What the Second Amendment Means to Me
August 20th, 2006
By Susanne M. Heun
Mrs. Heun is a wife of 15 years and mother of four young children. She exercises her active mind through various projects and causes. She has been a member of FrontSight for many years. (But is always pregnant or nursing a baby-so she looks forward to the day when she will finally take a course!)
Opportunity. Without pause, hesitation or brainstorm. The Second Amendment means opportunity to me.
“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.”
What a luxury that the Second Amendment can mean opportunity to me. It can only be so because of the nature of its very existence. I enjoy this privilege only because hundreds of thousands of Americans have exercised not only their freedom to follow the Second Amendment but their duty to follow it.
The Signers of the Constitution were motivated to include the Second Amendment because of their previous life experiences and perhaps, the foreshadowing of what was in store for many of them…I can only imagine their courage and conviction because mine has never been so tested. But because of their illumined minds I have these beautiful opportunities:
- I have the opportunity to live seemingly effortlessly in regard to regional security for my family and me. The Second Amendment assures me that our Military & National Guard are protecting our Nation not only from foreign and domestic enemies here and abroad but also during civil emergencies and natural disasters. I thank God daily with my family for the efforts and sacrifices of our men and women serving in this capacity.
- I have the opportunity to rest and relax in my home without apprehension for the welfare of my family. The Second Amendment ensures that my husband (and me after proper training) may protect my family as needed with a firearm. While civil discourse will always remain a gentleman’s primary resolution to conflict, I cannot dismiss that not everyone is a gentleman or a lady…In such cases when no amount of talking would preserve the health and very life of a person, I have the opportunity to defend my family and me and not become a victim.
- I have the opportunity to hunt my own land and provide food for my family. The Second Amendment secures private ownership of firearms for this purpose and hunting is not reduced to a “club” atmosphere and “planted” game.
- I have the opportunity to train in the proper use of firearms without having to be in the Military, National Guard or Law Enforcement. The Second Amendment guarantees that I have a right to keep and bear arms and my own character guarantees that I will only do so with appropriate instruction, practice and mastery.
Conversely, the Second Amendment also provides the luxury of some to criticize, countermand and quarrel about its original intent. This can only be “allowed” because there are others securing, with firearms, the basic freedoms and tranquility that we all enjoy. While fervent discussions will continue about the Second Amendment, we need only rest our gaze upon any number of countries to see what could be in store for a nation that rids itself of such a “hot button.”
May we never know that desperation and loss which so many in our own lifetimes face because they cannot defend themselves. May we never know the oppression, insecurity and lack of opportunity to which the absence of such a Constitutional framework would certainly lead.
While the Second Amendment means an opportunity to secure good things for my family and me, any number may choose not to view it as an opportunity… The glass can always be viewed half full or half empty. As Americans protected by our Constitution and all of its Amendments, we enjoy such freedom of thought and practice. May we recognize and celebrate such liberty and the many rights that our Fore Fathers secured for us.
Keeping the Hearth Alight,
Susanne M. Heun