Is the right to bear arms conditioned on a Militia?

Randy Barnett, one of the Volokh Conspirators, wonders in a series of posts whether the right to bear arms depends on the existence of a militia (or, if I understand it correctly, your right to own a gun depends on your potentially being part of the general civil defense). He continues this thought in two articles over at GlennReynolds.com (filling in for the Big Cheese), as "The Right to Bear Arms", and "How would you organize the militia?"

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I think the minds of our

I think the minds of our Founding Fathers were clear on this, the murkiness is a modern socialist product.

Jefferson:

?Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God. The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in Government. No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.?

?The Constitution of most of our states (and of The United States) assert that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed.?

Washington:

?Firearms stand next to the Constitution itself. They are the American people's liberty teeth and keystone under independence.?

Richard Henry Lee:

?To preserve liberty it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.?

Those are some interesting

Those are some interesting articles by Randy, but what the founders intended is largely irrelevant to my right to bear arms. My right to keep and bear arms does not come from the Constitution; it is an objective right that comes from first principles of ethics.

Its not irrelevant- whether

Its not irrelevant- whether or not you're going to have to face armed intervention in order to exercise your right depends on the interpretation of the Constitution, and thus in small part what people can divine of the "original intent" of the writers.

Its not irrelevant- whether

Its not irrelevant- whether or not you're going to have to face armed intervention in order to exercise your right depends on the interpretation of the Constitution, and thus in small part what people can divine of the "original intent" of the writers.

It is irrelevant to the existence of the right. Culture may change, and illuminating the intentions of the Founders may play a part in helping change the culture in a positive way, but the right itself is objective and independent of anyone's intent.

The context of the argument

The context of the argument is not whether the right exists as a matter of logic (natural right), but whether it is a right that is recognized (and how recognized) by our current government.

Its not about the culture, per se, but the government's position- and that is important since, as I said, their position determines whether they're going to forcibly abridge your right or not (and whether or not you're going to have to fight). The topic is not just arcane lacunae to be dismissed...

Its not about the culture,

Its not about the culture, per se, but the government's position- and that is important since, as I said, their position determines whether they're going to forcibly abridge your right or not (and whether or not you're going to have to fight). The topic is not just arcane lacunae to be dismissed...

Who says it's to be dismissed? I'm just saying that if you want to convince someone about the right to bear arms, the best strategy is convince them that it makes sense in their own mind, rather than showing that wise men many years ago said so.

I think it's a grave mistake for gun owners to base their strategy on the 2nd Amendment. The Bill of Rights is just a piece of paper, and democracy can make it irrelevant through the 'living document' mindset.

Freedom has to be sold for its own sake.