Fire in a crowded theater when there is no actual fire, the government does not tape all theater goers moth shut to prevent that act. It is not illegal until it is actually done. Thus, no prior restraint.

    Only with the 2nd amendment, is prior restraint overwhelminigly asked for and for some reason granted.

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  149. rudderpedals says:

    @Jack:

    Establishing government oversight of the people’s arms was not only not the intent in using the phrase in the 2nd amendment, it was precisely to render the government powerless to do so that the founders wrote it.

    *Which government* is powerless? That’s where Heller and you quite justifiably following Heller start going down the garden path.

    Since we’re to construe the stuff as written it’s critical to remember that when this was written it was written as a limit on the Federal government, not the state govt. Before incorporation by the 14th amendment it was clear that states could infringe day and night on this vaunted right. For ~140 years after incorporation the states could infringe day and night until Heller knocked over all the tables in the room.

    So the problem is not what the founders meant then, it’s how do you scry the founder’s intent with respect to impairing the states *if they had known the 14th amendment was coming along*. I think if you’re doing that sort of divining you’re in metaphysics. This IMO is one reason why it’s dopey and pointless to pretend the founders were all-seeing and knowing and intended to bind the nation with their dead hands to a static 18th century society.

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  150. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: Are you jealous that I haven’t called you a cupcake? Is that why you keep pressing this issue? You have obviuously discerned my usage, why do you care what it means to me?

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  151. Tillman says:

    @Jim Henley: Dude, in a courtroom this would be considered a “leading question” by this point, and it’s getting old. At least to me.

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  152. Tillman says:

    @Jack:

    I do, however, have a problem with limiting the size of magazines as this can be found in no peer reviewed evidence to reduce violence. Additionally, who is to say what is the right amount of ammunition needed for selfe defense. A state legislator? Why 10? If 10 is OK, then why not limit it to 7? Or 5? Or 1?

    Ah, then presumably you opposed the limit on federal funding for scientific research into gun violence? That’s another NRA gem.

    For the record, I’ve got nothing against state gun registries. A national gun registry would be somewhat ominous and put bureaucrats laboring to link state registries in data archives out of business. Job-destruction concerns, you see.

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  153. Jack says:

    @rudderpedals: I agree with your analysis 100%. Originally the amendments were a limit on federal government only. However, in their wisdom, SCOTUS decided that that limit was insuficient because states were infringing upon basic rights, limiting voters, liiting freedom of assembly and speech, thus they extended thes limits to state governments. The 14th pulled other amendments into the fold and limited what states could do. And yes, it wasn’t until Heller, that states were officially told that they too fell under this supremacy.

    Our founders, at the time, were wary of federal power, that is why it took until the 14th amendment to preemt state laws contrary to federal law.

    However, I am not a “Living Document” interpratist. Our founding fathers were men before their time and produced the best option available to them then and now.

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  154. Jim Henley says:

    @Tillman: As opposed to the internet’s 5,271,009th back-and-forth over the meaning of “well-regulated,” which is not getting old at all?

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  155. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: To spare poor Tillman I’ll consider this your final evasion on the topic. I thought, wrongly, you might be man enough to own your intentions, is all.

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  156. Jack says:

    @Tillman: I’m not against funding per say, but…based upon the recent actions of the DOJ, IRS, DHS, etc., some feel funding these reports will only result in predetermined outcomes based upon the political party in the executive office at the time.

    However, a report from the Clinton DOJ/FBI (I cannot site the exact report at this time as I am not at home where my references are located), specifically said there are 171 defensive gun uses per every one homocide. So, those that believe outcomes are predetermined may be wrong.

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  157. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: My intent was to call him a Cupcake. No more, no less.

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  158. Tillman says:

    @Jim Henley: Touche.

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  159. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: I hope you are at least fooling yourself with this. I’d hate that effort to be completely wasted.

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  160. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: There is no subliminal, subcontext, or sub-other purpose for my usage. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

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  161. Jim Henley says:

    @Tillman: :)

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  162. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: A cigar is a cigar and when we point at a cigar and say “cigar” then “cigar” is just “cigar.” But when we point at a cigar and say “cupcake” we have left the realm of the literal.

    But don’t worry. I think we all get what you were up to.

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  163. grumpy realist says:

    DNFTFT.

    I did love the story on TalkingPointsMemo about the guy who decided to show how safe guns were by shooting himself in the head.

    A definite loss of brains, indeed. In all senses of the term.

    I don’t mind gun nuts having guns. I do mind it when their stupidity and jack-assedness causes danger to MY life and limbs, however. If all of you would just continue in your competition for the Darwin award with each other, I’d be perfectly happy.

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  164. Jack says:

    @Jim Henley: Apparently you do not understand the cigar reference. Google Freud, cigar and interpreting symbols.

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  165. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack: Jack, you keep asserting, and maybe believing, that other people aren’t understanding what you are yourself not understanding. I know the Freud quote well, and as a quondam poet and critic, I’m totally down with metaphors, symbols and their limitations. So I know for certain that your attempt to apply the quote here is wrongheaded. It will still be wrongheaded even if you say it yet again.

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  166. Jim Henley says:

    @Jack:

    And I won’t question your stupidity and cowardice for failing to protect those you claim to love.

    To further contribute toward mutual understanding, “stupidity and cowardice” are exactly the terms I believe apply to your ardor for guns and preoccupation with so-called “self-defense.” I think it is cowardly to obsess over the possibility of violence to the extent that gun fandom does. For instance, home invasion is an extremely low-probability calamity, but gun nerds are forever going on about it.

    Most of us have the guts to just get on with our lives without thinking about the bogeyman all the time. And as a bonus, we don’t get drunk and kill our friends quite so often. That’s us not being stupid.

