Eric Zuesse, originally posted at strategic-culture.org
In the 2008 five-to-four majority Heller decision defining what the Second Amendment means, the U.S. Supreme Court said that the Amendment’s “prefatory clause,” which stated the Amendment’s “purpose,” is irrelevant to understanding the Amendment, and must therefore be ignored when applying the Amendment to determine whether a given law has been passed which violates this Amendment. That Heller decision reversed 69 years of prior settled U.S. Supreme Court rulings, and it basically ignored the key part of the Second Amendment itself — the Amendment’s very purpose — in order, basically, to promote gun-sales. Heller was the most pro-gun-sales ruling ever by the U.S. Supreme Court, and it blatantly lied about the U.S. Constitution, in order to do that. Here’s how they did it:
The entirety of the Second Amendment 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 Heller decision used the following absurd excuse as its ‘justification’ for ignoring the Amendment’s very purpose:
“The Amendment’s prefatory clause announces a purpose, but does not limit or expand the scope of the second part, the operative clause. The operative clause’s text and history demonstrate that it connotes an individual right to keep and bear arms.”
That prefatory clause (“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State”) wasn’t actually “a purpose,” but the purpose; and to ignore a law’s stated purpose is outrageous, and should never be tolerated by any judge — especially a law that’s part of the Constitution itself, and most especially when the nation’s Supreme Court is perpetrating this atrocity against the entire nation, the U.S. Constitution itself, which is an act of the most profound type of treachery to perpetrate. Such judges virtually spit upon the Constitution they are obligated to protect. Instead of the 2nd Amendment’s stated purpose, the Court-majority introduced its own, alleged, purpose, from the majority’s supposed investigation into the Amendment’s history — and they even lied about that. The Heller decision went on to assert that the Amendment’s purpose was a very different one from the stated purpose, and was a purpose which came from the “Antifederalists”: the Heller ruling said
“The Antifederalists feared that the Federal Government would disarm the people in order to disable this citizens’ militia.”
In their view, the Amendment was added so as to arm potential counter-revolutionaries against the newly established Union government: the U.S. federal Government. This supposed other ‘purpose’ — which the five who signed the majority-decision accepted and which was supposedly inferred by them from ‘history’ instead of from the Founders who wrote the Constitution and wrote the 2nd Amendment, with its stated purpose — reigned for them, as if it were the ‘actual’ purpose of that Amendment.
However, only the Federalists had actually written the U.S. Constitution. They did it during 1787-1791. They were opposed — not supported — by the Antifederalists. The Antifederalists opposed the proposed U.S. Constitution. They were the minority, and so the Constitution became democratically passed as America’s Constitution, the basic Law of the United States of America. Only after the U.S. Confederacy, of slave-states during the subsequent 1860s U.S. Civil War rebellion against the Federal Government, did the anti-federalist position, of states’ rights being supreme above the authority of the federal Government, become briefly re-established in those rebelling states, and so those rebelling states re-established, but only in these slave-states, much of the pre-American-Revolution system, against which the Founders had fought and won the Revolutionary War, though this time that system, of states’ rights above the federal government, was being applied without specific reliance upon the British monarchy and empire. For the Antifederalists, their rejection of the King’s rule meant transference of his powers directly onto the former colonies themselves — not onto a new U.S. federal Government, the Union, the federal republic. That’s why they called themselves “antifederalists.” Yet the Heller 5 ruled for the “Antifederalists,” against the Federalists. That’s treachery.
Today’s U.S. Government is not the one that was established by America’s Founders, the authors of the U.S. Constitution. Today’s U.S. regime is, instead, mainly the nationwide restoration of the Southern Confederacy, which U.S. President Abraham Lincoln had temporarily defeated during the Civil War and thereby secured the progress of democracy in America, which has since tragically ended. The Southern Confederacy was a local and successful antifederalism, which became defeated by the Union, which restored the federalism that had been established by the Founders. But the Union’s — and the Founders’ — victory in the Civil War has increasingly become reversed, through treacherous actions, such as the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in the Heller case. The Heller case is the easiest-to-document case-example of this treachery, and this is the reason why it’s the one that is being discussed here. (I am not interested in guns, but am extremely interested in the U.S. Constitution — far more so than are the U.S. Supreme Court jurists who had won their seats by perjuring themselves in their oaths-of-office.)
