One of the most heated and contested issues in the nation today is the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States and its various interpretations. Before I proceed, I am going to present this very short amendment for those who may not know what it states so that you will have a clear understanding of what we are sharing today: “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.”
When the founding fathers wrote this amendment, most constitutional scholars and historians concur that they were assuring that the national government would not be able to prohibit nor disarm a state militia. Also, since state militias consisted of ordinary citizens, they would maintain the right to bear arms. However, since this amendment was written, much has changed in the area of “weaponology”. Firearms have greatly evolved from the single shot muzzle loaded muskets that were used back then to rapid firing rifles and handguns that can discharge hundreds of rounds per minute. As brilliant and well-meaning as our founding fathers were when they wrote our Constitution and Bill of Rights, there was no way that they could (humanly) see how awesome and destructive firearms would develop and evolve as they have done.
I must (at this time) confess that I am a staunch believer in the Second Amendment and the right of every sane, law abiding, and qualified citizen to bear arms. I have in my personal possession quite a few firearms that I fully intend to keep. With a clear conscience and for the life of me, I cannot find a biblical or rational reason that would prohibit any law-abiding citizen from owning a firearm. I know that there are some considerations and responsibilities to which we who own firearms must adhere. I have personally known of some true stories when someone who owned a firearm was not cautious and careful to secure and safeguard their guns from the meddling reach of their children. In one such incident (when I was a boy growing up in Newtown), a young boy about my age shot and killed his younger brother with a shotgun that their father had left exposed and unsecured. Another incident that almost turned tragic in my family occurred when my father left his revolver exposed and unsecured. One of my younger brothers (who was only around four years old) got his hands on it and fired off a round that almost hit my mother. Imagine the tragic consequences that almost transpired all because my father was negligent and irresponsible about having a firearm in the house where there were children.
There is an issue that is being debated by people on both the left as well as the right regarding the right to bear arms dilemma that I will bring to your attention and briefly consider at this time.
Good Men with Guns
are the Equalizers to
Bad Men with Guns
As much as some are adamantly opposed to anyone carrying firearms (except law enforcement or military personnel), most can agree that this would be an ideal scenario only if there were no criminals, no terrorists, no robbers, or no bad people carrying guns with the intent to victimize, hurt, and even kill others. Since we live in a world where these types of aggressive, violent, and evil people are often on the prowl and footloose and fancy free, we must by all means take some continual precautionary measures and remain vigilant in order to protect ourselves from others with criminal and violent intent to use aggression and deadly force against us. Among these good precautionary measures is having good men with guns positioned in strategic spots in places like schools, churches, and other venues where people gather in masses to counteract and neutralize the threat of the bad men with guns.
Are Military Grade Rifles Like AR15s Necessary?
The scale of military grade and battlefield weapons are in high demand and ordinary citizens and military groups are scurrying to purchase them before there is a shortage. Before I give you my take on these military rifles like AR15s and whether or not the ordinary citizen should be allowed to buy them, I want to briefly allude to a time in history when the gangsters and criminals had more powerful weapons than law enforcement officers (like those of the FBI, state, city, and county police, and sheriff departments) respectively. These officers, who were responsible for upholding the law and apprehending criminals, were at a grave disadvantage in their firearms in comparison to many of the gangsters who had military grade weapons like Tommy guns (submachine guns). Many law enforcement officers consequently were killed due to being out gunned with superior weapons that were being used by the gangsters. Eventually, the law enforcement agencies realized their mistake and introduced military grade weapons to their officers and S.W.A.T. teams who had to engage gangsters, terrorists, and other aggressive and violent criminals who were armed with battlefield type firearms.
Summary and Conclusion
Though I have mixed emotions about ordinary citizens owning AR15s and other military grade firearms, I am not dogmatically opposed to the idea. I believe that there are some who are old and sane enough to own such powerful weapons primarily for the sake of defending their families, churches, businesses, and other places where innocent and vulnerable people dwell and interact. I am thankful for some of the restrictions that Congress will (by all indications) make the law of the land regarding who will be able to buy these military grade weapons. Although, in my opinion, they did not go far enough. However, they are taking steps in the right direction to remedy an almost unsolvable problem. At the end of the day, the only true solution is contained in the following passage of Scripture that shall serve as our conclusion:
And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.