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Elmer1007 Donating Member (19 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 08:49 AM
Original message
The pesky meaning of "Well Regulated"
found this on the net.

http://yarchive.net/gun/politics/regulate.html

cited portion:


On the original meaning of the 2nd Amendment
Henry E. Schaffer

.....
Both of these uses have meanings *related* to the "to rule" of
man-made laws, but are more in the nature of "to adjust to or to be in a state of proper functioning". So a "well regulated watch" or a "well regulated double barreled shotgun" both would have meaning of "having been put into properly functioning condition".

From my reading of material from the colonial era, I have come to
understand that "well regulated militia" had a meaning at that time
(ca. 1789) in the nature of "a properly functioning militia" - which
would mean something along the lines of a properly trained and equipped militia (since it was common at that time for militiamen to bring their own firearms, with which they were already proficient.)

The language of the NC Legislature in 1789 strengthens this
interpretation. What can "well regulated Governments" mean other
than "properly functioning Governments"? Surely it didn't and
couldn't refer to a government under the control of man-made laws, for it is the government itself which makes these laws, and it would neither be noble nor sensible for the Legislature to be proclaiming that it is controlling itself.

An additional contemporaneous document which exhibits the same
meaning is the Federalist Paper #29, in which Hamilton is discussing
the composition of the militia and says, "To oblige the great body of the yeomanry, and of the other classes of the citizens, to be under arms for the purpose of going through military exercises and
evolutions, as often as might be necessary to_acquire_the_degree_of_
perfection_which_would_entitle_them_to_the_character_of_a_
well-regulated_militia, would be a real grievance to the people, and a serious public inconvenience and loss." (emphasis added)

Note that "well-regulated" clearly refers to how well the militia
functions and how well trained are the militia members. It does not
refer at all to the degree to which the government controls the militia or the members of the militia.

This interpretation is also borne out by some old or obsolete
definitions in the Oxford English Dictionary. "Regulated" has an
Obsolete definition (b) "Of troops: Properly disciplined" and then
"discipline" has a definition (3b) applying to the military, "Training in the practice of arms and military evolutions; drill. Formerly, more widely: Training or skill in military affairs generally; military skill and experience; the art of war."

.......

Therefore I conclude that the meaning of the 2nd Amendment is, "A
properly functioning Militia is necessary to the security of a free
State; therefore the (pre-existing) right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed."

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Hobarticus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 08:53 AM
Response to Original message
1. I missed the last Official State Militia Training date...
Will there be another one, soon?
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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 09:46 AM
Response to Reply #1
5. You're already in the militia.
Under USC 10.311, if you are a male between 17 and 45 and not in the armed forces, you're in a militia and it is your own responsibility to procure arms and training in case you are ever called up. Therefore, you are indisputably in a well-regulated militia, as its composition is codified under US federal law.

http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/10/usc_sec_10_000003...

TITLE 10--ARMED FORCES

Section 311. Militia: composition and classes

(a) The militia of the United States consists
of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age
and, except as provided in section 313 of title
32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have
made a declaration of intention to become, citi-
zens of the United States and of female citizens
of the United States who are commissioned of-
ficers of the National Guard.
(b) The classes of the militia are--
(1) the organized militia, which consists of
the National Guard and the Naval Militia;
and
(2) the unorganized militia, which consists
of the members of the militia who are not
members of the National Guard or the Naval
Militia.

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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 09:48 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. deleted
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 09:49 AM by johnbraun
deleted
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Hobarticus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 10:46 AM
Response to Reply #5
10. So, if I'm in the militia...
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 10:47 AM by Hobarticus
Where does the "well-regulated militia" in the 2nd amendment part fit in?

Jeez, not too well-regulated, to me. I turn 40 tomorrow, and I just find out from one person on some internet forum that I'm in the "militia"?

I'd think a "well-regulated" militia, membership in which allows me to own a gun, would at least have state-sanctioned training, or at least they'd TELL me that I was in the militia.....don't you?
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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 11:10 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. Nope. It's your responsibility to know the law.
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 11:13 AM by johnbraun
The law tells you you're in the militia. Therefore, the militia is well-regulated according to present definitions.

It's your responsibility to provide arms and training for yourself in case a state-sanctioned militia is ever formed.

The present law is actually kind of sexist, because women are not in the legally sanctioned militia and technically not allowed to own militia arms unless they are part of the armed forces.
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Hobarticus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 11:12 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. LOL!
Sure, man, whatever....
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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 11:15 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. Laugh if you want, the law is the law.
Counting down the days until 3-9...
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Hobarticus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 11:16 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. Maybe you should turn me in...
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 11:18 AM by Hobarticus
After all, now YOU know that I don't know and follow the law, and that makes you an accessory.
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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 11:32 AM
Response to Reply #14
15. Dude, it doesn't say you have to own a gun. Just that you're in the militia by law.
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 11:35 AM by johnbraun
You aren't going to be arrested or fined for not owning a gun, but if the US ever calls out the unorganized militia (which it won't, barring invasion from China), then they can point to that statute when you go "Who, me?"

