If not now, when?
The Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that gun for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home. When it comes to protecting freedom, Americans, including those on the Supreme Court, recognize that personal liberties must often be modified for the safety and protection of others. Yet today’s gun rights advocates constantly cite the Second Amendment of the Constitution, the right to bear arms, when threatened by attempts to limit, but not eliminate, modern-day weapons. Piggybacking on this idea is our right to free speech; it is frequently regulated through obscenity and decency laws. Slander, libel, pornography; we are silenced all of the time. Our rights to assembly and religion are compromised in the process, however. The debate over gun control continues to plague our country. On one side, there is the National Rifle Association (NRA) and 2nd Amendment-citing citizens who use their firearms for hunting and self-defense. On the other, there is the Handgun Control Inc. (HCI) and followers of the Brady Campaign who want to ban guns on the basis that they are dangerous. The Brady Administration passed a bill that requires individuals seeking to buy a gun at a licensed dealer pass a background check. Because guns are especially lethal weapons, it makes sense that before someone can own one, he or she meets the legal requirements for ownership. This simple step protects everyone, gun owners and non-gun owners, from the danger of high-risk people gaining access to lethal weapons. Both sides have strong arguments, anchored in historical precedent and statistical analysis. Anti-gun control lobbyists’ arguments include the guarantee of the 2nd Amendment, the definition of “militia” as any adult male, self-defense, the relative uselessness of permits and regulations, and court cases in favor of firearm possession....
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