by user Btchakir
Second Amendment to the Constitution:
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.
We've heard some of the most amazing brain vomit of late, due to the horrible tragedy at Virginia Tech. From Tom DeLay to Newt Gingrich to the NRA and its blind followers, we have received the word that everyone should be packing heat. If the students in Virginia had carried arms, Cho would have been shot down before he could get away with most of the murders.
This kind of talk brought on lots of commentary comparing the USA to Canada, to England, to Japan... to many countries who have passed more stringent gun control laws. It was consistently pointed out that we cannot even pass nationwide registration of guns. We register our dogs. In most states we register bicycles. But we give guns this Constitutional pass due to the 2nd Amendment.
So I started thinking: "How does one regulate a well-regulated militia?" If the founding fathers wanted us to have firearms in order to form the kind of militia that defended us at Concord at the start of the Revolution, and wanted that militia to be "well regulated", wouldn't those firearms have to be a known element? Wouldn't the government have to have a registry of who was in that militia and what equipment they had available?
We regulate many things: automobiles, the age of alcohol consumption, flight patterns of airplanes... and the Constitution doesn't even specifically call for these. But it does call for regulating a militia, and in this regulating all those participating, i.e. "the people", have the right to bear arms. But wouldn't they have to be registered somewhere so we know who they are (for when we call up the militia) and what they are armed with?
I believe in the Second Amendment. I don't believe in the right of the people to arm themselves for any reason whatsoever... but I'm not opposed to a well regulated militia.