By Mason Mohon | @mohonofficial
Maryland’s ban of 45 kinds of assault rifles and limit to ten round magazines was held up by a federal appeals court late last month. In a 10-4 ruling, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, maintained that the assault rifles that have been banned in Maryland are not protected by the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
Maryland’s Attorney General, Brian Frosh, said that it is “unthinkable that these weapons of war, weapons that caused the carnage in Newtown and in other communities across the country, would be protected by the Second Amendment.”
The AG continued that he believes this ruling will have national significance for gun rights within this country.
Judge William Traxler spoke out against the decision, saying that the voting majority “has gone to greater lengths than any other court to eviscerate the constitutionally guaranteed right to keep and bear arms.”
“For a law-abiding citizen who, for whatever reason, chooses to protect his home with a semi-automatic rifle instead of a semi-automatic handgun, Maryland’s law clearly imposes a significant burden on the exercise of the right to arm oneself at home, and it should at least be subject to strict scrutiny review before it is allowed to stand.”
The ruling here is fundamentally flawed and at the same time sets a dangerous precedent for the rights of American society. These ‘weapons of war’ that Frosh mentions are the weapons the American population owns for the purpose of keeping their government in check. Why? Consider this:
When looking at the Constitution, and specifically the Bill of Rights, it needs to be viewed in the context of limiting the power of the federal government and making sure they do not go too far. The first amendment guarantees speech so you can talk about what the government is doing wrong, press so we can publicize the falters of the state, and assembly so we can gather as communities outside of a government context.
The Fourth Amendment says they need a warrant to search through our things. The Tenth ensures that the states of the Union have autonomy. It is important to look at each of these amendments, ask “how does this limit government’s power,” and base decisions on whatever conclusions you make from how it holds back the state.
The second amendment guarantees a right to keep and bear arms so as to keep up a well-regulated militia. Interpreting that in the same way as the rest of the constitution, it is clear that it was meant to allow militias that work outside of the jurisdiction of any government body to be well-armed.
Why would such a militia need to be well armed? Simply put, to make sure the government doesn’t tread on us or our rights.
For a militia to be well-armed, the militiamen need to be well-armed. Individuals have the right to own weapons of war because a monolith of violence is ready to make the full transformation into Leviathan any day now. It was our government that upkept slavery, put the Japanese in camps, imposed tariffs leading to financial ruin, and mass-incarcerated black folk just to upkeep a system of slavery.
There is no doubt we need to defend ourselves from this thing.
And no, I do not want kids to die. I do not celebrate the death of children. Claiming that wanting to defend myself from a hellish apparatus of violence is a sensible thing to claim. Get your fingers out of your ears, look around, and start noticing: there is a government ruling over you that isn’t afraid to take away your most fundamental human rights.