"We must train & classify the whole of our male citizens,
& make military instruction a regular part of collegiate
education."--- Thomas Jefferson to James Monroe 1813-06-18
"Women should be permitted to volunteer for non-combat service,...
they should not be accepted, voluntarily or through the draft, as
combat soldiers... We know of no comparable ways of training
women & girls, & we have no real way of knowing whether the kinds
of training that teach men both courage & restraint would be
adaptable to women or effective in a crisis. But the evidence of
history & comparative studies of other species suggest that women
as a fighting body might be far less amenable to the rules that
prevent warfare from becoming a massacre &, with the use of modern
weapons, that protect the survival of all humanity. This is what
I meant by saying that women in combat might be too fierce."
--- Margaret Mead 1968 June
"It may be laid down as a primary position, & the basis of
our system, that every Citizen who enjoys the protection
of a free Government, owes not only a proportion of his
property, but even his personal services to the defence
of it, & consequently that the Citizens of America (with
a few legal & official exceptions) from 18 to 50 Years of
Age should be borne on the Militia Rolls, provided with
uniform Arms, & so far accustomed to the use of them,
that the Total strength of the Country might be called
forth at a Short Notice on any very interesting Emergency..."
--- George Washington to Alexander Hamilton 1783-05-02
"[It is required that] every man able to
beare arms have in his house a fixt gunn."
--- Virginia gun control law 1658
"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed;
as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe. The supreme
power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword,
because the whole body of the people are armed & constitute
a force superior to any bands of regular troops."
--- Noah Webster _An Examination into the Leading
Principles of the Federal Constitution_, 1787
"I'll be damned if I'm going to let them collect guns in the
city of Detroit while we're surrounded by hostile suburbs."
--- Coleman Young quoted in NewSpeak 1986-10-20
"To give arms to all men who offer an honest price for them,
without respect of persons or principles: to Royalist &
Republican, to Communist & Capitalist, to Protestant & Catholic,
to burglar & policeman, to black man, white man & yellow man."
--- George Bernard Shaw "Major Barbara" 1905
"That a well-regulated militia, composed of the body
of the people trained to arms, is the proper, natural,
& safe defense of a free State; that standing armies
in time of peace should be avoided as dangerous to
liberty; & that in all cases the military should be
under strict subordination to, & governed by, the
civil power." --- George Mason, VA Bill of Rights
"In war morale counts for 3/4s, the balance of
man-power counts for only 1/4." --- Napoleon I
"Standing armies can never consist of resolute robust men;
they may be well-disciplined machines, but they will
seldom contain men under the influence of strong passions."
--- Mary Wollstonecraft _A Vindication of the Rights of Women_ 1792
"What if they had to wait 7 days to get their rifles to
come to the Alamo & fight?" --- Robert Corbin 1991-04-12
"Free men & women have the right to own a gun to protect their home."
--- George Bush in Time 1989-02-06
"Nothing is so exhilarating as to be shot at without result."
--- Winston Churchill _Recollection of the Boer War_ 1922
"All persons... shall have in continuall readiness, a good
muskitt or other gunn, fitt for service." --- CT Code 1650
"You have a right to possess in your home & in your business
a rifle, a pistol, & King George can't take it away from you,
or Uncle Sam either." --- Edward M. Davis in Dallas Times Herald
"...anyone else who can afford them shall keep bows & arrows."
--- Edward I in Statute of Winchester 1253
"The great object is that every man be armed."
--- Patrick Henry ratification debate 1788
"I do not consider firearms as weapons. When I think weapon,
I mean bazooka." --- James Huber in NewSpeak 1986-04-28
"To make inexpensive guns impossible to get is to say you're
putting a money test on getting a gun. It's racism in its
worst form." --- Roy Innis in Washington Post 1988-09-05
"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body
of the people always possess arms, & be taught alike,
especially when young, how to use them."
--- Richard Henry Lee in _Letters from the Federal Farmer
to the Republican_ edited by Hartwell Bennett 1975
"The advantage of being armed... the Americans possess over the people
of all other nations... Notwithstanding the military establishments
in the several Kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the
public resources will bear, the gov'ts are afraid to trust the people
with arms." --- James Madison "Federalist" #26
"To disarm the people -- that was the best & most effective
way to enslave them." --- George Mason ratification debate 1788
"[Each man must] have... a sufficient musket or other serviceable peece
for war... for himself & each man servant he keeps able to bear arms."
