Cumberland Times-News

Letters

April 21, 2013

Right to bear arms not unconditional

Speaking as a gun owner, the U.S. Senate vote today (April 17) defeating West Virginia U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin’s bill to require the same background checks at gun shows that “over the counter” gun sales require, is an abomination.

The senators who voted against it should be sent home at the earliest voter opportunity.

It has been pointed out, correctly, that the auto is a killing machine. However, before I can operate an auto I must get a license. To do so I must; 1. demonstrate certain physical abilities; i.e. vision and mobility. 2. I must demonstrate my knowledge of the laws by passing a written test. 3. I must demonstrate my ability to control the vehicle by passing a driving test. Where is the parallel to guns? In some jurisdictions I’m not allowed to talk on my cell phone or text. (Wonder what the Founding Fathers thought about that?)

Now, off my soap box. Much has been said and written about the English Bill of Rights of 1689 and its relevance to the U.S. Bill of Rights, Second Amendment. Let’s examine the history behind the English Bill of Rights.

It followed out of the “Assize of Arms, 1181” in the Reign of Henry II. It proclaimed that;

1. “Let every holder of a knight’s fee have a hauberk, a helmet, a shield and lance. And let every knight have as  many hauberks, helmets, shields and lances, as he has knights fees in his demise.”

2. “Also, let every freeman, who holds chattels or rent to the value of 16 marks, have hauberk, a helmet a shield, and a lance. Also let every freeman who holds chattels or rent worth 10 marks have an aubergel and a  headpiece of iron and a lance ...”

4. “Moreover, let each and every one of them swear before the feast of St. Hilary he will possess these arms and will bear allegiance to the lord king Henry, namely the son of empress Maud, and he will bear these arms in his service according to his order and in allegiance to the lord king and his realm ...”

Contrary to what appears to be popular thought, the English Bill of Rights was regulated according to your status in life!

In the era before standing armies, the only way lords and kings could raise an army was by relying on the arms of their subjects. Later, King James II was a Roman Catholic. Among other grievances, he declared that Protestants were not allowed to bear arms to protect his throne and ensure a continued Catholic line.

The English Bill of Rights was primarily to allow the Protestants to protect themselves from the Catholics. First, the grievance, and second, the remedy related to bearing arms was;

1. “By causing several good subjects being Protestant to be disarmed at the same time when Papists were both armed and employed contrary to law. “

2. “That the subjects which are Protestant may have arms for their defense suitable to their condition and as allowed by law”

Thus, the right to bear arms was not unconditional. There were rules and restrictions. We need to be cautious in applying 16th century reasoning to 21st century problems. We now have standing armies and I don’t believe the Protestants fear attack from the Catholics any longer.

Medieval society could not, in their wildest imagination or dreams, envision all the problems facing our 21st century society.

Let’s be rational about gun control and direct our emotions to urging voters to exercise their voting privilege on all matters that affect us.

Ron Personett

Romney W.Va.

1
Text Only
Letters
  • It’s a secret It’s a secret

    Could someone enlighten us about why not even the names of the two entities bidding on development of the Footer Dye Works building can be divulged?
    A Times-News article about the bids included an explanation from a lawyer for the attorney general’s office about the need to keep the names and other information secret at this time. Despite that, the logic of not divulging at least a little more information escapes us.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • What do we do about those who weren’t criminals after all?

    Now that Maryland has become the 17th state to (finally) decriminalize possession of marijuana, one could say that the legislature and governor should be patted on the back for doing the right thing.

    April 17, 2014

  • Which approach to the school makes sense?

    What exactly is the long-range plan, according to the Allegany County Commissioners?
    I’ve read in the Cumberland Times-News that the current County Commissioners intend to spend $9 million to construct a new high school.

    April 16, 2014

  • H.O.G. Rally coming to Cumberland in June

    Let me introduce myself. My name is Francine Kraft and I am the Maryland/Delaware State H.O.G. Rally Coordinator for 2014.
    With a team of seven others, we have put together a rally for June 19-22 to be held in Cumberland.

    April 16, 2014

  • Access to trout ponds hard for those who have trouble walking

    I took my 5-year-old grandson Easton, who lives in Cumberland, to the Evitts Creek three ponds on March 31, the day it was stocked with trout.He had the joy and excitement of catching his first trout and two more. I have a Maryland fishing license and trout stamp.

    April 16, 2014

  • Wait long enough; they will die off without being cared for

    The letter to the editor of April 14 (“Military veterans have few friends in Washington, D.C.”),  I am afraid, hit the nail on the head — sort of — about this next set of returning veterans.

    April 16, 2014

  • Translations differ, but the message is eternal

    This letter is in response to a recent letter titled “One cannot compromise on God’s word” (April 13 Times-News). I had previously written a letter titled “Why are compromises so difficult to achieve” (April 7).

    April 15, 2014

  • Closing the loopholes will help clear the regulatory waters

    After a decade of uncertainty over Clean Water Act jurisdiction following Supreme Court challenges in 2001 and 2006, the Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers announced a forthcoming administrative rule to close enforcement loopholes, restoring protections to 20 million acres of wetlands, more than half the nation’s streams, and drinking water for 117 million Americans.

    April 15, 2014

  • The first step Remember where your freedom comes from before criticizing

    The deal at Fort Hood could have been avoided if it was caught in time.
    When you think a GI is not acting right, have him or her checked out before you put them back on duty and give them a weapon. Post-traumatic stress disorder is a serious and dangerous problem if it is not taken care of right away.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Midterm elections give chance to return to American values

    A movement has been started by veterans of our armed forces to get out the vote in 2014. That includes Coast Guard and Merchant Marine personnel for those not familiar with the history of both and their sacrifice. This is no small special interest  group, but many millions of Americans who can have an enormous impact on the  outcome of the November election if they all respond.

    April 14, 2014

Latest news
Facebook
Must Read
House Ads