Guest Post: Protecting Gun Rights Is Not A “Stunt”

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The Fargo Forum editorial board believes that the protection of our inalienable rights is a “stunt”. They prefer feel good “solutions” coming out of Washington, DC. Solutions that will not accomplish the stated objectives but which will take yet more of your individual freedom and liberty.

As legislators we swear an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of North Dakota. To the Forum that may be a quaint relic from a less enlightened era, but it is an oath that we take very seriously.

The 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects each individual’s natural right of self-protection and clearly states that this right shall not be infringed. The North Dakota Constitution opens with Article I, Section 1 and states, in pertinent part, that all individuals have certain inalienable rights which include the right to “keep and bear arms for the defense of their person, family, property, and the state, and for lawful hunting, recreational, and other lawful purposes, which shall not be infringed.” (emphasis added)

Section 2 of Article I of our State Constitution states that government is instituted to protect our individual, natural, inalienable rights. And it is with that in mind that we take our oath.

House Bill 1183 is intended to defend the right of each individual to protect themselves and their families. It is not a “stunt”.

The editors claim that by attempting to uphold our Constitution that we are tilting at windmills. For this pronouncement from on high they cite the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution. But did they read it? The Supremacy Clause is as follows:

“This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding.”

Now, we are just simple state legislators but the phrase “made in pursuance thereof” jumps off the page. We believe that any law passed by Congress that infringes upon the 2nd Amendment would not be a law passed in pursuance of the Constitution. As a result it would not be supreme.

Further, our position with regard to the Supremacy Clause is supported by Alexander Hamilton who wrote in Federalist No. 33, January 2, 1788:

“But it will not follow from this doctrine that acts of the large society which are not pursuant to its constitutional powers, but which are invasions of the residuary authorities of the smaller societies, will become the supreme law of the land. These will be merely acts of usurpation, and will deserve to be treated as such.

Hence we perceive that the clause which declares the supremacy of the laws of the Union, like the one we have just before considered, only declares a truth, which flows immediately and necessarily from the institution of a federal government. It will not, I presume, have escaped observation, that it expressly confines this supremacy to laws made pursuant to the Constitution; which I mention merely as an instance of caution in the convention; since that limitation would have been to be understood, though it had not been expressed.”

However powerful the Federal government has become we believe in federalism. We also believe that it is well past time that the several states reassert their authority.

The tone and attitude of the editorial is troublesome and the Forum were not content with simply taking a poke at legislators, the editors could not pass up the chance to take yet another swipe at western North Dakota. This displayed attitude is not helpful. The citizens of western North Dakota do not deserve to be talked down to by the Forum. And they certainly do not need the Forum’s opinion as to what they need.

Despite the opinion of the “constitutional scholars” and the bright minds of the Forum Editorial Board, we will side with Mr. Hamilton and uphold our oath to the people of North Dakota. That is the “new reality” that must be grasped.

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  • RCND

    Here here!

    • SusanBeehler

      You probably suggested this asinine bill!

  • Dirty Harry

    Not bad for a couple of simple state legislators. Give ‘em hell.

    • SusanBeehler

      I think it is bad and a “stunt” and a “political game”. If our “legislators” are so into the Constitution then why don’t they uphold it in their committee meetings and allow those at minimum to speak about the bills before them with the same amount of time they allow for the “government” sponsored lobbyists or the “public” with a contrarian viewpoint. This is not all about the Constitution; they pick and choose which parts of the Constitution they want to defend and freedom of speech is the first ammendment is second when it comes to the second ammendment what our “state political government” wants!!!

      • Hal414

        “I think”

        Who cares what you think. You are irrelevant.

        • SusanBeehler

          All lives are relevant.

          • Hal414

            You are correct, all lives from conception to natural death are relevant. I will correct it to your thoughts on this subject are ill conceived and irrelevant.

      • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

        The First Amendment rests on the Second Amendment.

  • Roy_Bean

    “….To the Forum that may be a quaint relic from a less enlightened era…”

    Actually, the Forum is a quaint relic from a less informed era.

    • LibertyFargo

      +1.

  • sbark

    ……..and yet we have Dem’cats on CBS National Network still trashing the entire Constitution, let alone the 2nd Amendment.
    A Georgetown Univ Constitutional lawyer Seidman is
    Comparing the Founding Fathers to a present day foreign power. We shouldn’t allow people who died over two hundred years ago who knew nothing of our country as it exists today to rule us with laws made up back then……….
    Ironic, the radical left is less than 20% of our nations population……the same percent the Russian communists were just prior to the revolution……

    • $8194357

      Nazis were around 30 % if I remember right.
      The “vangaurd” have positions of influance
      and make the beast look larger than it is..
      The “ideology” on the other hand influances a larger percentage.

