The Founders did not consider owing a gun a basic human right.

Every right the Founders considered a basic human right was stated without explanation or justification. If the Founders had considered gun-owning a basic human right like speech, religion, press, etc. the Second Amendment would have been worded just like the First, like the right to trial by jury, like the right to be free from unreasonable searches, etc.

If the Founders had thought that there was a basic human right to own guns the Second Amendment would have said, “Congress shall make no law infringing the People’s right to keep and bear arms” but Madison consciously chose not to do that. The 2nd Amendment was consciously worded differently from the First, Fourth and other amendments and provisions that protected what the Founders did believe were, in fact, basic human rights.

Instead, using your own re-wording, Madison felt it was necessary to qualify and justify the right to own guns — “Because a well regulated Militia is necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.”

Madison said clearly that people needed to have the right to keep and bear arms, not because it was a basic human right, but because the safety of the country required the existence of a well-regulated militia.

What’s the connection between needing a militia and citizens owning guns? People who are going to be called on at a moment’s notice to fight to protect the country from invasion and insurrection need guns to do that. That’s why Madison wanted them to have guns — so that when the State militias were called up, their members would have the guns they needed to fight.

When militia members were no longer allowed to use their own guns, the clearly stated purpose of the 2nd Amendment, providing armed men to staff the militias, disappeared.

Modernizing your own re-wording: “Because the country no longer needs armed citizens to staff a well-regulated militia, there is no longer a need for citizens to have a right to keep an bear arms.”

You may have other reasons why you think people should have that right but your reasons were not the Founder’s reasons nor the reason the Second Amendment was added to the Constitution. That specific reason went away in 1916, and the Founder’s reason for enacting the Second Amendment (while it is still law) is now gone.

BTW, you should think long and hard about the mindset that claims that having devices whose sole purpose is to kill other people is a basic human right.

Do you really believe that it’s a basic human right to always be prepared and equipped to kill other people? I hope you don’t call yourself a Christian.

Graduate of Stanford University & U.C. Berkeley Law School. Author of 17 novels and over 200 Medium columns on Economics, Politics, Law, Humor & Satire.

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