The high court's reading of the 2nd Amendment is simply wrong
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Any constitutional originalist worthy of the name knows that the writers of the Second Amendment would never have begun with that "well regulated militia" clause without intending for it to have significant bearing on the issue of bearing arms. It was the "Age of Reason" and such a clause as mere window dressing would have been out of the question.
There being no public armories at the time, militiamen were expected to respond to a call to duty with their own muskets. The cost of a musket was prohibitive for many. Servicing and loading it for use limited its "killing factor." The devastating power of today's assault weapons was inconceivable in the 18th century.
Until we abandon our unlimited "let them have guns" insanity we can expect ever more frequent slaughter of the innocents such as occurred last Friday.
While we have to live with its decisions, the Supreme Court isn't always right. The current court's reading of the Second Amendment is as far off target as was the Dred Scott decision of 1857 declaring that freed blacks had no citizenship rights.
The "well regulated militia" clause is essential to the meaning of the Second Amendment. The National Rifle Association's position today is as untenable as was that of the slaveholders 155 years ago.
ELIZABETH ASCHE "BETTY" DOUGLAS
First Published December 20, 2012 12:00 am