What type of arms does the Second Amendment protect? And the parallel between self-defense in the Founding period and today.

Someone made this shockingly simple and obvious point a couple of weeks ago, and I don’t remember if I ever posted it, and I no longer have the original. Here it is from memory:

The Second Amendment says:

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.

Since a militia is a military force, using military arms, obviously the type of arms that the people have the right to keep and bear are also military arms. The protected arms are not limited to those needed for self-defense against criminals.

And here is a second point, which various people have made: There is no clear dividing line between the types of arms needed to subdue criminals and the type needed to suppress mob attacks, insurrections, and invasions. When the Korean store owners in South Central Los Angeles were threatened by armed black mobs during the L.A. riots of 1992, they successfully protected their property and lives using AR-15 “military”-style semi-automatic rifles with large magazines. Revolvers with six cylinders would not have done the job.

During the Founding period a little over two centuries ago, Americans living on the frontier were faced with the merciless Indian savages (as the Declaration of Independence described them), against whom they needed to be armed to the teeth; this was surely one of the driving factors behind the Second Amendment. During the wonderful Civil Rights period through which we are now living, also known as the Founding period of America 2.0, Americans living in many of our urban areas are faced with merciless Negro savages (not that all Negroes are savages but many are) against whom they need to be armed to the teeth. The rights protected by the Second Amendment are just as relevant today as they were then.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 06, 2013 04:26 PM | Send

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