In the early 1970’s, Congress passed an amendment to the Voting rights act to stop States from limiting who could vote based solely upon their age, specifically for those who were old enough to fight in Vietnam, but not old enough to vote for the leaders who were sending them to Southeast Asia.
Many people objected based on the same old ideas that young people have never been more sawcie and saucie. President Nixon was concerned that the amendment would not pass Constitutional muster, and that might endanger the entirety of the Voting Rights Act. He signed it, but he wasn’t totally onboard with it. Read the rest of this entry
In the ongoing (with no end in sight) debate over exactly what to do about mass shootings, the doctrines have become entrenched. On the Left, all guns must be eliminated, because Australia did this and ended gun violence. On the Right, Switzerland and Israel have guns everywhere and they have no such shootings.
Guns *must* be taken away; guns are a Constitutional right and *cannot* be taken away.
Who is correct? What if both sides are to a degree? What if neither side is correct at all? Read the rest of this entry
This week the 4th Circuit Court, ruling en banc, ruled that a Maryland State law banning “assault weapons” is Constitutional. The Court ruled that those weapons were “military” in nature and therefore they are not covered by the restrictions of the 2nd Amendment.
Conservatives are outraged. Progressives are ecstatic. Who is correct? Is it as simple as “I am conservative therefore the Court is wrong” or “I am progressive so the Court is right?” Did the 4th really ignore the precedents of Heller and other cases dealing with the 2nd Amendment?
In order to understand the issue, one has to consider two competing syllogism and their underlying axioms:
(A) All guns are military weapons.
Ownership of military guns should be restricted to the military.
Therefore the individual ownership of all guns should be restricted.
(B) All guns are military weapons.
The Militia is a military unit.
Individual ownership of all guns are protected by the 2nd Amendment.
Remember that in order to reach a valid conclusion, the basic assumptions of the axiom must be true. If the underlying presumption is false, the logic, regardless of how brilliant, will reach an invalid conclusion.
Did the Court base its ruling in a good axiom or upon a flawed presumption?