Unfortunately, Lincoln’s progressive and democratic victory is being successfully challenged and defeated by today’s American fascists, not only in the White House and Congress, but even on the U.S. Supreme Court itself.
The Heller decision reflects the fundamental position of the Southern Confederacy (a feudalist society) (1861-1865) (to which America is returning in the modernized version, fascism, or as Mussolini sometimes called it “corporationism”), the position rejecting the U.S. Constitution. These modern far-right people have gradually rewritten the U.S. Constitution, to comport more with the views that prevailed in the slaveholding South.
The Heller decision is one of an uncounted number of decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court which have authorized the U.S. Government as imposing a dictatorship (such as America’s Founders had rebelled against and overthrown and replaced, by their instituting, through a Revolution, a limited democracy).
In fact, the Second Amendment makes very clear what its sole and exclusive purpose is: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State.” It’s stated clearly, right there. The U.S. Supreme Court’s ‘interpretation’ is instead their insertion of a lie, which they claim to be based upon their own examination of ‘history’, from which they supposedly infer a different or another ‘purpose’ for the Amendment. Only a fool can respect such judges as they. As a matter of historical fact, the actual debate, when that Amendment was being considered for addition to the U.S. Constitution, was itself based upon the implicit understanding that everyone had, regarding what the then-clear meaning was, of “a well regulated militia.” That then-universally-recognized meaning was: all physically capable adult males who are organized under the laws of the individual states and operating under their state’s laws as a military reserve force to be called up only in an emergency for battle, in case the U.S. Congress, which is within the national (not in any state’s) Government, declares war, so as to defend the entire nation against a threatening aggressive foreign nation (such as, certainly, Britain then was, and still remained).
The meaning of “a well regulated militia” was, then, the exact opposite of what the fascist judge who wrote the Heller decision said: “to deny Congress power to abridge the ancient right of individuals to keep and bear arms.” The 2nd Amendment had nothing to do with protecting the American people from an evil Congress. It was instituted instead to enable the entire federal Government to raise an army in a national emergency.
All existing state militias at that time were organized under the laws of the then-existing British colonies, which had just recently become states within the newly established U.S. federation. In no instance were the militia’s individuals organized only under their own personal authority. And now that the U.S. Constitution existed, those armed men were subordinate ultimately to the U.S. federal Government, and not only to their respective state governments (such as prior to the U.S. Constitution’s being passed into effect).
The U.S. Supreme Court’s Heller ruling represented a dramatic reversal of the Court’s previous interpretation of the Second Amendment. The Heller Court virtually, and entirely arbitrarily, defecated upon the tradition and principle of “stare decisis,” or of respect for settled Constitutional law as established via a prior definitive U.S. Supreme Court ruling. In the 1939 United States v. Miller case, the Court had stated, in a unanimous decision (which was arbitrarily being overturned by the 2008 U.S. Supreme Court’s 5 fascists in the Heller case), that the “obvious purpose” of the Second Amendment was to “assure the continuation and render possible the effectiveness of” the state militia, and that the Amendment “must be interpreted and applied with that end in view.” No other end, no other purpose, but only the stated one. This precedent wasn’t merely a bare majority of the Supreme Court speaking in the Miller case and to future American history; it was, instead, everyone on the Supreme Court, who were subsequently being reversed and nullified by the Heller decision’s bare majority in 2008.
Here was the Miller decision’s key passage:
The Constitution as originally adopted granted to the Congress power: ‘To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions; To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress.’ U.S.C.A.Const. art. 1, 8. With obvious purpose to assure the continuation and render possible the effectiveness of such forces, the declaration and guarantee of the Second Amendment were made. It must be interpreted and applied with that end in view.
