The right of the people to keep and read books shall not be infringed?
The Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads,
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.
Progressives read this and say that only those people in “a well-regulated militia” have the right to keep and bear arms. Let’s find out why this is utter nonsense, shall we?
Over at the Constitution Society, author J. Neil Schulman conducted a remarkable exercise. He sent the text of the Second Amendment not to a lawyer but to an expert on the English Language: Roy Copperud taught Journalism at USC for 17 years and served on the usage panel of the American Heritage Dictionary. Mirriam Webster’s dictionary frequently cites him as an expert on American English usage.
He sent Mr. Copperud a precisely grammatically identical sentence: “A well-schooled electorate, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and read Books, shall not be infringed.” Does that mean, he asked, that only a well-schooled electorate — high school graduates, say — are the only ones with the right to keep and read books?