Federal Judges Rewrite the 2nd Amendment

The most confusing dependent clause in the history of the nation, at least as far as personal liberty goes, is the one that begins the 2nd Amendment to the Bill of Rights. The full text of the amendment reads:

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

gun-control-cagle-cartoonTo understand what the Founders meant it helps to understand how much the former colonists disliked a standing army. As far as the Continental Congress was concerned the Revolution could be fought and won using an army composed entirely of citizen volunteers organized into local militia companies.

George Washington, the man actually in charge of the fighting, thought this was madness. He and the Congress had a running battle throughout the war over recruiting, equipping and paying a regular army. Washington believed only a professional, disciplined body of troops armed with military weapons could defeat the British.

Militia units simply wouldn’t stand up to line infantry. Civilians in the colonies usually owned rifles, not muskets. This meant a civilian could fire accurately at longer distances than a smooth–bore musket, but his rate of fire was not as rapid as the easier–loading musket.

Rate of fire, however, was secondary to the main problem with civilian arms: The inability to attach a bayonet to the rifle. Regular infantry charged with fixed bayonets and the men with spears always overwhelmed the men with clubs.

Militia members weren’t forbidden to buy muskets with bayonet lugs on the barrel. It was simply a matter of choice. Civilians would rather shoot a deer at 100 yds. and walk up to claim dinner, as opposed to chasing Bambi down and stabbing him with a bayonet.

As the war progressed militia units were used as skirmishers to pepper British troops with long range fire and then retire behind the regulars as the lines closed. So in the end both Washington and Congress were partially correct.

Once the war concluded under the Articles of Confederation the regular army languished, except for a remnant that manned frontier forts. State militias, again composed of volunteers bringing privately own weapons, provided defense against Indian raids and other disorder.

Before the outbreak of the Civil War there was private militia cavalry and even artillery companies operating without government control.

The role of civilian militia volunteers was codified in the Bill of Rights by the 2nd Amendment and the lasting rancor against a large regular army was found in the 3rd Amendment, which prohibited quartering troops in private homes.

The word “militia” in the 2nd Amendment means the “arms” citizens have a “right” to bear are by definition weapons of war. The Constitution doesn’t give us the right to own a BB gun or participate in paintball conflicts.

The Constitution gives us the right to own and bear light infantry weapons.

That fact escapes all leftist judges. They think government grants the right, when the Constitution obviously holds the right exists independently of government, which shall not infringe upon it.

The case that cannot be made by anyone reading the plain language of the amendment and knowing anything of history is that the 2nd Amendment does not cover weapons that are either military in nature or resemble military weapons.

Yet that is exactly what the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals did when it voted 10–to–4 to uphold an unconstitutional Maryland law that bans ownership of “assault weapons and large–capacity magazines.”

Ignoring “militia,” “arms” and “shall not infringe” the court sounded more like Chief Justice Oprah Winfrey when it concluded, “Put simply, we have no power to extend Second Amendment protection to the weapons of war.”

Only the justices don’t have to extend anything, the 2nd Amendment already protects “weapons of war.” Their job was to stop an obvious infringement upon that right.

Evidently the justices equate a militia to a sort of colonial bowling league. Just as you wouldn’t want bowlers rolling a cannonball down the lane, you wouldn’t want civilians owning a “military style” rifle. The problem with that reasoning is the militia was designed and expected to function in place of a regular military and to fulfill that role civilians must, by necessity, have weapons of a “military nature.”

Enlightened judges may not like the language of the Constitution. They may think the language is outmoded and superseded by modern life. But it is a violation of their oath of office to re–write the document to their liking or ignore provisions with which they disagree.

The Founders wisely provided a mechanism to amend the Constitution. It involves Congress, the states and voting. It does not include 10 politicians in black robes.

The Out–of–Control Gun Control Advocate

Gun control is a powder keg of an issue anyway, but selecting an individual as spokesman that reasonable people agree should never be allowed to own a gun, only makes the effort more prone to misfire.

And that’s exactly what happened in Virginia.

Democrats are convinced the next election is always going to be the one where “gun control” pays off. Except it doesn’t: Election after election after election this favorite issue is a dud at the ballot box. Bitter clingers always manage to out vote eager grabbers.

