The Right To Bear Arms In The Constitution Of The United States

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The Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States reads "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.” This amendment talks of the right to keeping a militia… but is very vague on the topic of “keeping and bearing arms.” As a result, people everywhere are heavily divided on the topic; some believe the amendment calls for unlimited rights to arms, whereas others believe in a theory known as the “living constitution” meaning the Constitution must be re-interpreted to modern society. Add in the rather biased opinions on the topic of the media, and one has a very distorted picture about what the right to bear arms looks like in the United …show more content…
In the past, the Supreme Court has ruled in decisions affecting American’s right to bear arms. In the 1939 Supreme Court case United States v. Miller, it was determined that sawed-off variations of shotguns can be regulated by the United States. This court case established the ruling that a weapon must "have some reasonable relationship to the preservation or efficiency of a well regulated militia . . . ." in order for it to be unregulated. If a weapon does not meet this requirement, the United States can constitutionally regulate it. More recently, in the 2008 Supreme Court case District of Columbia v. Heller, the Washington D.C. handgun regulations were challenged. In this decision, the Supreme Court ruled the Second Amendment “[...]established an individual right for U.S. citizens to possess firearms[...]” which called the District of Columbia’s ban on handguns as a …show more content…
However, the federal government has established some basic gun laws to set a basic standard. To purchase a firearm, one must go through a background check, and in some cases, obtain a permit in order to carry the gun (concealed weapon permits). Firearms dealers are also required to obtain a license to sell guns. In Pennsylvania, the gun laws are considered very loose. If a gun is lost or stolen, the state does not require the individual to report the theft. Firearms are not required to be registered, no regulation on ammunition sales exists, and no regulations exist on a person purchasing and re-selling a

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