President Barack Obama has caved to pressure from his supporters and finally exploited last week’s Aurora massacre to begin the push for gun control, erroneously claiming during a speech last night that the second amendment is about hunting and target practice.
“We recognise the traditions of gun ownership that passed on from generation to generation, that hunting and shooting are part of a cherished national heritage,” said Obama during remarks made at a National Urban League Conference in New Orleans.
In reality, the founders put the second amendment in the bill of rights not to ensure Americans could enjoy hunting or target practice, but as a protection against government tyranny.
As Howard University School of Law’s Thomas M. Moncure, Jr. explains, the right to bear arms was derived from English common law and was clearly focused around having an armed citizen militia to protect against abuses by the state.
As James Madison wrote in the Federalist Papers, the right to bear arms was seen as a means of protecting liberties against government intrusion. Madison noted that in “several kingdoms of Europe … governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.” Read more.......