The problem is particularly acute in off–year, non–presidential elections. Making gun control’s appearance in Virginia’s legislative races even more puzzling. The Democrat base is composed of a significant number of voters that aren’t ideologically motivated. Their participation is reward–based and presidential elections promise high caliber booty for the winners: Free daycare, free healthcare, free phones, free college and free citizenship.

Off–year Democrat voters are ideologically motivated — that’s why they’re voting in the first place. Highlighting gun control, appealing to Democrats that are already going to vote, is only firing blanks if it motivates Republicans who may not have voted if they didn’t fear losing 2nd Amendment rights.

This is why gun control failed again in Virginia. Long–time Clinton family bagman, and current Gov. Terry McAuliffe desperately needed to win an open–seat race in the Richmond area to gain control of the senate. McAuliffe’s legacy freebie was supposed to be Medicare expansion, but convincing the base to embrace scheduling a doctor visit and putting Election Day on their calendar was proving to be a daunting prospect.

Then it happened, a high–profile shooting ripe for exploitation. Only using it created a self–inflicted wound. Read my complete Newsmax column here:

http://www.newsmax.com/MichaelShannon/gun-control-violence/2015/11/12/id/701825/

 

Keep the Crazy Away from Sharp Objects & Sharp Comments

Turning in gunsI’m strongly in favor of keeping the mentally ill away from firearms and I’m coming around to approving any policy that keeps crazy ‘journalists’ away from a keyboard, too. Case in point is Salon.com writer Arthur Chu. His rant titled “It’s not about mental illness: The big lie that always follows mass shootings by white males” makes Alex Jones sound like Dr. Phil.

Chu and Solon appear to be angry because most of America has a handy rule of thumb for predicting mental illness: Any white loser that goes into a prayer meeting at a black church and indiscriminately shoots nine people in the belief the killings will spark a race war — is nuts.

Besides, everyone knows if you want to create widespread civil unrest it requires a white cop to shoot a black suspect in self–defense while the suspect resists arrest.

Chu begins, “I get really really tired of hearing the phrase “mental illness” thrown around as a way to avoid saying other terms like “toxic masculinity,” “white supremacy,” “misogyny” or “racism.”

He’s more concerned with how the insanity manifests itself than the underlying mental illness. This is like criticizing coverage of Jack–the–Ripper for not pointing out his poor surgical technique.

The Charleston shooter was manifestly a crazy racist. The description has the advantage of being accurate without making the rest of white America, and gun owners in particular, responsible for the deaths.

Chu does have the distinction of being the first soft–on–sanity leftist I’ve encountered. He complains about the lack of “serious policy proposals for how to improve our treatment of the mentally ill in this country,” but he wants to exploit the mentally ill to remove guns from the law–abiding sane.

He contends that pointing out the crazy component of white mass shooters is only an excuse to begin a reign of terror among the mentally ill by requiring them to undergo treatment and possibly recover. “Elliot Rodger’s (Isla Vista) parents should’ve been able to force risperidone down his throat. Seung-Hui Cho (Virginia Tech) should’ve been forcibly institutionalized. Anyone with a mental illness diagnosis should surrender all of their constitutional rights, right now, rather than at all compromise the right to bear arms of self-declared sane people.”

Since Rodger’s score was three killed with knives and three killed with guns, confiscating my guns wouldn’t have prevented his spree. And Cho was so nutty a professor wanted him banned from her classes before he started shooting.

The mental health component of preventing gun violence is to bar gun ownership to anyone who’s been involuntarily committed to a psychiatric institution. Second Amendment rights can reinstate after five years and a doctor’s clearance.

But logical consistency doesn’t matter when the end goal of the left is to control guns by confiscating guns.

To Chu calling someone mentally ill is like pulling a gun on them, so to speak. “When you call someone “mentally ill” in this culture it’s a way to admonish people not to listen to them, to ignore anything they say about their own actions and motivations…”

Sure, just ask Kathleen Willey how that works.

But why any sane person would want to listen to Seung–Hui Cho’s ranting is a mystery to me and that goes for all the rest of the mass shooters and their manifestos.

The entire piece is so full of straw men that the column constitutes a fire hazard, but I think his solution to the problem is getting rid of white men and privately owned guns.

