It’s a mystery to me why the gun-control community has allowed their opponents to walk off with the Second Amendment. If the amendment guarantees an individual right to own a gun, it also confers a right to regulate gun ownership. It’s right the text: “...a well-regulated militia....” Even accepting the gun enthusiasts’ definition of the militia as the broad community of armed citizens, it seems clear that the Second Amendment not only allows but requires regulation. Put another way, Sarah Brady has Second Amendment rights too: the right to have the militia -- the community of armed citizens -- well regulated. Why is she -- and the rest of the country that wants tighter restrictions on guns -- not making a Second Amendment case?
And one of the comments, in part:
Fascinating, isn't it? Did you know that the word really means "to break" and not to weaken or diminish?Actually none of you are technically right. The most important word in the 2A is not "well-regulated" nor "militia" nor "the people" nor any of the others until you get to the last one -- "infringed."
The word "infringe," as any good English teacher should be able to tell you, means to abolish or cancel. The correct usage is not that one "infringes upon" something -- one "infringes" something. Look it up in the oldest American dictionary you will find, Websters 1828 (hint: it's online). The word came into our language from the French, "infrangere," meaning "to break." The meaning was not at that time the same as "abridged," as much as many gun owners today would wish it so.
In the last 200 years we have seen the word change meanings somewhat and now it has come to be synonymous with words like "impinge," or to mean to restrict, trespass upon, or limit. Sorry folks, that's not its classical meaning. To paraphrase, "...the right of the people shall not be abolished or cancelled." That's how the founders would have understood it and what they thought they were writing.
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