Skip to comments.Part Nine: Right to bear arms
Posted on 09/17/2010 5:33:12 AM PDT by marktwain
MOUNT VERNON The right to bear arms, to many people, is one of the most important rights guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States. Local attorney Harlow Walker spoke of the history and meaning of the Second Amendment of the Constitution on Wednesday, the final night of the lecture series. 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 Second Amendment states.
Walker began with a brief overview of English history concerned with the evolution of the idea of the right of the people to keep and bear arms.
Walker said King Alfred, who ruled England from A.D. 871 to 901, established the principle that his subjects had the obligation to serve in a citizen army as required by the crown.
This obligation to defend the country also included an obligation to provide oneself a weapon, Walker explained.
The continual arming of the citizenry at all class levels continued over the years eventually shaping the views held by this countrys Founding Fathers.
English history made two things clear to American revolutionaries, Walker said. Force of arms was the only effective check on government and standing armies threatened liberty. Recognition of these historical facts meant that the force of arms necessary to check government had to be placed in the hands of the citizens.
There were two factions of those charged with writing the countrys constitution, the federalists and the anti-federalists. Both groups agreed the main danger to the republic was tyrannical government, one that abused power in a way that restricted or denied those rights considered to be natural rights, ones people possess from birth.
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There have been over 47 million National Instant Criminal Background Checks in the last 3 1/2 years. While one cannot infer a 1:1 correlation between that number and a firearm purchase, you certainly can't buy a gun from a dealer without one.