Is the Second Amendment Outdated?

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Is the Second Amendment Outdated?

Lord Toussaint, Admin

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Guns. We’ve heard a lot about them in the past few months. There have been multiple shootings and many people want guns to go away, but many want guns to stay. Some people just want semi-automatic rifles to go away. Some don’t. This controversy all goes back to the second amendment, which gives Americans the right to bear arms.

We all know the second amendment, right:

“All men shall have the right to keep and bear arms and that right shall not be infringed.”

That’s it! Right?

Well, no, it’s not. Not exactly. That’s what people think it is!

The actual second amendment reads:

“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”.

So, what’s the difference? Why does it matter? And does it matter that it was written 230 years ago?  Well, it does, because it is the basis of the beliefs of these two factions. In order to understand what they believe, you need to understand how each side interprets this amendment.

According to the anti-gun faction, it does matter that the second amendment was written 230 years ago. When the second amendment was written, many of our nation’s leaders wanted some of the powers of the government to be restricted. Leaders such as Thomas Jefferson wanted Americans to be dependent on no one. He wanted them to be agrarian. Which essentially meant to farm their own food and make their own stuff. This also meant there would be no standing army, and, in the event that the United States had to defend itself against an organized military force, Americans would have to rely on militias. A militia is a group of untrained men that gather not just to defend themselves, but their country. Today, however, we have the most powerful standing army on the face of the earth and no longer need to rely on militias.

To the anti-gun faction, there is no need for Americans to possess weapons of war such as ar-15’s because there is a military to defend the populous. When our nation relied on militias the most modern firearms were muskets, these were weapons of war, the militia men needed war grade weapons to defend the nation effectively, the American populous doesn’t need war grade weapons because the American populous no longer needs to form militias.

One major reason cited by gun conservation advocates to keep firearms is the right of citizens to defend themselves from their own government. In fact, some would argue that, had the Cuban people had guns, Castro never would have come to power. Some also argue that had the people of the eastern bloc had guns they could have revolted against their communist regimes. Today, however, it’s hard to image any scenario in which citizens of the US would be forced to take up arms against their government, considering that the US government is controlled by the people of the US and the US military is mostly a volunteer force.

On the other side there is a world with… gun deaths…a society plagued with mass shootings…….the deaths of innocent children…..and weapons of war and carnage on our streets fueling a perpetual cycle of violence. Statistically, countries that have significant gun control are more peaceful and have less crime, this is what the anti-gun faction would tell you, but what is the other side of the argument?

 

According to gun conservation advocates, it does not matter if the second amendment was written over two hundred years ago. Many would tell you that the right of citizens to protect themselves and their fellow citizens, from crime, an outside force or even the government, is timeless. As written in the majority opinion of Et Al. v. Heller in the US Supreme Court, “The Second Amendment protects an individual’s right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home.” Gun conservation advocates state that if firearms are to be restricted or completely taken away, that crime rates would increase. As Wayne Lapierre, chief executive of the NRA (National Rifle Association) once said, “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.” According to a survey conducted on May 9th, 2013, 48% of convicted felons admitted that they avoided committing crimes when they knew the victim was carrying a firearm. In the eyes of gun conservation advocates, repealing the second amendment would lead to higher crime rates and more deaths due to criminal activity, because of citizens being unable to defend themselves.

Gun conservation advocates also cite the right of Americans to defend themselves against the government. In the event that a tyrannical regime took control of our government. If this were to happen, the people could defend themselves with their war grade weapons, such as ar-15’s and reinstate a democratic government by the people.

On the other side, there is a world of…..high crime rates……less freedom…….lack of safety…….. assault on our basic American principles… and preventable deaths due to a lack of citizens being able to defend themselves. This is what the pro-gun faction would tell you.

In this world, there will always be conflict and desperation to impress beliefs upon people. In reality though, what others think is irrelevant, what they want you to think is irrelevant. What is relevant is what you believe, your own informed opinion. These are the ideas that you use to contribute to a democratic society, not the opinions of others. Your opinions, your beliefs are what can help shape our word tomorrow. Take these factors into consideration and think, what will make the world a better place and what do you believe?

 

 

 

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