Justice Scalia Goes Gun Crazy

BY Herschel Smith
3 years, 7 months ago

No, that’s not my preferred title, but the one used by Adam Winkler:

America has more than its fair share of extremists who believe people need to stock up on guns to fight against tyrannical government in Washington.Add one more to the list: Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. In a speech in Montana on Monday, the jurist was asked about the Second Amendment and what arms were protected by that provision of the Constitution. That “remains to be determined,” he replied. As one example, he asked if people have a right to “bear shoulder-fired rocket launchers?” Perhaps they do, Scalia suggested. The answer would turn on the historical understanding of the Framers, who Scalia said included the Second Amendment in part to preserve the right of people to revolt against a tyrannical leader.

Adam continues, “The idea that the Second Amendment gives people the right to revolt against government is broadly shared among gun rights extremists” (Adam is referring to people like me – Adam would have been a loyalist during the revolutionary war, I would have charged up King’s Mountain against the loyalist troops) … “The insurrectionist understanding of the Second Amendment fails to account for two other features of the Constitution. First, the Second Amendment itself includes a preamble referring to the necessity of a “well regulated militia.”

Here Adam continues with the well-worn and tired claptrap about well-regulated meaning controlled by the state.  Bob Owens has the must-read defeater argument on this, but since Adam won’t care about this I won’t spend time recapitulating what Bob says.  Adam can continue to wring his hands and worry over things, and we can move on to one salient observation about Scalia.

I have long lamented what I perceive to be the weakness of Heller versus D.C.  But perhaps Scalia really does understand that the Second Amendment has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with hunting or self defense, and has everything to do with ameliorating tyranny.  And perhaps Scalia knows that the Supreme Court had to bite this off in chunks.  If so, this is a welcome evolution in Scalia’s thinking – at least as it pertains to what he feels free to say out loud.

And oh, by the way, the Hughes amendment was an unconstitutional obscenity.

UPDATE: Kurt Hofmann writes me, observing that: ” … Mr. Constitutional Law Professor is already lost, when he talks about any bill in the Bill of Rights giving rights.  Besides, my position has always been that the Second Amendment does not protect “the right to revolt,” but protects the right to the means of effective revolt.  When revolt becomes necessary, a Constitutionally protected “right to revolt” wouldn’t matter, even if there were one, because by then, the Constitution will no longer be relevant.”  Good points.

Thanks to David and Mike for the attention.

Leave a Reply

21 Comments on "Justice Scalia Goes Gun Crazy"

Notify of
Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Paul B

I would have to say I would be the old guy that stopped the company from advancing.

The tories are still with us and still trying to get our guns.

Bill St. Clair

“Reread that pesky first clause of the Second Amendment. It doesn’t say what ANY of us thought it said. What it says is that infringing the right of the people to keep and bear arms is TREASON. What else do you call an act that endangers ‘the security of a free state’? And if it’s treason, then it’s punishable by death. I suggest due process, speedy trials, and public hangings.” — L. Neil Smith

Mt Top Patriot

What it means is this:

It is not ours to restore the power of the Constitution. It is ours to show them the wrath of America without the protections the Constitution offers them.

Let them restore it to find refuge from us.

– TL Davis


I think Bill St. Clair states it very well.


I’m an older retired fellow who has tried to teach my children and grandchildren about the so-called Rights they have lost. When the time comes to challenge tyranny, the only power I will understand is the gun in my hand and the one on my hip. I will derive no power from the Constitution, as the left-wingers and the silence of the right, will have destroyed it.

“At the outset of the Revolution the entire train of artillery was composed of four cannon possessed by the Boston Artillery Company. Two of the cannon were captured by the enemy and these two were owned by several citizens of Boston.” This inscription was engraved upon the two cannon returned to the several citizens of Boston, by order of henrty Knox First Secretary of War by direction of the Congress of the United State 1788, they were named the Adams and the Hancock. Three pound cannon fird a solid ball weighing three pounds, chain and ball or canister shot-a canvass bag containing hundreds of musket or iron balls. Explosive round were not deployed by cannon yet. They were used in mortars. The Continental Navy was composed of 64 ships with some 1200 cannon and swivel guns-small cannon type guns mounted on ship rails and tripods. The Privateers-armed civillian owned ships-numbered more than 2000 with over 14,000 cannon and swivel guns. source; US Maritime Museum. So it looks like the civilllian ownership of artillery was equal to that of the government-on land-and close to 14 times what the government possesed on ships. Now when the courts were talking about what the… Read more »

‘Well-regulated’ is the opposite of ‘irregular’ in terms of irregular militia or irregular army.

