The Second Amendment was Ratified to Preserve Slavery
Tuesday, 15 January 2013 09:35By Thom Hartmann, Truthout | News Analysis

Musket(Photo: Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery)The real reason the Second Amendment was ratified, and why it says “State” instead of “Country” (the Framers knew the difference – see the 10th Amendment), was to preserve the slave patrol militias in the southern states, which was necessary to get Virginia’s vote. Founders Patrick Henry, George Mason, and James Madison were totally clear on that . . . and we all should be too.

In the beginning, there were the militias. In the South, they were also called the “slave patrols,” and they were regulated by the states.

In Georgia, for example, a generation before the American Revolution, laws were passed in 1755 and 1757 that required all plantation owners or their male white employees to be members of the Georgia Militia, and for those armed militia members to make monthly inspections of the quarters of all slaves in the state. The law defined which counties had which armed militias and even required armed militia members to keep a keen eye out for slaves who may be planning uprisings.

As Dr. Carl T. Bogus wrote for the University of California Law Review in 1998,

“The Georgia statutes required patrols, under the direction of commissioned militia officers, to examine every plantation each month and authorized them to search ‘all Negro Houses for offensive Weapons and Ammunition’ and to apprehend and give twenty lashes to any slave found outside plantation grounds.”

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One Comment to “2nd Amendment was devised to keep Americans in chains”

  • There were a LOT of compromises made to get the Bill of Rights confirmed by the several states. Nearly a century later, Lincoln would have allowed slavery to continue if doing so would have held the Union together. The key thing to keep in mind is that – in this nation – slavery, as an official policy, no longer exists.

    And Blacks now have the right to keep and bear arms to effect their own defense and thus to keep those days from ever being revisited. Yes, it was an ugly compromise that got the Second Amendment passed … but it DID get passed and, defended, it will never cease to be a useful tool in the eternal fight against tyranny and oppression of whatever sort.

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