Courts have consistently held that each of the ten amendments in the Bill of Rights to the Constitution has limits. For example, discussing the First Amendment, Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes stated: “You can’t shout ‘fire!’ in a crowded theater.” (Unless, of course, there is a fire.) The Second Amendment states:
“A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”
Is the Second Amendment is an exception to the rule that each amendment has its limits. How far do you think the Second Amendment goes? I’ve developed a little quiz that addresses that question. Precede each question with the clause: “IS THE GOVERNMENT VIOLATING THE SECOND AMENDMENT WHEN…”
1) it prohibits citizens from bringing guns into prisons and jails?
2) it prohibits citizens from carrying guns into courtrooms?
3) it prohibits citizens from carrying guns on airplanes?
4) it prohibits citizens from carrying guns in Congress?
5) it prohibits citizens from carrying guns in public legislative hearings?
6) it prohibits citizens from owning machine guns?
7) it prohibits citizens from mounting machine guns on the backs of their pickup trucks?
8) it prohibits citizens from keeping and carrying grenades? (Hand? Rocket propelled?)
9) it prohibits citizens from carrying open swords, pikes and/or battle axes in public?
10) it regulates the length of knife blades that can be carried in public?
11) it bars from schools citizens who are carrying guns?
12) it bars from children’s playgrounds citizens who are carrying guns?
13) it limits the rights of citizens to carry guns on military installations?
14) it requires permits for the concealed carrying of firearms?
15) it requires persons who wish to keep and bear arms to pass a background check?
16) it prohibits ex-felons from possessing guns?
17) it prohibits the mentally deranged from possessing guns?
18) it prohibits convicted spousal abusers of possessing guns?
19) it prohibits citizens from carrying loaded guns in vehicles?
20) it recognizes the right of a property owner to bar persons carrying weapons from her/his/its private property?
If you answered “no” to ANY ONE of these questions, you believe that there are limits on the Second Amendment. Your next step is to decide where to place the limits on it, and why. For example, what’s the differenc