Saturday Essay: Second Amendment not about hunting rights

Saturday Essay: Second Amendment not about hunting rights

Like the Bible, our Constitution is often quoted and interpreted as if the long-ago intention must apply to contemporary situations. Larry Gillen (“ Protect gun rights ,” June 11) applies the Second Amendment, specifically referencing militia, to hunting rights. Hunting was not on the minds of those fighting against King George’s regiments, and to attempt to equate the reach of that clause to deer hunting is absurd. Nor is it imaginable that the revolutionary colonists could have imagined hunting as part of their defense of colonists against a faraway king imposing taxes without permitting colonial representatives to vote in the English parliament. Even further from the context of those earlier writers is its misuse to sustain unimaginable violence in our cities and communities today by fellow citizens. The language protected “militia,” e.g., an organized unit, but not a state-sponsored army, working together against foreign forces attacking homes and communities. A far cry from individuals stockpiling weapons and carrying concealed weapons into churches, schools, shopping malls, movie theaters, public parks, etc. The abuse of the Second Amendment has created the most violent culture among modern societies not at war with or protecting itself against the imminent invasion and assault of foreign armies. The misinterpretation of that oft-cited clause of the Bill of Rights reveals the widespread misunderstanding of the entire structure and intent of a nation “conceived in liberty and justice for all.” When my liberty is threatened by my neighbors’ arsenals that he claims a right to discharge when/​if […]

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