Wednesday, September 7, 2011

On the Second Amendment

At the Volokh Conspiracy, David Kopel links to his recent article on the Second Amendment, concerning the rise and fall of the idea that the Second Amendment referred to some sort of collective right, belonging to "the people" as a whole.  (As he points out, that view simply does not hold up under inspection.)

I previously posted some of the proposals that led to the creation of the Second Amendment.  They could support a theory that this individual right was intended, in part, to benefit the public by making complete reliance on a military unnecessary (and by making the general population formidable to that military, in case it would ever be corrupted), but not that the right itself was to nothing more than the existence of a militia, in a nation where anyone could be disarmed.  The idea that the Second Amendment concerns a collective right simply is not plausible.

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