LIFE AND DEATH UNDER THE SECOND AMENDMENT

By William Markiewicz

Obviously you cannot live comfortably under the Second Amendment which, in the name of freedom, permits ownership of dangerous arms at the expense of public safety. But in the name of security, you can’t limit your lifestyle by not participating in public gatherings – sports, political ... where you are exposed to unexpected dangers. The Swiss have the ancestral right to keep arms at home. But it is infinitely easier to control Swiss than Americans. Controversial issues probably shouldn’t be defined by rules alone. They should be voted on and the majority should win. The wise principle of the French Revolution was: Freedom of one ends where the freedom of another starts.

The Second Amendment, in the name of full freedom, makes me think of Liberum Veto in old Poland. The collective vote was the rule but it had to be a total collective rule. If one disagreed, it was enough to cancel even an absolute majority decision. So, any irresponsible noble -- drunk, unintelligent, or simply a paid agent of a foreign enemy -- could paralyse the country’s political process. Poland fell into nonexistence, partitioned for two hundred years.

Absolute individual freedom where everybody is a king is, in reality, a negation of freedom. Freedom should be in the hands of the majority. Leadership and freedom don’t deny each other. Popular leaders who respect the majority like Obama, Chavez, Chretien, have a ticket to history.

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