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What DOES The Second Amendment Mean?

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Flying Headbutt, Mar 6, 2008.

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  1. Flying Headbutt

    Flying Headbutt Moderator Staff Member

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    I ask because the very meaning of the wording there will be decided on by the US Supreme Court, after oral arguments are held on March 18th.

    The basic gist if you haven't been paying attention is that a group of people have sued the District of Columbia seeking to overturn an outright ban on handguns in the city. At this point, nothing classified as a handgun inside city limits is legal. Some rifles and shotguns are allowed, but with restrictions inside the home. Obviously there is no hunting. A Federal Appeals Court agreed that the law was too restrictive and violated 2nd Amendment rights.

    Now, the city argues that the wording does not grant anyone the individual right to own a gun. They point to the section dealing with militias and ask, what militias are there these days? They also say that if the court disagrees and believes the amendment grants an individual right to own a gun, the District's law is a only a more restrictive version of regulations that occur at the state and federal level all the time. Thus, it can be reasoned that ALL gun control laws at the state and federal level COULD be deemed unconstitutional depending on how the court rules, the city says.

    My guess is that the court is going to send this back to a lower court and order them to look at it in a different way. The key, clearly, is deciding the influence of the "well regulated militia" part of it. With that no longer an issue, does it render the rest of the amendment null? I doubt a conservative leaning court will say yes. Interestingly enough, the Solicitor General of the US has argued in favor of the ban, though not for the same reasons as the city is arguing. Close to 100 briefs have been filed by outside entities, mostly against the city's stance.
  2. Rumpleforeskin

    Rumpleforeskin Active Member

    This thread reminds me of a Family Guy episode...

  3. SigR

    SigR Member

    I have no idea what the Supreme Court will decide. That said...

    The way I've come to interpret the second amendment is like this: We have a right to have a gun so that we can overthrow the government if it does something crazy...you know, like implementing an income tax, or snooping through our personal belongings without our consent.

    I believe that the framers didn't even reason that it would *ever* be an issue that someone would think to deprive them of a gun for purposes of hunting or self-defense, which is why they didn't write a broader protection.

    It's important to recognize that the Bill of Rights does not bestow rights upon anyone. It merely protects the People's rights from the government. I believe that the spirit of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence protects gun-owner rights, even if they aren't specifically protected.

    And regardless of what people wanted 200 years ago, screw anyone who says that I don't have a right to get a gun to protect myself. Seriously, screw them. It's my life. Criminals are going to get and use guns whether they are legal or not. Don't punish the good guys for what the bad guys do with them.

    You want less gun violence in society? Legalize drugs. Problem 75% solved.
  4. PeteyPirate

    PeteyPirate Guest

    I tend to agree with that argument, but what bothers me is that the Founding Fathers also probably didn't anticipate assault rifles, automatic weapons, etc. I think everybody should be allowed to own a gun if they want to, but I think gun manufacturers should only be allowed to make muskets.
  5. PeteyPirate

    PeteyPirate Guest


    Break yosself, fool!
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  6. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    I believe it involves my favorite tee shirt.

  7. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    I don't give a fuck what the Founding Fathers wanted.

    1) they're dead, and

    2) they averaged about a fourth-grade education and an IQ of about 85.
  8. ColbertNation

    ColbertNation Member

    If we didn't have guns, the King of England could walk right in here and start pushing us around. Is that what you want?
  9. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    A lot of attention is given to the the well regulated Militia part (which I think meant that each of the united 13 states (as they were at the time) should have a group of individuals who could be called upon to defend the country if attacked from outside or to quell a civil rebellion (by unregulated militia perhaps?). What is overlooked is that the point of the amendment is to preserve the "security of a free state" rather than preserve the rights of gun owners. Otherwise it would have read "The right of the people to bear arms shall not be infringed."(PERIOD). Anyone who understands the original intent of the amendment at the time it was written and argues otherwise is being dishonest. (See the right to privacy).
  10. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    If law is overturned Baghdad will be a safer place than DC
  11. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    Because all those criminals aren't getting guns now? That must explain why you can walk safely through every D.C. neighborhood at 2 a.m.
  12. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    You might get run over by one of the Kennedy's on way to early vote
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