Chu appears to believe that the white, oppressive culture that is America today — President Obama, call your office — broadcasts subliminal messages picked up by the most vulnerable among us, who aren’t crazy, just indoctrinated.

No credit is ever granted to white America. “And hundreds of years of history in which an entire country’s economy was set up around chaining up millions of black people, forcing them to work and shooting them if they get out of line? That’s just history.” The only problem with that is slavery in the US lasted less than 100 years and 400,000 Union troops died to remove that stain from our nation’s honor.

Finally, in full frothing–at–the–mouth mode, he concludes, “We love to talk about individuals’ mental illness so we can avoid talking about the biggest, scariest problem of all–societal illness.”

The entire piece reads enough like a manifesto to make me hope Chu isn’t a gun owner himself. The rational among us can be thankful that outside the fever swamp of Salon this screed will have little influence and we can mark Chu as a Bernie Sanders voter who thought the finest moment in recent history was the Occupy movement.

Are You Smarter Than a Supreme Court Judge?

Stevens' idea for amending the Constitution is a loser, too.

Stevens’ idea for amending the Constitution is a loser, too.

April was not a good month for Americans that still believe the Supreme Court is a font of legal wisdom. Former Justice John Paul Stevens authored an Op–Ed in the WaPost proving you can be ignorant of history, blinded by ideology and confused regarding the plain meaning of words and still get to wear the black robe.

Stevens’ essay was titled ‘The five extra words that can fix the Second Amendment.’

And no, Stevens’ five words weren’t “you can’t have a gun,” but that’s a good guess.

He began his effort in problem–solving by using the left’s favorite technique: Use distorted statistics to shock the public and advance a disingenuous argument: “Each year, more than 30,000 people die in the United States in firearm-related incidents.”

That’s a big number. Almost as big as the total number of Americans killed each year in car crashes. What Stevens purposely leaves out is the fact that 19,392 — or six in ten — of those deaths were suicide!

Once the suicide is removed from the total, it become obvious that riding in a car driven by a cell phone–wielding woman is much more dangerous than living in Virginia where people are allowed to carry guns openly. And cell phones aren’t protected by the Constitution.

What Stevens should be calling for is federal suicide control. If Congress would stop listening to the mortuary lobby and pass an effective law banning suicide — or at least get the ball rolling by creating suicide–free zones (this alone would speed up Metro travel in DC) — we could eliminate almost two–thirds of the gun deaths overnight.

The rest of the country could experience the safety and tranquility that residents of Detroit and Chicago currently enjoy in their gun–free cities. Once suicide is outlawed only criminals will kill themselves, surely a win–win.

But suicide doesn’t generate much news coverage so publicity–seekers aren’t interested in this sensible step to prevent unnecessary death.

Stevens contends the interpretation of the 2nd Amendment was ‘settled,’ much like global warming science, until the NRA went rogue. “For more than 200 years… federal judges uniformly understood that the right…was limited in two ways: First, it applied only to keeping and bearing arms for military purposes, and second, while it limited the power of the federal government, it did not impose any limit whatsoever on the power of states or local governments to regulate the ownership or use of firearms.”

That’s accurate without being truthful, since for two centuries neither states nor the federal government were trying to ban types of weapons, restrict the sale of weapons or impose ownership restrictions. So who would file a suit to stop an infringement that didn’t exist?

As for not imposing a limit on state or local governments, Stevens proves his knowledge of the Constitution is limited. If what he wrote is true then the Bill of Rights wouldn’t prevent states and cities from limiting speech, searching without a warrant and shutting down the newspaper if it criticized Barack Obama.

Stevens then lurches from urging judges to butt out because, “Public policies concerning gun control should be decided by the voters’ elected representatives, not by federal judges.” To complaining that those same legislators aren’t doing enough to seize weapons from the law abiding in the wake of Virginia Tech and Sandy Hook.

Before gracing us with his five–word prescription for domestic gun bliss, Stevens’ last contribution is to completely misrepresent the Bill of Rights and specifically the 2nd Amendment. He claims the amendment “was adopted to protect the states from federal interference with their power to ensure that their militias were “well regulated.” This is ludicrous on its face. The Bill of Rights was added to the Constitution to protect individual rights and without those 10 amendments the Constitution would not have passed.