Yes, the law is old and will probably never be used. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist. It has a purpose, and that purpose is to specify you, a 40 year old male, as a member of the militia.

:)
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Hobarticus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-22-08 12:12 AM
Response to Reply #15
24. Dude, if I don't own a gun, what good am I in this militia?
What's a member of a "well-regulated militia" without a gun?

I have no formal military training, I have no basic gear or skills to be of any use to any military unit.

I have no firearm appropriate for any sort of defense against a well-armed invader, likely with armor and air support.

I have no idea who I am to report to, if called up, or where.

Am I subject to be press-ganged into this unorganized militia against my will?

Where exactly do my rights as a citizen and rights to property get superseded by this unorganized militia authority?

Who has command-and-control over this unorganized militia? What exactly is the order of battle? Is this under the command of my governor and National Guard, or is this under command of the DoD?

How exactly does the federal government call out an unorganized militia? Will I get a pre-recorded message on my phone or something?

And how is an unorganized militia different from a well-regulated militia? I thought the 2nd amendment specifies a well-regulated militia?

You seem to be in some position of authority and know a lot about this, so I've got some questions, understandably.
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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-22-08 12:29 AM
Response to Reply #24
25. Exactly.
"What's a member of a "well-regulated militia" without a gun? "

Dead weight.

"I have no formal military training, I have no basic gear or skills to be of any use to any military unit."

Well, under the 2nd Amendment, best go and get you some gear and skills. The purpose is not to get military-equivalent training, but to get familiarity with weapons systems and operations.

"I have no firearm appropriate for any sort of defense against a well-armed invader, likely with armor and air support."

If you have a rifle capable of making hits out to 600m, you're on par with the Iraqis. They seem to be doing OK.

"Am I subject to be press-ganged into this unorganized militia against my will?"

You're already in it.

"Who has command-and-control over this unorganized militia? What exactly is the order of battle? Is this under the command of my governor and National Guard, or is this under command of the DoD?"

You are under the COC of the governor of your state, then the CIC. But the real responsibility for your militia duties lies with you.

"I have no idea who I am to report to, if called up, or where."

That's the point. You are not "called up". You're in it, and if there is civil unrest or another major problem in your area then you have the responsibility to hook up with other members of the militia and coordinate things. No one is going to tell you what to do at first, if ever.

"And how is an unorganized militia different from a well-regulated militia? I thought the 2nd amendment specifies a well-regulated militia?"

A well-regulated militia is one codified under law. Your membership in it is regulated and codified under law. Therefore, the unorganized militia is well-regulated.

Look, 999/1000 times your militia status applies, it's not going to be because the Chinese are invading. It's because a hurricans just hit and people are looting neighborhoods so you grab your rifle. Or there's a snowstorm and Florence down the block needs her heart medication. Or there's a massive fire and you need to volunteer in a burn unit. Your participation in a well-regulated militia means that you give help where help is needed, and in order to help others you cannot be helpless yourself - and that is the reason that you have a firearm. When there are problems, civil society and protection falls apart because they're dealing with the really big problems, and you as a helper have to be able to ensure your safety as you go about helping people.
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bluerum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 04:56 PM
Response to Reply #5
20. Crimminy. If you could read you would be dangerous. It says no such thing.
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bluerum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 09:01 AM
Response to Original message
2. Although - one could say that part of being a "well regulated" and military
is fast and secure communications with and throughout the command structure. This includes communications with the political machinery to which a military answers to.


"To oblige the great body of the yeomanry, and of the other classes of the citizens, to be under arms for the purpose of going through military exercises and
evolutions, as often as might be necessary to_acquire_the_degree_of_
perfection_which_would_entitle_them_to_the_character_of_a_
well-regulated_militia, would be a real grievance to the people, and a serious public inconvenience and loss."


This whole section seems to be saying that the "well regulated" militia/military exists so that the citizenry can go about their business and not have to shoulder those labors.


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jmg257 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 09:16 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. Hamilton was in favor of a "select militia", instead of one where everyone was mandated
to serve, and train occcasionally. His vision was more what we have now with the National Guard (other then it was created and is armed by the feds, is part of the army, and the states have very little involvement).

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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 09:57 AM
Response to Reply #2
8. And this will be the next anti argument, mark my words.
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 10:27 AM by johnbraun
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moving_the_goalposts

The wording of the 2nd is clear - the citizens shall have arms, not dependent on their militia service, but so that when a militia is needed they can be formed into one and trained easily.
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bluerum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 04:52 PM
Response to Reply #8
19. The wording is clear - that there shall BE a well regulated militia to protect
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 04:53 PM by bluerum
the citizenry, and so that they are not required to take up arms themselves.

If they want to take up arms, well that is their prerogative. But the language clearly states that it is an undue burden on the average citizen to stand in as a member of a militia. Therefore, a well regulated militia shall be maintained.
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jmg257 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 08:52 PM
Response to Reply #19
23. That is from the Federalist Papers (#29) - not the Constitution or the 2nd amendment,
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 08:57 PM by jmg257
or the Militia Act of 1792 when congress 1st did its duty per the Constitution. Hamilton had a vision - but that is not what was laid down by law. Not too many others (the States) trusted the new govt with so much power as to allow them complete control of the militias.

