All About the Legal Right to Bear Arms
Authored by LegalMatch Law Library Managing Editor, , Attorney at Law

All About the Legal Right to Bear Arms

The United States Second Amendment protects the rights of citizens to possess guns for their protection. This amendment was passed in 1791, as an addendum to the United States Constitution. Historians show that this was influenced by England's Bill of Rights, and was signed into effect to protect the rights of the people. A number of cases have set a precedent for this amendment, in order to strengthen it and further explain it.

The advent of the Bill of Rights came due to the ineffectiveness of the Articles of Confederation. Citizens needed help in case invaders entered these territories, so the Second Amendment instituted these gun rights, to allow citizens to bear arms, form a militia and otherwise protect themselves whenever the need arises. While the amendment discusses the formation of militias, today's citizens largely recognize this amendment as the "right to bear arms." Gun enthusiasts and hobbyists celebrate and protect this right, as do organizations such as the National Rifle Association.

Most gun enthusiasts celebrate this amendment, while also touting the importance of firearm safety and responsible firearms ownership. They take pride in this amendment, and the rights that they have as gun owners in the United States. While various states have their own sets of laws, which dictate registration, concealed carry and other procedures, the Federal law sets the foundation for the rights of people who choose to own firearms. People have the right to own and use firearms for protection, collectorship, hunting and self-defense. Anyone interested in this amendment or gun ownership should always do their research, so that they are fully aware of the terms of the Second Amendment and how it came to pass.

The following resources explain the Second Amendment in great detail, and offer information pertinent to gun ownership, gun safety and hunting.

  • NRA History – The NRA refers to itself as America's longest standing civil rights organization. They protect the rights of gun owners and work to pass policies that enforce these rights. This section of their site outlines their history.
  • Gun Ownership – The National Institute of Justice offers detailed data and statistics about gun ownership.
  • Quick Reference to Federal Firearm Laws – The DOJ offers a quick reference material to Federal gun laws, including crimes and punishments.
  • Gun Ownership Now Mandatory in Colorado Town – A town in Colorado has made gun ownership mandatory. This article goes into detail about this turn of events.
  • US: Gun Ownership & the Supreme Court – The Library of Congress offers valuable information about the Second Amendment, in addition to reference material for further research.
  • Best States for Gun Owners – This publication features information on which states are the most beneficial for gun owners.
  • Right to Keep and Bear Arms – This organization provides a number of links and resources for people looking to learn more about gun rights.
  • Gun Trends & Statistics – The polling company offers data on a number of historical trends related to gun ownership and laws.
  • Gun Rights FAQ – This foundation fights for gun rights and sponsors publications that discuss these issues in depth.
  • Bill of Rights Transcript Text – This site features transcripts for the Bill of Rights and other legal documents.
  • NRA-ILA - Second Amendment – The NRA sponsored site features a wealth of information on Second Amendment rights and advocacy.
  • Students for the Second Amendment – This organization advocates gun rights. They provide a number of links helpful for anyone looking to learn more or get involved.
  • Second Amendment and Rights to Keep and Bear Arms – This UCLA law site features an in depth breakdown of the Second Amendment, in addition to sources and subsequent litigation.
  • Bill of Rights Institute: Second Amendment (1791) – The institute goes in depth about the Second Amendment and other Bill of Rights components.
  • Firearms Safety – An article that outlines 10 rules for safe handling of guns.
  • Gun Safety Information – Gun safety information along with statistics, overviews, news, journal articles, and more.
  • 50 Best Hunting Rifles – An article discussing the 50 best hunting rifles of the last 10 years.
  • Hunting Facts – Information on hunting with firearms including how often Americans hunt, how many hunt, how much ammo is purchased annually and much more.
  • Concealed Carry Permit Map – A map highlighting which states allow concealed carry along with which permits are honored in particular states.
  • State Gun Laws – A clickable map that allows you to see gun laws for each state, just click to read the laws.
  • Gun Owners of America – An organization that works to preserve the rights of citizens to keep and bear arms.
  • National Association for Gun Rights – The official website for the National Association for Gun Rights, a civil advocacy organization.
  • Guide to Self-Defense Guns – A simple guide for buying and carrying handguns meant for self-defense.