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Second Amendment no license for vigilantes

Date published: 2/8/2013

This is in response to Gordon Lane's interpretation of the Second Amendment ["Second Amendment: Not about venison and antlers," Jan 31].

This amendment, dated Dec. 15, 1791, states: "A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

It is our observation that the security of our free state relies on an authorized and professional law enforcement and military. We do not believe the amendment authorizes citizens to use arms when they feel our leaders are overstepping their authority or to attack those "of foreign influence."

Unless you are a Native American, you are part of this foreign influence. Who is to make the decision that our "republic is in danger from foreign and domestic elements that might attempt to seize political powers"? Armed vigilantes should not make these decisions.

Lane might also read up on the history of Northern Ireland. In 1969, Northern Ireland had elected to remain part of Great Britain. They relied on the British for military protection.

Consequently, this "invasion" that he refers to was necessary because of the violence between the Protestants and minority Catholics. Certain factions on both sides were very well armed. It was not until the British established martial law to preserve order and disarm these groups that violence diminished.

We subscribe to the idea of restriction of assault weapons. Our nation has three times the violent death rate among wealthy nations as the next country surveyed.

John and Beverly Feeney