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Old 10-16-2008, 05:00 PM
 
Location: Bradenton, Florida
27,236 posts, read 40,261,063 times
Reputation: 10915

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunluvver2 View Post
************************************************** ****
ThTKramar
Do you not understand that their fear of a "standing Army" was one of the primary reasons for the Second Amendment?

Eventually a standing Army was instituted but only AFTER the right of the people to keep and bear arms was insured.

Read the history.

GL2
Those troops still cannot be quartered in private homes.

Anyway, in the Army's EARLIEST days, it was disbanded after hostilities ended. When did they stop disbanding it? Sometime during the Indian Wars?
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Old 10-18-2008, 09:47 AM
 
5,092 posts, read 4,357,785 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TKramar View Post
When did they stop disbanding it? Sometime during the Indian Wars?
This is a chart of US military personnel as a percentage of total US population for the entire history of the United States, taken from Wikipedia.




You can see that historically the United States maintained a very small military in peace time, usually to guard the national armories, garrison the nation's military installations, man the US navy, maintain a military presence on the frontiers, and provide a basic back-bone for when a larger military was warranted.

The US Navy was considered a national defensive force, preventing the European powers from threatening the US directly and protecting American merchant ships abroad. Because of this, it was almost always larger than the standing army in peace time. Also, a Navy wasn't considered to be a force capable of overthrowing the national or state governments, as it wasn't land-based.

In keeping with the suspicion of standing armies, the US Army was purposefully kept small, but in times of war it would greatly expand with volunteers and with the inclusion of state militia units and later with the introduction of conscription in the 1860's.

After World War II the US military did not return to traditional pre-war levels. This was due to the military occupation of both Germany and Japan after the war. Additionally, the US military grew substantially with the Cold War, the Korean war and the Vietnam War.

After the end of the Cold War in the late 1980's and the end of the first Persian Gulf War in the early 1990's, the size of the US military did draw down, but not to the traditional levels prior to World War II. This is probably due to NATO commitments, along with the stationing of troops in Japan, Korea and the Middle East, and to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
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Old 10-18-2008, 02:04 PM
 
Location: Bradenton, Florida
27,236 posts, read 40,261,063 times
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I know that when the West was being settled, the U.S. Army had a number of forts built out there...and, as exemplified by Custer's Last Stand, frequently got into battles with the Indians native to the area.
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Old 10-19-2008, 04:37 AM
 
19,183 posts, read 27,734,523 times
Reputation: 4000
The Founders weren't all that smart. We can certainly sit back and admire their work, but there are plenty of people alive today who are as smart as the Founders were, and smart people today have vastly more knowledge to work with than what the Founders did. The Founders were however smart enough to realize that the Colonies were a going economic concern, one that would never be able to realize its vast potential (or retain its vast potential profits) while under English rule. This, as much as glorious ideals, drove the path to revolution. We are however fortunate that along that path, there were found enough who had been influenced by democratic and other enlightenment principles to form a controlling bloc in defining what the new and independent nation would look like. There were other majorities that could have emerged. We are lucky that none of them did.

The Founders were writing however for their own time, not for all time. They expected that future generations would take the same initiative that their own had taken in writing new and updated constitutions to suit their own needs and their own times. They did not at all intend for their heirs to be shackled in the chains of their own ancestors. What they didn't anticipate at the time was that a case called Marbury v Madison would come along in 1803 and add to their work the process of judicial review, a process that would take advantage of the vagueness and generality that both wisdom and compromise had left in the Constitution by turning those into flexibility and elasticity, the very things needed to mold an existing plan and mechanism to newly emerging circumstances. Thus, rather than scrapping the old and in fact rather noble experimental framework, we have gotten now through better than two centuries with just a few significant changes to the Constitution itself (principally the 14th Amendment), a few more insignificant ones, and a whole bunch of jurisprudence, the latter having been the principle means by which modernization and adaptation have been accomplished.

The implications of this are that by now, rewriting the Constitution would require a great deal more than just that. For one thing, we would be extremely unlikely to get the Bill of Rights back in any new document, and for another, we would be trashing the entire body of jurisprudence associated with each phrase or section that was removed or amended, leaving a need either to codify all that somehow, or to rehear and re-examine all of the pertinent issues addressed over 200 years on a de novo basis. This would be a huge (not to mention potentially destabilizing) undertaking, the payoff for which would be quite uncertain. It would be very easy to imagine that a worse plan and mechanism would emerge from a hasty and decentralized process of re-invention, perhaps even a much worse one.