The Militias of the several States were well defined entities by this time - the Constitution made them a requirement - made them permanent, and after the federal Militia Act they became more standardized - duty was mandatory for most able-bodies males of certain ages. There was no "select Militia" - "eveyone" had to serve in their state militias, everyone had to arm themselves, & train/muster on occasion to become well regulated. (exemptions for legislators, public servants etc.)

The citizenry was the Militia - right up until the creation of the National Guard (circa 1903-1906).
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jmg257 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 09:09 AM
Response to Original message
3. Of course that's what it means. An "effective militia" is necessary, because the recourse is a
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 09:50 AM by jmg257
standing army. That was the whole reason for giving Congress the power to provide guidelines (A1,S8,C16) for how the people will arm themselves for duty in the Militias of the several States, for how those militias would be organized, and how they will be trained/disciplined - standards help effectivness; and with the 2nd there is a mandatory order of it getting done (well functioning militias are "necessary").

The states had been neglecting their militias under the Articles, and since the role of the militias was VITAL to the constitution and our freedoms (A1,S8,C15) - they MUST BE effective. As Hamilton pointed out BEFORE the 2nd was written/ratified - "Well regulated" is "well armed and well trained". Otherwise there would be a greater need for a large standing army - that bane of liberty.

These days, even with the usurption that is the National Guard, we the people must still be sufficiently armed, and familiar with our arms (CMP, etc.) because we are still part of the Militia (of the United States). Of course separate from our militia role we also have the unalienable right to self-defense - and so are allowed the means to enjoy that right.
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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 09:49 AM
Response to Original message
7. USC 10.311 places all males 17-45 not in the armed forces in a militia.
Therefore, the militia is well-regulated, as its composition is defined and codified under US federal law.

Therefore, it is your responsibility to procure arms and training suitable to your participation in it if you are ever called up.

TITLE 10--ARMED FORCES

Section 311. Militia: composition and classes

(a) The militia of the United States consists
of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age
and, except as provided in section 313 of title
32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have
made a declaration of intention to become, citi-
zens of the United States and of female citizens
of the United States who are commissioned of-
ficers of the National Guard.
(b) The classes of the militia are--
(1) the organized militia, which consists of
the National Guard and the Naval Militia;
and
(2) the unorganized militia, which consists
of the members of the militia who are not
members of the National Guard or the Naval
Militia.
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Indy Lurker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
9. Yes, Well regulated, as in well functioning
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 11:05 AM by Indy Lurker
such as a well regulated clock.

In fact old clocks with a precision movement were called a "regulator".




ON EDIT:

As I have said before, there is no IF...THEN statement in the 2nd amendment.

There are just two statements, both declarations.


The first is that: A well regulated militia, being (inasmuch as it is) necessary to the security of a free state

The second is that: the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.


There are no questions being asked, there is nothing conditional.


********************************

Being \Be"ing\, adv. Since; inasmuch as.

And being you have Declined his means, you have increased his malice. --Beau. & Fl.

Source: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)







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Plague Donating Member (31 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 02:04 PM
Response to Reply #9
16. Maybe I'm confused...
Edited on Thu Feb-21-08 02:04 PM by Plague
Given that the amendment pretty clearly states 'the people', why is this still an issue? It doesn't say 'the militia' or 'only the people in the armed forces' or so on. Aren't 'the people' average Americans like you or I?

(Edit: this wasn't intended as a direct reply)
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Indy Lurker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. It does seem clear to me as well.
The latest spin, it that Average Americans, (the people) do have the right to keep and bear arms without infringement,

(so Yeah! we have gun rights)

but **ONLY** when when they are part of a well regulated (state government organized and run) militia.


And since there are no well regulated (state government organized and run) militias, none of "the people" are having their rights infringed.

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johnbraun Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 02:32 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. As I said, USC 10.311 "regulates" the unorganized militia.
So we're all in it, and are having our rights infringed. QED.
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bluerum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 04:56 PM
Response to Reply #18
21. Righto then. I am in the militia.
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WWFZD Donating Member (165 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 06:27 PM
Response to Original message
22. Well regulated, er stated
In the parlance of the day folks would speak of a well regulated gentleman - an individual who is orderly, sober, rational, reasoned, one not given to sudden outbursts of emotional hysteria. With the militia well defined as adult males ready to bring their own weapons to the fight if necessary, the well regulated militia means exactly that. The people are the well regulated militia. That same WRM being necessary to the security of free state the govt shall not interfere with the well regulated peoples RKBA and be part of that WRM.
Contrast that with another group of armed citizens, the lynch mob, the witch hunters, the vigilantes and the cross burners. Excitable, emotional, irrational and easily led by the latest prophet of the day. A non-well regulated mob of jackasses who can, by due process, have their RKBA taken away from them.
The well regulated militia is also a pretty good way to deal with the non regulated mob like the lunatics who open fire in public places, almost always gun free zones.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-22-08 12:53 PM
Response to Original message
26. Congress must "provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia". It's derelict in that
duty.

Many states have provisions for the "unorganized militia", see State Guard Association of the United States, Inc.
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