    • SusanBeehler

      Why would you want a “revolution” and to bear “arms” against your fellow Americans? People who talk as you are, are tyrannical!

      • Hal414

        Apparently you didn’t comprehend. sbark compared you in the radical left to the 20% of the Russian population. The 20% communist population were the ones who overthrew the government in the revolution. It’s you (20%) lefties who are destroying this country.

      • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

        Unimpressive rhetorical question. People have borne arms against their fellow citizens off and on for a very long time, both in this country and around the world. It is tyrannical governments that are the concern. Just as a aside, do you ever think through anything whatsoever before you excrete your comments? There is no sign that you do. I would ask you to think about it, but alas …

        • two_amber_lamps

          “Excrete”…. lol… Damnit FM I blew coffee thru my nose on that one!

          • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

            SusAnBeehler = the Say Anything Bimbo.

      • slackwarerobert

        Fellow americans would be bearing arms beside me, not against me. There is no constitutional right to overthrow your idiot neighbor.

  • Good Grief

    You would think that noted constitutional scholars Representatives Grande and Streyle would know that, while the Federalist Papers have (very rarely!) been cited by the Supreme Court as persuasive, they offer no legally binding precedent.

    For that, one would look to, you know, actual, binding precedent. Say, McCulloch v. Maryland, arguably one of the most famous decisions handed down by the Court. There, Congress’s power was broadly construed and the Court narrowly limited the authority of State governments to impede the federal government. In addition to specifically enumerated powers in the Constitution, it was held that certain broad federal powers are implied by the Necessary and Proper Clause. The decision explicitly refuted the idea of “compact federalism”, as the States did NOT ratify the Constitution, the people did. If the States were to retain the sovereignty as Petitioners argued, the States would have the ability to veto a federal action, a power they do not have.

    This principle was upheld THREE YEARS AGO in Comstock in a 7-2 decision. There, the Necessary and Proper Clause, in combination with the federal police power, granted Congress the authority to enact the Adam Walsh Safety Act. The Act allowed the federal government to order the civil commitment of a person, a power previously held by the States.

    Of course, one should not expect such reasoning to get in the way of a jolly good partisan exercise. One should, however, expect our diligent representatives to spend the three seconds on Google required to find out that the last time there was an Assault Weapon Ban (which will not happen again, so really, this is all moot as any other federal action will be less restrictive than such) was passed into law, it was not struck down by the Supreme Court for a reason.

    I understand that I just wasted ten minutes of my time, as none of this will make a difference in this echo chamber of a forum . . . but facts matter, people. Try and set aside the emotions of the debate for a moment and consider the document you all claim to love so much and its history.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      The funny thing is, this bull doesn’t impede the feds at all. They’re free to enforce what they want.

      So your condescending rant was, well, irrelevant.

      Boy do you look silly. Next time try knowing what you’re talking about.

      • Good Grief

        This bill does not impede federal law at all? Weird. When I read things like §2(1) – (6), which provide that State and local government can ignore all federal laws enacted after January 1, 2013, that’s exactly how I read it. Please cite your legal analysis that says otherwise, rather than an argument based on ad hominems, which also happen to carry no legally binding effect.

        And I am not sure when a reasoned argument became a condescending rant. But whatever.

        I have no problem with differing policy opinions. I do have a problem when one argues their opinion from a legal standpoint and does not understand the constitutional foundation that form their legal argument. I will continue to base my legal opinion on the law as I have learned it from trained professionals. When H.B. 1183 inevitably fails constitutional muster, you all can continue to talk about the “real” Constitution, as you understand it from your formal education in the law.

        • RCND

          And where is it stated states are required to enforce federal law, especially after the feds expended so much energy in court fighting the states who were trying to in the case of immigration? I also do not see the paragraphs you reference as ignoring federal law; rather they simply direct state and local agencies not to assist in the enforcement of federal law. Which brings us right back to my first question …

          • GG

            As we are dealing in hypotheticals–if 1138 actually passes, if Congress actually does anything on guns, etc–it is impossible to know where the enforcement will come in. But if all of the above happens, Congress will figure out a way for the States to take part in any plan they come up with (supremacy + necessary and proper? taxing and spending? commerce?). Who knows.

