The Second Amendment at Work

Originally Posted on Medium - March 13, 2018

I am not in favour of people being able to carry assault weapons. But an argument I often hear about the need to ban them is that there is no way the founders could have predicted the rise in technology to this degree. That this was not the purpose of the second amendment.

I disagree. The whole point of the second amendment was to arm civilians well enough to prevent a tyrannical government from taking over by force. To say they cannot have predicted assault-style weapons would need to play to both sides; the governments capabilities have expanded as well.

With assault weapons, the second amendment is working as intended. I cannot think of a Western country whose population is better suited to defend itself from its government if needed. Whether we think that should be possible, or will ever be needed, is not the point. The point is; that is exactly what the second amendment was intended to do. It was not to bear arms to protect yourself against intruders, it was not to bear arms to hunt, it was to bear arms to defend against the government. If you have an example of a country better prepared in that regard than the US, I would love to hear about it.

But in that light, the second amendment has already failed. The government has tanks, and drones, and nukes. There is no longer a possibility of defending oneself against the government. No matter how many assault weapons someone collects, they do not stand a chance against an army’s arsenal. So to say you need the gun to protect yourself is a foolhardy argument.

Which brings me back to: I do not think people should carry assault style weapons, but under the second amendment, they have every right to.