That Warren Burger Quote Gun Grabbers Love Is Ahistorical — Not To Mention Sort Of Fake

I don’t know how many times people have dropped this alleged quote from the late “conservative” Justice Warren Burger into my social media feeds:

The gun lobby’s interpretation of the Second Amendment is one of the greatest pieces of fraud — I repeat the word ‘fraud’ — on the American People by special interest groups that I have ever seen in my lifetime. The real purpose of the Second Amendment was to ensure that state armies — the militia — would be maintained for the defense of the state. The very language of the Second Amendment refutes any argument that it was intended to guarantee every citizen an unfettered right to any kind of weapon he or she desires.

If you find yourself in a debate over the Second Amendment, sooner or later someone is going to let you know that Burger believed an individual right to gun ownership was one of the “greatest pieces of fraud” perpetrated on the American people. Burger’s line is ubiquitous—it can be found in The New Yorker, Slate, Politico, NPR, every major newspaper, and in every anti-gun columnist’s pieces.

The first problem with the popular online iteration of the quote is that it’s actually cobbled together from three separate sources to give it more impact. Don’t get me wrong: Burger is mistaken in all instances, but he is mistaken in different contexts.

The second problem is that the quote often reads as if Burger—the “conservative” who voted with the majority in Roe v. Wade—offered this argument as a member of the Supreme Court. No high-court decision has ever defined the Second Amendment as anything but an individual right. And Burger never uttered a word about the Second Amendment while sitting on the court.

For that matter, he never rendered a gun decision on any court, nor ever wrote a legal paper on the issue. And it shows.

Then again, the “collective right” theory was only a recent invention of revisionist historians and anti-gun activists when Burger adopted it. It’s also a tough one to sell to anyone who cares about history.

Nearly every intellectual, political, and military leader of the founding generation, from John Adams to Thomas Jefferson to Benjamin Franklin to George Mason to Samuel Adams to George Washington to Patrick Henry to James Madison and so on, is on the record defending the individual’s right to bear arms. There is not a single record of anyone in that era challenging the notion.

Anyway, the part of the quote about the gun lobby is taken from a 1991 PBS interview in which Burger erroneously argues that the 18th-century conception of “well regulated” was the same as the contemporary one. The notion that the state, much less the federal government, would be empowered to “regulate” what kind of weapons you owned would have been alien to a person in 1789. “Well regulated” simply means a well-pulled-together militia, rather than a rabble.

Burger maintains that the real purpose of the Second Amendment was to ensure that state armies would defend state populations. This is an ungrammatical and ahistorical reading of the amendment.

Yes, there was a debate over standing armies and control of the militias. But, as the late Justice Antonin Scalia pointed out in Heller, “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed” is the operative clause in the Second Amendment. The “well regulated Militia” part is the prefatory clause.

It makes zero sense to read the prefatory clause as a nullification or even limitation of the operative clause. It is tantamount to arguing that because the First Amendment says Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, it’s not an individual right to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

The Second Amendment explicitly mentions “the right of the people” — people who generally used their own weapons as militiamen — just as it does elsewhere in the Bill of Rights when protecting individual rights. Many colonies enshrined the individual right to bear arms in their constitutions before the Bill of Rights was even written, most of them in much more explicit terms. No state defined it as a collective right. Some Federalists argued that special protections in the Bill of Rights were unnecessary because there were so many guns in private hands that it was unimaginable any tyrannical army could ever be more powerful than the public.

The other two parts of the quote are lifted from different passages in a column Burger wrote for the Associated Press. Here the former justice expands on his idea that guns should be regulated like cars.

“[A]lthough there is not a word or hint in the Constitution about automobiles or motorcycles,” Burger says, “no one would seriously argue that a state cannot regulate the use of motor vehicles by imposing licensing restrictions and speed limits based on factors of driver’s age, health condition, and driving record, and by recording every purchase and change of ownership.”

It is because automobiles and motorcycles — or transportation as an ideal — are not explicitly protected by the Constitution that you can heavily regulate those things. The better analogy would be due process or speech rights. (Although Burger wasn’t a great fan of the First Amendment, either.)

Besides all that, Burger should have known that Americans, even in 1991, did not have “unfettered” access to “machine guns.” In 1986, the Firearm Owners’ Protection Act law made ownership of fully automatic weapons pretty rare.

Burger also should have known that the Gun Control Act of 1968 established the first federal age limits for buying guns. Today there are tens of thousands of laws regulating gun ownership in the United States. That is not “unfettered” by any definition.

In fact, it doesn’t seem like Burger knew very much about the topic at all.


All Wars Are Bankers’ Wars

Fascist-Freddy – December 15th, 2022

All Wars Are Bankers’ Wars explores a common central banking connection behind America’s wars. Direct quotes from the founders, presidents, and other world leaders are cited regarding each of the major wars America was involved in, beginning with the American Revolution, King George III and Benjamin Franklin, and culminating with a warning and solution to avoiding World War III.

SourceSouth Australian Gov Criminal Organisation

DC Panel Calls for Removing, Relocating, or ‘Contextualizing’ Washington Monument, Other Landmarks

A committee formed by D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser issued a report Tuesday recommending the removal, relocation, or contextualization of the Washington Monument and a number of federal monuments and buildings in Washington,DC.

Bowser formed the District of Columbia Facilities and Commemorative Expressions, or “DC FACES” committee in July, to study assets in D.C. named after individuals to “ensure these individuals reflect contemporary DC values,” according to the report.

The committee was asked to make recommendations if a namesake is “inconsistent with DC values and in some way encouraged the oppression of African Americans and other communities of color or contributed to our long history of systemic racism.”

The report recommended:

Using the Mayor’s position on the National Capital Memorial Advisory Commission, [to] recommend the Federal government remove, relocate, or contextualize the following assets:

1. Christopher Columbus – Columbus Fountain (federal)
2. Benjamin Franklin – Benjamin Franklin Statue (federal)
3. Andrew Jackson – Andrew Jackson Statue (federal)
4. Thomas Jefferson – Jefferson Memorial (federal)
5. George Mason – George Mason Memorial (federal)
6. Francis Griffith Newlands – Newlands Memorial Fountain (federal)
7. Albert Pike – Albert Pike Statue (federal)
8. George Washington – Washington Monument, George Washington Statue (federal)

The committee was made up of eight working group members and more than 20 staff members.

It focused on “key disqualifying histories, including participation in slavery, systemic racism, mistreatment of, or actions that suppressed equality for, persons of color, women and LGBTQ communities and violation of the DC Human Right Act.”

The committee also recommended renaming a number of other assets, including: public schools; residential buildings and campuses; community and recreational centers; parks, fields and playgrounds; government buildings; streets, roads and bridges; landmarks, and commemorative works; and statues and memorials.

“In all instances we believe strongly that all District of Columbia owned public spaces, facilities and commemorative works should only honor
those individuals who exemplified those values such as equity, opportunity and diversity that DC residents hold dear,” it said.

They looked at the costs of renaming, relocating, or contextualizing assets, which in some cases would cost as much as a million dollars or more.

After the report’s release, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) rebuked the committee’s recommendations.

“Hey D.C.—they’re not your monuments to rename or remove. They’re America’s monuments,” he tweeted.

Follow Breitbart News’s Kristina Wong on Twitter or on Facebook.



Please help truthPeep spread the word :)