All in all, the idea of starting over would not likely be a good one. We might be better off in realizing that the anticipated time for such a thing is long since gone by, and that, for better or worse, we are stuck with Constitution that we've got. So long as the courts remain principally staffed by just and honest men, we are perhaps better in letting judicial review remain as the molder of change, resorting to amendment on those rare occasions when this day-to-day process proves insufficient to our needs.
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Old 10-19-2008, 05:00 AM
 
Location: Eastern Kentucky
1,237 posts, read 2,640,207 times
Reputation: 1262
Quite frankly, I feel that the constitution is an awsome document and is as relevent today as it was when it was written. I firmly believe that the authors had the welfare of the entire country in mind when they wrote it, which is a lot more that I can say for our politicians today. If we let them start mucking around with the constitution, those of us without big bucks to make contributions are in major trouble.
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Old 10-19-2008, 12:28 PM
 
Location: Somewhere out there
9,616 posts, read 11,061,524 times
Reputation: 3717
Smile Activist Re-interpretations and all!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TKramar View Post
No one's really addressed the issue about the Constitution being an antiquated document. Two people have admitted that society has changed since it was first written

Gunluvver...if they were frightened of a "standing army", then why do we have one?
Gunluvver's answer to this one was right on...

Quote:
Originally Posted by TKramar View Post
Well! there's a vote for rewrite...or at least an amendment.

Speaking of amendments...would the Founders really want people to be armed with the technology of today? Or were they merely okay with black powder blunderbusses or muskets?
...which were "the technology of the day" back then. Actually, many of our side's weapons in the Revolutionary War were "rifled" firearms versus many un-rifled British or French firearms. So they were significantly and techniclally better and more accurate. Maybe we should give America back to the French now because we had an unfair advantage? Gosh I feel SO guilt-ridden now....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ludachris View Post
The Founding Fathers were pretty smart guys. They wrote the Constitution to be as timeless as possible and to have the basic principles needed for a free society. But even as hard as they tried, eventually, we will find some of the ideas to be outdated. People/society evolve and things change.

However, I think the idea of rewriting it would be dangerous.
The amount of outside influence in politics these days is insane - especially from groups with outrageous amounts of money. It seems everyone has an agenda and who knows how a new version of the Constitution would end up looking like due to those influences. I trust the Founding Fathers more than I trust 90% of the politicians around today. I'd rather we not touch it.

Wow ludachris, you said a mouth- and mind-ful there!
Your comment should be posted on every high school poly-sci room's bulletin board! (Sorry, ain't gonna happen! see: NEA)

It would be catastrophically dangerous to touch this spectacularly forward-thinking document. Of course it's dated, but so is the bible, and look how many people stick to literal interpretations of that one! Let's do it this way: if you want to, wholesale, re-write our Constitution, then we get to re-write the bible, and also, for every Amendment you get to re-word, we get to re-word one of our choice with exactly the words we want. A nice socialist egalitarian free-for-all... You don't get to have it all your way!

What could WE possibly want? Oh I dunno....

Such things as mandating a non-liberal-biased media (we get to adjudicate just what is "fair and unbalanced"...). Or how about allowing a third political party into all future debates, not based on their palatability to big biz or socialists? Or a re-distribution of electoral votes based on land area, not urban population numbers? (Yeah! Go Wyoming, Colorado, Nevada, Montana, N. & S. Dakota, and on and on. Goodbye LA, Chicago and NYC.)

By the way: Don't be so scared of lawful, legal gun owners ! We're here to protect you. We are not the problem. (Take one of us home to dinner, meet the folks, etc.) We do scare the bully-thug, drug dealing lawbreaker home invasion types that you think were just "disadvantaged" as youths. (Oh and yeah, coincidentally, "To hell with the victims"...) My lawfully owned AK clone semi-auto-only rifle is none of your business as long as I don't use it illegally. Which I never will. Why do you assume I will?

Perhaps you think that only the government can control our emotions and thoughts? Or perhaps, as with Mr. Stalin, they don't want a population capable of bothersome resistance to government mind or fiscal control (see: Wall Street last week..). By your apparent thinking, you'd side with the National Guard at Kent State (i.e.: only the State should have firearms). Imagine if the students had more than tomatos or rocks....(either there would have been quite a bloodbath, more than there already was, or there would have been a standoff with no-one injured. a sort of Mutual Assured Destruction thing. Hell it worked for us in the Cold War, right?)

