The Second Amendment is Not Your Gun Permit

Fact: the Second Amendment does not grant you the right to keep and bear arms.

I’m probably going to make a few enemies here, but it’s about time to correct this common misnomer. You probably have seen this message a million times, especially on Facebook,  in some ad for a gun rights group, or a meme, or some person commenting in opposition to state concealed carry permits. They almost always say something like, “the Second Amendment is my only gun permit.”

Erroneous.

First off, the Constitution does not grant us rights. The Constitution serves as a rule book. It delegates power to the federal government, outlines its responsibilities and declares its restrictions.

Second, the Bill of Rights protects natural rights and privileges from federal government usurpation. That’s it. It further defines the limits of federal authority. It doesn’t give you a right. And it doesn’t stop other governments from infringing on them. It certainly doesn’t turn the federal government into a liberty enforcement squad.

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President Puffs on Marijuana: “No Change in Law”

President Obama has brought neither change nor hope when it comes to federal marijuana prohibition and its constitutional ramifications.

But you’d think the Evolver in Chief would have second thoughts after his own former favorite for US Surgeon General, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, recently changed his mind on the issue.

Following the CNN documentary “Weed,” hosted by Gupta, in which he presents a case to lift marijuana from the Schedule 1 federal classification, White House deputy press secretary Josh Earnest stuck to the script.

“The administration’s position on this has been clear and consistent for some time now. While the prosecution of drug traffickers remains an important priority, the president and the administration believe that the targeting of individual marijuana users, especially those with serious illnesses and their caregivers, is not the best allocation of federal law enforcement resources.”

Where is the hope in continuing policies that have doubled marijuana-related incarceration, contributing to the largest imprisoned population in the world? There’s certainly no hope for the young African-American male, who is arrested 3-4 more times more on average than his white counterparts. In Obama’s own home state of Illinois, 58 percent of those arrested for possession are African-Americans, who make up just 15 percent of the population.

Judging by Obama’s record on marijuana prosecutions, his definition of “drug traffickers” is about as clear as his definition of “terrorist” or “transparency.” Federal agents have stepped up aggressive enforcement, targeting medical marijuana dispensaries in several states.  But statistics are proving that no matter how much they increase enforcement, the federal government is failing in its effort to stop the state nullification efforts against their national prohibition scheme.

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Ruling Reveals NSA Lies to Courts, Congress About Scope of Surveillance

originally posted at The New American

The National Security Agency was forced to de-classify a document, the contents of which make it easy to see why the snoops wanted it kept secret.

In an 85-page ruling handed down by Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (commonly known as the FISA court) judge John D. Bates, the NSA was called out “for repeatedly misleading the court that oversees its surveillance on domestic soil, including a program that is collecting tens of thousands of domestic e-mails and other Internet communications of Americans each year,” the New York Times reported on Thursday.

Bates found that the NSA routinely misled the court as to the scope of its domestic surveillance activities.

“The court is troubled that the government’s revelations regarding N.S.A.’s acquisition of Internet transactions mark the third instance in less than three years in which the government has disclosed a substantial misrepresentation regarding the scope of a major collection program,” former FISA court chief judge Bates wrote in his ruling.

Most of the secret NSA programs recently brought to light by the Edward Snowden leaks are mentioned by Bates as being evidence of the NSA’s blatant disregard for the Constitution and for legal limits on its surveillance authority.

As reported by the New York Times:

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