What is the purpose of the 2nd Amendment? Is it, as the left claims, to ensure that the States have the ability to arm their National Guard troops? Is it, as some claim, put into the Constitution to ensure that people would be able to hunt? Or is it something else?
The simple fact is that if a person simply reads the black and white text of the Constitution without any preconceived prejudice it should be quite clear what this Amendment does, but not why. ”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.” Simply put there is no Constitutional method of limiting the ability of the people to bear arms, other than another Constitutional Amendment, ratified treaty or a complete scrapping of the existing Constitution. This means that by the text of the Constitution you or I are allowed to own a Howitzer if we so choose because there is nothing within that document which limits the right to bear arms in any way shape or form.
Some of the confusion over the actual purpose of this Amendment is based on its preamble which states “a well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state”. This is where the National Guard interpretation comes into play. Those who read that as a qualifier believe that the 2nd Amendment only applies to the state militia, which we now call the National Guard. The only problem with that theory is that if you ask the man who wrote it, you will find it was not his intent at all. In fact James Madison stated quite clearly that the militia is the body of the people, in other words, it is the citizens of this Republic. So based on Mr. Madison’s statement about the amendment he wrote we can rule out the militia as the National Guard argument.
So is it about hunting? We can refer to the writings of any number of founding fathers to answer this question, but none are as appropriate as the ones from the mouth of the man who crafted this protection. Again we turn to James Madison, “The right of the people to keep and bear…arms shall not be infringed. A well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country…” If you take this statement literally it is not about hunting, but instead is about Liberty. More importantly the defense of liberty. This is a theme echoed among our founding fathers, editors, and other figures throughout the time of the drafting of the 2nd Amendment. No statement could be more clear than that of Thomas Jefferson who said to James Madison in a letter ”What country can preserve it’s liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance. Let them take arms.”
The second Amendment is about keeping the government fearful of the people and therefore subservient to us. Take away our weapons and we have no way to defend ourselves from a potentially despotic regime which manages to get elected, perform a coupe or some other method of eliminating our Representative Republic and replacing it with something else against the will of the people. Remember that without the Right to Bear Arms none of the other rights mean a thing because there is nothing that can prevent them from being taken away. It is the right, which secures all of the other rights.