This is the Best Article About Gun Control and Rights that You Will Ever Read

Why? Because I wrote it.  

If you have been a regular reader of the Geese for awhile, you might have seen this before.  Quit your bitching.  It’s not like you haven’t watched every Andy Griffith Show, and Gilligan’s Island 17 times, plus it’s great.  You bloggers, should repost it, and new readers must see it.

Wrong About Rights and the Caveman Test

           There’s a lot of talk going on about rights, - rights to healthcare, rights to affordable housing, rights to free contraception, rights of free speech, rights to bear arms, etc.  Rights are good.  Right?  Right.  It would seem then, that all the people in favor of all these rights would be on the same side.  Right?  Wrong.  How can this be?  Rights are good.  Rights are right.  Doesn’t everyone deserve all these rights?  Who’s wrong?  Who’s right?

           Everyone is entitled to equal rights, but not everyone knows what rights are.  The Declaration of Independence states that we have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and the constitution says, eh, the constitution says, the constitution says a lot of things.  Here is where the problem is.  Only a small percentage of people in this country have ever read the constitution and even a smaller percentage understand it.  Here’s a very, very brief and simplified explanation of it.

           The constitution of the United States went into effect in 1789 and is mostly a bunch of stuff about how our federal government is to be set up and run.  There, you can’t get more brief and simple than that.  Now what about all this rights stuff?  

Soon after and even before the constitution went into effect, many people thought there needed to be more stuff in the constitution than just that “how the federal government is to be set up and run” stuff.  They felt that the rights of the country’s citizens needed to be protected and rightly so.  They had just recently been in a big argument with England about that stuff.  So rather than starting over from scratch, they added to the constitution, first ten amendments, which we refer to as the bill of rights.

           The fifth through the eighth amendments deal with prosecution, eminent domain, trials, bail, and other judicial stuff.  The tenth amendment says that any powers not expressly granted to the federal government by the constitution belong to the states and or people.
The third amendment says that citizens cannot be forced to feed and house soldiers in their homes and the fourth amendment prohibits unlawful search and seizure.

The first and second amendments are the ones we are all probably most familiar with.  They are what people are most often talking about to when they are legitimately referring to constitutional rights.  It’s the ninth amendment were things get murky.  It says that people may have other rights that are not listed in the constitution and just because they are not listed, it doesn’t mean that they can be violated.

So what is and what is not a right?  Is health care a right?  Is it one of those unlisted rights that the ninth amendment was referring to?  How can anyone know?

Setting aside the fifth through eight amendments, which deal mostly with our judicial process, I use what I call the “Caveman Test” to determine if something is indeed a right.  What I mean is this.  If someone claims that they have a particular right, I ask myself, “Would that person still have that right if they were a caveman?”  

The Declaration of Independence says that we are endowed by our creator with rights that include life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  This means people were born with these rights long before any government was created, and such rights exist always and everywhere regardless of the existence of any government.  True rights are independent of government.  

A government cannot give anyone a right; it can’t even take a right away.  The worst a government can do is to violate rights and the best it can hope to do is to try and protect rights.  Our forefathers were smart enough to know this and defined rights as limitations on what the federal government could do.

There’s an additional benefit to using this criteria to determine if something is a right.  It saves (or least helps prevent the spending of) government money.  It doesn’t cost (or at least directly cost) anything to let people have the freedom of speech or let people own guns.  Financially speaking, health care is an open-ended question limited only by national bankruptcy.

Let’s put the Caveman Test to the test, and apply it to some of these so-called rights.  Is health care a right?  No.  Why?  Health care is a commodity, not an idea.  If healthcare were a right, you should theoretically be able to go back in time, before hospitals or doctors, in an area where there weren’t even any people, demand healthcare and receive it.  The same holds true for affordable housing, and don’t even mention the right to free contraceptives.

What about free speech?  Yes, that is a right.  As soon as the first language was developed, people were saying whatever they wanted, until the first tribal chiefs (government) arrived on the scene.  People have been fighting to protect that right ever since.

What about guns?  Cavemen didn’t have guns.  Wouldn’t this mean that we can’t own guns?  Well let’s look at the second amendment.  It doesn’t actually say, “We have the right to own guns.”  (“What?!!!”, all the NRA dudes are screaming.  “Yes!!!”, the gun control advocates are cheering.)  The second amendment says, “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.”  The word gun is not even in it.  Why?  

The first weapon was a rock.  You either threw it at an enemy or hit them with it.  Then came the club, and then the spear.  The guy with the rock was no match for the guy with the spear.  Even at time of the revolutionary war, weapons technology was rapidly evolving.   The proponents of this amendment knew that the guns of tomorrow would be vastly superior to the guns they had at that particular time.  They purposely left out any description of arms in the amendment, because they knew that limiting the people to revolutionary war style muskets would, in the future, leave them just as vulnerable to criminals and tyrannical governments as if they had no weapons at all. 

 Rather than describing what weapons the people could have, they wanted to prevent the government from infringing (read setting limitations) upon the peoples right to own them.  So much for the constitutionality of gun control laws.


  1. I love the. I homeschool now and today we went over the 4th, 5th and 9th amendments. Tomorrow, I'm going to ask my son these questions using the caveman test. I love your analogies. You make it so easy for people to understand. Sane people...not Strauss people. Lol. Will be re blogging this.

    1. This... Not the. Stupid auto corrector. I know it was probably my own mistake but I'm blaming auto correct anyway.

    2. Let me know how well it worked as a teaching tool.

    3. It was great! My son loved it and when dad asked about school he said, oh, we read Neil's blog. Lol it feels like you are already a member of our little family. Keep up the great work and remember, I can always use material for school. Ha

  2. Hmmm - perhaps this is why the progressives refer to us as Neanderthals - individual rights are indeed so easy a caveman can get it!

    1. But progressives can't seem to figure it out.