Unformatted text preview: , without that idea, it would be impossible for the people to resist the government on behalf of the Constitution, because the government and the Constitution could not be separated. Once we recognize the possibility of separation, however, the logical flaw in the inconsistency claim becomes clear. When government itself seeks to subvert the Constitution, then the government, far from representing the Constitution, actually becomes its opponent. If the people then take up arms to defend the Constitution, their revolution is made to protect the existing structure, not to forge a new one. In such case, the people revolt not against the Constitution (the advocates of which they have become) but only against the sitting government. IF ALL CHECKS ON GOVERNMENT TYRANNY FAIL, THE PUBLIC MUST REVOLT Paul E. McGreal, Associate Professor, South Texas College of Law, FORDHAM LAW REVIEW, March 2000, p. 11481149. If Article V provides a peaceful means of revolution, the Second Amendment, the People's third check on the federal government, acknowledges that violent means might someday be required. Framers who had just concluded a violent revolution to break from a government they opposed could not ignore this contingency. Thus, while many checks were built in the system, violent revolution was a failsafe. For this reason, the Second Amendment guarantees "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms" in order that "[a] well regulated Militia" could safeguard "the security of a free State." The "militia" mentioned by the amendment referred to members of the community who would stand ready to defend their locality against oppression by a distant and detached national government. Neighbor would fight along side neighbor to defend their homes and their liberty. Citizens must possesses near constant vigilance in case all other checks fail. And if all other checks fail, Americans might have to go to war again to fight for their freedom. To ensure that this check retained its bite, the Second Amendment does not allow the federal government to defang the People. SLHS Value File Rights
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This document was uploaded on 11/20/2013.
- Fall '13