Letter: About gun rights
The Vail Daily recently carried a column by Jack Van Ens about the right to keep and bear arms issue: “Hit the Second Amendment’s bull’s-eye.” Despite Supreme Court rulings that confirm the individual right to keep and bear arms, Van Ens persists in claiming otherwise. He says that amendment merely confirms the right of states to organize and arm militias. If you read the Second Amendment, it concludes: “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”
Note that it does not say it is creating a right; it is confirming a prior, natural law right of people to be able to defend themselves — from government, mobs, criminals and whatever else threatens their safety. About the militia — federal law defines it as all able-bodied males between the ages of 17 and 45. See Title 10 US Code Section 311. Colorado’s constitution has a similar definition in Article XVII, Section 1. Vans Ens ignores the Colorado Constitution, which makes this issue clear, in Title II, Section 13: “The right of no person to keep and bear arms in defense of his home, person and property, or in aid of the civil power when thereto legally summoned shall be called in question; but nothing herein contained shall be construed to justify the practice of carrying concealed weapons.”
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