So, You Want To Repeal The 2nd Amendment | Ron’s Office Hours | NPR
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So, You Want To Repeal The 2nd Amendment | Ron’s Office Hours | NPR


RON ELVING: The Second Amendment casts a long shadow across gun debates in America. JODEY ARRINGTON: We’re talking about our God-given fundamental right. TUCKER CARLSON: Gun control
JOSH EARNEST: Of gun control CARRIE LIGHTFOOT: Second Amendment right
JOE SCARBOROUGH: The Second Amendment PAUL RYAN: Legitimate constitutional
NEWT GINGRICH: Right to bear arms DONALD TRUMP: Second Amendment
(cheers from crowd) ELVING: But what would it take to actually
change it? Amending the Constitution began practically before the ink was dry on the original document. The Second Amendment, the right of state militias and individuals to “keep and bear” firearms, was the second in that original batch of 10 amendments that we think of as the Bill of Rights. So here’s how it works:
Congress can change any part of the Constitution it wishes to, with a two-thirds vote of the
House and a two-thirds vote of the Senate and — here’s the hard part — three-fourths
of the states must sign off; currently, 38 states. These original 10 and all subsequent amendments
to the Constitution were added using a process that’s right there in the Constitution – Article 5. (or Article V because the framers liked to show off their Latin.) Since then, those hurdles of two-thirds in
Congress and three-fourths of the states have loomed awfully high. There have been thousands of proposals to
amend the Constitution, but only 17 have made it all the way and only two in the last 50
years. If all this seems daunting, there is another
way to change the Constitution. That would be by calling a new constitutional convention. This would require a call from two-thirds
of the state legislatures, probably with a specific amendment in mind. But some people believe that such a convention, once it began, could change any part of the United States Constitution … as long as
it could be ratified by three-fourths of the states. So…. while the Founding Fathers were apparently willing to be edited, they did not want it to be easy. They wanted any change to the Constitution to reflect a powerful national consensus. It’s been awhile since we’ve had one of
those, and it may be a long while before we have one on guns. For now, I’m Ron Elving at NPR. Thanks for coming to my office hours.

100 Comments

  • Russ Carr

    I am a minority. And have lived overseas. The people who want the Second Amendment repealed are Democrats who supported enslaving my people. Foreign governments who lick their chops at all that American farmland. People in our government who want complete control who do not care about peoples' rights at all. Lets face it. The problem is America is the last free country. I can tell you for a fact that its not guns thats the problem. This all boils down to slavery. The first gun control was started when white Americans who were pro slavery realised black people could own guns. I got one for you. Lets the people who want gun control go to places that have no rights to guns. They would be flocking back here ASAP. Lets face reality that this issue is being pushed so that an invasion can take place for that prime American farmland. Guess who backed the gun control agenda the Russians. Who do you think funds those parties buy use of agents on our soil. You America better wake up and start wondering why everyone in the world is flocking to get here. Freedom. Its funny the first things the Nazis did was ban guns. Guess what happened next. Wanna end school shootings? End social ackwardness.

  • Rob

    Unfortunately, while the founders thought there had to be a "powerful national consensus" – 3/4 of the states – to change the constitution, they did not count on the huge disparity in state populations that has grown ever wider over time. So now, a "consensus" is no longer necessary. In fact, the 38 least populous states can change the consitution and those states could represent less than 50 percent of the US population. Some consense.

  • Fred Freddy

    I don't think removing the second amendment would be necessary for 1990s gun regulations. The right tend to portray a zero sum struggle between virtually no regulation and a strawman opposition that wants to ban gun ownership and sometimes take guns from all owners. The left tend to want restrictions on magazine size, regulate ammunition sales and weapon sales. Bans on sales of long guns and carbines specifically designed for military use. Or, variations.

  • mclaine33

    The 3/4th of the States part is the exact reason why the 2nd Adm. can never be replaced or changed. It’s impossible to convince 3/4th of all States to abolish the 2nd Adm

  • sebradfield

    "The second of that original batch of ten…" Actually what we call the 2nd Amendment was the fourth of an original batch of twelve. The first two were not ratified by the States. The original 1st Amendment, specifying how many Congressmen there could be and how many people each one would represent, was never ratified by enough States to make it into the Constitution. The original 2nd Amendment, stating that Legislators could not give themselves a direct pay raise, i.e. any raise they voted themselves would not pass into law until the next election had taken place, was finally ratified as the 27th Amendment in 1992.

  • Maria Callous

    Everyone knows you are supposed to be armed. There could be an invasion at which time the State might need our assistance. Learn to read. General Mattis may need our help, too. If someone or everyone had been packing heat in the synagogue it wouldn't have happened.

