Las Vegas Massacre Proves 2nd Amendment Must Be Abolished

Eric Zuesse

The Las Vegas gunman wasn’t operating merely as a gunman but as a sniper, and yet the U.S. Constitution’s 2nd Amendment makes no distinctions whatsoever regarding handguns versus snipers’ weapons — automatic (or semi-automatic) rifles which spew bullets so fast the Las Vegas shooter was able in the brief time-span of only around ten minutes to murder at least 59 people and to injure another 527.

So long as the 2nd Amendment continues to exist — not to be abolished — the only thing that the Las Vegas shooter did (and which others will do) that was (is) illegal was (is) to murder and injure people, but his purchase and possession of those weapons, which made this mass-slaughter possible, were (and will be) perfectly legal; and, furthermore — very importantly — the shooter had no criminal record nor other prior personal history that excluded him from purchasing the 23 rifles and guns that were in his hotel room, nor the 19 other guns, which were in his home.

In other words: the problem isn’t just ‘mentally deranged individuals’; it is also our legal system.

This incident therefore proves that, either the 2nd Amendment must be nullified, or else any entertainment-event or other event that attracts a mass of people, is an open invitation to anyone who wants to commit mass-murder — that the only access the law (the government) has in order to deal with such attacks is after-the-fact, once all of those murders and injuries have already been perpetrated. Nothing can be done in advance, so as to prevent any such attack.

Hiring more police officers won’t do it.

Building more prisons (and America already has the world’s highest percentage of its population in prison, a higher percentage than does any other nation) won’t do it.

This sickness, in our society, doesn’t consist only of allegedly demented people (and Stephen Paddock, the perpetrator, had no such record)  who might perpetrate such acts — it consists also of our laws, and of the consequent mass-availability of weapons-of-mass-destruction, under our laws. And, guns aren’t the only problem; Timothy McVeigh and others have already proven this, quite amply. No mere “gun laws” can deal with that.

Nothing can be done to prevent people such as Timothy McVeigh or Stephen Paddock from wanting to do what they do, but much can be done to make more difficult and rare their doing it — and, an essential thing which must be done, the prerequisite to all of the others, is the passage of a 28th amendment to the U.S. Constitution:

28th Amendment: The 2nd Amendment is hereby repealed.

It doesn’t need to be replaced by anything, merely repealed, because, according to the 2nd Amendment itself, the reason that the Amendment was being proposed, when it was, was stated in the Amendment’s own opening clause, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,” and those “well regulated militias” no longer even exist — the U.S. has long had, instead, a standing army — and navy, and air force, and National Guard (despite the Founders’ opposition to any of those except the National Guard). And, abolishing the 2nd Amendment won’t affect those people (operating in their official capacity), at all.

Under the 2nd Amendment, as interpreted by Antonin Scalia of the Supreme Court, in his landmark 2008 majority-decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, there is no Constitutional way to restrict any person’s right to any weapons at all: “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” That is the Amendment’s second and final clause. Scalia said that the Amendment’s first clause, which states that this Amendment’s purpose was “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,” is irrelevant — that, instead, this Amendment’s right is a right that any American possesses, regardless of whether or not that person is a member of a well-regulated militia. Scalia then contradicted himself (as he routinely did) by saying that “nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms.” The Second Amendment does not limit itself to some people and not others, but says simply (and if we ignore the Amendment’s purpose, as he did, then it does say this without any reference to a “militia”) that “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” The 2nd Amendment doesn’t say “the right of sane people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” It doesn’t say that “the right of people who have no criminal record, to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” (But it does say that the right of any member of a “well regulated” — which in that time meant state-controlled — militia, to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed; but Scalia ignored that restriction, entirely.) Scalia simply lied there, because no logically internally consistent way exists to affirm, as he did (even going so far there as to strip away the Amendment’s actual stated purpose) “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed,” and also to say that “nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms.” His (and that Court’s) interpretation of the 2nd Amendment doesn’t just “cast doubt” on those “longstanding prohibitions”: it nullifies them — but he (and they) said it didn’t, and they therefore wrote the laws on this, instead of honestly interpreting the U.S. Constitution as they had sworn to do — these were activist far-rightwing jurists. He knew when he wrote the Court’s decision, that, until then, the U.S. Supreme Court had always denied that the Second Amendment was to be interpreted apart from its first clause, and had instead imposed upon the second clause the first clause as limiting the scope of that right, to apply only to members of well-organized state militias. But Scalia, who personally reveled in killing, and was the Court’s most impassioned defender of capital punishment, and was himself an avid hunter who especially enjoyed killing non-human animals ‘for sport’, have opened the floodgates — and, by his (and their) doing so, he (and that Court) made absolutely impossible any constructive response to the Las Vegas massacre other than passage of the 28th Amendment that is here proposed.

