The Second Amendment and the right to bear arms has always been a part of American culture and history, the right to bear arms is as American as apple pie and westerns, but it has and always will be a hot topic and the wording and meaning of the Second Amendment comes into question frequently. The currently accepted meaning of the Second Amendment is that it gives militias and individuals the right to bear arms, the right to own firearms (“Second Amendment to the United States Constitution”).
However even though the right to bear arms is given to every American it can be revoked, many states have ensible laws that restrict where you can take a firearm and who can own them, and many Americans support these restrictions even though they technically violate the Second Amendment, they are supported because everyone knows that firearms can be dangerous when placed in the wrong hands.
When the founding fathers where drafting the Second Amendment they made many drafts of it before coming to an agreement on the present version of the Second Amendment, also there has always been a reasonable restriction on where you can take a gun and who can own one. But as history uggests there is a fine line between firearm restriction and violating the Second Amendment.
Over the years there have been many cases that question whether or not a law restricting the access to firearms violates the Second Amendment and the peoples’ right to bears arms, for example one of these cases was District of Colombia V. Heller. The Second Amendment is a whopping twenty seven words long and because of this the meaning of the Second Amendment is somewhat unclear and is often debated. Furthermore when the Second Amendment was written the founding fathers wrote many drafts of the Second Amendment, until they finally decided on the present version, of the Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights.
As a result of the Second Amendment being unclear there has been many supreme court cases and the decisions on the court cases has helped to clarify and decide what the Second Amendment means, and because of the land mark court cases they have changed the interpretation of the Second Amendment to the presently accepted interpretation that gives the people the right to bear arms.
Also in history there have been some people who have wanted to do away with the Second Amendment ompletely but, the only way they would be able to do so is to draft the 28th Amendment that states that the Second Amendment no longer applies and is here by ratified, to do that there would need two thirds of both houses and two thirds of all states to vote for it, but polls have shown that around 52 percent of Americans support the Second Amendment (The Political Insider), so it would be nearly impossible to pass such a legislation.
The landmark court case District of Colombia V. Heller (“District of Colombia V. Heller”, Oyez) had major influence over the right o bear arms and the interpretation of the Second Amendment. Therefore the focus of this case was whether or not the District of Colombia’s gun laws violated the citizen’s right to bear arms and the Second Amendment. The District of Colombia’s laws in question banned handguns and required all legal firearms to be disassembled or locked, preventing them from being used for self-defense.
But before the judges made their decisions they had to look at the Second Amendment and determine the meaning of it, and if the right to bear arms applied to the citizen’s. Therefore Heller and his attorneys claimed that the citizens were given the right to bear arms by the Second Amendment; they used the fact that the laws prevented citizen from protecting themselves with firearms which they claimed was protected by the Second Amendment.
While The District of Colombia and its representatives and the federal trial court in Washington D. C. used the wording of the Second Amendment as evidence that the right to bear arms only applied to militias, such as the army, National Guard and law enforcement. But when the case got to the U. S Supreme Court, the judges ruled ith a five to four decision that the Second Amendment is made to protect every individual’s right to bear arms not just the militias, because of this ruling it forever changed the interpretation of the Second Amendment, and the ruling secured the peoples’ right to bear arms.
Two contemporary court cases that relate to my landmark case and the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms are McDonald v. Chicago and Drake v. Filko. McDonald v. Chicago is the first current course case and it is similar to the Heller case because this case also involves a gun ban that citizens believes iolates their right to bear arms, and this case was sparked because of the ruling on the Heller case (“McDonald v. Chicago,” Oyez). Private Citizens thought that their Second Amendment right to bear arms was being violated because of the gun ban enacted in Chicago.
Then the judges ruled with a five to four decision for McDonald that because of the Fourteenth Amendment and the Second Amendment which gives the individual the right to bear arms for protection. Drake v. Filko is another case it involves a law in New Jersey that requires individuals to get a handgun permit before being able to carry a andgun outside of the home, and in order to receive a handgun permit you need to have been previously threatened and need protection.
As a result of the laws, the New Jersey residence that filled the suit claim that preventing a person from carrying a handgun violates their Second Amendment rights to bear arms for protection (“Drake v. Filko”, Oyez). Both of these cases involve laws that the residents of these cities believe violate their right to bear arms for the use of self-protection and that it is protected by the Second Amendment. The Second Amendment and the right to bear arms has always een a controversial issue and it probably always will be, but the current accepted interoperation of it is that it protects the right of an individual to own firearms.
In addition landmark court case District of Colombia V. Heller helped to contribute to the currently accept meaning of the Second Amendment and the case also attributed to other contemporary court cases being filed, and it was used as evidence in them and most likely will be used as evidence in many more cases to come. Even though the true intention of the Second Amendment may never be fully nown, I believe that because of some of the court cases the basic intention of the Second Amendment that the founding fathers had in mind when they wrote it has been established as the meaning of the Second Amendment.
So in conclusion the right to bear arms and the Second Amendment has and probably always will be a hot topic, but I think because of the court cases the basic meaning of the Second Amendment has been revealed, and even though technology and ideals may change the right to bear arms will not because it is protected by the Second Amendment and because it is a very American right.