Gun Rights Quotes
Supreme Courts on Being Armed
"To prohibit a citizen from wearing or carrying a war arm . . . is an unwarranted restriction upon the constitutional right to keep and bear arms. If cowardly and dishonorable men sometimes shoot unarmed men with army pistols or guns, the evil must be prevented by the penitentiary and gallows, and not by a general deprivation of a constitutional privilege."
-- Arkansas Supreme Court, 1878
"The right of self-defense is the first law of nature; in most governments it has been the study of rulers to confine this right within the narrowest possible limits. ... and [when] the right of the people to keep and bear arms is, under any color or pretext whatsoever, prohibited, liberty, if not already annihilated, is on the brink of destruction."
-- St. George Tucker, Judge of the Virginia Supreme Court 1803
"Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government's purposes are beneficient. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."
-- Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis
"It is not the function of our government to keep the citizen from falling into error; it is the function of the citizen to keep the government from falling into error."
-- Justice Robert H. Jackson
"The right of bearing arms for a lawful purpose is not a right granted by the Constitution; neither is it in any manner dependent upon that instrument for its existence."
-- U.S. vs Cruikshan