The Militia which the States were expected to maintain and train is set in contrast with Troops which they [307 U.S. 174, 179] were forbidden to keep without the consent of Congress. The sentiment of the time strongly disfavored standing armies [such as today’s U.S. Department of ‘Defense’ provides, unConstitutionally]; the common view was that adequate defense of country and laws could be secured through the Militia: civilians primarily, soldiers on occasion.
The signification attributed to the term Militia appears from the debates in the Convention, the history and legislation of Colonies and States, and the writings of approved commentators. These show plainly enough that the Militia comprised all males physically capable of acting in concert for the common defense.
As is clear there, the purpose of the state militias was not only the “defense” against foreign invasions, but the state militias were organized also in order to put down “Insurrections,” such as the 2008 fascist U.S. Supreme Court majority, in the Heller case, sought actually to encourage and assist (“Insurrection”). The Miller decision said — to the exact contrary, and with documentation that the Heller judges simply ignored — that the Founders’ reason for the Second Amendment was to enable “calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions.” The Heller fascists, to the exact contrary of the Founders, wanted instead the encouragement of such far-right “Insurrections.” The Heller 5 were, actually, boldly raping the U.S. Constitution. They were raping America’s Founders. And, apparently, no one has noticed.
The Heller decision simply ignored the reason why state militias actually existed; the Heller decision said:
The adjective “well-regulated” implies nothing more than the imposition of proper discipline and training.
It actually implied and meant a great deal more than that. The 5 Heller judges simply ignored the power and authority under which the state militias operated, and to which the militias answered. Insofar as those 5 judges were concerned, these militias were self-organized, and maybe fighting together against the Government — an “Insurrection,” which is one of the two things that the militias were intended to protect the Union against — and certainly not to facilitate.
Furthermore: the very idea that, as the Heller ruling said, a Constitutional provision’s “purpose … does not limit or expand the scope of … the operative clause,” is, itself, a blatant lie, which even people of low intelligence can easily recognize: its falseness is blatant enough so that the clearly fascist intent — of the 5 jurists who agreed there in asserting it — was flamingly obvious and outrageous. Nothing can be more obvious than the fact that a law’s purpose needs to be adhered-to by the entire legal system that is enforcing the law. (Otherwise, for what reason does the law even exist?) The law’s purpose is supposed to be the supreme guide to the law’s interpretation, application, and enforcement. But today’s U.S. Supreme Court is instead dominated by outright traitors, who baldly deny this obvious and blatant fact. They did it right there. They don’t want the actual intent of the Founders to rule in this country. Judges such as this are termites at the very foundations of the American republic. Toleration of such judges is unacceptable in any democracy. This has been tolerated far too long.
Only in a dictatorship can brazen lying, like that, from the nation’s highest court, be tolerated so much so that none of the national press were pointing out each one of that decision’s brazen falsehoods (as is now being done here). The United States has thus been descending into a fantasyland, in which only fascist myths are publishable and publicly accepted as being more than the lies they are, by the ‘news’ media, and by the ‘expert’ juridical commentators (such as this one), all of whom in 2008 and afterward should be laughing-stocks today, for accepting that ruling. Because, if they are not being ridiculed, then what hope is there that a Constitution will be adhered to, and honored, in anything like the sense that it was written for, and intended? Laughing-stocks, indeed! They either are that, or else there can’t even be a hope for democracy — not any, at all. How can there be hope for democracy if judges such as that are tolerated and their decisions thus come gradually to accumulate and so to eat away at the very fabric of a democracy, its very Constitution?
With blazing boldness, the U.S. Supreme Court in Heller overthrew the Founders, and reasserted the Southern Confederacy, more than a century after the South’s defeat in the Civil War. But that’s merely one of the many ways in which they’ve done this. And, apparently, nobody even cares.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.