Jews For The Preservation of Firearms Ownership, Inc.
P.O. Box 270143
Hartford, WI 53027

Phone (800) 869-1884
Fax (425) 451-3959

Bullets to Save Ballots Third Prize Winner
The Constitutional Coup, or How Lincoln Became King
By Dennis Kabaczy

Mr. Kabaczy, happily married and with a teenaged daughter, became involvedin the freedom movement -- specifically in the battle to change Michigan'sdiscriminatory concealed carry law in 1997 -- when he joined the MichiganCoalition for Responsible Gun Owners. Eventually becoming a member of theBoard of Directors, he was active in the writing and passage of what becameMichigan's shall issue law in 2000. He is currently a member of Great LakesShooting Sports Association, MCRGO, NRA, and his proudest membership JPFO.

"How would today's America be different if politicians feared citizens, rather than citizens fearing their government?"

In order to answer this question, one must consider why and how our country changed from a federal republic to a nationalistic democracy. In considering the change, and what has come in its wake, one must look at the Constitution, and especially, the Bill of Rights.

First, some background: during the first part of the nineteenth century, American government was a small government, largely not involved in the day to day lives of Americans. It was a government run mostly according to Constitutional guidelines, and Jeffersonian principles.

During the first half of the nineteenth century, though a few political parties came and went, politicians were primarily divided into two camps. On one side were those that supported Jefferson's principles. Those principles consisted of government being a small, limited federal republican government on equal footing with the state governments and existing at the state governments' pleasure. In other words, where politicians feared the people. The other camp was those who supported Hamilton's principles. Those principles being a large central government, superior to the state governments, and the only arbiter of constitutionality. In other words, the type of government we have today, where people fear the government.

Until the Civil War, the Jeffersonians held sway, and the Hamiltonians (primarily in the Whig, then Republican parties) were in the minority. The Jeffersonians, however were primarily in the southern states. During the early secessionist period, as the southern states left the union, Jeffersonian congressmen left congress. At the beginning of the Civil War, there were a Republican President, Abraham Lincoln, and a predominantly Republican congress.

It has been said that the Civil War was actually our second constitutional convention, and forever settled the question of "state's rights."

During the Civil War, Lincoln and the congress, tended to ignore the Constitution when it suited them. Lincoln suspended habeas corpus and jailed many of his critics without trial or charges. He instituted conscription and an income tax, had arms confiscated from persons living in border states in violation of the second amendment, and basically ignored the ninth and tenth amendments as well as congressional war powers, in launching his invasion of the southern states.

These precedents set the stage for Reconstruction, and the ascendancy of a strong central government run according to Hamiltonian principles. Since the end of the Civil War, we have been seeing the rise of a strong, central, basically unconstitutional government. A government that has consistently been consolidating its power, until today, where a citizen is a fool not to fear the government, and what it can do to her.

Any number of changes, resulting in either no Civil War at all, or a Confederate victory early in the Civil War, would have prevented Lincoln's election or reelection, and left us with a smaller, kinder government, within constitutional boundaries, and respectful of the citizens.

Schooling would primarily be the responsibility of the family, and we would probably have a more literate population. This would mean no need for a department of Education. With improved schooling, people would be more aware of their constitutional rights, and probably more protective of them.

With a population more knowledgeable of their constitution, we would not have an imperialistic empire bound government. Most if not all of the unnecessary meddling that has been done to other countries in the past one hundred and forty years would not have been done. The standing army we are so familiar with today would not exist.

A knowledgeable populace probably would not have permitted Prohibition to occur. Without Prohibition, we would not have today's Drug War in which the population's rights are further trampled. Further, without Prohibition, we would not have had the St. Valentines Day massacre, which was one of the major incidents leading to the National Firearms Act, our first federal victim disarmament law.

Without the precedent of the National Firearms Act, we would not have more than 20,000 victim disarmament laws on the books. With the population having arms equal to those of the federal government, our rights would be even more secure, and we would not again be on the brink of Civil War because of a government that has overstepped its bounds.

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