Right to Bear Arms
“We should not blame a gun itself for any crime or any acts of violence, any more than we can blame a pen for misspelling a word.” Proven by this statement belonging to Robert Bennett but even more notably by the malevolence of the world’s past, time after time it has been proven that guns do not kill people; in fact it is the people themselves that do. Remaining stationary and innocuous until a force and a finger consciously pulls the trigger, a gun is and will always remain an inanimate object that only becomes dangerous when a deranged or wicked mind has willed it do so. As the controversy surrounding the Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights - a proclamation of the ability for Americans to bear arms - escalates, gun ownership and the interpretation of US founding documents is put into question as arguments support the counterpoint that infringing said right could finally reduce gun violence to save the lives of countless individuals. Due to the evidence provided by the true intentions of the Founders to open the citizens’ eyes to the dangers of oppressive government, climbing crime rates, and the importance of the Second Amendment as a means of preserving moral duty, history itself reveals that stripping Americans of the right to bear arms inevitably rids them of their life and liberty.
What exactly are the requirements of being a ‘good citizen’? Although the definition varies according to an individual’s beliefs and the country they reside in, the most universal component of good citizenship is abiding strictly to all laws and conditions of the government while enjoying the rights endowed to them. Being mindful and obedient to society is crucial to achieving a world of “liberty and justice for all”; however the institution of democratic law in the United States has extended the typical guidelines of citizenship to produce a social order far more utopian than any other throughout history thus far. Subsequent to officially establishing America’s independence, the Founders’ created the framework of their revolutionary government based off of themes of natural rights, higher law, and popular sovereignty as constants to guarantee that citizens would forever live in a society governed for and by the people. Cruel subjugation from British rule fresh in their minds and hearts alike, their statements as recovered by historians clearly explain the importance of the Constitution’s amendments to protect American civil rights and the methodical purpose behind their design: “The Constitution shall never be construed to authorize Congress to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms,” said Samuel Adams on their intent. Though it may be assumed that the right Adams speaks of is only the right to own and keep firearms - a right with significance proved by its position as second in the Bill of Rights - deeper interpretation reveals that bearing arms is merely a small part of the equation to achieving freedom that is maintained not only by bearing what George Washington termed as “liberty teeth” but the freedoms of press and speech outlined by the First Amendment, a wall of defense against tyranny and unjust government. Although using guns to provide family dinner or fend off lowly criminals are not to be pronounced irrelevant to the reason behind bearing arms, the Founder’s original intent is expressed by the desire to prevent repeating the misfortunes of the past by allowing citizens not only to have the appropriate protection against foreign invaders but ultimately the immediate threat of oppression lurking within their own country. When national safety is jeopardized by such internal dangers, preserving liberty through a surefire ’backup plan’ that is essentially what is stated by the Second Amendment literally puts the power in the hands of citizens to refresh the government’s position as a body of law in effect only to fulfill the common good of those...
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