Like Sherlock Holmes’s ‘Baker Street Irregulars’ or the ‘Civilian Irregular Defense Groups’ during the Vietnam war or Theodore Roosevelt’s First Irregular Cavalry making the charge up San Juan Hill.

Justice Scalia Goes Gun Crazy |

[…] The Captain’s Journal – by HerschelSmith […]


The Hughes amendment needs a challenge. We can argue and probably agree, that Nukes, Biological or chemical weapons should be out of reach as “normal” weapons. Cannon and machine guns should be available. We have already compromised with extra paperwork for them. The Hughes amendment only drives up prices and leads to the end of private ownership. As they break, are lost, worn out, burned in house fires, there are no more. It is a slow, long term confiscation. That is the point.

With regards to “well regulated”, that means practiced. At the least, this means we should all target shoot often. That is the fundamental skill. Let’s have the government pay for our ammo! We could also practice small unit actions to improve coordination.

In any case, the operative clause says the people shall not be infringed. The prefatory clause merely explains the rationale or reason for it. We have compromised in 1934, 1968, and 1986. NO MORE.

Repeal the Hughes amendment. It is time for the pendulum to swing back.


Perhaps the “line” of what is “ok for private ownership” should be drawn based on the police or sheriffs weapons. We face the same criminals and terrorists. If they can have it, so can we. The people may find “it” just as useful and needed. Or, the police can do without “it”. No MG’s, RPG’s, armor for us, then none for them. Any so called advances in weaponry, such as RFID chips or “smart” guns need to apply to all. No exemptions for them. Funny how they don’t want that.

Justice Scalia Goes Gun Crazy | The Gun Feed

[…] Go to this article […]


the human right to self-defense ,with what ever means available, is not written anywhere that allows man to revoke it….it is in the mind and body of the human where ever that person may be…home ,auto,park,store,church,beach,woods, and yes even Washington DC…no matter what the rulers say…..imho…..Semper Fi


First and foremost, a sincere and heartfelt shoutout to all U.S. Military Veterans:
“Thank You For Your Service.”

For the benefit available to those who may not be aware:- allow that I humbly submit the following as expressed by those who Founded the most evolved and sophisticated system of government ever devised, fashioned and implemented in the whole of all Human history — embodied as that of the American Constitutional Republic. Congress of the United States begun and held at the City of New-York, on Wednesday the fourth of March, one thousand seven hundred and eighty nine. [Excerpt as follows:] “THE Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution. RESOLVED…” Note that, ‘in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers’ — ( meaning of course, those few and expressly limited powers granted to those within and acting on behalf of the ‘Federal’ government, and only by consent of the people — one particular ‘further declaratory and restrictive clause added’ as follows: Amendment II “A well regulated… Read more »
Mark Matis

I would take exception to that, Gw, for any veteran who is now working as “Law Enforcement” and is spitting on their very oath of office to the Constitution. That would include EVERY officer in the NYPD, as well as EVERY officer in the CPD, and MANY others across this country. God damn them to hell for their treason.

re: On August 24, 2013 at 2:35 am, Gw said: First and foremost, a sincere and heartfelt shoutout to all U.S. Military Veterans: “Thank You For Your Service.” —————————————————————————- Service ? Service for what ? To what ? To whom ? I know you mean well Gw but, as a military veteran I would ask you to stop thanking us. Today, and for 19 wars since WW2, members of the US military have followed orders in violation of the United States Constitution. We have killed and maimed and made homeless millions of people the world over in undeclared conflict. We have a usurper in the West Wing who is a criminal and a murderer. A usurper to the Constitution. Yet where are our military leaders ? Where are our flag officers who would and could execute a coup d’etat against this illegitimate government of soetoro-obama ? They are pandering to soetoro-obama and his socialist minions. They are getting ready to enter into ANOTHER war, this one a biblical prophesy of a Middle East cauldron and the end of the world, joining in war against Syria. No Gw….don’t thank us. For we haven’t defended the country against enemy attacks and invasions… Read more »
Mark Matis

Thank you.

James Harris

Without getting into each of the myriad details of the arguments above, I’d point out one thing I think is miss stated:

It is not just “big business” (however defined) that wants cheap labor, cheap goods, or other benefits available through the present international trade/immigration arrangements. There all kinds of small and medium businesses that directly or indirectly benefit from this trade of people and goods; and ultimately, the American consumer him/her-self demands it. Nobody forces anyone to shop at Walmart, for example (or any of the smaller stores that buy/sell with the same international entities); they just do.

All this morphs into the following two questions: 1) What would be the world-wide, as well as internal, economic effects of closing our borders as described above? 2) Are we as a nation willing to pay that price?

While different people will respond to these “differently,” I think that generally speaking, the most common answers are intuitive.


Honorable Men of good Conscience, Moral Character, strong Constitutions and deeply held Convictions.
Truly humbled to be in such good company.