They did it, with their lies and self-contradictions, and it now needs to be undone — by abolishing the 2nd Amendment altogether. After all: those “well regulated [state] militias” no longer even exist.

But abolishing the 2nd Amendment is no solution to the problem of mass-murders in the United States. Criminals will always find ways around the laws — just look at what the banksters who crashed the global economy in 2008 got away with; and skillful criminals who operate by means of guns, instead of by means of pens, always will, too. It is instead a necessary, but not sufficient, condition in order to make possible governmental policies that will reduce such carnages. Opponents of laws and regulations restricting certain weapons might as well argue that there should be no laws, and no regulations at all, since there will always be evil persons who will get around whatever restrictions exist. The basic argument of the National Rifle Association (a business organization that produces a fortune for its executives by defending the 2nd Amendment) is that the problem is these evil individuals and not their weapons. However, the problem is actually both. And America isn’t dealing effectively with either one. Furthermore, as the Las Vegas massacre makes clear, relying only on individuals’ criminal records and on psychologists’ assertions regarding individuals’ mental and emotional fitness to possess these weapons (or, at least, to possess guns), would also fail. The NRA position is simply an excuse to enable its members to buy as many and as bad guns (even snipers’ rifles) as they want. It’s that ridiculous. Beyond a certain point, however, such as where Stephen Paddock acquired allegedly 42 rifles and guns, it should be presumed to be no longer merely a private matter (which it never actually was). Government has a role to play in providing for the safety of all residents. The NRA, fundamentally, but not explicitly, is denying that. The NRA is not saying that anarchy and only non-governmental armaments will advance public safety, but their position does support that position (of ‘the government is the enemy’), which is the reason why police departments are strongly anti-NRA, even though politically conservative. But they’re also terrorized by the NRA’s membership so that police opinions about the matter are publicly expressed only timidly. Open-carry laws are the flashpoint there, because these types of laws implicitly challenge the exclusivity of police officers’ right to intimidate people by the public display of their guns. However, police also, as employees of the public, cannot afford to “go public” about their political views, so openly, as to oppose the NRA in a public way. Instead, police officials dance around the problem — the problem that’s created by the 2nd Amendment.

Everyone who disagrees with this position is supporting anarchy, and, whereas libertarians might happen to think that anarchy will increase public safety, no one else does. Supporters of the 2nd Amendment are supporters of anarchy, in accord with Scalia’s majority Supreme Court decision, and they have the rich NRA (and the 2nd Amendment, which makes them rich) to thank for increasing the salaries of NRA executives and lobbyists, but not to thank for increasing anyone’s safety. If anyone’s safety will be increased by privately possessed automatic and semi-automatic rifles, that person is in a war-zone, and — since the person is only a private individual — is a terrorist, and is not conducive to the safety of anyone but him-or-her-self (if, really, even that).

If you want a civil war, you won’t win it by privatizing public safety. The delusion that that’s the way to go, would be hilarious, if it were not so tragic. But some people profit off of that delusion, and pump it to the hilt — which is why the delusion is so widespread.

Civil war is not the way to achieve freedom. Only democracy can do it. We don’t have one, but “taking up arms against the government” won’t achieve it. (Those public officials might represent the oligarchs; but they’re not the oligarchs; and pretending that they are, won’t make them so, and will never achieve freedom — nor democracy. And it certainly won’t enhance public safety.) The delusion is profitable for some persons, but very destructive for the entire society.


Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of  They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

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  • thomas h

    Horseshit. I am much more likely to need a defensive firearm than be killed by a loon. By an exponentially greater factor. Bataclan happened where guns are basically unobtainable. Most attacks in Europe and the rest of the world are done with actual military arms. There is only one gun store in Mexico. Compare the US and Mexican murder rates…

    • epazote

      >>”Compare the US and Mexican murder rates”

      * the USA is fighting it’s drug war not on it’s own soil, but using for hire proxies (military) in 83 countries around the world. Rather than deal with it internally, it’s placed demands on other sovereign nations to “just stop it”, “it’s your responsibility to assure no drugs reach the largest consumer market for drugs, the USA”.
      * the death toll in Mexico and other Latin American nations is directly attributable to this failed, 43 year long “war on drugs”
      *…”There is only one gun store in Mexico”
      wrong. There are many outlets across the country, but they are all owned and operated by the government, and there are strict controls as to the type of weaponry civilians are permitted to purchase and/or own.

      • thomas h

        Show me where gun control stopped the Bataclan massacre or made the favelas of Rio peaceful.

  • bs1174

    I’ve read a lot of crap from this guy, but this is by far the worst. I won’t even click on one of his long-winded ‘opinions’ for a laugh anymore.
    He wants us defenseless. But he’s dreaming. 800 million guns out there will back up MY opinion.

    • sometime

      I don’t recall reading this author…He, though, is part of the problem……grasping hands with the neocons, the military people, the real killers of our US society…..Throw the fucking military into the deepest part of the ocean and leave it there… would never be missed except by those who get their pockets lined with cash…as a result of it’s existence …

    • sometime

      wish I could find the authors email…i’d write him an ear full he’d never forget….these people who have been around the sunday school block a time or two and then think they have enlightened solutions to aid the American culture…are wrong….each and every time. Yet they sure get the press…cause they are a writer….bullshit.

  • sometime

    Hog Wash……Get rid of violence ( the idea of it) as a solution to living and solving life’s problems and these killings like this won’t happen….Vegas happening, had nothing to do with guns and every thing to do with the mind set of the shooter…..( provided this was not a gov false flag….?) The US Gov itself is the greatest killer of people all over the globe through the US Military….Get rid of the Military! That’s right…get rid of it….30 countries bombed by the US since the end of WW2..(countries of no threat to the US)…people died by the millions..not by the 10’s…Get rid of the Military…..and no we won’t be invaded by so and so…after that happens….you might be surprised…Other countries will follow our lead….that’s right…..Violence be gets violence and until the US changes it’s mind set, this kind of thing will happen over and over…just has it has been…decades upon end…….

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  • Publius

    Learn the meaning of the words.

    “Well regulated” means “well organized”. I.e., military “regulars” as opposed to “irregulars”.

    “Militia” means “state miltary”. I.e., National Guard.

    The constitution requires the Federal army to supply, train, and pay the state militias so that they can be “regulars” that are equal to the federal army. The state legislatures appoint the officers.

    However, those state militias constitute a standing army, which is a threat to liberty. So the citizens are to be armed in order to insure that the federal and state standing armies are kept in check.


    A well-regulated militia (professional state army) being neccesary to the security of a free state (and also a threat to the liberty of the citizens), the right (of the citizens) to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

    This was clearly explained in The Federalist Papers. Any disagreement is a result of a failure to do the homework.

    • sometime

      this author Is part of the problem….the problem of the press purposefully deceiving the public, with their writings…the writers minds are either not competent to understand such or they deliberately write to undermine truth….i’m guessing the latter is most often the case

    • jadan

      A well regulated militia is not a professional military entity; it is a gathering of citizen soldiers to prosecute a war. This was the key to the success of the Revolution: highly motivated citizen-soldiers. They fought in guerilla combat, they fought in formations like professional soldiers. But when the job was done, Cincinnatus went back to his farm. The soldiers became citizens again, and they took their weapons with them, except for the heavy ordinance, which your average patriot couldn’t load on to his wagon. So the right of citizens to bear arms, was also the right to form militias in the common defense against enemies of liberty..

