Who Are The People?
In any discussion of the true meaning of the Second
Amendment, a number of misinformed people would have you believe that it doesn't
say what it says Here is the complete text of the 2nd: "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." There it is plain and
Yet some people want you to believe that the purpose of the
2nd Amendment was to arm the Militia...despite the fact that the
constitution itself [Article 1, Section 8, Clause 16] had already given to
Congress the power to "provide for the organizing, arming an disciplining the
Militia." These same people want you to believe that only the right of the
Militia to keep and bear arm "shall not be infringed." Take note of the caps in
the Constitution for Militia and the lack of caps for militia in the Bill of
Apparently they do not know that the framers of the Bill of
Rights haggled long and hard over individual words and phrases. The Founders'
understanding of the English language far surpassed that of the 2nd's present
For those people, who obviously have never learned to
diagram a sentence, I will take this opportunity to examine the 2nd
from a grammatical point of view.
In the first place, the word "right" is indisputably the
subject of the sentence. The predicate ,or main verb phrase, is: "shall not be
infringed." That is the imperative form of the verb; in short, it is a
straightforward command. The reference to the militia appears only as an
introductory subordinate clause, which has no power to limit or
restrict the subject or the predicate.
The Bill of Rights was drafted in response to demands by a
number of states as a condition for their ratification. These states insisted on
an explicit Bill of Rights to protect the people from the possible tyranny of
some future too-powerful central government [talk about farsighted]. They wanted
a listing of inalienable rights "of which men, when they form a social compact,
cannot deprive or divest their posterity." [Samuel Adams 1st
The state constitutions of Virginia, New York, North
Carolina and Rhode Island include the clause..."the people have the right to
keep and bear arms."
If any unschooled person still believes, after this lesson
in grammar and history that the framers of the Bill of Rights did not mean that
"the people have the right to keep and bear arms", I suggest that they visit an
English teacher, and a competent historian.
The odd "militia misconception" as to what the founders
intended as opposed to what the 2nd actually says, is a figment of
the imaginations of those who would disarm the USA. In their hearts they know
they are blowing smoke, witness their fatuous attempts recently to have the
"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." Thomas
Jefferson, proposal for a Virginia constitution, T. Jefferson papers,
I must add a note of thanks to some people T. Jefferson, S.
Adams, P. Henry, et al.
Check out Quotes in this section.