Prof. Nick Johnson on the 14th Amendment & the right to arms
"So what do militia-fixated critics of the right to arms have to say about all this? Well, not much. Because if you aim to neuter the right to arms with claims that the amendment is only about militias, you really do have to ignore the Civil War, Reconstruction, the postwar amendments, and indeed most of the 19th century (including antebellum state court decisions holding that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to arms enforceable against the states).
Ironies abound here. Most cutting is that people who lean heavily on the Fourteenth Amendment to support rights that they like, avoid it like kryptonite when it comes to the constitutional right to arms. Someone quipped that this is constitutional interpretation, buffet-style. Justice Stevens' dissent in McDonald is a prime example of this. It extols privacy and reproductive rights grounded in the Fourteenth Amendment, but disparages the armed self-defense right that will keep you alive to enjoy all the others.
For many years, critics chided the academy, the government, and society at large for rendering Blacks invisible within the American story. That criticism invoked our strongest moral invectives. Recently, both Stevens and Waldman have actually used the word "fraud" to disparage the constitutional right to arms. So where is the outrage when supposed champions of civil rights blithely dismiss the struggles of the first generation of black citizens and the enduring lessons surrounding the Fourteenth Amendment's protection of the individual right to keep and bear arms?"