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Christmas in 1776: George Washington

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Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

15 December 1791

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The Second Amendment has most recently been interpreted to grant the right of gun ownership to individuals for purposes that include self-defense. At first it was thought to apply only to the Federal government, but through the mechanism of the Fourteenth Amendment, it has been applied to the states as well. [Cornell]

Amendment II


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.