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Table of content for this series can be found here.
Match 2: To Arms
Once upon a time, Europe was ruled by many kings and lords. They hold all the money and power. If you were just a peasant, you pretty much just work hard to keep food on the table, keep your head down and don't get into trouble with the powerful. There were many restrictions. Peasants were not allowed to wear certain clothing items, in case people mistaken you as a noble. I have heard that in medieval time, it is only nobleman can carry sword in public during peace time, with exception if you are traveller, merchant who will encounter danger during travel. Later on, it is the gentleman can bear light arms like rapier. Back then the word "gentleman" refers to people who came from "good" family but not necessary noble. Not just a regular poor sob.
America was a land of revolutionary ideas. It is not surprising given its independence comes from rebel against the ruling of Imperial Britain. One of the idea the founding fathers came out was, anyone, no matter you are noble or peasant, can own arms. In fact, you take your gun and join or form a militia of you liking, without having to knee in front of a king to swear loyalty to or get knighted.
What I think about the second amendment, the very spirit is meant to be a rebellion against the old European tradition and value of that time.
In those days, if I want the ability to self defence, a hand gun or a simple rifle will serve me well. Even if I want to join a local militia, I doubt there are more complicated equipment than a cannon. Almost three hundred years later, it really depends on what I want to self defence against. If I am worried about an insane person taking a semi-automatic to my company and start firing, I am not sure a hand gun is sufficient. If I were a minority and think the local police is corrupted. Well, the police in US often get surplus military gears. So what should I get to protect myself? A howitzer? kamikaze drone? Tank? Well, second amendment allows me to bear arms, and arms doesn't mean only gun. In theory, I should be allowed to buy ICBM or even nuke if I have the money. The whole idea of second amendment is I don't have to knee before a king and all that jazz to get weapon. So I shouldn't need to be enlisted to get my hands on ICBM, or get elected as US president to touch that nuke button.
Or is that so?
Often I feel that we have to revisit what was purpose of the second amendment and how does it serves us in the modern days. As of 2022, I view the spirit of it as everyone should have the right and the means to self-defence. What are the equipment adequate for self-defence, and if something can be done to reduce threats in public space thus reduce the need of self-defence should be up for debate.
Sadly, each of the interest groups tend to fight for their own narrow interest and belief, so all these debate end up nowhere. After every mass shooting, there would be some of the debate, but nothing really change.
I have no good idea on how this problem can be solved. I wish that there is a solution. Very few Americans are gun-blazing nut jobs. I believe a lot of them would rather living in peace, except they may not have the luxury to.