  • Micheal Carney

    This is fucking ridiculous. No one is trying to repeal the Second Amendment and to say anything besides is a blatant example of the strawman fallacy. The Founding Fathers had no way of knowing how twisted their work would become over the centuries and you can't treat the words of old men dead for two centuries like divine fiat.

  • M0rtecai

    I don’t want to repeal the second amendment, I just don’t think owning a gun is a right, just like driving a car isn’t a right, the state can pull your drivers license and I think they should handle guns the same way.

  • The King In Yellow

    Ahh……so that's why we'll never have bipartisanship. One party who controls both senate and the house controls the constitution. That makes a lot more sense as to why Democrats were pissed they didn't get both in their, "Blue Wave" and Republicans were pissed when they lost the house. I still don't think it's a smart move changing any amendment in modern times, mainly because once you do, you've lost control of your populace. Especially if you attempt to take guns away.

  • Jerry Allen

    If they really tried it there would be another civil war in this country. I know law enforcement officers and military personnel who say they would NOT take away American citizens guns at any cost. Leftist sure in the hell don't have the balls to do it. Guns are here to stay. I've listened to left wing cooks for 40 years say they was going to disarm America, guess what….. they Haven't.

  • A 4 PLAYJUNKIE

    I see a lot of "try to take the guns and you will get a second civil war"..
    That is not accurate, you will get a second revolutionary war. This very thing us what started the first revolutionary war, Britain tried to take the colonists guns and boom the United States of America was born. Everyone of these politicians violating their oaths to uphold the constitution are traitors to the United States of America. Patriots uphold their oaths, and believe in the freedoms the bill of rights insure. RIGHTS you traitors!!!

  • H Barajas

    IF gun ownership was so important why then was the 2nd Amendment added AFTER the original U.S. Constitution was ratified ! Because it was deemed needed as a means to control black slaves and Indians and later Mexicans who were already born of this North American landscape. Today the 2nd Amendment is really not needed for our race and religiously blended society and thank goodness for that ! We have awesome communications net works and have large fully staffed police forces to respond to our needs for help, one no longer needs powerful weapons to savagely protect his or her self.

  • wes c

    Interesting, but needless. The 2nd amendment has already been surrendered as a right and now is being treated as a privilege. People ask permission to keep arms, they beg the state to bear arms and pay to have a license to do so if permitted. They have waiting periods or have to prove they need one to get permission and may still be subject to a thumbs down. This and much more. The 2nd is useless.

  • Clifford Ishii

    The inalienable right to self defense as well as 2A means I can have and carry a Jo staff as a weapon, and so can others.

  • Melissa Peterson

    Repealing the 2nd Amendment isn't about banning all guns, it's about being able to pass any kind of gun control legislation without people throwing the 2nd Amendment in there as an excuse. Guns are way more advanced now than they were 200+ years ago, and yet we are beholden to an Amendment that could have never predicted where we are now technologically as a society. If we could pass sensible gun control legislation on our own, I don't think people would be so gung-ho about getting rid of the 2nd Amendment. Also, the First Amendment is way more crucial to our survival as a democracy, but people don't defend it nearly as emphatically. Thats leads a lot of people to believe that it's more about the guns in and of themselves than actual protection of our democracy. However as shown in this video, it is gonna take an immense amount of public, congressional, and state support to ever repeal; and I don't think we're anywhere near getting there yet.

  • bob ross

    guns are designed to do harm.  cars are designed to provide transportation.  cars kill just as many or more people than guns do every year.   NPR is anti American, pro-slavery scum that deserve no voice and should be brought to trial for treason.

  • John Ski

    You Leftists do not want to get rid of the guns, you want only the Government to have the guns. A small political elite and their henchmen. Consider that governments in the last century alone murdered a quarter of a billion of their own citizens, outside of war. After disarming their populaces. What type of governments? Leftist-Socialist-Marxist-Communist governments, like the one you wish the US had….

  • Dan Erickson

    If you're taking the 2nd amendment away may as well take the 1st amendment also then we can just be a communist country like China. Not.

  • Sebastian Minney

    It would never happen to many states would vote against it like Texas Oklahoma Kansas Mississippi Wyoming Idaho etc it's a Democrats pipe dream !!!! Keep dreaming !!! Come and take it !!!!

