Saturday, March 02, 2013

Give Up Your Guns ... Or Else!


Obama to Top Brass: Will you fire on American Citizens?
Gun Control
Any public official, elected or appointed, who either advocates for or attempts to restrict personal ownership of firearms is a domestic enemy of the Constitution
Matt Shipley
Friday, March 1, 2013
Every time a mass shooting happens in America, and before research or analysis for the actual cause can begin, many people and news outlets instantaneously clamor for national gun control as if they are following Rahm Emanuel’s dictum to “never let a serious crisis go to waste.” Such an approach speaks loudly that the issue is more about control than it is about guns.
As part of gun control advocates’ mantra and a cornerstone of their argument, they claim citizens don’t need assault weapons to hunt or to defend themselves in their homes. Although, it is true citizens can do both of these things without assault weapons, their claim misinterprets the intent of the Second Amendment and the right it was written to protect.
To understand why this claim completely misses the point of the Second Amendment, we must look at what the Second Amendment states and comprehend what it meant to those who wrote it. “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.”
According to George Mason and many other founders, the Militia, to which the Second Amendment refers, consists of “the whole people, except a few public officials” and “of all classes, high and low, and rich and poor.”[1] From this, it is important to understand that the Militia is the entire population of United States’ law abiding citizens. Obviously, in time of need, only able bodied male citizens would be expected to serve, but this does not restrict the right to bear arms to those who do not meet that description. Therefore, every law abiding citizen of the United States has a right to keep and bear arms without infringement from the national, State or local government, because it is a right bestowed by God derived from His commandment to honor life.[2]
The right of every citizen to keep and bear arms was so important that the first US Congress listed it immediately after the other freedoms about which “Congress shall make no law;” freedom of religion, speech, the press, peaceful assembly and to petition the government.
While the Second Amendment protects every citizen’s right to bear arms, many erroneously interpret the amendment to refer only to personal self-defense or sport. The framers of the Second Amendment recognized and understood the right to personal self-defense, but they had an expanded application from what citizens needed to defend themselves; specifically government tyranny.
The importance of this right may be lost to many in our present age, but its relevance and importance is no less valid today than when it was written. The founders who debated the terminology used in the Second Amendment, as well as citizens who debated for and against the ratification of the Constitution, made it clear the Second Amendment was written to protect liberty, the rights of citizens and as a defense against a national standing army.
Even though the Declaration of Independence lists liberty as one of the unalienable rights endowed by our Creator, there are people, namely elected and appointed officials, who would take away that liberty if they could. This is why Patrick Henry warned, “Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined.”[3]
The force to which Patrick Henry refers is best described by the author of the Letters from the Federal Farmer, most likely Melancton Smith, in which he describes the purpose of the Militia. “[W]hereas, to preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.”[4] The Federal Farmer makes it clear that liberty is only preserved through the whole body of the people keeping and bearing arms. This implies a use of force against government that has exceeded its constitutional authority and is stealing liberty from citizens.
James Madison made a similar point during the Bill of Rights debate in Congress. “A well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country.”[5]
From these quotes every American must understand that freedom is not free and it is only maintained through eternal vigilance against anyone who would dispossess us of it, which also includes inalienable rights. If individuals are incapable or overpowered in their ability to defend their rights through force, they might as well have lost them already. Although, might does not make right, it is always necessary in defending it.
Some may argue that our standing army defends our rights and freedoms, but it was for defense against a standing army the founders argued the need for every citizen to be armed. Eldridge Gerry, during the Bill of Rights debate in Congress, stated, “What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty.”[6] Eldridge Gerry made the point that guns are intended to prevent government from tyrannizing the populace and without guns citizens would not be able to exercise their right to take back their government when the government fails to uphold the law.
Standing armies have historically been a threat to the freedom and liberty of citizens, because standing armies are controlled by people who can and perhaps desire to take freedom and liberty away. This is why Noah Webster correctly deduced, “Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed;”[7] and it is for this reason every citizen must retain the right to keep and bear arms.
