Wow - where to start... Of all of the amendments in the Bill of Rights, none polarizes the country
more than the 2nd Amemndment. Many people that are pro gun control are simply basing their mindset on
emotion rather than the historical context and meaning of the Constitution. In many cases, no amount
of measured discourse and meaningful/contextual statistics will alter their thought patterns. To make
this site a kind of one-stop shopping source for information, there are other pages here that explain
why the country was founded, what led up to the first Revolutionary War, and the several important
documents related to the creation of the United States. I strongly urge you to refresh your knowledge
of the history of the country's infancy before trying to understand why presevration and advocacy of
the Constitution is so important to me, and why it should be important to you as well. Lastly, the
2nd Amendment is under such aggressive and continuous attack that I felt this page deserves a table of
contents, and possibly even tabs in order to illustrate the impact these attacks have.
I was puttin' some thinkin' on the 2nd Amendment at the beginning of January 2012, and had what I
now consider to be an epiphany.
As most of you probably know, the framers of our Constitution were highly reluctant to support the
idea of a standing army due to the government's ability to wield said army in any way that was deemed
to fulfill a nefarious purpose against the citizenry, or the possibility that the military would attempt
a takeover of the duly elected government. I think the 2nd Amendment was put in place as a compromise
toward that idea.
"A well regulated Militia,..."
Some people today are interpreting this to mean that the militia must be "well regulated", as in
controlled and registered, or that by "militia", the framers were referencing the federal armed forces,
and this interpretation couldn't be more wrong. In the era in which this document was written, it was
common practice to refer to soldiers in an organized army as "regulars". They were "well regulated" in
terms of training and provisions (ammo). This means that the first four words were intended to mean
that the militias - as opposd to the idea of a standing army - must be well trained with
battlefield-capable weapons and supplied so that they might be called up to defend the country.
"...being necessary for the security of a free State,..."
I see this as meaning the a country (or "State") cannot expect to be and remain free against either
foreign or domestic aggressors unless the population is both willing to defend it, and even more
importantly, CAPABLE of defending it.
The third part of the amendment puts the ultimate power solidly into the hands of "the People"
"...the right of the People to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed."
In other words, the right of the people to keep and bear arms was put in place in order that they
might participate in the previously referenced militia for the purposes of resisting/putting down an
out-of-control federal government that either usurped the Constitution (currently underway), or that
might use its standing army as a vehicle for oppression of said citizens, or worse, a military that
attempted to take over the government by force, or repel an invading army.
I assert that the original intent of the 2nd Amendment really has nothing at all to do with hunting
or defending one's self, family and/or property, although that's a happy accident involving the right to
keep and bear, and was probably assumed by the men of the time to be a logical extension of having a
firearm, thus it was not overtly mentioned. Instead, it's about defending the principles set forth in
the Constitution and to preserve the ideology as stated in the Declaration of Independence against a
standing army - and/or nefarious abuse of said ideologies by the federal government, and perhaps
equally as important, to protect those principles and ideologies from ourselves.
Finally, I see the 2nd Amendment as a mandate to all Americans, that they are responsible for the
continuity and security of the republic that our forefathers fought to create and conitnue to fight to
keep, and that this sometimes requires the use of force. It's a fact that the 2nd Amendment is what
kept Japan from invading the US in WW2, and I'm convinced that it's the only thing keeping Mexico
from trying to militarily take control of Southern California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas.
I'm prepared to accept that some folks may not agree with my interpretation, and that's fine. But
when you consider the 2nd Amendment in the context of the lives and times of the men who authored it,
I fail to see how anyone can possibly come to any other conclusion. In my opinion (and because of my
analysis of the 2nd Amendment), talk of "assault weapon" bans and ANY other gun control measures are
in DIRECT violation of the 2nd Amendment, and I consider any attempt at gun control is an infringement
on my rights. You may now talk amongst yourselves (the 1st Amendment in action). How can we - as
veterans, public servants, and even more importantly, as AMERICANS - be expected fulfill our promise
to support AND defend the Constitution if we don't have the proper tools with which to do so?