            I really think it’s all moot as I don’t think 1138 will pass, and anything that Congress passes will be so weak that nobody will but up a serious fight against it.

          • RCND

            That may be, but since we only meet 80 days every two years this is a good insurance policy at least for now. There is another positive aspect of 1183… it does not forbid assisting the feds in enforcement of existing laws. They need to stick to the ones they have now (which they have not been enforcing) before adding any new ones.

          • SusanBeehler

            We do not need insurance, the legislature can go into a emergency session if it is needed. This is just posturing and strutting “guns” to send a asinine political message.

          • slackwarerobert

            Not without sticking the taxpayer with the bill. Now if they do it pro-bono, I would have no problem waiting.

          • SusanBeehler

            The bill will allow charging federal law enforcement with a felony if they do their jobs or without the amendment willing to charge our own local law enforcement!

          • Hal414

            If someone commits a felony, they aren’t doing their job.

          • SusanBeehler

            Do you live in North Dakota?

          • Hal414

            Of course I do, that is very clear in my posts. What difference does that make?

          • SusanBeehler

            Because you seem to be clueless about the wording of 1183, the proposed law.

          • Hal414

            Well, you are clueless about everything.

            Here is the link for you since you are the one who doesn’t know what “aid and assistance” means.

            http://www.legis.nd.gov/assembly/63-2013/documents/13-0500-02000.pdf

          • Spartacus

            Good God you’re obsessed with where everyone lives! Have you ever thought about seeking help for that problem? It might be a good idea and Obamacare might even pay for it.

          • SusanBeehler

            So, some people post like they do not have a clue about what is happening in North Dakota and only are concerned with the National scene. This blog article does have to do with North Dakota

          • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

            Typical hick remark from the Babbler.

          • slackwarerobert

            Yes, but if she seeks help she will loose her 2nd amendment rights under obama. Better to stay crazy with your guns, than be sane and get robbed and killed all the time.

          • slackwarerobert

            No, they can pull a sting, and lure the suspect over state lines, and arrest them there, or wait till they step on federal property even. Federal employees do not have the right to break state laws. Just because they do it all the time does not mean it is legal to do it. There is no federal law the requires them to arrest anyone, that is what arizona is complaining about.

          • SusanBeehler

            Under a penalty of being charged with a crime, lets slap the threat of a felony on our federal law enforcement if they do their job or a threat of a misdemeanor if local officials, enforcement or anyone helps federal enforcement. That is “controling” “abusive” “tryannical”!!

        • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

          You should read the last paragraph of your original comment.

          And the law doesn’t say we ignore federal law, just that the state seeing enforce it.

          I thought that’s what the Obama administration wants after the whole Arizona/illegal immigration issue.

          Seriously, I’m not convinced you’ve even read the bill.

          • Spartacus

            Unwittingly GG has made you point out the gist of most of the problems with laws in this country. There are so many that they are selectively enforced. When one that isn’t enforced becomes an issue instead of looking at enforcement agencies and asking why they failed to enforce existing laws, lawmakers just do what their job description says they should do…create redundant laws. Now they’ve ran out of options, create the next law that will this time violate the constitution or ask why enforcement hasn’t done their jobs, either way it’s a problem with the government, not the citizens and government is choking on it.

          • $8194357

            Selectivly enforced for ideoligical leftist agenda driven purposes.

        • slackwarerobert

          So how does that impede any federal law? Nothing says they can’t come in and if they witness a federal crime arrest and try the offender for it. How is is ND fault holder says only feds can enforce federal law?

          • SusanBeehler

            Where do you live?

          • two_amber_lamps
          • SusanBeehler

            I thought I seen you in there.

          • two_amber_lamps

            Ms. SuzyStalkerB… why are you so obsessed with where people live? Do you intend to pay them a visit? It’s really rather creepy….

            But then creepy fits your meme.

          • SusanBeehler

            No I don’t plan on visiting anyone, but it is very irritating to me when someone is chiming in on a bill in our NORTH DAKOTA and they don’t live here and may have not even been here ever. Such as the many Californians and Virginians who seem to frequent the blog stories about a proposed North Dakota law or story. If you don’t like something about what we have going on in our state, than put it in the context of where you live.

          • two_amber_lamps

            I don’t recall the banter on this blog having any bearing on the future of the bill in question. People from other states might have some healthy insight, do you not care to hear input from outsiders? Sounds like you’re manifesting some xenophobic tendencies. Or are you just so ethnocentric as to automatically discount other opinions? ND uber alles Mrs. SuzyBHeilND?

