Across Continents

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Book at bedtime

Took about an hour or so to read The Constitution of the United States. The small pocket edition Chris had given me the previous day also included The Declaration of Independence. A tirade of abuses purportedly inflicted by the King of England on the Peoples of the New World. Some very emotive language. Waging war, plundering the seas, ravaging the coasts, burning towns, imposing taxes, obstructing the Administration of Justice, dissolving legislative bodies. You sensed the Founding Fathers were a bit disillusioned with Blighty.

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But much more interesting, revealing, than the Constitution itself, or the apocalyptical Declaration of Independence, are the various Amendments. Some familiar ones. The Second. The "right of the people to keep and bear Arms". Doesn’t specifically mention suppressed fire grenade launchers, assault rifles and the like, but there again it is a pretty broad brush document. The Fifth. "nor shall.. (any person).. be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself". The right to silence.

Less well known ones. The Eighteenth. Ratified 1919. Later repealed in 1933 by the Twenty-First. Prohibition. Thirteenth. Abolition of slavery. 1865.

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