      Undemocratic government is the enemy of liberty in our day. This means a government without free & fair elections, a government controlled by people of wealth, a government of secrecy, black budgets, and universal surveillance. The government we have now with war mongering billionaire morons in command is the enemy of liberty. The right of the people to have weapons parity with trained government mercenaries shall not be abridged. The right of the people to make another revolution if they deem it necessary shall not be infringed.

  • paul

    everyone has their favorite amendment in the Bill of Rights to keep and their favorite amendment that they think should be gotten rid of

  • Joel W

    Because criminals will magically stop buying already illegal firearms if that happens.

  • ShawnCathcart

    The author chooses to ignore the plain meaning of the second clause of the 2nd amendment, while declaring the first clause to be entirely valid, an illogical argument. The author also ignores history, militias of the time of the founding consisted of all adult males capable of bearing arms, in other words, all of the people. The militias were not under state control, they were locally organized and under the command of their local officers. The authors of The Constitution, having very recently fought a war against a tyrannical government, knew the importance of the right to bear arms in defense of one’s self and one’s community, thus the 2nd amendment was added to The Bill Of Rights.

    The author argues that a repeal of the 2nd amendment would allow the federal government to ban firearms ownership in The United States, he is wrong here also. Even without the 2nd amendment the federal government lacks the Constitutional authority to ban firearms. Can the author cite the article, section or amendment of The Constitution that would grant congress this power?

    The author states that mass shootings like the one in Las Vegas can not be stopped, he is wrong again. A competent security force of the type that now prevents attacks on high value individuals could have stopped the shooter very quickly, or perhaps prevented his actions entirely. Promoters of events that draw large crowds will now have to consider hiring such a security force. Depending on police is clearly not the answer, but the answer does exist. If each ticket sold for a large crowd event is a few dollars more to provide real security, the cost will be well worth it.

    • cettel

      Re: “The militias were not under state control”

      That reader had refused to click onto the link in this article where the article said “a ‘well regulated’ — which in that time meant state-controlled — militia” where the phrase “state control” was both linked and boldfaced.

      In other words, this reader refused to look at the article’s evidence.

      If he had clicked onto the evidence, he would have seen this:

      “In 1777, the Second Continental Congress adopted the Articles of Confederation, which contained a provision for raising a confederal militia that consent would be required from nine of the 13 States. Article VI of the Articles of Confederation states,

      … every State shall always keep up a well-regulated and disciplined militia”

      • empty

        since when are the articles of confed law of the land?

        • Eric Zuesse

          They were the law of the land until the U.S. Constitution replaced them, don’t you know? That was the point-of-reference behind the terms in the U.S. Constitution — or don’t you even care what those terms meant to the people who wrote that document (our Constitution)? You want to invent your own terms-of-reference, because the NRA has zombieized your mind about what the 2nd Amendment meant, and you believe that propaganda-organization?

          • hyperbola

            Why so much fuss about a problem that has been declining and is much less prevalent than previously? Smacks of “thought-control” by politicians/media/sects that try to manipulate Americans?

            Mass shootings are not growing in frequency, experts say

            …. Grant Duwe, a criminologist with the Minnesota Department of Corrections who has written a history of mass murders in America, said that while mass shootings rose between the 1960s and the 1990s, they actually dropped in the 2000s. And mass killings actually reached their peak in 1929, according to his data. He estimates that there were 32 in the 1980s, 42 in the 1990s and 26 in the first decade of the century. Chances of being killed in a mass shooting, he says, are probably no greater than being struck by lightning….

          • hyperbola

            This article again peddles propaganda that comes primarily from the sect that carried out the biggest genocide of the 20th century in Europe.

            Ynetnews Opinion – Stalin’s Jews
            We mustn’t forget that some of greatest murderers of modern times were Jewish

            Another Mass Shooting, Another Grab For Guns: 6 Gun Facts

            Nothing is more deplorable than hijacking human tragedy to push an unrelated political agenda. A mass murderer taking the lives of some 60 people in Las Vegas this week has nothing to do with the majority of lawful firearms owners in the United States who aren’t and have no intention of ever killing another human being….
            …. Upon examining the following 6 facts, we will see that access to firearms has no significant relationship to violence – and that violence is driven by another entire set of factors that must be addressed if we honestly want a more peaceful and prosperous world.

