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Adopted to ease fear of the new federal government disarming the militias of individual states at the time of United States Constitution's ratification, the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution states: "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." While the Amendment was initially subject to little scrutiny after its passing, its language has grown into a subject of considerable debate regarding its applicability to individual citizens. Some consider the Amendment to grant individual citizens a constitutional right to firearm possession, an interpretation known as "individual right theory." An opposing theory, known as "collective rights theory," interprets the Amendment as barring the federal government from violating the states' rights to self-defense while providing no constitutional right to individual citizens. In recent years, the US Supreme Court has heard a number of

Timeline

06/26/2014: Federal judge upheld Colorado gun control laws

04/23/2014: Georgia governor signed bill expanding gun carry rights

03/31/2014: Federal judge ruled immigrants have same gun carrying rights as citizens

03/25/2014: Ninth Circuit upheld San Francisco gun control laws

02/13/2014: Ninth Circuit overturned California concealed weapons ban

05/31/2013: Illinois Senate approved concealed weapons bill

03/21/2013: Fourth Circuit upheld Maryland concealed carry permit restrictions

12/11/2012: Seventh Circuit struck down Illinois ban on concealed carry

06/28/2010: US Supreme Court found that Second Amendment applied to the states in McDonald v. Chicago

06/26/2008: US Supreme Court held DC handgun ban unconstitutional in District of Columbia v. Heller

 ...[more]

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