What I have to say will not be popular, and that really is the point. Expressing oneís opinion is a basic human right provided by our creator and spelled out in the U.S. Constitution. It cannot and should not be something decided by popular vote. In the 1960s if one had taken a popular vote about segregation in the South, it would easily have been upheld, and some would have argued that it was the will of the people. However, a majority of voters canít take away the rights we have been granted. Our Founding Fathers realized this so they clearly delineated those things which were natural rights of the people. Elected officials often represent the will of their constituents, but it takes the courage of conviction to understand when it is necessary to oppose such popular sentiments.
John Kennedy wrote about such conviction. One example he provides is the case of Edmund G. Ross, who represented the one vote to save President Andrew Johnson from being removed from office in his impeachment trial. My point is that while I am a passionate supporter of democracy, there are times when what is popular is not what is right.
Which brings me to the point of this letter; all of our rights need to be protected and preserved. They are the natural order of the way things should be. One of these rights is spelled out in the Second Amendment to the Constitution. When attempts are made to limit our ability as citizens to protect ourselves we must remember that this right is as precious as all the others. In fact, some would agree that it is the most important because without the ability to defend ourselves all of our other rights are clearly in jeopardy.
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Gov. Peter Shumlin announces demise of his single-payer health insurance initiative; convicted first-degree murderer Alan Prue sentenced to 50 years for killing teacher Melissa Jenkins; veterans chafed about park naming snub.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: In 497 BC, first Saturnalia festival celebrated in Rome, Scandinavians retain 'Yule Goat' as symbol of season, Krampus, evil side of holiday cheer, terrorizes children into better behavior, more advice from Christopher Hitchens.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: In 533 AD, Byzantine Emperor Justinian I gets the old empire back together again routing the Vandals from Carthage; in 1890, Lakota Chief Sitting Bull is killed at his home in South Dakota; in 1970, Soviets land probe on Venus.
- DUANE CARLETON: Rutland Herald Events Editor George Nostrand interviews musician Duane Carleton, whose new CD 'A GIRL LIKE THAT' drops Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014, and will be celebrated that evening with a show at 9:30 p.m. at Killington's Pickle Barrel.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Sigisimund, king of Hungary, creates Order of the Dragon to defend the West against Ottoman Turks; Chong Ho escorts 300 virgins to China; J. Bruce Ismay born this day, built Titanic, gets free trip, does not go down with the ship.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Storm takes out power for 60,000 Vermonters; state gets $33M to fund pre-K education; Springfield board OKs fund to demolish blighted buildings, voters have final say; George Nostrand runs down coming events.