The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) has just ruled that [emphasis mine]:
The Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home.
This is a landmark ruling that the antigun lobby has been fighting against for many years. The argument was that the 2nd amendment didn’t apply to individuals; only a state run militia. If this argument prevailed, then it would have effectively prevented an individual citizen from owning a gun.
While the ruling is a victory for those of us who take responsibility for our own self-defense, it doesn’t give carte-blanche rights to own any type of gun you want. Nor does it allow an individual to carry a weapon outside the home without a license. Those issues are left up to the states (which I agree with since I’m a big states-rights guy). From the ruling:
Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose…
The entire ruling is worth reading, but here are some of the summary exerpts:
The Amendment’s prefatory clause announces a purpose, but does not limit or expand the scope of the second part, the operative clause. The operative clause’s text and history demonstrate that it connotes an individual right to keep and bear arms.
The handgun ban and the trigger-lock requirement (as applied to self-defense) violate the Second Amendment. The District’s total ban on handgun possession in the home amounts to a prohibition on an entire class of “arms” that Americans overwhelmingly choose for the lawful purpose of self-defense.
Read the whole opinion of the court HERE (PDF).