          • slackwarerobert

            It isn’t where you live, it is keeping options open for where you can retreat to. obama is proof anyplace can become a cesspool when the idiots come out and vote.

      • SusanBeehler

        “Bull” is correct, this bill is “bull”. It is a “stunt”, it is a “political game” and just makes North Dakota look like a hick state which has no thought of fellow Americans, they rather shoot Americans (government tyranny) than come up with possible ways to help our urban Americans with gun violence nightmare they have to live with.

        • Hal414

          What the heck are you talking about? You are very strange.

          • SusanBeehler

            I was not talking to you. I was posting a reply with Rob (I believe you may not live in North Dakota) this article is about a bill 1183 which is “bull”. The bill is being driven by a “constitutional” interpretation the state has to protect the state residents from the “tyrannical federal government” it is a secession theme, a “confederacy” stunt and they are willing to sacrifice our law enforcement even if it is in bill form only.

          • Hal414

            You don’t know what you are talking about. Who in ND law enforcement opposes this bill? You are very strange, no wonder the legislature cut your crap off.

          • SusanBeehler

            Cass County Sheriff’s Department

          • Hal414

            I didn’t see any testimony on behalf of the Cass County SO. When was it given?

          • SusanBeehler

            Legislative Council would have any testimony on the bill, I think you have to request it before you can “see” it. Here is what was said by the Sheriff:http://sayanythingblog.com/entry/fargo-police-chief-calls-for-assault-weapons-ban/

          • Hal414

            Oh my goodness. Susan doesn’t know the difference between the County Sheriff and the City Police Chief.

            Susan, the Fargo City Police Chief is a political tool of the moron mayor, the Cass County Sheriff is elected by the county residents. There is a big difference between a political tool and elected official.

          • SusanBeehler
          • slackwarerobert

            Then you look at the law, the sheriff can arrest the police chief, the police chief cannot arrest the sheriff. So which one is the final authority?

          • slackwarerobert

            So where in the bill does it authorize shooting cops?

        • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

          Babble.

        • slackwarerobert

          Buy a gun and shoot back. You don’t need me to hold your hand for that. You don’t have to live in fear, crooks should be living in fear.

    • slackwarerobert

      And what “broad” federal power grabbing guns is needed to not infringe on the right to bear arms? They don’t need a law banning guns to ensure you have a right to have guns.

  • RandyBoBandy

    Diminishing the second amendment piece by piece is also a risky stunt. I would compare it to sky diving without a parachute, there really is no good outcome.

  • KJUU

    Well. How about we wait for actual constitutional scholars to weigh in, instead of editorial boards from North Dakota papers? How many constitutional scholars are employed by Forum Communications?

    I’ve forwarded the editorial to Eugene Volokh, we’ll see if it sparks any interest.

    • SusanBeehler

      How about we wait for the case to be decided in Montana before we jump on a political band wagon and look like hicks!?

      • Hal414

        You are the only one here who looks like a hick.

        • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

          Hick would be an upgrade for Sue the Babbler. Many hicks actually have some common sense.

          • SusanBeehler

            Common sense is what is lacking in this bill!

          • Spartacus

            If sense were really common then you would have some.

          • $8194357

            ( Many hicks actually have some common sense.)

            Thanks flame.
            Tee…Hee..

      • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

        Waiting for others to act is very, very hick.

        • SusanBeehler

          Wise

          • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

            Thank you.

      • Spartacus

        By we are you talking about yourself and the mouse in your pocket?

        • SusanBeehler

          North Dakota

      • slackwarerobert

        So what does montana’s constitution say about firearms? You can’t compare laws without comparing the framework that authorizes those laws.

  • banjo kid

    Two ways to look at gun control advocates number 1. they are silly and do not read the statistics , number two they want us unarmed so they can do as they please .

    • SusanBeehler

      What if you are unwilling to look at where common ground could be found to create a safer place to live and to address gun violence? Unwilling to look at a problem just allows a problem to grow!

      • Hal414

        Because your viewpoints don’t pass Constitutional muster, therefore, there can be no common ground.

        • SusanBeehler

          Your Constitutional muster, maybe but there is a common ground are you willing to go towards it?

          • Hal414

            I will be as far away from you as I can get!

          • banjo kid

            Are you willing to look at the truth for a change??

      • http://flamemeister.com flamemeister

        “Unwilling to look at a problem just allows a problem to grow!”

