Why Does The Second Amendment Exist?
I’ll give you your first hint. Or several even. The Second Amendment does not exist so that gun collectors can buy antique muskets. Nor so that Elmer Fudd can keep on trying to bag Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny. It was never contemplated so that survivalist types can stock their hideaways in the mountains of Idaho against the day that civilization breaks down and it’s kill or be killed. In fact, so long as they did not actually infringe on the right to own guns, Congress and/or state legislatures would not be doing anything unconstitutional if they were to regulate, or even prohibit, these activities.
The men who wrote the Constitution included the Second Amendment for one reason only. They even told us what that reason was when they wrote it.
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.
It is important, though, to understand just what James Madison, Patrick Henry, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and their fellow Revolutionaries considered to be a “militia”, in order to understand the importance of this Amendment. So, to do that, let’s review what some of them had to say.
“O sir, we should have fine times, indeed, if, to punish tyrants, it were only sufficient to assemble the people! Your arms, wherewith you could defend yourselves, are gone …” Elliot p. 3:50-53, in Virginia Ratifying Convention demanding a guarantee of the right to bear arms
“Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?”
“Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are ruined.”
Richard Henry Lee, 1788, Member of the First U.S. Senate.
“To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people always possess arms…”
“…to disarm the people is the best and most effective way to enslave them…”
“The Constitution of most of our states (and of the United States) assert that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed and that they are entitled to freedom of person, freedom of religion, freedom of property, and freedom of press.”
In fact, Patrick Henry, Richard Lee, and most other Revolutionary leaders knew full well that their revolution against British tyranny would have been impossible without the arms that nearly every colonist kept in their homes. The Second Amendment is our last, final defense against tyranny.