  • Toddy Kwest

    See after they remove it they won't have any laws yet that prohibit guns so that is just extra time for us to proper for war

  • John Giglio

    It would take 2/3 majority in both houses of congress and then 2/3 of states to amend the 2nd amendment. Don’t see that ever happening

  • Abdul Sierra

    The 2nd Amendment is a racist Amendment. It is by now a USELESS amendment as well. You can cry Tyranny all that you want, you'll never defeat the Government, nor a Tyrannical Government. You're simply diluting your mind with delusional thoughts and/or ideas. You'll be labeled a domestic terrorist, and painted by a drones targeting system 3 seconds before you can say Fvck. Then you're dead, and anyone who was foolish enough to March along side you, is also dead. The 2nd amendment has got to go. No Police shall have firearms, nor civilians. None. Zilch. Zero. Only the U.S. military will have firearm's. The End.

  • Shock Therapy

    The simple truth is that the 2nd amendment is only a written affirmation that we are the militia, and we have an unalienable right to bear arms.
    … imagine how pissed the bears are…

  • Mandatory Carry

    Had the Founder foreseen the future of the United States, the Second Amendment would have read very differently;
    “A well protected public, being necessary to the security of a free State, the Duty of the people to keep and bear arms shall be Enforced.”

  • Razak 44

    OMG I love our Constitution and the people who wrote it. They were truly wise. A weak, unarmed defenseless people will ultimately be a enslaved people. And a societal failure.

  • Michael Pfister

    A point: The 2A doesn't actually grant a right. In point of fact it doesn't even recognize or identify a right. What it does is name a pre-existing right and then SPECIFICALLY PROHIBIT the Federal Government from infringing on that right. Legally, if the 2A were removed, as a US Citizen I would still have a fundamental right to self defense as well as a fundamental right to own, possess and carry the arms necessary to exercise that right. However, with the 2A removed the Federal Government would likely begin infringing on and "regulating" that right as quickly as possible in a attempt to get rid of it post-haste. Sheeple can't be armed, after all….

  • rocksy112

    Pay attention people. They are finding sneaky ways to disarm America. Chipping away at it piece by piece. It is happening every single day.

  • willglo

    They may not repeal the 2nd Amendment anytime soon here!…
    But they sure as shit are very good a conducting A SHIT-TON of "Backdoor gun control" now as we speak!!!
    At the end of the day, all I've gots to say is… "Pry it from my cold dead fingers!"

  • Thank The Moon

    Yeah, you read that wrong… entirely. See the first part is a literal restating of what was already in the Constitution. That the Federal and State Governments are allowed to form militia or military units. This is how we got the different federal military branches and the 50 state militia of the National Guard. So why say it twice? Well, they didn't. The first part of the Amendment is a justification. With the understanding that it takes a well regulated militia to protect a state, that militia is a threat to the people of the state, should they be turned on the people. As a defense, the people have the right to keep and bare arms to protect life, liberty, and property.

  • shingshongshamalama

    "God-given right"
    1: God did not write the constitution.
    2: Fundamental rights don't need constitutional laws to recognize. They're assumed.

  • Owen Thomas

    Repeal of the second is what has to be done… like people anywhere else, I think the US populace are sufficiently composed of reasonable people of sound judgement, so I think the necessary majority for constitutional change will be reached.

  • T Lurch

    CIVIL WAR is coming in 2020 I will say around November after the election.. And I don't feel as it matters whom wins… God save our great nation and place your hand over the hearts of our troops… For they are going to be put in a tough spot… And other nations will see we are at war between ourselves and get a set and attack us as well…. Which will start WW3 and damn close to the end of the world as we knew it…
    lll% SEMPER FI MOTHERFUCKERS

  • Floyd Hawk

    The founders had insight given to them by the grace of God. They were smarter than any politician that ever lived since. We need to recognize that, and be grateful for it.

  • Paladin JN01

    It doesn't matter what it would take to change the Constitution. What matters is that leftist pussies like you wanna take away our God-given rights and I'll die and go to Hell before that happens.

  • Yerushalayim Bar Kadosh

    A human being can not keep an unintelligent animal of any species on earth, from using what ever means necessary to protect its own life, the life of its offspring, its den, its territory, or its food from the threat of another animal – so what makes some humans believe that they have the right to keep an intelligent animal from using what ever means necessary for self protection of life, property, freedom/liberty. Inalienable means God Given / given by nature of being born; in a place of survival of the fittest / in a food chain. A human believing they have this right, and ability, is utterly insanity! These Realities are the foundation of the nature of the spirit our God Fearing/God Believing forefathers; used in their expressions, when they wrote the 2nd amendment of the United States Constitution using the language that they used. A Predator only fears a nonpredator, when the non-predator has the strength and power to defend itself from predation! Tyrant Governments are nothing more than human predators seeking, and waiting to predate on the weak and least fittest humans – The Humans That Refuse To Stand Up And Protect Themselves!

