Great Daily Kos Piece on Protecting Second-Amendment Rights
Quoting Kaili Joy Gray:
Liberals can quote legal precedent, news reports, and exhaustive studies. They can talk about the intentions of the Founders. They can argue at length against the tyranny of the government. And they will, almost without exception, conclude the necessity of respecting, and not restricting, civil liberties.
Except for one: the right to keep and bear arms.
When it comes to discussing the Second Amendment, liberals check rational thought at the door. They dismiss approximately 40% of American households that own one or more guns, and those who fight to protect the Second Amendment, as "gun nuts." They argue for greater restrictions. [...]
Those who fight against Second Amendment rights cite statistics about gun violence, as if such numbers are evidence enough that our rights should be restricted. But Chicago and Washington DC, the two cities from which came the most recent Supreme Court decisions on Second Amendment rights, had some of the most restrictive laws in the nation, and also some of the highest rates of violent crime. Clearly, such restrictions do not correlate with preventing crime. [...]
The Bill of Rights protects individual rights. If you’ve read the Bill of Rights -- and who among us hasn’t? -- you will notice a phrase that appears in nearly all of them: "the people." [...]
Certainly, no good liberal would argue that any of these rights are collective rights, and not individual rights. We believe that the First Amendment is an individual right to criticize our government. [...] And yet, despite the recent Heller and McDonald decisions, liberals stumble at the idea of the Second Amendment as an individual right. They take the position that the Founders intended an entirely different meaning by the phrase "the right of the people" in the Second Amendment, even though they are so positively clear about what that phrase means in the First Amendment. [...]
But it’s different! The Second Amendment is talking about the militia! If you want to "bear arms," join the National Guard! Right? Wrong.
Aside from the fact that the National Guard did not exist in the 1700s, the term "militia" does not mean "National Guard," even today. The code clearly states that two classes comprise the militia: the National Guard and Naval Militia, and everyone else.
Everyone else. Individuals. The People.
The Founders well understood that the militia is the people, for it was not only the right but the obligation of all citizens to protect and preserve their liberty and to defend themselves from the tyranny of the government.