"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."
The militia is not the people as some would believe. The "well regulated militia" is the standing military controlled by congress and the states. The purpose of the second amendment is not to show that the people, being the militia, should have weapons. the purpose of the second amendment is to show that because we need a well regulated militia, the people should also have weapons. The founding fathers had just fought a war against a government controlled military and were distrustful of having another one. However, they realized that to defend from outside threats, they needed a trained, ready military. That's the "well regulated" part. The founders also knew there would be a temptation by the government to use the standing military to enforce its rule over the people. So they created the second amendment to ensure the people would be armed and able to defeat any domestic army who tries to enforce tyrannical rule. The second amendment is not proof that we are the militia, it is a statement of resignation that we need a militia, and therefore need a way to defeat that militia. The military may have more advanced weaponry and vehicles, but the sheer number of people who have small-arms, as well as the fact that the people would have the advantage of being intimately familiar with the battlefield, means no standing army could prevail. The founding fathers, even thought they themselves were the new "ruling class" wanted the people to be able to overthrow the government should that government become an oppressive and tyrannical ruling body. When discussing this subject with your friends, please, do not sugar-coat it. I DO NOT ADVOCATE THE VIOLENT OVERTHROW OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT OR THE ASSASSINATION OF PUBLIC OFFICIALS. But I do advocate having the means to do so, as should ever freedom-loving citizens of this nation.
"I have always been a soldier. I have known no other life. The calling of arms, I have followed from boyhood. I have never sought another." From The Virtues of War, by Steven Pressfield.
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