There is NO Constitutional Right to own a gun.
Some people have convinced themselves, and try to convince others, that ownership of guns is protected by the U.S. Constitution. This is completely false.
The portion of the Constitution used to try to justify this claim is the 2nd Amendment.
“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.”
Even a quick read shows that the word ‘own’ is not anywhere in the 2nd Amendment. So, there is NO Constitutional Right of gun ownership.
How is this large mistake, imagining gun ownership to be a Constitutional Right, imagined to be real? It is the false claim that the verb keep, that is, to keep, means to own. But this claim is easily disproven. If Farmer Senoj lets Farmer Jones keep, that is, store, some corn in Farmer Senoj’s silo, this definitely does not mean Farmer Senoj owns this part of Farmer Jones’ corn. Farmer Senoj may charge a silage fee for keeping the corn, but Farmer Jones can remove and/or sell that portion of corn at any time. So, to keep is NOT the same as to own. Similarly, when a person owns something, e.g. a painting, we often assume they will maintain possession of it — keep it — but that does not have to be true. They could permanently loan that painting to a museum or a relative, thus not keeping it themselves although they retain ownership.
Still, we should investigate the potential relationship of to keep and to own more thoroughly. To do this we can use a textual type of analysis, initially on present-day definitions of to keep. Dictionaries are the arbiters of language. If most dictionaries don’t consider one word to mean the same as another, then the words do not mean the same. Using them as our bulwark ensures the analysis will not fall victim to idiomatic, individual opinions.
There are a great number of dictionaries in use today. Looking at all the present-day dictionaries is not necessary as long as we evaluate an unbiased sample of the most popular and respected dictionaries. In this analysis, I have used all the English language dictionaries kept in my county’s excellent library and looked online at dictionaries that have been chosen as most popular. Beyond that, simply googling the definition of keep adds a few more dictionaries to the list. As must be in such a sample, both the Oxford English Dictionary and Black’s Law Dictionary are included as they represent the most respected arbiters of…