I'd suggest that we all honor and respect the existing Constitution. So far, un-sullied or re-written, it has stood the test of time. Maybe not the best document ever, but awfully close! Let's all try to be proud to be Americans, despite self-righteous world opinions and leftist political pressure. .

By the way, I vote NO. But also, being able to conduct these forums and debates is truly a gift of immeasurable freedom. I'll actively defend your right to be involved!

Last edited by rifleman; 10-19-2008 at 12:39 PM.. Reason: typos
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Old 10-19-2008, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Bradenton, Florida
27,236 posts, read 40,261,063 times
Reputation: 10915
Quote:
Originally Posted by rifleman View Post
Gunluvver's answer to this one was right on...



...which were "the technology of the day" back then. Actually, many of our side's weapons in the Revolutionary War were "rifled" firearms versus many un-rifled British or French firearms. So they were significantly and techniclally better and more accurate. Maybe we should give America back to the French now because we had an unfair advantage? Gosh I feel SO guilt-ridden now....



Wow ludachris, you said a mouth- and mind-ful there! Your comment should be posted on every high school poly-sci room's bulletin board! (Sorry, ain't gonna happen! see: NEA)

It would be catastrophically dangerous to touch this spectacularly forward-thinking document. Of course it's dated, but so is the bible, and look how many people stick to literal interpretations of that one! Let's do it this way: if you want to, wholesale, re-write our Constitution, then we get to re-write the bible, and also, for every Amendment you get to re-word, we get to re-word one of our choice with exactly the words we want. A nice socialist egalitarian free-for-all... You don't get to have it all your way!

What could WE possibly want? Oh I dunno....

Such things as mandating a non-liberal-biased media (we get to adjudicate just what is "fair and unbalanced"...). Or how about allowing a third political party into all future debates, not based on their palatability to big biz or socialists? Or a re-distribution of electoral votes based on land area, not urban population numbers? (Yeah! Go Wyoming, Colorado, Nevada, Montana, N. & S. Dakota, and on and on. Goodbye LA, Chicago and NYC.)

By the way: Don't be so scared of lawful, legal gun owners ! We're here to protect you. We are not the problem. (Take one of us home to dinner, meet the folks, etc.) We do scare the bully-thug, drug dealing lawbreaker home invasion types that you think were just "disadvantaged" as youths. (Oh and yeah, coincidentally, "To hell with the victims"...) My lawfully owned AK clone semi-auto-only rifle is none of your business as long as I don't use it illegally. Which I never will. Why do you assume I will?

Perhaps you think that only the government can control our emotions and thoughts? Or perhaps, as with Mr. Stalin, they don't want a population capable of bothersome resistance to government mind or fiscal control (see: Wall Street last week..). By your apparent thinking, you'd side with the National Guard at Kent State (i.e.: only the State should have firearms). Imagine if the students had more than tomatos or rocks....(either there would have been quite a bloodbath, more than there already was, or there would have been a standoff with no-one injured. a sort of Mutual Assured Destruction thing. Hell it worked for us in the Cold War, right?)

I'd suggest that we all honor and respect the existing Constitution. So far, un-sullied or re-written, it has stood the test of time. Maybe not the best document ever, but awfully close! Let's all try to be proud to be Americans, despite self-righteous world opinions and leftist political pressure. .

By the way, I vote NO. But also, being able to conduct these forums and debates is truly a gift of immeasurable freedom. I'll actively defend your right to be involved!
So...we should deny women equal rights, shouldn't we? Because that was tradition at one time. Women should be in the home, being supported by men. Men go to work, women take care of the house.

But then people complain that THAT is an "outdated" idea. The Constitution is much older than that.
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Old 10-19-2008, 02:19 PM
 
Location: Sarasota FL
6,516 posts, read 8,597,986 times
Reputation: 6021
Wait a minute. You mean to tell me we actually have a constitution? Does it say anything about having different branches of government with rules of how the government should be run and what it does?
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Old 10-19-2008, 02:29 PM
 
Location: Bradenton, Florida
27,236 posts, read 40,261,063 times
Reputation: 10915
Well, it does say that it is CONGRESS' job to declare war, not the president's! He's ONLY the Commander in Chief.
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Old 10-19-2008, 02:56 PM
 
Location: Eastern Kentucky
1,237 posts, read 2,640,207 times
Reputation: 1262
Please show me where in the constitution that women should be denied equil rights or should stay home and be taken care of. A lot of things were tradition at that time, but they are not mentioned in the constitution.
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