As of the date & time of this post, all thoughts, comments and opinions read and hereby acknowledged.

Sincere appreciation extended to Mr. Herschel Smith for providing one such as myself this format for posting.

That said, and for any inclined to do so — I for one, would be highly interested in reading further considerations with regard the posted excerpt.


You are currently reading "Justice Scalia Goes Gun Crazy", entry #11154 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) Guns,Second Amendment and was published August 22nd, 2013 by Herschel Smith.

If you're interested in what else the The Captain's Journal has to say, you might try thumbing through the archives and visiting the main index, or; perhaps you would like to learn more about TCJ.

26th MEU (10)
Abu Muqawama (12)
ACOG (2)
ACOGs (1)
Afghan National Army (36)
Afghan National Police (17)
Afghanistan (677)
Afghanistan SOFA (4)
Agriculture in COIN (3)
AGW (1)
Air Force (31)
Air Power (9)
al Qaeda (83)
Ali al-Sistani (1)
America (7)
Ammunition (26)
Animals in War (4)
Ansar al Sunna (15)
Anthropology (3)
Antonin Scalia (1)
AR-15s (86)
Arghandab River Valley (1)
Arlington Cemetery (2)
Army (49)
Assassinations (2)
Assault Weapon Ban (26)
Australian Army (5)
Azerbaijan (4)
Backpacking (2)
Badr Organization (8)
Baitullah Mehsud (21)
Basra (17)
BATFE (53)
Battle of Bari Alai (2)
Battle of Wanat (17)
Battle Space Weight (3)
Bin Laden (7)
Blogroll (2)
Blogs (7)
Body Armor (17)
Books (2)
Border War (7)
Brady Campaign (1)
Britain (27)
British Army (35)
Camping (4)
Canada (2)
Castle Doctrine (1)
Caucasus (6)
Center For a New American Security (8)
Charity (3)
China (10)
Christmas (8)
CIA (23)
Civilian National Security Force (3)
Col. Gian Gentile (9)
Combat Outposts (3)
Combat Video (2)
Concerned Citizens (6)
Constabulary Actions (3)
Coolness Factor (2)
COP Keating (4)
Corruption in COIN (4)
Council on Foreign Relations (1)
Counterinsurgency (215)
DADT (2)
David Rohde (1)
Defense Contractors (2)
Department of Defense (130)
Department of Homeland Security (16)
Disaster Preparedness (3)
Distributed Operations (5)
Dogs (6)
Donald Trump (1)
Drone Campaign (3)
EFV (3)
Egypt (12)
El Salvador (1)
Embassy Security (1)
Enemy Spotters (1)
Expeditionary Warfare (17)
F-22 (2)
F-35 (1)
Fallujah (17)
Far East (3)
Fathers and Sons (1)
Favorite (1)
Fazlullah (3)
FBI (7)
Featured (177)
Federal Firearms Laws (18)
Financing the Taliban (2)
Firearms (585)
Football (1)
Force Projection (35)
Force Protection (4)
Force Transformation (1)
Foreign Policy (27)
Fukushima Reactor Accident (6)
Ganjgal (1)
Garmsir (1)
general (14)
General Amos (1)
General James Mattis (1)
General McChrystal (41)
General McKiernan (6)
General Rodriguez (3)
General Suleimani (7)
Georgia (19)
Google (1)
Gulbuddin Hekmatyar (1)
Gun Control (471)
Guns (1,082)
Guns In National Parks (3)
Haditha Roundup (10)
Haiti (2)
Haqqani Network (9)
Hate Mail (7)
Hekmatyar (1)
Heroism (4)
Hezbollah (12)
High Capacity Magazines (11)
High Value Targets (9)
Homecoming (1)
Homeland Security (1)
Horses (1)
Humor (13)
ICOS (1)
IEDs (7)
Immigration (54)
India (10)
Infantry (3)
Information Warfare (2)
Infrastructure (2)
Intelligence (22)
Intelligence Bulletin (6)
Iran (169)
Iraq (378)
Iraq SOFA (23)
Islamic Facism (44)
Islamists (69)
Israel (18)
Jaish al Mahdi (21)
Jalalabad (1)
Japan (2)
Jihadists (80)
John Nagl (5)
Joint Intelligence Centers (1)
JRTN (1)
Kabul (1)
Kajaki Dam (1)
Kamdesh (9)
Kandahar (12)
Karachi (7)
Kashmir (2)
