Don Sherfick

Vasectomies and the Second Amendment: a looming constitutional crisis?

Filed By Don Sherfick | March 27, 2008 1:38 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment, Marriage Equality

I see where government officials in a remote section of India have come up with an idea to incentivize men to have vasectomies: make it easier for them to obtain gun permits.

I'll resist the temptation to speculate about the tradeoffs between the ability to fire off live rounds and being limited to shooting blanks. The story does, however, take me back to my days in Army Basic Training, where we were reminded to use proper terminology when referring to our firearms. In marching up and down the hills of Fort Knox we chanted: "This is my rifle....this is my is for fighting, the other for fun."

Now I have no idea as to whether or not the Indian equivalent of our Constitution contains a clause resembling our Second Amendment. And I guess I don't care much either way. What happens in New Delhi stays in New Delhi. Perhaps they number their Bill of Rights differently. Maybe the one about firearms comes first, and the one about freedom of speech and expression is further down the list. This may lead to some confusion between the right to bear arms and the right to bare one's short arm, but again, I'm not about to espouse entanglement with foreign jurisprudence, especially when it pits one form of testostronal articulation against another.

So far as I know, nobody has yet proposed a similar idea in this country. That's probably a good thing, because the Supreme Court is just now getting around to its first real interpretation of what the Second Amendment means since Betsy Ross took sewing lessons. Balancing gun rights with reproductive rights may well produce another landmark case, maybe styled "Planned Parenthood versus The American Rifle Association". It might even feature Carton Heston squaring off against Gloria Steinem in oral argument, giving a whole new meaning to his famous "my cold dead hands" speech years ago.

In the end, perhaps the same folks who gave us the ambiguous and recently discarded "Indiana Marriage Protection Amendment" will come up with a slightly revised version of the Second Amendment: "A well-sterilized militia being essential to a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed" That should resolve any doubt as to whether there's a rational connection between a surgical clip and the kind that holds live ammunition.

Constitutional scholars, please weigh in have nothing to loose but your credibility.

Crossposted at American Values Alliance.

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Maybe that's the solution to gun control here, Don. Want a gun permit? Snip and clip.