We all know that this phrase is synonymous with the highly-inflammatory and endlessly-debated question of to what extent we have the right to bear arms. What else should we know?
At there end of the US Constitution there is a list of amendments. The first 10 amendments are called the Bill of Rights and they list specific prohibitions on governmental power that protect the individual liberties of the citizens. The second of these amendments specifically addresses keeping and bearing arms.
For all the debate it has generated, the second amendment is ridiculously short. What right does this brief amendment guarantee the citizens? Here is the second amendment to the United States Constitution in its entirety:
“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.”
Surely the Founding Fathers could have helped us out a little with better punctuation and capitalization, but there you have it. You be the judge.