--- MA Code 1632
"Registering a gun is like registering to exercise the right of
free speech." --- Michael McCabe in NYTimes 1989-04-02
"I don't like the idea that the police department seems bent on
keeping a pool of unarmed victims available for the predations of
the criminal class." --- David Mohler on being denied a carry permit
in NYC quoted in "Manhattan" 1989-04
"The people have a right to bear arms to the defense
of themselves & the State." --- PA Constitution 1790
"They'll have to shoot me first to take my gun." --- Roy Rogers 1982
"We desire the peace which comes as of right to the just man armed --
not the peace granted on terms of ignominy to the craven weakling."
--- Theodore Roosevelt 1901-12-03
"Next to having stout & friendly comrades, a man is chiefly
emboldened by finding himself well armed in case of need."
--- Walter Scott _The Fortunes of Nigel_ 1822
"The Constitution shall never be construed... to prevent the people
of the US who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms."
--- Samuel Adams proposed wording for Bill of Rights
"In 1789, when used without any qualifying adjective, 'the militia'
referred to all Citizens capable of bearing arms... The 'militia'
is identical to 'the people'." --- Akhil Amar professor Yale Law School
"The Bill of Rights as a Constitution"
in Yale Law Journal 1991-03
"If we are not going to punish criminals, I will never vote to take
away a person's right to bear arms." --- Walter M. Baker 1992-03-12
"Americans are far less free today than they were a year ago
When the Supreme Court functions not as a vigorous guardian
of the individual but as a cheer-leader for the government,
individual constitutional rights cease to have independent
meaning. Instead, they mean whatever the government wants
them to mean." --- Burt Neuborne ACLU
"I rejoice that America has resisted. Three million people, so dead
to all the feelings of liberty, as voluntarily to submit to be slaves,
would have been fit instruments to make slaves of the rest."
--- William Pitt 1766-01-14
"Freedom & not servitude is the cure of anarchy."
--- Edmund Burke "On Conciliation..." 1775-03-22
"The arms we have been compelled by our enemies to assume,
we will, in defiance of every hazard, with unabating firmness &
perseverance, employ for the preservation of our liberties;
being with one mind resolved to die free rather than live slaves."
--- Thomas Jefferson "Declaration of the Causes
of Taking Up Arms" 1775-07-06
Just a few more...
"...'the people' protected by the 4th Amendment, and by the 1st _and_
2nd Amendments, and to whom rights and powers are reserved in the
9th and 10th Amendments, refers to a class of persons who are part of
a national community..." --- US v Verdugo-Urquidez 110 S Ct 1839 (1990)
"Although it is extremely unlikely that the fear of governmental tyranny,
which gave rise to the 2nd amendment, will ever be a major danger to our
Nation, the amendment still remains an important declaration of our
basic military-civilian relationship, in which every citizen must be
ready to participate in the defense of his country. For that reason
I believe the 2nd Amendment will always be important."
--- John F. Kennedy
"The prohibition is general. No clause in the Constitution could by
a rule of construction be conceived to give to Congress a power to
disarm the people. Such a flagitious attempt could only be made
under some general pretense by a state legislature. But if in
blind pursuit of inordinate power, either should attempt it, this
amendment may be appealed to as a restraint on both."
--- William Rawle _View of the Constitution_ 1825
"That government certainly deserves no honest man's love or support,
which, from the very laws of its being, carries terror and danger to
the virtuous, and arms the vicious with authority and power."
--- Fisher Ames, Federalist, US Rep Massachusetts
"Let us now consider whether we may not be able to defend ourselves
with well-regulated militias against any foreign force,... That
the whole free people of any nation ought to be exercised to arms,
not only the example of our ancestors, as appears by the acts of
parliament made in both kingdoms to that purpose, and that of the
wisest governments among the ancients; but the advantages of choosing
out of great numbers, seems clearly to demonstrate... And I cannot
see why arms should be denied to any man who is not a slave, since
they are the only true badges of liberty; and ought never, but in
times of utmost necessity, be put into the hands of mercenaries or
slaves: neither can I understand why any man that has arms should
not be taught the use of them." --- Andrew Fletcher
"A Discourse of government with relation to militias" 1698
"The people are not to be disarmed of their weapons.
They are left in full possession of them."