Thursday, October 26, 2006

"Under these impressions...."

"Seventeenth. That the People have a right to keep and hear arms; that a well regulated militia, including the body of the People capable of bearing arms, is the proper, natural, and safe defence of a free State; that the militia shall not be subject to martial law, except in time of war, rebellion, or insurrection; that standing armies in time of peace, are dangerous to liberty, and ought not to be kept up, except in cases of necessity; and that at all times the military should be under strict subordination to the civil power; that in time of peace no soldier ought to be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner, and in time of war only by the civil magistrates in such manner as the law directs.
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"Eighteenth. That any person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms, ought to be exempted upon pay-ment of an equivalent to employ another to bear arms in his stead.
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"Under these impressions, and declaring that the rights aforesaid cannot be abridged or violated, and that the explanations aforesaid are consistent with the said Constitution, and in confidence that the amendments hereafter mentioned will receive an early and mature consideration, and con-formably to the fifth article of said Constitution, speedily become a part thereof--We the said delegates, in the name and in the behalf of the People of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, do, by these presents, assent to and ratify the said Constitution. In full confidence, nevertheless, that until the amendments; hereafter proposed and undermentioned, shall be agreed to and ratified..."
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- Journal of the House of Representatives of the United States, Ratification of the Constitution of the United States, by the State of North Carolina. United States, January 11, 1790.

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