            1. According to the FBI, more people die of barehanded assaults in the US per year than all rifle violence (“assault rifles” included) combined. In fact, homicide via personal weapons like hands and feet is more than double homicides carried out with rifles. …..

            …. Concluding Thoughts
            All 6 facts tell us that violence is driven by socioeconomic factors, not access to firearms. If firearms drove violence, the United States would be by far the most violent nation on Earth, followed by Serbia – they are not. The UK and Japan would have roughly the same rate of homicides – they do not.
            If you truly care about a more peaceful world, address the root causes of violence – which is clearly, obviously not access to weapons. Those who intentionally stir hysteria and prey on the emotions of well-meaning people to push issues like gun control have ulterior motives – and coincidentally allow all of the actual factors that drive violence – socioeconomic disparity and destitution – to continue or even expand. ……

          • empty

            “That was the point-of-reference behind the terms in the
            U.S. Constitution”
            wrong. i gave you the definition used in the constitution

            “You want to invent your own terms-of-reference,”
            youre the one trying to use the AoC, guy

            “NRA has zombieized your mind”
            i dont think ive ever even read anything by the nra

          • Flart Blooger

            one can argue the original meaning. or throw statistics around. all of it is meaningless. it’s truly a waste of time. you will not convince me and i will not convince you. you have a platform to convince others but they will run into the same thing i just explained when trying to convince others. i used to think like you. i changed my thinking by using all the tools available to my mind.

            the second amendment was not lumped in with the first. that is obvious. they both have been watered down over the years. most people don’t even know what the text of the first is. the point is that trying to limit the “rights” that are enumerated is a limit on human liberty itself. there are prices to be paid for not having a ruler tell us what to do. sadly, the price comes in many forms.

            there are only two directions we can go in. more freedom or less freedom. when one leans toward less freedom it can only keep going in that direction. forcing people to give up arms will inevitably lead to forcing people to give up religion, speech, assembly and an independent press. and if you scratch the surface a little you will realize that this has been going on for years already. just one little cut at a time.

            it’s just that simple.

            so be careful what you wish for. i hope your chains rest lightly upon you.

  • Criminals going to criminal.

  • howFoolishDoYouThink

    For an investigative journalist to post this absurd notion without substantiating facts he must be posting his own opinion or more likely those of whomever is controlling his purse strings.

    It is very clear the Las Vegas story has many unanswered questions, but instead Eric chooses to jump to conclusions, almost as fast as the US decided Assad was responsible for a gas attack within hours after the attack, almost as fast as the US accused Russia for downing an air plane, almost as fast as the US government accused Osama Bin Ladin for instigating 9/11.

    Where is Zuesse’s great forensics capabilities as he so artfully demonstrated in Christs Ventriloquist?

    History has time and again proven when the government takes away individuals self defense the people suffer. The American Indians come to mind. More recent examples are when Libya was talked out of its chemical weapons and the US soon followed by destroying the country. Thats also why N Korea is refusing to step away form its nuclear program because they know what the US will follow with; they lost 1/3rd of their population during the Korean War. In not one case have the individuals or countries benefited from denial of rights and self determination.

    The 2nd amendment is the only thing guaranteeing freedom of speech and our many other well earned rights.

    One would think their own reputation and objectivity was worth far more than this very poorly investigated article suggests.

  • Greg Burton

    Crap. The Las Vegas shooting just continues to demonstrate that the Satanic oligarchy running rough-shod on the world will resort to the lowest of crimes: mass murder a bunch of predominantly white people, and then blame white people for the crime and demand gun confiscation. More of the same …

    √ false flag terrorism,
    √ never-ending war,
    √ global warming scam,
    √ vaccine DE-evolution,
    √ weather modification,
    √ forced migrations,
    √ concocted race wars,
    √ economic privation and insufficiency,
    √ propaganda and #Fakenews,
    √ torture and mass murder.

    To bring about the total collapse and exhaustion of humanity, to impose their ‘New World Order’. De-industrialize, De-dollarize, De-tain, DE-gun, De-populate.

  • Or maybe not abolished but enforced by doing some of the referenced well regulating.