“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.”
It occurs to me that too much of the gun-control debate has absolutely nothing to do with the Second Amendment, even as it seems pretty much everybody having the debate — left, right and center — appears absolutely certain that it does.
Please look at the actual text (above). The Second Amendment is very clearly about the protection of a “free State” by a “well-regulated militia” comprised of citizens of that State (i.e. the same “people” mentioned in the phrase “We the people…”). Most importantly, it really is not in the least about any particular individual’s right to defend him or herself from some mugger or even a delusional fanatic armed to the teeth with automatic weapons.
As serious as those problems truly are, they have absolutely nothing to do with the Second Amendment, although few people seem to be aware of this. Because these problems have absolutely nothing to do with the Second Amendment, any effort to solve them with the help of the Second Amendment is simply doomed. The situation here is not unlike that of some incompetent mechanic trying to loosen a lug nut with a pair of scissors. Scissors are just are not the right tool for that job.
I think this observation might go a long way toward explaining why the United States has such a gun problem.