A "Well-Regulated Militia." What Does This Mean, Exactly?

The 2nd Amendment, in the U.S. Bill of Rights, states: “A well-regulated militia being necessary for a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

What does “well-regulated” mean, exactly? Theoretically speaking, focusing on the word “well-regulated,” would it be infringing on someone’s second amendment rights for the state to require them to go to the range/train every so often? Or take a class at a private training institution (or at an NRA-sponsored class) before they buy their first firearm? After all, they need to stay up to par in their marksman skills. Would this be violating the 2nd amendment? Sorry if this is a stupid question.

Many states do require you to take a class before you can buy a handgun and I expect many people view that as unconstitutional.

I don’t think the phrase would allow states to enact laws to make people train regularly though.
It doesn’t establish a militia or anything, it simply declares that one is necessary, and a competent one, i.e. “well regulated”.

1 Like


Allow me to assist. It is irrelevant to the right.

1 Like

It is unfortunate that this one sentence has left us almost alone in the world with a lunatic fringe demanding, and getting, almost unfettered access to any firearms, regardless of the national slaughter they’re causing.
And this was not the intent of this amendment.


:rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl: ^ ^ ^ ^

To solve this issue, lets look at the word “regulate” means via Dictionary

to govern or direct according to rule
to bring under the control of law or constituted authority

So basically the word “regulate” refers to creating rules to abide by.

A “well-regulated militia” means that militias must have rules and regulations.

The 2nd amendment is all about allowing people to form militias and ability to own weapons in order to defend the country. No where does it say the government cannot regulate the firearms industry.

1 Like

The government does not have any powers not explicitly spelled out in the Constitution.

That wasn’t the usage of the term regulate when the constitution was written. It is what the word has come to mean over time though.

In current wording it could be phrased “a smooth operating militia, being necessary for a free state…”

not as long as its there

I understand the concept of words changing in meaning, but regulate still means creating a functional system, and you cannot have a functional system without rules and regulations.

I doesn’t matter what it meant. The sentence does not explicitly grant any powers to the government.

That’s true. And the end of the sentence universally prohibits any powers to the government in this regard.

It’s not irrelevant to the Amendment. It is irrelevant to the right. Of course now you will claim there is no difference, and again you will be wrong.

You’re in over your head consistently on this subject because you refuse to study.

Interesting. What does the gas regulator on your BBQ do?

Which has been routinely violated with the approval of the ephors.

There are some restrictions I would not be against, but I don’t see any legal method to enact them. One thing is for sure, I don’t want anybody preventing myself and other law abiding citizens from owning guns.

Our courts have ruled on this issue. Federal and state governments can restrict the gun industry. Scalia even said so himself.

People who committed crimes or have major mental illnesses can be prevented from owning a gun.

It’s not rocket science here.

Things like universal background checks, gun registration, stricter licensing rules for more lethal weapons, are perfectly reasonable in my view.

We could ask nicely for a change.

There are a lot of things “perfectly reasonable in my view” that you wouldn’t like.

And most gun control laws are not reasonable, they are passed out of ignorance and emotion. Example you say? “Silencer” laws.

Would it be like the 16th Pennsylvania Volunteers, made up of civilians who were trained in military fashion to keep the peace during heated disputes between communities or attached to the regular army to fully assist in the Spanish-American War? Or as a backup to fill in when necessary for the National Guard to use their resources elsewhere during times of conflict?
Well regulated:

  1. structured, available, armed, trained civilian unit
  2. maintaining their own equipment
  3. not customarily compensated for service in monetary exchanges
  4. Not subject to, or defiant of government proclamations-serve/protect citizenry against wrongful state matters, serve/protect state against unruly citizenry, whatever the wrongful matter
    Just my understanding of a well regulated militia, based on my great grandfather’s service from a private to Brigadeer General in a militarized setting.