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Sample essay topic, essay writing: The Second Amendment And The Right To Bear Arms - 1067 words
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WORKS CITED Cottrol, Robert, ed. Gun Control and the Constitution: Sources and Explorations on the Second Amendment. New York: Garland Publishing Inc., 1994 Dowlut, Robert. The Right to Keep and Bear Arms in State Bills of Rights and Judicial Interpretation. SAF 1993 Freedman, Warren.
The Privilege to Keep and Bear Arms. Connecticut: Quorum Books, 1989  Hickok, Eugene Jr., ed. The Bill of Rights: Original Meaning and Current Understanding. Virginia: University Press of Virginia, 1991 Kruschke, Earl PHD. Gun Control: A Reference Handbook. California: ABC-CLIO Inc., 1995 Image on the cover page taken from TIME
Photographer unknown. Prune Yard Shopping Center v. Robins, 447 U.S. 74, 81 (1980) Zimring, Franklin E., Gun Control. Encyclopedia Encarta: 1993-1997 Microsoft Corporation.Throughout the years there has been an ongoing debate over the Second Amendment and how it should be interpreted. The issue that is being debated is whether our government has the right to regulate guns. The answer of who has which rights lies within how one interprets the Second Amendment.
With this being the case, one must also think about what circumstances the Framers were under when this Amendment was written. There are two major sides to this debate, one being the collective side, which feels that the right was given for collective purposes only. This side is in favor of having stricter gun control laws, as they feel that by having stricter laws the number of crimes that are being committed with guns will be reduced and thus save lives. However while gun control laws may decrease criminals' access to guns, the same laws restricts gun owning citizens who abide by the law; these citizens make up a great majority of the opposing side of this argument. These people argue that the law was made with the individual citizens in mind.
This group believes that the Amendment should be interpreted to guarantee citizens free access to firearms. One major group that is in strong opposition of stricter gun control laws is the National Rifle Association (NRA). The NRA argues that having stricter gun control laws will only hinder law-abiding citizens. The final outcome on this debate will mainly depend on how this Amendment is going to be interpreted. The Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights states: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.
(Amendment II 1791)This debate has produced two familiar interpretations of the Second Amendment. Advocates of stricter gun control laws have tended to stress that the amendment's militia clause guarantees nothing to the individual and that it only protects the states' rights to be able to maintain organized military units. These people argue that the Second Amendment was merely used to place the states' organized military forces beyond the federal government's power to be able to disarm them. This would guarantee that the states would always have sufficient force at their command to abolish federal restraints on their rights and to resist by arms if necessary. The Second Amendment was written shortly after the colonist had gained their freedom from Britain, and the reason for their gaining independence is that they were tired of living under British rule and especially under the leadership of King George the III.
These gun control advocates argue that the Second Amendment grew out of the colonists' fear of standing armies and their belief that having militias that were composed of ordinary citizens was the surest way of maintaining their freedom (3).The opposite side of this debate consists of those who claim that the amendment guarantees some sort of individual right to arms. This view comes from the literal wording of the Second Amendment, which states, "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." Along with this argument, the NRA and other groups in opposition of gun control argue that the first, fourth, ninth, and tenth amendments are all constructed to refer to the citizens as individuals and not as a collective state. These gun advocates feel that if one is to give a rational interpretation of the collective view to the constitution, then one would have to assume that the Framers referred to the individuals in the first, fourth, and ninth amendments; to the states in the second amendment, and then separated the states and the people in the tenth amendment, although they feel that this was inconsistent with the wording of the second amendment (5). Proponents of strict gun control laws, including Handgun Control Inc., and Coalition to Stop Gun Violence argue that the Second Amendment guarantees a collective right rather than an individual right. When the occasion occurs that Americans find it necessary to band together to defend their rights, they are constitutionally guaranteed the right to own the firearms they need for that purpose.
They advocate restrictions on some types of firearms by citing high numbers of gun-related deaths in the United States. These proponents argue that by making stricter gun laws this will in turn reduce the number to crimes that are committed with guns and would thus save lives. One of their supporting arguments is that each year in the United States, more than 35,000 people are killed by guns, which is a death rate that is much higher than any other nation. Attacks involving a gun are five times more likely to result in a death than in any similar attacks made with a knife. Also, in 1992 guns were the weapons used in approximately two-thirds of the murders of the United States (8).
However, while gun control laws may decrease criminals access to guns, those same laws restrict law-abiding citizens. Opponents of gun control laws, including organizations such as the National Rifle Association (NRA), object to the inconvenience these laws may cause to law-abiding gun buyers or owners and would not prevent the possession of guns by criminals. The NRA argues that about half of all United Stated families own at least one gun, and that the most frequent motives for owning a gun is to protect the home, hunting or target shooting, and for collecting. Those who oppose restrictions on gun ownership find support in the language of the Second Amendment and believe that it should be interpreted to guarantee citizens free access to fire arms. The NRA has strenuously lobbied for the passage of state laws allowing citizens to carry concealed weapons. In arguing that the Second Ame ...
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