Texas A&M University School of Law professor Mary Margaret Penrose is calling for a repeal of the Second Amendment, saying she feels the right to bear arms, as written, is largely misunderstood.
Penrose made her Second Amendment comments not at Texas A&M but at a panel discussion at the University of Connecticut. Connecticut Governor Daniel Malloy, who signed a major gun control law this year, delivered the opening remarks at the gun control symposium organized by the Connecticut Law Review.
Unfortunately, drastic times require drastic measures. I think the Second Amendment is misunderstood and I think it’s time today, in our drastic measures, to repeal and replace that Second Amendment. The beauty of a states’ rights model solution is it allows those of you who want to live in a state with strong restrictions to do so and those who want to live in a state with very loose restrictions to do so.
Of course, many supporters of the Second Amendment also are strident supporters of states’ rights, but they and the professor likely have different mindsets.
The Texas professor asked for a show hands to indicate how many audience members felt that gun control laws had been successful – all arms remained at rest. Repealing and replacing the Second Amendment qualified as an “unfortunate” yet necessary drastic response in the professor’s mind.
Professor Penrose deemed herself “somewhat agnostic about guns” but said she is extremely passionate” about the Constitution – but in a negative light. During the University of Connecticut speech, Professor Penrose also admitted that she tells law students that both the Bill of Rights and Constitution are “obsolete.”
Penrose also said:
Why do we keep such an allegiance to a Constitution that was driven by 18th Century concerns? How many of you recognize that the main concern of the 18th century was a standing army? That’s what motivated the Second Amendment — fear of a standing army.
The reasons that both the Founding Fathers and the American people cherish and vow to protect the Second Amendment are many. While concerns about a standing army may number among them, “fear” is certainly not the only reason gun rights supporter say.
Penrose actually supports re-writing the entire Constitution, according to KDAF.
She told the Houston Chronicle:
My proposal says that Texas is in the best position to decide for Texans what gun rights should be, presupposing that guns are a right. Whether you can take an automatic weapon hunting or not is (a decision) better made at the state level than by the (U.S.) Supreme Court justices.
The problem with her argument, say gun rights groups, is it would allow gun ownership in more liberal states to be prohibited – the opposite of what the Founding Fathers supported.
Thomas Jefferson had this to say about the Second Amendment:
Laws that forbid the carrying of arms disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man. The beauty of the Second Amendment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it.
James Madison said that disarming the people is the “best and most effective way to enslave them.” George Washington stated that free people ought to be armed.
How do you feel about the Second Amendment and Constitution remarks made by Texas A&M University professor Mary Penrose?