Every other right we hold dear depends on our right to defend ourselves, as Thomas Jefferson stated, “The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.”[8]
Further proof of this is found in Alexander Hamilton’s Federalist Papers. He stated, “... but if circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people while there is a large body of citizens, little, if at all, inferior to them in discipline and the use of arms, who stand ready to defend their own rights and those of their fellow-citizens.”[9] Hamilton’s point is that the arms and capabilities of citizens should never be grossly inferior to that of any standing army controlled by the national government.
George Mason made a similar point during the drafting of the Virginia Declaration of Rights in 1776. “That a well-regulated militia, composed of the body of the people trained to arms, is the proper, natural and safe defense of a free state; that standing armies in time of peace should be avoided as dangerous to liberty;...”[10] These quotes make it clear the right to keep and bear arms was primarily to defend freedom and liberty from a national standing army.
This leads us back to the critical question in the gun control debate, “What kind of arms do the people have the right to keep and bear? Just from the quotes above, a discerning person can deduce that the people possess the right to own equal or greater fire power than what the national government can bring to bear against them.
This sounds completely unreasonable when taking into consideration the lethality of modern military weapons, which is a valid concern. Yet, the answer to this conundrum does not lie in restricting the general public’s access to equal fire power. The solution is in restricting the national government’s access to overwhelming fire power to only when approved by Congress. This means the general public would not need weapons such as claymore mines, fully operational tanks, heavy artillery, anti-tank rockets, chain guns, or grenades and grenade launchers if the national government was restricted in wielding these weapons as outlined in the Constitution.[11] The Constitution confines this authority in Congress and limits it use to the purposes of suppressing Insurrections, repelling Invasions or when Congress declares War.[12]
These restrictions and limitations extend past the Army and Marine Corps to include modern paramilitary organizations masquerading as law enforcement agencies such as the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) and other entities under the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). All these organizations not only add a significant sum to our annual national expenditures, they place a very significant threat on the liberty of Americans. By establishing the DHS, the national government has consolidated control of military-like organizations at the national level and it uses them without Congressional approval. Fiascos such as Waco, Texas and Ruby Ridge, Idaho, in which rights of Americans were grossly violated, with near impunity, are prime examples of the threat these paramilitary organizations pose to Americans.
The substance of the gun control debate boils down to this simple fact: any public official, elected or appointed, who either advocates for or attempts to restrict personal ownership of firearms is a domestic enemy of the Constitution and anyone who attempts to take firearms away from law abiding citizens is operating outside of the law. American citizens are responsible for their own defense of freedom and it is past time Americans start exercising, via due process of the law, this responsibility by holding people accountable for these crimes they are committing against American citizens.
[1] George Mason, Virginia Ratifying Convention, June 16, 1788.
[2] American Founding Principles, The Origin of Rights, August 27, 2012.
[3] Patrick Henry, 3 J. Elliot, Debates in the Several State Conventions 45, 2d ed. Philadelphia, 1836.
[4] Letter from the Federal Farmer #18, January 25, 1788.
[5] James Madison, I Annals of Congress 434, June 8, 1789.
[6] Elbridge Gerry, I Annals of Congress at 750, August 17, 1789.
[7] Noah Webster, “An Examination into the Leading Principals of the Federal Constitution”, in Paul Ford, ed., Phamplets on the Constitution of the United States, at 56 (New York, 1888).
[8] Thomas Jefferson, 1 Thomas Jefferson Papers, 334 (C.J. Boyd, Ed., 1950).
[9] Alexander Hamilton, Federalist 29, January 9, 1788.
[10] George Mason, Article 13 of The Virginia Declaration of Rights of 1776.
[11] American Founding Principles, When is the President the Commander in Chief, October 22, 2012.
[12] US Constitution, Article I, Section 8, Clauses 11 and 15.