The obvious plain language of the 2nd protects an individual right to own weapons, but that’s evidently too subtle for a retired Supreme Court justice.

Then Stevens graces us with his solution: His amended amendment: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms when serving in the Militia shall not be infringed.”

If anything those five words would initiate an explosion of litigation.

In Athens a citizen was subject to military service until age 60. I figure I can pull a trigger until well into my 90’s. Sixteen–year–olds often served in militias, too, so many underage restrictions go by the board, thanks to Stevens.

As a serving militia member I will need my weapons at hand in case of a sudden call out. That makes militia members immune to any restrictions on carrying a firearm. I can carry in schools, courtrooms, national parks, football stadiums and even Toby Keith’s.

Stevens evidently believes the same legislators who aren’t passing the gun laws he wants are suddenly going to come down hard on militias. Historically militias were locally based and locally run without interference or control from the state government.

Each militia decided what weapons to carry, uniforms to wear, method of selecting officers and how often to meet. With Judge Stevens help you can think of the new militia as the Shriners with sidearms.

And as for what weapons to carry, let’s look at the world’s best–known militia the Taliban. The Talibs have RPGs, fully automatic rifles, grenades, heavy machine guns and donkeys. Everything the well–equipped American militia member could want, except for the donkey.

Stevens’ ‘solution’ removes age restrictions, expands the scope of weapons allowed for personal ownership and eliminates most geographic restrictions on where weapons can be carried. It’s the exact opposite of what Stevens wants, but not an unusual outcome for leftist social engineering.

If it weren’t for those boring monthly militia meetings, I would support him 100 percent.

Feeling Threatened? Borrow a Legislator!

Indians & Gun ControlThe reason the debate over the 2nd Amendment is so futile is that supporters of the amendment have two jobs — one expected, the other burdensome. Marshalling an argument for your position is only natural in a debate and if it’s not done, that side deserves to lose.

What’s burdensome is 2nd Amendment supporters also have to explain how guns function to opponents who are dangerously ignorant and basing their position on feelings, myths and MSNBC.

It’s like debating physics with Wile E. Coyote.

The gun control debate in Colorado is a perfect example. For years Rep. Diana DeGette (D–Space Cadet) has sponsored federal legislation to ban “high capacity magazines.” Naturally after Sandy Hook, DeGette began pontificating about her bill once again. She predicted that banning “high–capacity magazines” would reduce gun violence because “”the bullets will have been shot and there won’t be any more available.”

This may have been true if DeGette was talking about a “high–capacity” lipstick cartridge, but not an ammunition magazine. This is the equivalent of fighting high school vandalism by banning “high–capacity” egg cartons sold at Costco. In the real world magazines are reloaded and can be reused over and over, just like purses!

Later DeGette sent her “spokeswoman” Juliet Johnson out to clarify her remarks, but unfortunately the ignorance in her office isn’t confined to the officeholder. Johnson explained, “The congresswoman has been working on a high-capacity assault magazine ban for years and has been deeply involved in the issue; she simply misspoke in referring to ‘magazines’ when she should have referred to ‘clips,’ which cannot be reused because they don’t have a feeding mechanism.”

Wrong again. “Clip” is an inaccurate term for magazine and by any name the device is reusable as long as the spring holds up.

During hearings for state anti–gun legislation in March, State Sen. Evie Hudak told a rape victim testifying before her committee that it was foolish to think she could have stopped her attacker with a gun: “Statistics are not on your side,” Hudak explained.

For those residents who might want to pack more than a sheaf of statistics on their hip, House Majority Leader Dickey Hullinghorst offered solace. She claimed during an interview that firearms ownership is unnecessary because the state legislature protects citizens.

“As a woman, I have the right not to carry a gun and to feel safe on the streets,” Hullinghorst lectured, “and that’s what we provide for in the state legislature is for all of us in the state of Colorado — to feel safe on the streets without having to carry a gun.”

This could work. Here in the DC area we have a system called Capital Bikeshare where participants buy a membership and then borrow bicycles from stations scattered across the area when they need to go somewhere and don’t want to walk or drive.

