Congresswoman sees ‘threat’ in Constitution
But House sergeant-at-arms says gun expert’s
comment presented ‘no specific danger’
The head of a gun-rights organization is delivering a lesson on the Constitution to a member of Congress who claimed his statements on the Second Amendment constituted a threat against her.
“I have never encouraged, or even suggested, that anyone harm anyone. Rather, my speech was designed to educate citizens, and politicians, that it is the fact that Americans are armed that allows them to resist efforts to be dominated, intimidated, or controlled by politicians.”
His letter came after Maloney reported him to Capitol Police and the House Sergeant-at-Arms because of his statements in a recent interview with Rolling Stone.
In the interview, she alleged, “Mr. Pratt is actively encouraging his members to threaten violent action against members of Congress.”
Roll Call reported Maloney claimed Pratt’s statements were evidence of “just how outrageous the extreme pro-gun movement has become.”
The report said: “Maloney’s staff notified Capitol Police and House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving of the recent article which declared Pratt the ‘Gun Lobby’s Secret Weapon,’ the congresswoman said, but they were told there was ‘no specific danger and nothing to be done.’”
Pratt told the congresswoman: “Lest you believe that I stand on the fringes of civilized society, let me provide you with some other sources for the same principle which I was enunciating.”
He cited the Declaration of Independence, which states “whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government.”
He quoted Frederick Douglass: “A man’s rights rest in three boxes: the ballot box, the jury box, and the cartridge box.”
And he called on the wisdom of John Basil Barnhill: “Where the people fear the government you have tyranny. Where the government fears the people you have liberty.”
Finally, he quoted Justice Antonin Scalia: “[W]hen the able-bodied men of a nation are trained in arms and organized, they are better able to resist tyranny.”
“These various statements span four centuries. They come from people of differing ethnicities, of various stations, and holding differing political beliefs,” Pratt wrote. “What they all agree on is that you should go to work every day with a healthy amount of fear and respect for the American people who you are supposed to represent.”
In Rolling Stone, Pratt had said, “The Second Amendment is not for hunting, it’s not even for self-defense.” Instead, it is “for restraining tyrannical tendencies in government. … Especially those in the liberal, tyrannical end of the spectrum. There is some restraint, and even if the voters of Brooklyn don’t hold them back, it may be there are other ways that their impulses are somewhat restrained. That’s the whole idea of the Second Amendment.”
The New York Daily News interpreted the statement to mean Pratt believes “the Second Amendment exists to ensure government officials face a permanent threat of gun violence.”
Not so, Pratt insisted.
Congress should do its job, he said, “in constant trepidation” over concern the members’ job performance would be “publicly criticized from the soap box … you will be voted out via the ballot box” or there would be a verdict in the jury box.
And, he wrote, “Should you attempt to disarm Americans the way the British crown tried 240 years ago, the same sovereign people who constituted this government using the cartridge box someday may need to reconstitute it, as clearly anticipated by the Declaration of Independence.”
A WND call requesting comment from Maloney’s office was not returned. But thousands of other Americans did jump into the conversation.
Examiner author David Codrea wrote that, like the famous “I’m Spartacus” scene from the Kubrick movie, on this issue he would say, “I’m Larry Pratt.”
“If the Capitol Police are going to investigate him, they’re going to have to investigate me, too, because I agree with everything he said about the Second Amendment being a last-resort protection against tyranny,” he wrote.
Thousands of Americans joined in with his statement on GOA’s Facebook page.
The basic constitutional concept also got an endorsement from GOP superstar Dr. Ben Carson, the retired neurosurgeon and author of multiple bestsellers.
According to CNSNews.com, at a recent Western Conservative Summit in Colorado, Carson said the Second Amendment was installed in the Constitution so Americans could support the military if needed, but “more importantly, so that people could protect themselves from an overly aggressive government, if that ever happened.”
He said he “would never compromise the Second Amendment in any way.”
“All we have to do is look back through history and see what happened when various dictators rose to power,” he said. “One of the first things they always did was confiscate the weapons. So we don’t ever want to allow that situation to occur.
“We don’t even necessarily want them to know who has weapons.” he said.
Pratt told the congresswoman: “The Second Amendment was written to preserve ‘a free state’ against the ever present temptation faced by government officials to steal liberty from the people.”
And he re-told the story of Athens, Tennessee, in post-World War II 1946, when returning veterans “found their hometown …. had been taken over by corrupt local politicians.”
“It was those veterans’ access to and experience with firearms that made possible the preservation of ballot boxes that were about to be fraudulently counted, in what has come to be known as the Battle of Athens. A 1992 movie entitled ‘An American Story’ commemorates the actions of these brave veterans,” he wrote.
“Private ownership and skilled use of firearms is what enabled our country to gain its independence, and it is what continues to preserve our liberty. Someday, I hope that you study this aspect of the history of our great nation, that currently allows you to serve in the People’s House, and come to understand the great principles on which it was founded and continues to operate,” Pratt wrote.
Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2014/07/congresswoman-sees-threat-in-constitution/#9ldTTLjEl5hpkudf.99