CDR Matthew W. Shipley graduated from Navy recruit training in January 1985, Electronics Technician “A” School in October 1985, Naval Academy Preparatory School in 1987 and the United States Naval Academy in 1991.
Shipley’s tours include Assistant Platoon Commander at SEAL Team EIGHT, test article Officer-in-Charge of a Mk V Special Operations Craft (SOC) at United States Special Operations Command, Operations Officer at Special Boat Unit TWENTY, Mk V SOC Liaison Officer to Special Operations Command European Command, Naval Special Warfare Task Unit (NSWTU) Commander for a Mediterranean Amphibious Ready Group, and Platoon Commander at SEAL Team EIGHT.
As a reservist, Shipley served as Executive Officer of Navy Reserve Naval Special Warfare Group TWO Detachment 309, as Executive Officer of SEAL Team THREE Fallujah, Iraq in 2006, and as NSWTU Commander Manda Bay, Kenya in 2006-2007. He is currently the Commanding Officer of SEAL Detachment EIGHTEEN in Little Creek, Virginia.
Shipley’s awards include: Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Defense Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal and various unit, campaign and service awards.
'Guns for Greatness': Gun buyback program would reward New York's young gunslingers with mentorship and Beyonce concert tickets for The Mrs. Carter ShowHip-hop mogul Michael (Blue) Williams, the head of Family Tree Entertainment, awaits approval of the private-sector program from NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly
By Shane Dixon Kavanaugh and Bill Hutchinson / New York Daily News
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Williams, who has managed OutKast and Cee-Lo Green, plans to get Beyonce directly involved with "Guns for Greatness." He has raised $75,000 for the program, in which Commissioner Raymond Kelly has expressed interest, and is trying to reach $100.000
A millionaire hip-hop mogul has a bold plan to rid New York City streets of firearms: He wants to
offer young gunslingers who turn in their weapons mentorships ... and Beyoncé concert tickets.
Michael (Blue) Williams, the head of Family Tree Entertainment, has pitched the city’s first private-sector gun buyback program to NYPD brass and is waiting for Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly’s okay.
“We want to get as many guns off the streets, and if this works, we’d like to support it,” Kelly told the Daily News, adding that the proposal needs more study.
If given the green light, Williams — who has managed the wildly successful careers of OutKast and Cee-Lo Green and has the ear of hip-hop and rap royalty — said he’ll solicit help from none other than Beyoncé.
“The Beyoncé show is coming to Brooklyn; the Jay-Z show is coming to Yankee Stadium. Our goal is to reach out to individuals who are in my industry, in my world and who I have an association with and get their support,” Williams, 43, said Monday.
“I think we should all work together to help get guns off the streets,” Williams said.
Beyoncé is slated to perform at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center in August, while Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake are set to play Yankee Stadium in July. Williams hopes to also talk Jay-Z into the guns for tickets deal — once police sign off on it.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly (left) is studying the the gun buyback proposal with other city officials
Williams hopes to launch the program — dubbed “Guns for Greatness” — on March 23 at a Brooklyn church.
Kelly said the police would have to be involved.
“You need police officers present. You’d need the expertise,” Kelly said.
Williams has raised $75,000 for the program is working to boost that figure to $100,000.
“This program aims to provide young people with an opportunity to receive guidance and inspiration from committed mentors, an important option that will enable them to experience possibilities other than a life surrounded by gun violence and unnecessary shootings and killing,” Williams’ letter to Kelly reads.
Hip-hop mogul Michael (Blue) Williams pitched the gun-for-tickets plan
Williams said he was prompted to do something about gun violence after his business partner, Chris Lighty, co-founder of Violator records, shot himself to death in August. He said his own recent arrest for bringing a gun he had registered in Georgia but not in New York through LaGuardia Airport was also an “eye-opening experience.”
“It was just sort of like a pushing point,” Williams said. “It eventually convinced me that one person can make a difference if they believe in something.”