I can see the same principle working with Colorado Legis–share. When a woman who doesn’t want to pack heat feels uneasy at the prospect of walking along a dark street, she simply borrows a legislator from a nearby station and the solon accompanies her. Residents can buy memberships from the nearest lobbyist.

Strong, assertive women like Hullinghorst would probably be in high demand, but any legislator is better than no legislator when you’re in a tight spot.

The Democrat–dominated state house then passed a series of anti–gun laws that resulted in a recall election for two prominent Democrat gun grabbers Sen. Angela Giron (Pueblo) and Sen. John Morse (Colorado Springs). The recall pitted the media, Democrats and billionaires like Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Eli Broad against a plumber who had to borrow money from granny to start the recall drive.

Yet outspent 27 to 1 the plumber and conservatives in Colorado won! Both Democrats lost and will be replaced by Republicans.

Evidence of firearms fantasy is not confined to Colorado though. After a calm and courageous bookkeeper named Antoinette Tuff prevented a school shooting by talking the gunman into surrendering, I anticipated the gunphobics would be urging Congress to pass emergency funding to put a bookkeeper with a megaphone in every elementary school in the country.

Washington Post columnist Petula Dvorak certainly didn’t disappoint. She crowed that there were no deaths in Decatur, GA in spite of the fact teachers weren’t armed, the NRA’s gun–toting police officers weren’t present and the school didn’t have “frightening ‘intruder drills.’”

Dvorak explains, “As soon as the man entered the school and fired one round into the floor, Tuff called 911 and stayed smooth and calm as a computer help line operator. She kept a conversation going among herself, the gunman and the 911 dispatcher…Her 911 call — listen to the whole thing; it’s riveting — is a portrait of poise, compassion and selflessness. She was exactly what America is forgetting to be.”

Unfortunately for Petula and all the lessons she would have America draw from this single incident, there is a stark difference between this attack and other shootings. The Georgia gunman shot the floor, while the high school, university and elementary school gunmen shot people. You’d think a highly trained reporter would notice that.

A school that prepared for a variety of contingencies and had a bookkeeper with a megaphone, along with an armed teacher or two, would have options for dealing with a gunman depending on whether the he shot the parquet or the principal. In Dvorak’s dream school the students and teachers would be out of luck in almost every case.

But that’s not an argument one can make with legislators, advocates and leftist journalists that live in a dream world. And even the Colorado recall results may bounce off their impermeable armor of ignorance and arrogance.

So for the rest of us the choice boils down to this: You can have “statistics” on your side or you can have Smith & Wesson. The choice is yours, for now.

The Interview: Terry McAuliffe & the Boston Attack

Intimidating pressure cookers like this will be a thing of the past after Democrat Terry McAuliffe becomes Virginia governor.

Intimidating pressure cookers like this will be a thing of the past after Democrat Terry McAuliffe becomes Virginia governor.

(A source within the McAuliffe for Governor campaign leaked a copy of this transcript from an interview with a New York Times Sunday Magazine reporter. I felt I owed it to my readers to give them an advance look at this latest development in the Virginia governor’s race.)

NYT REPORTER: Governor McAuliffe, ha, that’s a bit premature, Mr. McAuliffe I could not help noticing at today’s media event that you were surrounded by all the genders of the rainbow, all ages and all races. And what’s more, everyone was wearing jogging clothes and actually smelled a little sweaty. Do you think the symbolism was important for your new legislative agenda?

Terry McAuliffe (D–Flim Flam) candidate for governor in Virginia: (Laughs) Well President Obama and Mayor Bloomberg had already booked the famous Boston marathoners, so we made do with local volunteers and a few of the better kept homeless. I will say we had a few problems convincing the older gentlemen to put on those tiny running shorts, but everyone was a good sport and happy to do a few laps around my indoor track to get in character for the event.

 

NYT: Tell us about this new legislation.

McAuliffe: It’s very simple. This is a problem and I have a government solution. After I’m sworn in, during my first hour as Virginia’s new governor I intend to introduce legislation to implement what I call common–sense pressure cooker control that all American’s can support.

 

NYT: How will it work?

McAuliffe: The centerpiece of the legislation is a one–per–month limit on pressure cooker sales to civilians. Purchasers will be entered into a statewide Culinary Registry where their name will be matched against previous purchases. This is a painless process for shoppers, which we will begin in upscale department stores. If their name comes up as having purchased a pressure cooker less than a month previously, they will be directed to a nice toaster oven or blender. In fact, if they are willing to give us their email address, the state will notify them when they are eligible to again purchase a pressure cooker.

