44. Understanding the Second Amendment

A big obstacle to common sense gun control is the Right’s false historical narrative that the Founders wanted an armed American public that could fight its own government.

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Right-wing resistance to meaningful gun control is driven, in part, by a false notion that America’s Founders adopted the Second Amendment because they wanted an armed population that could battle the U.S. government. The opposite is the truth, but many Americans seem to have embraced this absurd, anti-historical narrative.

Our Bill of Rights does not guarantee gun manufacturers the absolute right to sell military-style, high-caliber, semi-automatic combat assault rifles with high-capacity magazines to whoever they want.

The right to bear arms is granted only in the context of a well-regulated militia and thus the security of a free state. A National Guard yes. Heavily-armed lunatics roaming the streets unregulated… never!

The second amendment is only about a state’s right to have its own army, and for that army to have any weapons it chooses, and that the Federal government cannot interfere with that right in any way. And that has been the case since 1789. It has never applied to an individual. And was never intended to. The second amendment is and was about giving the states an absolute right to have their own armed militias which today has been transformed into the National Guard.

What this all comes down to is that there is no war against the second amendment. The Second Amendment is and was about the right to have a state militia which today is the National Guard not the right of individuals to bear arms which there was no discussion about at the time of the writing of the Second Amendment. It was a different time a time when we were a rual nation. A time when every farmer had a long gun to hunt with so he could feed his family, and to protect himself against Indian attacks as he stood against the elements that he must defend himself against on a daily basis. Not Washington nor Jefferson nor Adams nor Madison or any of the other Founding Fathers were even considering banning long guns from these farmers.

Washington our first President, and hero of the Revolutionary war was quite frustrated and angry at the idea that this young republic would have numerous bands of its citizens rebelling. He had seen such rebellions which had taken place in Europe, and in no way was interested in offering means for individuals to do the same. On the other hand at this time of our young Republic men such as Jefferson who did not agree with Washington or Adams concerning what today is referred to as States Rights argued over this on a daily basis. Therefore the Second Amendment did protect the individual states to have a militia with the same military types of weapons as the federal government such as cannons. The second amendment did not give the right to individuals to own military weapons such as cannons or the like.

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