Another view on 2nd Amendment history
I am writing this in response to Mr. Bill Ketter’s article “Disaster in Indy, delay in D.C.” in the Opinions section of the Tuesday, April 20, 2021, News and Tribune.
In his article he claims that he wants to put the 2nd Amendment in context, but fails miserably at doing so.
The 2nd Amendment was written in the aftermath of the war for independence from the British. The war was carried out in a time of division in this country much like today. Not everyone in this country was behind the movement for independence from the oppressive rule and taxation by Britain. The war was fought by volunteers with the modern weapons of the day or whatever they owned at the time. There was no U.S. Government or paid military at that time. There were militias of volunteers.
When the war was over they began drafting documents to form a new government. This was of great concern to many that had just fought the war. They had just won independence and were suspicious of forming a new central government. There were those that insisted that the 2nd Amendment be added to secure the people’s ability to challenge and defeat any new government that later was found to be as faulty as the one they had just fought.
Hunting, recreational shooting, and personal defense aren’t the reason for the Amendment, but by-products of it. In this context it would seem that the founding fathers weren’t trying to foresee the development of modern firearms or the stockpile of our government’s weaponry, but were trying to provide the people the ability to resist a tyrannical government if need be. That would suggest to me that they were expecting the people to have a fighting chance should the need arise. Single-shot muskets wouldn’t cut it today against the most powerful military in the world.
In the hands of a law-abiding citizen firearms are tools just as are a hammer or baseball bat. In the hands of a criminal any tool can be an assault weapon. Common sense tells us that it will be ineffective to ban the tools that a huge number of law-abiding citizens use safely rather than increase the regulation and control of criminals themselves. Imagine the government calling for banning automobiles because drunk drivers use them to kill a large number of people every year.
It’s not the tool, it’s the people using it that determines if it is used for good or for evil. How many times have you heard the phrases, “He/she had a lengthy arrest record,” and “He/she had a history of violence,” and “He/she had a history of mental illness”? The system and regulations are in place to conduct background checks, but the information needed for a comprehensive check isn’t always passed along the channels as it should be to prevent the sale of a firearm to a person that should not have one.
There seems to be a revolving door at the top of the courthouse steps because criminals enter and exit again, only to escalate their criminal behavior. One of the basic functions of all levels of government is protection of its citizens. It’s long overdue to get tough on criminals and correct the shortcomings in our system that perpetuates violent criminal behavior.
To read and make up your own mind about the context of the creation of the 2nd Amendment download the digitized book, “History of the United States,“ by Charles A. Beard and Mary R. Beard, Copyright 1921 by The Macmillan Company, available free from Amazon.com.
David Meyers, Henryville
Sisters continue fight for racial justice
As we learned of the triple guilty verdicts for Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer now convicted for the murder of George Floyd, we sensed a bit of light shining in the darkness that is systemic racism in this great nation.
We are grateful to the family of George Floyd for pressing on in their quest for a true justice. The Providence Community stands with all those who see these verdicts as a sign that police accountability is possible.
Even as we can now breathe a bit easier knowing that one police officer has been held accountable for the murder of one Black man, we, like so many others, recognize that excessive use of force and the killing of Black and Brown bodies continues seemingly unabated. We know that justice has not yet been achieved. And yet, we believe that true racial justice is possible.
One way to honor George Floyd’s life is to support the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act (HR 1280). We urge all Americans to contact your U.S. Senators and ask them to support the passage of this most important legislation.
Our faith calls us to honor and respect all persons. We profess that Black Lives Matter. We know that all life is equally sacred. We commit ourselves to continue the work of dismantling systemic racism. We pray the Litany of Non-Violence prayer (https://spsmw.org/prayer/sisters-of-providence-litany-non-violence/) as a daily reminder of this commitment. Join us. Everyone deserves to breathe freely.The
General Council of the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods:
Sister Dawn Tomaszewski, General Superior,
Sister Lisa Stallings, Vicar and General Councilor, and
Sisters Mary Beth Klingel, Jeanne Hagelskamp and Jenny Howard, General Councilors