No matter how many jurists and intellectuals may embrace it, the theory that “the individual right” to personal self-defense lies at the heart of the Second Amendment is plainly wrong. This is not to say that the Amendment, correctly construed, does not effectively ensure for almost all individuals a right of personal self-defense with firearms. It does, but (in most cases) with every kind of firearm that is in any way suitable for any type of Militia service, not just handguns kept in one’s home. Moreover, it guarantees for almost all individuals various rights to employ firearms for purposes far beyond the narrow confines of their own personal self-defense at home.
Each individual enjoys “the right * * * to keep and bear [his own] Arms”, not simply so that he can defend himself, but so that all individuals can act in concert in “well regulated Militia” to preserve their communities as “free State[s]”. Thus, nothing could be more erroneous—and even destructive of the purpose of the Second Amendment as well as the Militia Clauses of the original Constitution—than the notions that not only does “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms” embrace an “individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation”, “having nothing whatever to do with service in a militia”, but also individual self-defense is “the central component of the right itself”.
Thus, at least insofar as it is made to rest upon the right of personal self-defense, the supposed “individual right” to possess firearms is the spawn of confusion. Worse yet, it is the source of delusion as to what actually needs to be done to enforce the Second Amendment. For, notwithstanding that all too many naive patriots believe it to be correct, and even though it may provide some protection for “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms” in isolated instances, at base the notion that the Amendment primarily concerns itself with only an “individual right” is part and parcel of the strategy America’s enemies are employing in order so to befuddle “the people” that they will not seek to organize themselves in the one and only way the Constitution itself tells them is “necessary to the security of a free State”.