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  167. mantis says:

    @Jack:

    However, a report from the Clinton DOJ/FBI (I cannot site the exact report at this time as I am not at home where my references are located), specifically said there are 171 defensive gun uses per every one homocide.

    The study is here. In they key findings is this passage (with full details within):

    Evidence suggests that this survey and others like it overestimate the frequency with which firearms were used by private citizens to defend against criminal attack.

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  168. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jack:

    There are two types of people, those that can be trusted with a gun and those that cannot.

    There are two types of people, those that see the world in childish, simple black and white terms and those that do not.

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  169. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jack:

    In my opinion, the public should have access to the same type of hand held weapons (Rifles, handguns, etc) as the military.

    Why are you limiting that to hand-held weapons? Why don’t you think civilians should be able to own, say, RPGs, flamethrowers, grenades, shoulder-fired missile launchers, recoilless rifles, mortars, artillery, or even tanks? These are armaments, after all, and all weapons that could be useful to a militia, well-regulated or not. By what right does the US government ban civilians access to them, given the 2nd Amendment?

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  170. JustDon says:

    @stonetools:
    Although you demonstrated it nicely, you left out “strawman argument” from your list of fallacies.

    Or do they only count as fallacies if they are for the opposing position?

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  171. Bob @ Youngstown says:

    Gun fans like Jack serve to remind me that passion and logic are often mutually exclusive.

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  172. al-Ameda says:

    @Jack:

    As I stated, I have been personally attacked by others to include Mantis, Michale, and Al Ameda.

    Jack, if you can point to a personal attack I have made on you I’d appreciate it.

    Why do conservatives constantly portray themselves as victims? You’d think that with all the weaponry they possess they’d feel more confident, right?

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  173. Pinky says:

    Jack and Jim – If two trolls fight in the forest, do the rest of us have to hear it?

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  174. Jim Henley says:

    @mantis:

    The study is here. In they key findings is this passage (with full details within):

    Mantis, that’s a great link, thanks. Pages 8-10 discuss the many reasons to suspect the survey’s Defensive Gun Use statistics are seriously inflated. It’s particularly striking to compare the survey’s raw DGU figure to the actual crime statistics in the NCVS, as the report does.

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  175. mantis says:

    @Jim Henley:

    It’s particularly striking to compare the survey’s raw DGU figure to the actual crime statistics in the NCVS, as the report does.

    Indeed. It seems that when responding to surveys (not to mention commenting on websites), gun owners will dramatically exaggerate the number of times they need to “defend” themselves. Considering how many of these people are delusional, living in an imaginary lawless world where they are constantly under threat from all sides, one suspects that most may even have themselves convinced of these self-defense incidents actually occurred outside their minds.

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  176. Jim Henley says:

    @mantis: Yeah, gun fandom seems particularly prey to both the Dunning-Kruger Effect and the Fundamental Attribution Error. And it’s not even that they’re necessarily worse about those things than the population at large – though I think they probably are. It’s that guns raise the stakes of personal hubris. “I’m good enough. I’m smart enough. And BANG someone’s dead!”

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  177. wr says:

    @Jim Henley: Oh, for God’s sake, he was implying that anyone who disagreed with him was a fag, and not nearly as manly a manly man and he is. Because he’s got guns, you see, which means he’s manly and you’re a fag.

    He’s also a whiny little coward who won’t step up and admit it.

    But mostly — and come on, people, get a clue — HE’S A TROLL.

    I’m not saying he’s Jenos, necessarily. Just one of the brotherhood of losers who will say anything to keep people paying attention to him. In this case, that involves looking so stupid as to have no awareness of what simple English words mean.

    HE’S A TROLL.

    And you have all been trolled.

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  178. Jim Henley says:

    @wr:

    Oh, for God’s sake, he was implying that anyone who disagreed with him was a fag, and not nearly as manly a manly man and he is. Because he’s got guns, you see, which means he’s manly and you’re a fag.

    He’s also a whiny little coward who won’t step up and admit it.

    Yes, of course.

    In this case, that involves looking so stupid as to have no awareness of what simple English words mean.

    HE’S A TROLL.

    And you have all been trolled.

    I was actually curious whether he would, at any point, be brave enough to admit he was gaybaiting. Of course he wasn’t, but I didn’t know just how absurd the lengths he’d go to avoid admitting it would be.

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  179. Pinky says:

    @Jim Henley: Really? You got “gay” from “cupcake”? I read it as general contempt.

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  180. Jim Henley says:

    @Pinky: Gay. Feminized. Girlish. Unmasculine. Of course. Likewise with “Pudding” and “Dildo.”

    Tell me you’re not ALSO going to play dumb on the obvious associations here. Cause I don’t think the thread can take another episode.

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  181. @Jim Henley: I concur on all counts.

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  182. mantis says:

    It is probably the first time I’ve been called cupcake. I think it’s fabulous. I think I have a crush on Jack.

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  183. Jim Henley says:

    @mantis: He could defend you.

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  184. Jim Henley says:

    It’s good to squabble about the politics of this case because that way we can avoid focusing on the pity and terror of it. I’ve been rereading the coverage, and if you accept John Rogers’ (disputed) version of events as true – the kindest construction you can put on the events, basically – the incident is almost indescribably sad. We can take refuge from the full horror of it in legalisms like “castle doctrine” and “stand your ground” (or “rage killing” and “gun nut”) but those are ways to hide ourselves from really seeing the thing.

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  185. Pinky says:

    @Jim Henley: This reminds me of an episode of Scrubs. “No, I’m not calling you gay, I’m calling you a girl. I call you a girl – that’s what I do. How could you not get that by now?”

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  186. DrDaveT says:

    Apparently ‘Jack’ is his last name. His first is ‘Hi’.

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