ROMNEY WORDSWORTH – I’ve had just about enough of hearing from gun control advocates, saying that they believe that the Founding Fathers never intended the Second Amendment to mean that private citizens could own an AR15, and only intended the Second Amendment to allow private ownership of second hand, and second rate, arms like flintlock muskets.
Anyone who says such a thing doesn’t know what the Hell they’re talking about.
Let’s examine the cutting edge “assault guns” of the Revolutionary War.
Meet the Brown Bess. This was the standard issue infantry weapon of the British Empire in 1775. It is a smoothbore musket that fires a .69 caliber lead ball shot that can blow a man’s head clean off, or blow a gaping hole in a man’s chest. Although the muzzle velocity was low by today’s standards, the damage done by a direct hit makes the .223 round from an AR15 look like a pin prick by comparison.
Trained infantry could get off three shots per minute with the Brown Bess. It’s biggest drawback was the fact that it was accurate only to about 100 yards. The British compensated by having their infantry companies target an area, rather than individual targets, and saturate the target area with massed fire.
American Militiamen used an equivalent musket, whether of British or domestic manufacture. But the American Militaman had another, even more powerful weapon available.
Meet the Pennsylvania Rifled Musket. Invented and manufactured by Pennsylvania gunsmiths, this weapon was effective out to 400 yards, four times the distance of British muskets. Because of this, Americans used this like a modern sniper rifle, aiming for and taking out individual targets. When employed from entrenched siege positions at the Battle of Boston, American Infantry Companies armed with the Pennsylvania Rifled Musket inflicted a casualty rate of 42%, causing the British victory at Boston to be dearly bought. This gun was the cutting edge of infantry assault weapons of the day. Thereafter, the British never attempted to assault American entrenched positions. Unfortunately, American generals made many mistakes, trying to fight the British toe to toe in open fields, trying to beat the British at their own game.
The very first Continental Regiment authorized by the Continental Congress (out of 27 Regiments) was armed with the Pennsylvania Rifled Musket. It remained under George Washington’s direct control throughout the war, as a “Special Reserve Force”.
Now, here is the rub: THE 1ST CONTINENTAL REGIMENT WAS DRAWN FROM CITIZEN MILITIA, WHO SUPPLIED THEIR OWN UNIFORMS AND THEIR OWN WEAPONS! The Continental Congress never had the money to issue uniforms or weapons to the Regiments they authorized. They struggled to procure the gun powder and shot for the troops, and failed frequently to even pay the troops. The ten companies of the 1st Regiment relied on privately bought and owned guns of the men who volunteered to enlist. The Founding Fathers not only intended the citizens to have access to the best, most cutting edge assault weapons of the day, they relied on it!
Every single Regiment of the Continental Army were actually State Militia Regiments “on loan” to the Continental Congress. Every man in every Regiment supplied their own guns, and their own uniforms. A little known fact: The U.S. Army to this day expects troops to pay for their own combat boots.
But it gets better!
American Artillery grew out of a small number of militia artillery companies in the Colonies. When war came, the members of these companies brought to the Patriot cause their expertise and their own cannons. Foremost among these was Henry Knox, a Boston bookseller, volunteer artilleryman and self-taught military genius, who took charge of the foundling American artillery branch and whipped it into a formidable force, probably the most effective branch of the Continental Army.
In New York State, the colony could only claim one Artillery Company in its Order of Battle. This unit was raised by John Lamb, a 41 year old merchant of New York City, who financed the artillery company on his own credit. Captain Lamb (later Lt. Colonel and second in command of all artillery under Henry Knox) got a head start by organizing the theft, er, liberation, of 21 British cannon from a warehouse in Turtle Bay.
Got that? The artillery of the Continental Army were owned, largely, by private citizens of the militia. So, never mind assault guns, the Founding Fathers were OK with private citizens owning the equivalent of modern howitzers.
At the end of the Revolutionary War, the Continental Navy consisted of one surviving warship. This was sold off at auction to a private buyer by the Continental Congress, because they didn’t have the money to keep the warship manned and operational, AND WOULDN’T DREAM OF PUTTING THE PUBLIC IN DEBT WITH DEFICIT SPENDING AND BORROWING!!! The country would not have a navy again until 1791, when the Congress approved construction of new frigates to fight the Barbary Pirates, a.k.a. Islamic Terrorists attacking American shipping in the Mediterranean Sea. The more things change, the more they remain the same.
So, to sum up, the Founding Fathers were JUST FINE with private citizens owning cutting edge assault guns, artillery, and even WHOLE WARSHIPS! If the Founding Fathers were around today, they would wonder, loudly and angrily, why American citizens are barred from owning M16’s.
So the next time you hear an ignoramus Liberal say that the Second Amendment isn’t meant to allow citizens to own an AR15, tell them to SHUT THE HELL UP, they don’t know what they are talking about!