“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.”
— US Constitution
There are those who argue that current day “militia” is the National Guard, police or the US military. They are clearly wrong as it is obvious those categories do not need their right to keep and bear arms protected by the Constitution. The Second Amendment refers to all American residents.
There are also those who argue that the right to keep and bear arms is the right to self-defense, or the right to hunt etc. These are also wrong – the purpose of the Second Amendment was to protect the people from a runaway government, from potential tyranny. Here is what Thomas Jefferson had to say on the topic:
“What country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance. Let them take arms.”
– Thomas Jefferson, letter to James Madison, December 20, 1787
“The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…. Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.”
– Thomas Jefferson, Commonplace Book (quoting 18th century criminologist Cesare Beccaria), 1774-1776
We consider all laws banning regular Americans from keeping and bearing arms to be treasonous under the Constitution.