Debate Magazine

Defund the Police, Get a Kyle Rittenhouse

Posted on the 20 November 2021 by Doggone

 Art. 12. La garantie des droits de l'Homme et du Citoyen nécessite une force publique : cette force est donc instituée pour l'avantage de tous, et non pour l'utilité particulière de ceux auxquels elle est confiée.

XII. A public force being necessary to give security to the rights of men and of citizens, that force is instituted for the benefit of the community and not for the particular benefit of the persons to whom it is intrusted.

Déclaration des Droits de l'Homme et du Citoyen de 1789

What Kyle Rittenhouse did was wrong. That is traveling to another jurisdiction to "preserve the peace". He was lucky that he wasn't shot by the actual militia, or National Guard (US Constitution, Article I, Section 8, Clauses 15 & 16) for being on the street with a weapon. On the other hand, I understand why he did what he did.

The Document that I quote above is contemporary to the US Constitution and is equally influential on the Constitutions of other nations beside France and former French Colonies.  There are parallels between the two documents, but the most important piece of the Constitution tends to be neglected. That is the preamble. In other laws, there is a statement of purpose, or why the document was adopted. The US Constitution states it was adopted for the purposes of:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. 

The Second Amendment of the US Constitution DID NOT repeal previous sections of the Constitution, which describes the roles of  the militia as:

To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

And while the uneducated like to claim membership in the militia as members of an "unorganised militia", that is the equivalent to saying that being subject to the draft makes one a member of the US Military. In other words, the "unorganised" miltia is a body which can be called into service under the call up provisions of state laws. Presser v. Illinois, 116 U.S. 252 (more) 6 S. Ct. 580, 29 L. Ed. 615, 1886 U.S. LEXIS 1760 (1886) addressed this issue:

The right voluntarily to associate together as a military company or organization, or to drill or parade with arms, without, and independent of, an act of congress or law of the state authorizing the same, is not an attribute of national citizenship. Military organization and military drill and parade under arms are subjects especially under the control of the government of every country. They cannot be claimed as a right independent of law. Under our political system they are subject to the regulation and control of the state and federal governments, acting in due regard to their respective prerogatives and powers. The constitution and laws of the United States will be searched in vain for any support to the view that these rights are privileges and immunities of citizens of the United States independent of some specific legislation on the subject. It cannot be successfully questioned that the state governments, unless restrained by their own constitutions, have the power to regulate or prohibit associations and meetings of the people, except in the case of peaceable assemblies to perform the duties or exercise the privileges of citizens of the United States, and have also the power to control and regulate the organization, drilling, and parading of military bodies and associations, except when such bodies or associations, are authorized by the militia laws of the United States. The exercise of this power by the states is necessary to the public peace, safety, and good order. To deny the power would be to deny the right of the state to disperse assemblages organized for sedition and treason, and the right to suppress armed mobs bent on riot and rapine.
What happened in Kenosha is a very good example of how the Second Amendment has been taken out of context. Yes, when the official forces are unable, or unwilling, to keep order, somebody has to step in. Likewise, I wouldn't convict someone for defending their home as was the case with the McCloskeys. On the other hand, Kyle Rittenhouse was walking around openly carrying a weapon: he could have been the victim of the REAL militia had they been on the scene. As is, he was an untrained civilian in a situation which was way beyond his abilities.

His heart was in the right place, but his head was up his ass.

Unfortunately, he is a symbol of the "armed civilian" using a weapon for "self-defence". But Kenosha burned with or without Kyle Rittenhouse. 

The reality is that people saw the police as either unwilling or unable to control what was happening in US cities, but the issue here isn't the Second Amendment: it's that the US is a failed state. It's the Soviet Union on life support.

BTW, unless your militia was created by act of congress: it is not a true constitutional miltia (Article I, Section 8, Clause 16). The Second Amendment does not create the militia, it only ensures its viability. But the fact that there is a large standing military establishment shows that the Second Amendment is a victim of desuetude and should be repealed.

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