James Ostrowski
LRC Blog
February 7, 2011

There’s much confusion about the purpose of the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms. Critics who fail to grasp or refuse to acknowledge its purpose find it easy to cast the right to bear arms in a sinister or silly light. It’s about shooting Bambi or a politician who votes the wrong way on HR83901.

This headline from today captures the essence of why we need a right to bear arms:

2 dead in Tunisia after police open fire on demonstrators

As you have surely surmised already, the right to bear arms is defensive in nature. Its purpose is to allow the people to defend themselves against the government when the government, as governments frequently have done, engages in mass murder against people who are peacefully exercising their natural rights such as freedom of speech, assembly, religion, petition, or even that glorious right to alter or abolish the government itself.

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