 

NYT: The program will be limited to Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus?

McAuliffe: Certainly not. I’m aware that good value can be found at Target and something called ‘Big Lots.’ In fact, I intend to close the so–called ‘second–hand loophole.’ We will regulate sales at flea markets and thrift stores. Just because you may ‘no hablo’ doesn’t mean you should not register your purchase. I’ll give the secretary of technology six months to come up with an ‘app’ that will allow Smartphone registration in smaller stores and at garage sales.

 

NYT: So the legislation is just a limit on the number of purchases?

McAuliffe: No, I should have said a comprehensive, common–sense approach. There will also be a limit on the size of pressure cookers. No one really needs one of those high–capacity pressure cookers. Herbert Hoover only promised a single chicken in every pot, not an entire flock. And at our house my cook, Consuela, has never had to use a high–capacity pressure cooker. And that includes the really big fund raising events Bill Clinton attended before he became a vegan.

My kitchen experts also tell me that with the shrinking size of the American family and the distaste professional women display toward cooking, pressure cookers of 3 or possibly 4-quart capacity will be sufficient.

In addition, we also have design guidelines for cookers sold in Virginia. We want manufacturers to cut down on the number of dials and vaguely threatening controls found on some pressure cookers. In my experience newlywed cooking is frightening enough without adding an ominous pressure device to the mix.

 

NYT: Will this legislation have any impact on the Virginia economy?

McAuliffe: Of course I don’t want to do anything that would harm job creation. That’s one of my most popular focus group tested talking points. We certainly don’t want an Obamacare situation here. So there will be a size limit exception for commercial establishments that may require a larger–capacity cooker for their clientele. Right now homeless shelters, soup kitchens, prisons and Old Country Buffett are exempt from both size and purchase limits.

 

NYT: But what about existing large capacity pressure cookers that are already owned?

McAuliffe: The size of the existing pressure cooker market is nothing like that of the gun market, thank goodness. Plus there is no National Cooker Association pressuring gutless legislators. I feel that as inexperienced newlyweds burn things in pressure cookers, divorce papers are filed and just the general wear and tear of moving occur, the large capacity pressure cooker inventory will be reduced to a manageable size.

 

NYT: What about the public health component of your program?

McAuliffe: That’s important, too. The director of the state department of health will be encouraging pediatricians to ask their minor patients if they live in a house that contains pressure cooker and if so where is it stored. It’s important to know who has access to the cookware. We are also considering including a few questions on the amount of salt used in cooking and the presence of trans–fats.

 

NYT: Do you feel these common–sense regulations will remove the threat?

McAuliffe: This will certainly reduce the threat that originates in the kitchen, but at the same time, I don’t want to overlook the delivery system used in the Boston attack. I think the day of large, military–style backpacks is over. Black, camo or other assault backpacks are simply not necessary for civilian transport. When we were all still reeling from the tragedy, I was leaning toward banning backpacks entirely, but when my daughter pointed out the crucial role backpacks play in our education system, I relented.

 

NYT: What backpacks will be allowed in the future?

McAuliffe: We are currently writing the new regulations, but I think most backpacks that feature licensed characters or come from OshKosh B’Gosh, REI or Victoria’s Secret will be allowed, particularly if the backpack has those sexy little stringy straps. I also intend for the state patrol to conduct “backpack buy back” programs where outlawed backpack owners can turn in illegal backpacks in exchange for reusable grocery bags.

 

NYT: How long before Virginians can expect to see a difference?

McAuliffe: As the War on Poverty has proved, no problem that government attacks is really ever solved, but I think this is an important first step. 

Jesus, Another Innocent Man Wrongly Convicted

bitter christian

Few pastimes are more entertaining than witnessing a smug, non–orthodox Jew giving instruction on New Testament theology to Christians. Last Saturday the most reverend Lisa Miller in her Washington Post ‘Belief Watch’ column asked readers, “Is gun ownership Christian?

