Gun control and the Second Amendment have been in the new and at the forefront of American conversation in the last several months. The largest topic in this discussion is, what does the Second Amendment say, what does it mean, and does it still apply today. The main viewpoints of this argument really come from each group’s interpretation of the verbiage that makes up the Second Amendment. One group takes a universal human right to bear arms approach, while another group takes an approach that makes the Second Amendment a propositional statement.
The viewpoint of universal human right to bear arms indicates that this right is more of a natural right to the human race rather than a right given to you by your country. (Head) This interpretation of the amendment seems to leave out the first statement of the amendment, “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state”. The statement indicates that a militia is, indeed, necessary to maintain our freedom. (Head) It is important to remember that the Second Amendment was adopted in 1791 when the country did not have a well-trained government military and relied heavily on these civilian militias to ward off invasions by the British and the French.
The other prominent viewpoint in the midst of this conversation is a civilian militia interpretation. This interpretation focuses largely on the first statement of the Amendment and uses that statement to qualify the second statement, “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” With this view of the amendment, the right to bear arms is contingent on the necessity of a civilian militia to protect our land and our freedom. (Head) This does not allow for a “cover all” or universal right to bear arms and seems to leave the decision on whether or not the weapons are, in fact, needed to protect our country.
Although I understand and can sympathize with both sides of the argument, the civilian militia viewpoint...