Reading comprehension and the Bill of Rights

The text of the Second Amendment goes like this:

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Some politicians see that and think it means that only the military can have guns.  Even though the Constitution gives the Congress the ability to “raise and support Armies” in Article 1, Section 8.  Somehow the “right of the people” part is overlooked and ignored.

The words are plain to see, but for some reason people’s reading comprehension is really bad.

The text of the First Amendment goes like this:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Well, in the wake of a viral video about Sinclair broadcasting these same politicians with their reading comprehension issues looked at the First Amendemnt and couldn’t see the part about “abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.  That blurred out just as much as the “right of the people to keep and bear arms.”

Maria Cantwell, Tom Udall, Patty Murray, Elizabeth Warren, Ron Wyden, Ed Markey, Richard Blumenthal, Tina Smith, Bernie Sanders, Jeff Merkley, Tammy Baldwin, and Cory Booker, all US Senators wrote a letter to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, demanding an investigation into Sinclair Brodacasting Group and possibly pulling their FCC rights.

If you want to ban scary looking guns, why wouldn’t you want to ban scary sound bites?

No right is safe from people like this.

5 Replies to “Reading comprehension and the Bill of Rights”

  1. Prohibitions against media conglomerates are not new. It seems to have been relaxed, but companies used to not be able to own only two of these three in a region: newspaper, radio, or TV.




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    1. Except Sinclair isn’t being accused of owning too much media in a single market. They’re accused of running a promotion that made leftists butt hurt.




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    2. You’re right, infringements on the Constitution are not new. Older than radio, in fact. That of course doesn’t excuse them.




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  2. I think that every bill passed by congress and every executive order/regulation promulgated by the executive branch should be require to have a paragraph or two identifying the specific article of the constitution that allows the government to take the subject action and defending what constitutional purpose is being satisfied. And no, the “welfare” clause of the preamble doesn’t count.




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    1. The Republican majority instituted such a rule (for bills, that is). I see no evidence that it made any difference. Democrats reacted to that proposal by ridiculing it, which makes it pretty clear what they think about the Constitution.
      “General welfare” is a phrase in Article 1 Section 8 that has been stretched to cover anything that dishonest politicians want it to mean. Ditto the Commerce clause.
      Consider for example the assault weapons ban bills that contain the absurd phrase “…or possess in interstate commerce…” As if it were possible for someone to possess an item “in interstate commerce”. But no weasel wording is too far fetched for the enemy to put to work in the service of their goals.




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