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Argument: 2nd Amendment applies only to collective right of militia to bear arms

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Court of the United States DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA AND ADRIAN M. FENTY, MAYOR OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, Petitioners v. DICK ANTHONY HELLER, Respondent. On Petition for a Writ of Certiorari to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ”The Amendment’s text compels this interpretation. The opening clause expressly relates the right to keep and bear arms to the need for a “well regulated Militia.” Such a force is said to be necessary to the security of a free State.” The word “Militia” naturally refers to the state-regulated military forces envisioned in the Militia Clauses of the Constitution, art. I, § 8, cls. 15-16. A militia that is “well regulated” is properly disciplined. See Miller, 307 U.S. at 179 (citizens enrolled for military discipline). Contrary to the view of the court of appeals, which considered the second clause of the Second Amendment in isolation,the first clause is not precatory surplusage merely “announcing the desirability of a well regulated militia.” App. 34a. The Framers gave this language careful attention, revising it several times, and considered it essential to the Amendment as a whole. See The Complete Bill of Rights: The Drafts, Debates,Sources, and Origins 169-81 (Neil H. Cogan ed., Oxford Univ.Press 1997)."


Oral arguments in DC vs. Heller. Walter Dellinger, ESQ., Washington, DC. - "MR. DELLINGER: Good morning, Mr. Chief Justice, and may it please the Court: The Second Amendment was a direct response to concern over Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, which gave the new national Congress the surprising, perhaps even the shocking, power to organize, arm, and presumably disarm the State militias. What is at issue this morning is the scope and nature of the individual right protected by the resulting amendment and the first text to consider is the phrase protecting a right to keep and bear arms. In the debates over the Second Amendment, every person who used the phrase 'bear arms' used it to refer to the use of arms in connection with militia service and when Madison introduced the amendment in the first Congress, he exactly equated the phrase 'bearing arms' with, quote, 'rendering military service.' We know this from the inclusion in his draft of a clause exempting those with religious scruples. His clause says 'The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, a well armed and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country, but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms shall be compelled to render military service in person.' And even if the language of keeping and bearing arms were ambiguous, the amendment's first clause confirms that the right is militia-related."


Parker v. District decision. - "... the meaning of the Second Amendment has been settled since the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in United States v. Miller, 307 U.S. 174 (1939). In that case, the Court ruled that the 'obvious purpose' of the Second Amendment was to "assure the continuation and render possible the effectiveness" of the state militia."


Oral arguments in DC vs. Heller. Mr. Dellinger - "[...]MR. DELLINGER: Mr. Chief Justice, I believe that the phrase 'the people' and the phrase 'the militia' were really in -- in sync with each other. You will see references in the debates of, the Federalist Farmer uses the phrase 'the people are the militia, the militia are the people."

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