It is said that the 2nd Amendment follows hard upon the 1st so as to serve as its bodyguard — providing the added incentive of coercive force by a wary citizenry to guarantee that those initial cherished liberties, expounded by our Founders, did not go the way of the 10th Amendment. The 2nd Amendment, interpreted as the right to bear arms by a free people, has not escaped that yawning chasm that has opened up between the political Right and Left, and the rationale behind this stratification falls along the same familiar tensions of individual vs. collective. The nature of men, having proved insufficient in wisdom for the eradication of evil, must then paradoxically utilize the equalization of deadly force to not only suppress the jaundiced glint in our neighbor’s eye but the tyranny that arises when men esteem the chimera of ordered equality over liberty.
Of all laws that are deemed to have their origin in nature, the Law of Self-Preservation is indeed the most fundamental. Each person, ceteris paribus, has been deemed to have an a priori right to guard the sanctity and value of their life through any means necessary, assuming their attitude is one of general peace with men and not of the character of brigands. The friction arises with the inherent inequality of humanity, evidenced in their disparate size, strength, and stature. Now, while defensively brandishing a knife or cudgel poses a strong inducement in mounting one’s stout defense of life or property, the use of a firearm has irrevocably changed the dynamic relationship between both predator and victim. Since criminals, from the dullest to the most sophisticated, are deeply concerned with maintaining both their own freedom and their “skin,” more than a passing thoughtful consideration is generally weighed within a criminal’s nefarious equation when deciding whom he shall next fall upon.