        My, my! A gem! May I be allowed to enter that in my Little Book of Fatuous Quotations?

      • banjo kid

        Susan you need to look at the stats in Australia before you want more gun control here. I believe we have about 70,000 gun control laws are you sure one more would help , they need to enforce the laws already on the books and do away with more than half of them. Talk to the lady who lost her parents one sunny day at Lubbies in Texas , she went by the stupid gun law and she was powerless to save her parents and she could have in a second, he was 12 feet from her as she reached in her purse and realized she had left her gun in the truck to be on the right side of the law. Like I said you are either a useful idiot or part of disarming America so it can be taken over by a dictator. Armed citizens reduce crime and murder. Look at the stats in every state that passed conceal carry and compare them to Chicago and New York. and California . Reactionary gets you in trouble and solves nothing. I am willing to look at anything that might reduce violence and crime but gun control will not do a thing .

        • SusanBeehler

          I think we can learn alot about guns right here in North Dakota, no need to go to a foreign country. 2011, 15 murders only 3 were unknown victims to the killer, the majority were domestic violent related and the most common weapon was a knife. 22,000 concealed weapons permits in North Dakota and we do not have “stranger” murder here. We have control of our guns in North Dakota. There is no reason to be “knee jerking” around legislation in a reaction to what is happening on the national scene, let’s see how this plays out.

      • slackwarerobert

        The problem is gun free zones. When are you going to start admitting that, and work to get rid of them?

  • $8194357

    UNESCO
    A UN agenda to re-write and social engineer American and global history..
    Leftist “social engineering false moral utopia”.

    And folks say I make this stuff up.
    Th UN’s real mission is to usher in:
    One World New World Order

    http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/2011/08/unescos-war-against-the-jews-.html

    UNESCO against the Jews

    Special:
    UN’s cultural body seems to be engaged in inquisition-like campaign against Israel
    Giulio Meotti Published: 07.19.11

    The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) adopted a decision calling on Israel to immediately cease all archaeological works in the Old City of Jerusalem. In particular, UNESCO, one of the UN’s most prominent and influential agencies, attacked the renovation of the Mughrabi Bridge that links the Western Wall plaza and Temple Mount.

    The decision, initiated and promoted by Arab states, was adopted by consensus of the Western members of the commission. Indeed, the vote is the latest anti-Jewish initiative launched by the UN office meant to promote culture, education and science around the world. In fact, UNESCO’s robber barons are sanctifying the current global campaign aimed liquidating the legitimacy of the Israeli regime.

    In 2009, UNESCO designated Jerusalem as “capital of Arab culture,” working with Palestinian Authority officials and key Arab figures to protest against what they described as “the Israeli occupation of Holy Jerusalem.” Other cities granted the title over the years were Algiers, Damascus, Cairo, Tunis, Amman, Beirut and Khartoum

  • SusanBeehler

    Fargo Forum editorial calls it a “stunt”, I do too or as you said a “political game”.

  • SusanBeehler

    The drafters of this legislation may have “intended to defend the right of each individual to protect themselves and their families.” But if this is the case you are trampling on my right to protect myself and my family in the way I feel safe. I do not feel safe when my state government is willing to pit law enforcement against law enforcement, by stating they will or could be charged with a crime. For me this is “state” government at its ultimate control, creating chaos. This is not in the best interest of all residents, it is overlooking those who want to live their lives “free” from state encroachment by state government. The state regulates who and how we can get concealed weapons permits we surely can regulated how guns are sold within in our state. We need LEADERS not politicians playing some game, pulling a “stunt” other states are pulling to show political clout, it is WRONG! There is no ban so this is the “boogeyman” bill.

    • slackwarerobert

      They only regulate “concealed” you are free to open carry the gun unencumbered. Now if you regulate concealed weapons and leave the assault rifles alone since you can’t conceal them, and any handgun worn outside of your cloths, I would call that reasonable. But how are law enforcement pitted against each other? Don’t they have to obey the law? No ban YET, they want to register now, so the ban later will work. There is no other rational reason for the government to know who has weapons. That NYC is already knocking on doors, and taking weapons that are registered because as they admit they know he has them is all anyone should need as proof the registration is just the first step.

  • Drain52

    Bingo!

  • devilschild

    Who cares what the Forum states on any topic?

  • slackwarerobert

    For once I have to support these idiot elitists. Get rid of the constitution, that gets rid of the federal government, It will be worth it. My state constitution will suffice for my protections.

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