Khost Province (1)
Khyber (11)
Knife Blogging (2)
Korea (4)
Korengal Valley (3)
Kunar Province (20)
Kurdistan (3)
Language in COIN (5)
Language in Statecraft (1)
Language Interpreters (2)
Lashkar-e-Taiba (2)
Law Enforcement (3)
Lawfare (6)
Leadership (5)
Lebanon (6)
Leon Panetta (2)
Let Them Fight (2)
Libya (14)
Lines of Effort (3)
Littoral Combat (8)
Logistics (49)
Long Guns (1)
Lt. Col. Allen West (2)
Marine Corps (244)
Marines in Bakwa (1)
Marines in Helmand (67)
Marjah (4)
Media (31)
Memorial Day (2)
Mexican Cartels (24)
Mexico (30)
Michael Yon (5)
Micromanaging the Military (7)
Middle East (1)
Military Blogging (26)
Military Contractors (4)
Military Equipment (24)
Militia (4)
Mitt Romney (3)
Monetary Policy (1)
Moqtada al Sadr (2)
Mosul (4)
Mountains (15)
MRAPs (1)
Mullah Baradar (1)
Mullah Fazlullah (1)
Mullah Omar (3)
Musa Qala (4)
Music (16)
Muslim Brotherhood (6)
Nation Building (2)
National Internet IDs (1)
National Rifle Association (17)
NATO (15)
Navy (21)
Navy Corpsman (1)
NCOs (3)
News (1)
NGOs (2)
Nicholas Schmidle (2)
Now Zad (19)
NSA (2)
NSA James L. Jones (6)
Nuclear (53)
Nuristan (8)
Obama Administration (218)
Offshore Balancing (1)
Operation Alljah (7)
Operation Khanjar (14)
Ossetia (7)
Pakistan (165)
Paktya Province (1)
Palestine (5)
Patriotism (6)
Patrolling (1)
Pech River Valley (11)
Personal (33)
Petraeus (14)
Pictures (1)
Piracy (13)
Pistol (2)
Pizzagate (21)
Police (241)
Police in COIN (3)
Policy (15)
Politics (316)
Poppy (2)
PPEs (1)
Prisons in Counterinsurgency (12)
Project Gunrunner (20)
PRTs (1)
Qatar (1)
Quadrennial Defense Review (2)
Quds Force (13)
Quetta Shura (1)
RAND (3)
Recommended Reading (14)
Refueling Tanker (1)
Religion (114)
Religion and Insurgency (19)
Reuters (1)
Rick Perry (4)
Rifles (1)
Roads (4)
Rolling Stone (1)
Ron Paul (1)
ROTC (1)
Rules of Engagement (74)
Rumsfeld (1)
Russia (29)
Sabbatical (1)
Sangin (1)
Saqlawiyah (1)
Satellite Patrols (2)
Saudi Arabia (4)
Scenes from Iraq (1)
Second Amendment (173)
Second Amendment Quick Hits (2)
Secretary Gates (9)
Sharia Law (3)
Shura Ittehad-ul-Mujahiden (1)
SIIC (2)
Sirajuddin Haqqani (1)
Small Wars (72)
Snipers (9)
Sniveling Lackeys (2)
Soft Power (4)
Somalia (8)
Sons of Afghanistan (1)
Sons of Iraq (2)
Special Forces (24)
Squad Rushes (1)
State Department (18)
Statistics (1)
Sunni Insurgency (10)
Support to Infantry Ratio (1)
Supreme Court (2)
Survival (13)
SWAT Raids (53)
Syria (38)
Tactical Drills (1)
Tactical Gear (1)
Taliban (167)
Taliban Massing of Forces (4)
Tarmiyah (1)
TBI (1)
Technology (16)
Tehrik-i-Taliban (78)
Terrain in Combat (1)
Terrorism (92)
Thanksgiving (6)
The Anbar Narrative (23)
The Art of War (5)
The Fallen (1)
The Long War (20)
The Surge (3)
The Wounded (13)
Thomas Barnett (1)
Transnational Insurgencies (5)
Tribes (5)
TSA (14)
TSA Ineptitude (11)
TTPs (1)
U.S. Border Patrol (5)
U.S. Border Security (14)
U.S. Sovereignty (17)
UAVs (2)
UBL (4)
Ukraine (3)
Uncategorized (42)
Universal Background Check (3)
Unrestricted Warfare (4)
USS Iwo Jima (2)
USS San Antonio (1)
Uzbekistan (1)
V-22 Osprey (4)
Veterans (2)
Vietnam (1)
War & Warfare (212)
War & Warfare (40)
War Movies (3)
War Reporting (18)
Wardak Province (1)
Warriors (6)
Waziristan (1)
Weapons and Tactics (57)
West Point (1)
Winter Operations (1)
Women in Combat (18)
WTF? (1)
Yemen (1)

March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006

about · archives · contact · register

Copyright © 2006-2017 Captain's Journal. All rights reserved.