There’s an old saying that goes something like this: No matter what your point of view, you can prove it in the Bible. It’s true in the Bible, and it is true in the US Constitution. For instance, my son who is a young lawyer was president of the Second Amendment Society at his law school. Damn the chicken in every pot ideal for American households, he believes a gun for every householder.
As for me, I have mixed feelings. The statistics indicate that countries such as Germany and France, where guns are outlawed, have extremely low murder rates. On the other hand, there is the remote possibility that our leaders could go bollywonkers and send some super troopers to storm our sacred homesteads, forcing unspeakable horrors upon us.
As for me, when I read the US Constitution, the words I read include an important paragraph. It says, in its archaic language filled with interesting commas, what we have a right to is “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.”
The history books I read of the era when the Constitution was written make it clear that every settlement, village, and town had a special building where the arms were locked up. They had a militia. Of course, some people had guns for hunting, too. On the other hand, people rarely kept arsenals under their beds.
As for the Second Amendment, I don’t know what is “right,” or “best” for us as a nation or as individuals. I just notice that the first phrase to the amendment is “a well regulated militia,” and that is quite different from individual households filled with guns. It is an circular debate, especially when you factor in the endlessly evolving state of our military capabilities. For example, if our military genuinely wanted to subdue our citizens, with their clever scientifically sophisticated weapons, could they trump the 2nd Amendment? Even the most sophisticated arms dealers and gun advocates would envy their whiz bang sophistication.
And so it goes, one can argue either side of this case with reasoned passion.
And so it goes, with almost everything of importance, interpretation is not so much a matter of specific words as it is a matter of context, emotional context, that is.
It’s so much more simple in the world of business. More often than not, the Profit Objective lends a cleanliness of reason that neither the Law nor Morality enjoy. If the objective is to create a profit, that intention drives our actions with clarity.
At the other end of the spectrum, when it comes to selecting a Supreme Court Justice, we cry fair or foul based on our personal convictions, depending on which side of Center we sit. Just as with the Constitution. It’s a matter of interpretations.