Second Amendment. The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution reads: A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of . 1 day ago · Stephen L. Black seems a little confused about what the words in the Second Amendment mean (“One Militia, well regulated,” April 18). There are two clauses of the Second Amendment, the.
Van Buren followed shortly after, and Caribou after that, and even more towns have recently joined. Kilcollins says that the resolution is more about educating people on their constitutional rights than it is about gun laws. If there [are] new gun laws obtained how to host a website on your own domain state level or federal level, we have to follow.
Joan Theriault is on the Caribou tbe council that passed the resolution in a four to three vote. She agrees with Kilcollins that the resolution has no impact on gun rights or laws. We have gun rights now. If people would have come a,endment and voted yes they wanted this, I would have gladly signed the resolution. The Sanctuaries are also gaining momentum in other parts of the State. Columbia Falls passed the resolution mezn voice vote at their annual town meeting, incorporating residents into the decision-making process.
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Jun 19, · What does the Second Amendment mean today, and what has it meant over time? He traces the history of the contentious clause and the legal . Apr 15, · “Nebraska has always been a state that has supported our Second Amendment rights. As a symbol of that support, today I am signing a proclamation to declare Nebraska a Second Amendment Sanctuary State,” the Republican governor said in a video. Second Amendment Sanctuaries in Maine started with the town of Paris in , but the movement didn’t begin locally until Kilcollins brought the resolution to the table in Fort Fairfield in January. Van Buren followed shortly after, and Caribou after that, and even more towns have recently joined.
As America grapples with a relentless tide of gun violence, pro-gun activists have come to rely on the Second Amendment as their trusty shield when faced with mass-shooting-induced criticism. In their interpretation, the amendment guarantees an individual right to bear arms—a reading that was upheld by the Supreme Court in its ruling in District of Columbia.
It was drafted, after all, in the first years of post-colonial America, an era of scrappy citizen militias where the idea of a standing army—like that of the just-expelled British—evoked deep mistrust. What does the Second Amendment mean today, and what has it meant over time? He traces the history of the contentious clause and the legal reasoning behind it, from the Constitutional Convention to modern courtrooms. This historical approach is noteworthy.
The Heller decision, written by Justice Antonin Scalia, is rooted in originalism, the concept that the Constitution should be interpreted based on the original intent of the founders. While Waldman emphasizes that we must understand what the framers thought, he argues that giving them the last word is impossible—and impractical. What the country needs now is important. Michael Waldman: I started the book after Newtown. There was such anguish about gun violence and we were debating, once again, what to do about it.
But this was the first time we were having that conversation in the context of a Supreme Court ruling that the Second Amendment protects individual rights of gun owners.
And now every time people debated guns, every time people talked about Newtown, they talked about the Second Amendment. I wanted to see what the real story was: What the amendment had meant over the years, and what we could learn from that.
MJ: What preconceived notions about the Second Amendment did the history that you uncovered confirm or debunk? MW: There are surprises in this book for people who support gun control, and people who are for gun rights.
When the Supreme Court ruled in Heller , Justice Scalia said he was following his doctrine of originalism. Emphatically, the focus was on the militias. Now at the same time, those militias are not the National Guard. Every adult man, and eventually every adult white man, was required to be in the militias and was required to own a gun, and to bring it from home.
So it was an individual right to fulfill the duty to serve in the militias. MW: Yes. And she had her picture taken in front of the sign so we could confirm that it was actually still there! And that might be noteworthy for some. There were plenty of guns. There was the right to defend yourself, which was part of English common law handed down from England. But there were also gun restrictions at the same time.
There were many. There were limits, for example, on where you could store gunpowder. There were lots of limits on who could own guns for all different kinds of reasons. There was an expectation that you should be able to own a gun. MJ: So then why focus on the Second Amendment and not the English Bill of Rights or other things the framers drew on that more clearly address individual gun ownership? MW: We are not governed today, in , by British common law. Law evolved, the country evolved.
It was a very rural place. There were no cities. There were no police forces. It was a completely different way of living. So gun rights activists turned this into a constitutional crusade. Those who want more guns and fewer restrictions realized they could gain some higher ground if they claimed the Constitution.
MJ: You write that throughout most of the 20th century, the courts stayed out of the gun laws debate. What changed that led them back in? That was the consensus, that was the conventional wisdom. The NRA has been around for a long time. It used to be an organization that focused on hunters and on training. And they started with scholarship. They supported a lot of scholars and law professors. They elected politicians. They changed the positions of agencies of government.
They got the Justice Department to reverse its position on what the amendment meant. And then and only then did they go to court. So by the time the Supreme Court ruled, it sort of felt like a ripe apple from the tree. They also moved public opinion. And, you know, I gave him credit for being part of a really significant effort that changed the way we see the Constitution. MW: They certainly supported a lot of it. The way it works in constitutional law is that legal scholarship plays a pretty big role.
So there became a rather deafening roar of the pro-individual gun ownership model: They were publishing and reinforcing each other. Some of it was very useful, and I cite it in the book. And some of it, when you look at some of the claims, they are easily punctured. It reminded me of the people who write movie posters, in terms of pulling quotes out of context. Could you send them back to me?
You can buy a T-shirt that has the quote! MJ : How is it that such questionable scholarship went so far—all the way to the Supreme Court?
But when it actually came time to doing the history, he skipped over the actual writing and purpose of the Second Amendment. Out of 64 pages [in the decision], only 2 deal with the militias. Which is what the founders thought they were talking about.
One of the things that I hope people take away from this is that the original meaning is always important, but it is not the only way to interpret the Constitution. MJ: What are your thoughts on the historical argument that the Second Amendment is a civil right protected under the 14th Amendment? MW: After the Civil War, there were a lot of freed slaves who were terrorized by white vigilantes. One of the purposes of some of the framers of the 14th Amendment was to make sure that they get guns.
Now, the Reconstruction government that enforced the 14th Amendment also had very strong gun laws, such as prohibitions on carrying concealed weapons. Just like the colonial period and the early revolutionary period, it was a very different time. What you had in the South was low-grade guerrilla warfare between the races. MJ: You write that in Heller , there was a big shift in how the case was argued: There were many references to colonial America, and very little about current gun laws and current patterns of violence.
Is this the new normal for gun cases? Heller said: Yes, there is an individual right, but it can be limited. Well, dozens of judges have ruled since then, and overwhelmingly, they have upheld district gun laws.
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