Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

Second Amendment & the Right to Keep and Bear Arms

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.

The Second Amendment protects the right of the people to keep and bear arms for defense of life and liberty.

In U.S. v. Cruikshank (1876), Presser v. Illinois (1886), Miller v. Texas (1894) and U.S. v. Miller (1939), the Supreme Court recognized that the amendment protects an individual right. It has never taken a different view. However, in Salina v. Blaksley (1905), the Kansas Supreme Court invented the idea that the amendment instead protected a “right” of a person to keep and bear arms only while serving in a state militia, and in U.S. v. Tot (1942), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit advanced the idea that the amendment protects the “right” of a state to have a militia.

In District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), the Supreme Court heard its first case specifically centered on whether the amendment protects an individual right to arms. Gun control supporters advanced essentially the "Salina" argument, but the Court, consistent with its previous rulings in Second Amendment-related cases, ruled that the amendment protects an individual right to keep arms and to bear arms "in case of confrontation," without regard to a person’s relationship to a militia.

In McDonald v. Chicago (2010), the court extended the Second Amendment's protection nationwide.

Issue Articles
SECTION
FROM
WITHIN

News  

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

D.C.`s Personal Protection Act <br> Passes U.S. House

Fairfax, VA -- Today, the U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved legislation to restore the right of self-protection ...

News  

Thursday, July 1, 2004

Attorney General Ashcroft & The Second Amendment

Distinguished author and Constitutional lawyer Stephen Halbrook responds to the Violence Policy Center's attack upon Attorney General John ...

News  

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

South Carolina Repeals ‘One-Gun-A-Month` Law

No summary available

News  

Thursday, March 25, 2004

NRA Hails West Virginia University <BR>For Reinstating Rifle Team

FAIRFAX, VA -- After an outpouring of support from the National Rifle Association (NRA), the state Legislature, shooting ...

News  

Thursday, April 17, 2003

Talking Shop with Majority Leader Bill Frist

NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris Cox recently sat down with the new Senate Majority Leader to talk about freedom, ...

News  

Friday, April 4, 2003

D.C. Residents Demand Second Amendment Freedoms

The National Rifle Association today announced its support for the lawsuit filed by five Washington D.C. residents in ...

News  

Friday, March 21, 2003

An Opening Gambit For Tyrants Is To Disarm The Public

An Opening Gambit For Tyrants Is To Disarm The Public The right to Akeep and bear arms@ is ...

News  

Monday, March 10, 2003

Ninth Circuit Disputes Silveira Decision, Judge Calls Second Amendment an Individual Right

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in a February 18 ruling questioned that circuit`s recent ...

News  

Tuesday, February 11, 2003

NRA 132nd Annual Meetings & Exhibits - Orlando, Florida, April 25-29

No summary available

News  

Tuesday, May 14, 2002

Anti-gun Lobby Attempt To Influence U.S. Brief In Supreme Court On Emerson Second Amendment Case<BR> By Stephen P. Halbrook

Distinguished author and Constitutional lawyer Stephen Halbrook responds to the Violence Policy Center`s letter to Solicitor General Olson ...

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.