  • kde439

    "Arms" does Not mean just firearms, it means weaponary swords, spears, knives & yes firearms, (including cannons ). Look how many foolish restrictions that politicians are always pushing. Why not Freedom ?

  • Nice Guy Eddie

    The government can’t revoke our God given or natural rights, including the right to arms and self defense. The Constitution protects these rights; it does not bestow them. These rights existed long before the United States. But, the Constitution and Bill of rights won’t stop the authoritarian, Socialist modern Democrat Party from undermining our rights. They’ve been undermining 2A for decades and are now working on the First Amendment with their speech codes on Universities, and ignoring the freedom of association by denying people the right to work unless they join a union.

  • George Grieninger

    you say that all seventeen amendments followed a process/ my question to you is that I have been learning about the 16th amendment which "supposedly gave our government's the "right" to tax our wages was only approved by 2 states. That would not equal the states needed at the time, but it was signed into law by the secretary of state fraudulently. Is this true, maybe you could do a pod on this.

  • Corno di Bassetto

    "A God-given fundamental right" is a solecism under positive law. We don't follow God's rights. We follow the Constitution.

    Moreover, there is no right to own a private gun in the Constitution. Nota bene, I refer to the Constitution, not to the Heller Court's Expurgated Edition of the Constitution to please gun rights ideologues, the way that Thomas Bowdler bowdlerized Shakespeare's plays to please squeamish women and children in similarly expurgated editions.

    The video's paraphrase of the Amdt as "the right of states and individuals to keep and bear arms" is simply wrong. There is no reference to individuals anywhere in the Bill of Rights. Surely the word "individual" appeared in contemporaneous lexicons and dictionaries, just like the word "gun" did or the words "private guns." Clearly Madison could have elected to use those words but elected not to. In fact we know with certainty that Tench Coxe advocated for ratification of the Amdts by saying the proposed arms amdt gave people the right to keep their "private arms." Surprise! Madison or the committee clearly elected NOT to replicate those words in the final amdt.

  • Brice Macaluso

    For those that want to repeal the 2nd, i propose we repeal the 1st, but only for those that want to take my rights

  • Wm.

    Finally a Democrat that is truthful. However, you better believe if the Democrats can find a sneaky underhanded way to get rid of the 2nd Amendment, they will do it. Vote Republican!

  • gregshock

    Get rid of the second amendment and just say goodbye to the rest of the constitution while you’re at it. And pick your personal gulag.

  • angermgt1

    in the meantime leftist legislators ignore the Constitution and just pass Illegal dictates "gun control" and call it law .

  • kal bharov

    Dear Americans,
    Never give your rights to own a gun because if you will do so your country will become India.
    After 1856 revolt in India British ban weapons in India and
    After 1947 transfer of power the Indian constitution which is written by British unlike Americans founding fathers it banned guns for Indians.
    Hence, you have civil war…but one America…while we have Pakistan after more than 1 million people die in that civil war.
    You have good laws like jury system, right to recall but we don't…our judges are corrupt our police is corrupt… illegal pistol are made locally in India and killing for extortion and kidnapping happens a lot….
    We can't protest as government have no fear of take over…we don't have guns….
    While communist which are known as naxilites are getting copies of m16 and Ak56 from china so that they can take over India and make it from socialist democracy to communist India.
    I wish we Indians have second amendment we would have been free since first world war and fought for freedom of people and democracy.

  • dirigoelectric

    There’s only one reason politicians want to disarm law abiding citizens:
    So they can enact their plans without resistance

  • malmucciani

    Idiots here think repealing 2A means guns are banned. It would just mean that the gov't could implement bans or other measures. Repeal the fucking 2A already.

  • No No

    This is why schools in poor areas gloss over the chapters on the revolutionary war and the founding of our country…we wouldn't want those Young, inquisitive minds wondering why these things were put in place.

  • Jonathan Jorgenson

    I will never! NEVER! GIVE UP MY GUNS! Iam a law abiding citizen! I have the god given right to defend myself, my family, my property! From all enemies foriegn and domestic!

  • 1978 32

    PRO 2A 🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲🇺🇲

  • Armored Sentinel

    Whoever attempts to repeal the 2nd amendment will likely become a well hated figure in American history very likely for sparking a 2nd Revolutionary War, and for causing the destruction of human rights, while ignoring the fact they are causing casualties to fit their agenda. It takes a true psyho to attempt to repeal what made our nation.

  • Clifford Ishii

    My right to have and carry a Jo as a weapon(arms) is a natural right not given to me by the govt, nor can it be taken away by the govt. Do you get it Democrats/liberals?

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