Lenden Eakin is a Federal Firearms License Dealer. He is a National Rifle Association Firearms Instructor since 1994 with current certification in rifle, pistol, shotgun and personal protection. He is a Hunter Education Instructor since 1996. He is also an attorney and has military experience with the U.S. Army and Virginia Army National Guard.
The Second Amendment of the United State Constitution says, “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.”
Lenden began by noting that the Supreme Court is the body that determines what the constitutional amendments mean and they have said that every individual that is a responsible citizen has the right to bear arms for self defense and for the common defense.
So how has this played out in more recent times? Lenden pointed to a number of court cases. The District of Columbia vs. Heller was a case dealing with Washington D.C. when they had a ban on all hand guns. The Supreme Court ruled that the 2nd Amendment allows people to defend themselves and hand guns are a perfect self-defense weapon, therefore the D.C gun ban was overturned.
At the time of the case of McDonald vs. the City of Chicago in 2010, Chicago was banning firearms. Chicago felt that just because Washington D.C. can’t ban guns they should be exempt because the city is part of a state that is not under full-time federal control. The Supreme Court said the 14th Amendment applies the 2nd Amendment to all the states so every citizen of the U.S. has the right to keep and bear arms for self-defense.
Vic the asked about the phrase “tyrannical government” and where that comes into play. Lenden noted that the history of the 2nd Amendment follows the overthrow of tyrannical government in England and was in the minds of the framers and the people when they passed the amendment; to make certain that the ultimate power of the sword was in the people and not the government.
But now let’s get specific. What about a citizen’s right to own an AR-15 rifle? After all, the AR-15 is the civilian version of the standard military rifle. Lenden said that this is “the question on the table right now.” The case of U.S. vs. Miller from 1939 was about a short-barrel shotgun. The defense lost the case with the Supreme Court stating that guns owned by the people for common defense should be of a type similar to ordinary military equipment and typical of the time.
Whatever President Obama attempts to do via executive order, one thing is certain. With a relatively pro-gun, pro-Constitution House of Representatives in town, he’ll have a lot of eyes looking his way to make certain he’s not failing to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.