Saul Cornel writes about the Founding Fathers of America and the origin of gun control to establish a Well-Regulated Militia (AWRM).
He starts with a critic on the regulations in the bill of rights. Focusing on the second amendment, the provision that a well-regulated militia will have the right to keep and bear arms, he follows two perspectives that conflict: those who take the “individual rights” perspective and those who take the “collective rights” perspective……………….
He takes a historical approach to aid understand the reception and adoption of these two schools of thought. In the onset of the eighteenth and nineteenth century, courts had taken this right for granted. The courts then adopted the collective rights view in the better part of the twentieth century. Though the individual rights perspective thrived in the late twentieth century, the judicial system withheld itself from adopting this approach…………………
The context of the Book.
The author looks into the development of the rights to possession of arms. However, the author’s focus is concentrated on the U.S instead of Britain. America borrowed most of their legal concepts from the Whig theorists of Britain. In 1789, the fundamental freedoms (and this includes the right to poses firearms) were adopted from the British legal system and incorporated in the U.S constitution. But how did the British adopt this right to firearms…………………….
The author replaces the English experience with that of Boston. Here, the militia were allowed to own arms for the purpose of defending the community well. The author therefore accredits this move to ensure safety within the society by allowing the militia to possess weapons. They were prepared for external attacks and therefore terrorism levels reduced. They were also able to fight for their rights whenever confronted by soldiers………………………
Declaration of Rights in the Early Stages.
Cornell discussed the first part of the second amendment right that provides ‘a well-regulated militia, comprising of the body of the citizens, trained to arms, is the proper, safe and natural defense of a free state (Virginia Declaration of Rights, 1776). He reveals how this provision defines a civic right as well as a militia-centric approach…………………