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The Second Amendment

It’s quite understandable that you want to be able to defend your loved ones by exercising your God-given Second Amendment right to shoot any bad guy who invades your home.  But please make sure you stick to what the 1791 Second Amendment actually says: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

We have of course no doubt whatever that you’re a member of a well regulated Militia, necessary to the security of a free State, plus a dab hand with a 1791 musket, which we’re equally certain you are adept at loading and firing. Nothing to it. First, you half-cock the piece, then with your teeth you tear open the paper cartridge containing the ball and powder charge, open the pan of the lock, prime the pan with a small amount of powder and close it. Next, you pour the rest of the powder down the barrel, place the ball and paper wadding in the muzzle and ram them home with your ramrod, being careful to seat the ball firmly, but not too tightly, on the powder charge. Finally, you bring the piece to full cock. Voilà! Your musket is now ready to fire. And all in less than a minute.

[One tiny little caveat: your gun-toting home invader will most likely be brandishing a 600-rounds-a-minute Kalashnikov Automatic AK-47 Assault Weapon with a bump fire stock, which can fire ten bullets a second, giving him or her a slight advantage over your eighteenth-century musket.]

But in spite of this minor qualification, as you often point out, “Weapons are life savers.” To confirm this, we need only take a look at the totally specious opposing statistics put out by the World Health Organization and the American Journal of Medicine: “The US accounts for 82% of all gun deaths across the developed world, 90% of all women killed, and 92% of young people between ages 15 and 24 who are shot by guns. Not to mention the mass shootings that take place every day in America, killing some 36,000 of our citizens per annum.”

Yeah, yeah, yeah. The same old horse feathers we’ve come to expect from tree-hugging, bleeding-heart socialists in Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bermuda, Canada, Chile, Denmark, the Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, the Holy See, Hungary, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan and the United Kingdom, who have almost no guns at all.

Finally, apart from their indispensable role in saving us from rape, robbery, murder and mayhem, guns are also indispensable when we go hunting, not because we are hungry, but simply because like all red-blooded Americans we enjoy killing defenseless animals.

Yes, indeed, all you Second Amendment lovers are right on target, and thanks to you and your more than 300 million guns, we Americans are surely the wisest, luckiest and safest people in the world!

From my book, “Got a Couple of Minutes? Two Hundred 500-word stories.”

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David Stansfield is a former PBS writer-producer and the author of “Take Nothing For Granted,” a thriller set against the backdrop of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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