When it comes to rights, 2nd Amendment or others, do the words unalienable, fundamental, or natural mean anything to us anymore. When any of these words are placed in front of the word right, do they actually help us to understand the gravity of what the word right means, or have these words lost their value to us aside from what use politicians can get out of them by playing on our emotions to win approval and votes? This thread is intended to start a discussion for getting down to the nitty gritty of what we believe about ourselves as free people. What does being free mean now, compared to what it used to mean for example? Has each of our generations played host to increments of reduction in the standard of what free is and left each generation of children to grow up having no experience with what free started out to mean, and therefore having no perception of what has been lost or what must be defended? We like to shoot off our fireworks on the 4th of July, but do we ask ourselves how far away we are from the original notions of free? If we compare the gap between the old free and the new free, are we happy with that? Or does the gap demonstrate to us how much we have been talked into giving up those very things that we think our military spills its blood to protect? If for no other reason, we owe it to them (our military) to lift the lid on questions like these, and snap out of the stupor that we have been entertained into by accepting corporate medias offer of reality TV . in exchange for actual reality. For example, theres pages of opinions on this website that come from complaints about how the enforcement realities of concealed carry permits and licenses interfere with Citizens daily, common-sense exercise of their 2nd Amendment rights. Because of this, law enforcement people are put in the position of being the punching bag for these complaints. And because its taken for granted that the laws actually apply the way enforcers and administrators say they do, the result is that the dialogue about gun laws becomes an Us vs. Them contest that shuts off the possibility of seeing the problem any other way. But there is another way. Most people assume that law enforcers and administrators naturally know what theyre talking about when they assert what the law says, and so they dont spend much time wondering about whether thats true or not. But knowing how thin or non-existent education on the Constitutions and the laws is in our public schools, is it fair to say that those who graduate high school and later go into law enforcement, start off at the academy with a basic level of Constitutional/legal incompetence built in? If the core purpose of the Constitution was and is to protect Citizens rights and property, how much time is spent at the academy fixing cadets high school constitutional/legal ineptitude versus how much training is put into learning statutes they will simply be enforcing on the street according to policy? Does training policy include studying the legislative intent of the laws and understanding how basic terms are defined in them so they know how to enforce them properly . or does training mean reading the laws text with the lenses of their constitutional disability intact and applying them according to policy? Not having any law enforcement training myself, I dont know for sure, but I sure welcome LEOs on this site to clear this up. A lot of the information in this thread has already been posted in the The Direction of Law Enforcement thread in the General Firearm Discussion forum. Even though I feel this information is pertinent to that threads discussion, it also seems to be taking up too much room and more people will have a chance to benefit from it by having its own thread. So, the aim here is to open a discussion that lets us ask ourselves whether we are being given a chance to make fully informed decisions about the laws that we are constantly told we have to comply with .laws that supposedly directly affect our rights. To lead things off, Id like to put it out there that it is, first, necessary to know the meaning of the words in a law before you even read the law itself. The legislatively intended meaning of those words allows a reader to accurately understand what the law applies to. Thats why every chapter of law has its own definitions section. For starters, we all know that the word license or permit is constantly associated with those things that we like to think of as rights. Because of that, the word license is a perfect place to lead this discussion off, so everyone can see for themselves how the common perception of license differs from what it is legislatively intended to apply to. The definition of license is found in a body of law called the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), which is Chapter 183 of the Oregon Revised Statutes. The APA is the body of law that controls how executive branch agencies carry out their lawful duties by administering and enforcing the legislative intent of the law. See ORS 183.310(5): 183.310 Definitions for chapter. As used in this chapter: (5) License includes the whole or part of any agency permit, certificate, approval, registration or similar form of permission required by law to pursue any commercial activity, trade, occupation or profession. With this definition of license now known, I ask: When Citizens make decisions about applying for and paying for a license for anything, how often is it that its a decision made with full knowledge of what license means in the law above? The legislature inserted no language in this definition to make it apply to anything other than concerns of a commercial nature. So is exercising a right a commercial thing? No Are ladies intending to pursue a commercial activity, trade, occupation or profession when they put a pistol in their purse for self-protection for when they get off work at night? How about when its just really cold out and you need to put a coat on a coat that naturally conceals any pistol you have a right to keep and bear? Are LEOs unfairly being thrust into the hot seat of an adversarial relationship with a public that chafes at having their gun rights squeezed by mere laws, which do nothing to abolish the 2nd Amendment or State Constitutional gun rights provisions? How often are lawsuits that challenge gun control laws, based on attacking the validity of the premise that you CAN license a right? How many other rights are interfered with under the presumption that licensing them is valid? How much revenue is generated by the fees, surcharges, fines, taxes, etc. that go along with that presumption? How much more money would be available to be spent into the economy if that presumption were challenged and rebutted? How many more jobs would exist based on that money staying in private sector circulation? What other legal word definitions dont we know? At what cost?