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What Is The Second Amendment And How Is It Defined
“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.”
In just twenty-seven words, the Second Amendment solidifies one of America’s most fundamental freedoms — the right to keep and bear arms. But what is the Second Amendment? And how does it protect you as an American? Here are the facts.
What is the Second Amendment?
In short, the Second Amendment states that as an American citizen, you have the individual right to arm yourself. The amendment also firmly establishes that the government cannot infringe on that right.
The Second Amendment was ratified on December 15, 1791, as one of the first ten amendments to the Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights expanded upon the Constitution by establishing clear individual rights, limiting the government’s power, and further laying the foundation of American freedom.
Today, the Second Amendment remains fundamental to protecting the rights of law-abiding gun owners.
What the Second Amendment Means
It was no small task for the Founding Fathers to put the building blocks of American freedom into writing. There was much debate amongst them about the amendments' proposed contents. However, they did widely agree on the Second Amendment’s intended meaning.
“A well regulated Militia, …”
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“The Constitution preserves, the advantage of being armed which Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation (where) the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.”
James Madison, 4th U.S. President