This puts believers at an immediate disadvantage because Christ did not spend much of his ministry discussing consumer goods. He mentions the odd cloak, fragrant ointment, sword and widow’s mite, but one would not confuse Him with Ralph Nader or other marketplace stalwarts.

Besides, since Miller picks and chooses what she believes in regard to her own faith, she has no problem distorting the Gospel in an effort to draft Jesus into Code Pink.

She begins by completely misunderstanding the significance of Jesus on the cross. Miller writes, “The Christian Lord allowed himself to be crucified rather than fight the injustice of the death sentence imposed on him.” To co–opt Mark Twain; this is an inability to distinguish between lightning and the lightning bug.

On the contrary, it was not a miscarriage of justice. The sentence was the fulfillment of divine justice. Christ willingly substituted Himself on the cross in place of a sinful mankind. God did not alter the terms of the first Covenant with Abraham. There was a price to be paid for man’s rebellion and he decided to pay it Himself. (This refusal to “evolve” on the part of the creator, should give pause to modern “Christian” leader’s attempts to revise and soften the New Testament, but it doesn’t.)

Consequently, Christ was not the earliest recruit for the left’s anti–capitol punishment movement. Christ died for our sins. He willingly paid the price we could not pay and ushered in the New Covenant.

There would be no Christians without Christ’s death on the cross. Even if the Jerusalem chapter of the Innocence Project had tried to get Him off the hook, He would have refused the offer, because to do so would have rendered His work pointless.

After that inauspicious beginning, Miller moves on to the point of her column, “How do such Christians reconcile their stalwart commitment to the Second Amendment with their belief in a gospel that preaches nonviolence?” And then she quotes Matthew 5:39 – “If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”

This leads me to believe Miller was also not a fan of the excellent movie “Machine Gun Preacher”

Then it left me wondering if I had missed a recent development on the violence front, so I did an online search on “strike AND cheek AND gunfight” to see if there had been a rash of concealed carry permit holders (CCW) lighting up people who slapped them.

That search string was a bust, so I tried “strike AND cheek AND shoot” with the same result. Evidently there is no problem with Christian gun owners initiating violence. Miller’s goal appears to involve persuading Christians to join the ranks of the defenseless. This decision, however, would not be made in a vacuum. Should a Christian head of household decide to disarm because he believes guns are inherently evil, like cigarettes or 16 oz. sodas, his decision would not affect him alone. His wife, his children and mom in the basement would all instantly become draftees in the War for Pacifism.

And the family would be misguided draftees at that. As Adam Clarke points out in his commentary on the passage, these “exhortations belong to those principally who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake.” Say for example, an orthodox Christian that leftists like Miller slap up the side of the head for refusing to support homosexual marriage. Following Matthew, the Christian would turn the other cheek as he said he does not approve of the homosexual lifestyle either.

The verse is most certainly not directed toward ancient or modern Christians with a desire to defend their persons or their family.

Then Miller snidely intimates that “conservative Christian leaders are not falling over themselves to proclaim in public their pro–gun theologies.” But then Miller proceeds to list various Christians who are doing just that.

She takes issue with Richard Land, a former Southern Baptist Convention official, who said during a December interview on National People’s Radio (NPR) that he supports arming teachers. And Miller concludes with David French, senior counsel for the American Center of Law and Justice, who told her “Turn the other cheek does not mean turn your wife’s cheek or turn your children’s cheek.”

Miller — who works for an organization sporting guards who check commoners before they are allowed to enter — replies, “Provocative, but unconvincing. Jesus identified with the weak, not the strong; with the victims, not the shooters (or the people with the guns).”

Wrong again. Jesus praised a Roman centurion who controlled his own sword and 90 others — for his faith, saying, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith.” What’s more, Jesus reached out to the weak and the victims, but unlike leftist community organizers, He considered Himself a shepherd and the shepherd doesn’t hand the wolf a napkin as he approaches the herd.

There is another verse that’s very germane to this discussion, although Miller manages to overlook it. Luke 6:42 advises, “Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye?”

Miller would do more to protect the innocent life of children if she would worry less about the imaginary threat of “assault weapons” in the hands of Christians and more about the real threat of “assault doctors*” who are responsible for the deaths of over 1 million innocents each year during abortions.

*Thanks to my wife, Janet, for this inspired term that aptly describes a depraved occupation.