The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions." --American Statesman Daniel Webster (1782-1852)

Friday, January 28, 2011

"What if"

I was at work and during break we got to discussing a "what if?"   Suppose a massive gun control ban/confiscation was to happen due to some tragedy like a massive school shooting or something along that line and the president and congress push through a law that all guns have to be turned in and the police with military back up would search houses for illegal firearms.  Several of my friends were of the mind that it would cause upheaval and chaos.  I was of the mind that the vast majority of the military and police would refuse to obey such an order because as I remember when I was sworn in long ago to uphold and defend the constitution of the United States that such an order would constitute an illegal order and we would be honor bound to refuse such an order.
      I remember from my history that after the end of WWII that the allied powers brought members of the nazi government to trial in Nuremburg trials.  the frequent defence of the members was " Dienst ist Dienst" or it was my job.  Their general staff and government was based on the prussian model of unquestioned obedience.  We as a military followed a different belief that we don't obey an illegal order, our code of honor and the UCMJ reflects that.
      I am of the belief that the vast majority of the military and police would refuse such an order due to the oath we took and the belief in our system.   the only way for this to be circumvented was  for the state to form an independent paramilitary force like the Noriega's paramilitary Dignity Battalions or something like that where the force swears loyalty to a person rather than to a system of government. 

The Posse Comitatus Act is a United States federal law (18 U.S.C. § 1385) passed on June 18, 1878, after the end of Reconstruction, with the intention (in concert with the Insurrection Act of 1807) of substantially limiting the powers of the federal government to use the military for law enforcement. The Act prohibits most members of the federal uniformed services (today the Marine Corps, Army, Navy, Air Force, and State National Guard forces when such are called into federal service) from exercising nominally state law enforcement, police, or peace officer powers that maintain "law and order" on non-federal property (states and their counties and municipal divisions) within the United States.
The statute generally prohibits federal military personnel and units of the National Guard under federal authority from acting in a law enforcement capacity within the United States, except where expressly authorized by the Constitution or Congress. The Coast Guard is exempt from the Act.(compliments of Wiki)
  The above named law would prevent the U.S. Military from getting involved with law enforcement.  the government would have to remove this law to get the military or a paramilitary group involved.    

     If there was an attempt to do a massive seizure it would cause large amounts of casualties because the former law-abiding citizens would fight and the newly formed security forces would have spilled American blood.  The actions would inflame the citizenry unless they have been already cowed or bribed into silence.   I remember Ronald Reagan commenting during a speech that freedom is but 1 generation from extinction.  

      I am optimistic that we as a society will never get to such a point where an event like this would happen.

 An educated populace is the best defence against tyranny

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