He sent a written proposal to Kelly on Friday after meeting with top police brass.
The letter was co-signed by Richard Buery, president and CEO of the Children’s Aid Society; L. Londell McMillan, publisher of The Source magazine; and former federal prosecutor Kenneth Thompson.
“I was very excited to lend any assistance I could because I think what he (Williams) has developed is unprecedented,” said Thompson, 46, a candidate for Brooklyn district attorney. “Blue has set up a way to reach these young men.”
Thompson, who went into private practice after helping to prosecute cops involved in the infamous Abner Louima torture case, envisioned the program serving as a model across the nation.
“He doesn’t have to do this,” he said of Williams, who has made a fortune in a hip-hop management career spanning 20 years. “He’s doing this because it’s the right thing to do.”
Source magazine publisher Londell McMillan co-signed the letter to Kelly
The program will aim at enticing young black and Latino men ages 16 to 36 to give up their weapons for a chance at an alternative to gun violence.
In the letter to Kelly, Williams noted that “95% of shooting victims and shooting suspects in New York City are either black or Latino.”
“A disturbingly high number of these victims are young people,” the letter reads. “As Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Mayors Against Illegal Guns and others have noted strongly, the issue of gun violence is an urgent crisis that requires immediate attention.”
Williams said the initiative would be similar to the current NYPD gun-buyback program offering up to $250 cash for weapons surrendered anonymously with no questions asked.
But anyone who seizes the opportunity to sign up for a mentorship with major movers and shakers from an array of industries — including the recording business and finance — will receive a bonus, he said.
“You can make a decision to take that money and walk back out, or you can make the choice to get a mentor,” said Williams, raised in the south Bronx by a single mother who was a school principal.
Former federal prosecutor Kenneth Thompson also co-signed the letter
“In my perfect world, I’d love to have a gift package for signing up for the mentorship program that is worth way more than $250,” he said. “I think that when you’re dealing with younger people, you have to offer a little more to incentivize them,” he said.
The NYPD’s gun-buyback efforts began in 2008 with the collection of 2,632 firearms, but public participation has drastically dwindled since. Last year, only 941 guns were surrendered.
And Williams suggested the demographic turning over guns to the NYPD includes very few of the young hip-hop fans he deals with on a daily basis.
“That’s the audience they need to reach out for, the ones who are carrying the guns and committing the crimes. That’s my sweet spot, so to speak,” Williams said.
While it remains unclear if Beyoncé will lend her support to Williams’ program, the superstar and her husband, Jay-Z, were criticized by the singer and social activist Harry Belafonte in August for not doing enough to combat social ills.
“I think one of the great abuses of this modern time is that we should have had such high-profile artists, powerful celebrities. But they have turned their back on social responsibility,” Belafonte told the Hollywood Reporter.
“That goes for Jay-Z and Beyoncé, for example. Give me Bruce Springsteen, and now you’re talking. I really think he is black,” Belafonte said.
Beyoncé representatives shot back with a statement citing “the unselfish work Beyoncé has done and continues to do.”
The list included co-founding The Survivor Foundation, a multipurpose community outreach facility in downtown Houston, and donating $100,000 in 2008 to the Gulf Coast Ike Relief Fund to aid Texas victims of Hurricane Ike.
Beyoncé also performed in MTV’s Hope for Haiti Now! Benefit.
The singer also contributed to the annual World Humanitarian Day initiative by releasing a video of her 2011 ballad “I Was Here,” which was filmed at the United Nation’s General Assembly, her representatives added.
Also See:
What's Not Being Told About Newtown, Sandy Hook Elementary School?

(Part 1)
19 December 2012
(Part 2)
18 January 2013
Gun Control in America ... Really?
17 January 2013
Harper Scraps the Long-Gun Registry!
26 October 2011
Gun Control and the Right to Keep and Bear Arms
16 January 2009