Militia Groups By State

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Militia Groups By State


Alaska State Defense Force

The mission of the Alaska State Defense Force is to maintain an organized, trained military force, capable of timely and effective response to state emergencies, or, on other occasions deemed appropriate by the Governor, to provide military assistance to civil and military authorities in the preservation of life, property, and public safety.


Militia of Washington County

To defend the liberty of the citizens of the State of Arkansas, and these United States; through education, participation and action.


Viper Reserves

All the Innocent Americans the Government Hasn’t Thrown in Prison

The Arizona Militia

Our mission is to defend the State from all aggression, foreign or domestic, and to zealously resist, by any means necessary, any attempt to disarm and render impotent our Nation’s most vital defensive force: The Militia, composed of the body of The People of the united States of America.


California Militia 2000

Our members represent every racial group, every major religion, and both sexes. Many of our members are college graduates, and a substantial number possess advanced degrees, while others lack a high school diploma. Most of our people are veterans and many have actual combat experience. From professionals to laborers, and teachers to law enforcement officers, we have come together because we have something in common, something that transcends race, or religion, or sex. We love America. We know where she’s been, and we fear where she’s heading. We are graybeards who remember the cops that walked a beat in our neighborhoods, and who knocked on the door when they wanted to talk to us. We are young blacks who tremble at the sight of a police car in their rear view mirror. We are lawyers who still choke up when we read the Constitution, and we are factory workers and house-wives who refuse to believe that sacred document, the Constitution, has become obsolete. We are ordinary people who have done an extraordinary thing. We have read the writing on the wall, and we have said no. We have read the writing and said “Hell no!” “Hell no, I’m not giving up my country,” and “Hell no, I’m not giving up America,” not to the socialists, and not to the United Nations, not without a fight!

California Militia

Our plan is simply to train and prepare for what is inevitable: the destruction of our society from it’s own apathy and greed. Our strategy is simple. Prepare to rebuild America on the ashes of that destruction. If we can survive the initial turmoil and feed ourselves and our families until the chaos levels out, we can begin to rebuild. If we don’t organize now, it will be too late, as it will be impossible to form a network, when everyone will be preoccupied with daily survival in a chaotic state of anarchy. By forming defensive units now, and taking note of skills among our members we can best insure our survival through cooperation. We can, through this cooperation, begin to improve our lives now. All it takes is commitment and loyalty.

High Desert Militia of Southern California

We are a unit of the California Unorganized Militia. The militia is a legal entity as defined in US Code Title 10. Our active membership consists of proud working men and women from all walks of life who have volunteered their time to educate and train in the skills needed to effectively defend our families and homeland.

State Medical Command: California State Militia

To Establish a Training Program For the West Coast Area Militia.


Northern Colorado Militia

A means of communication for members of the Northern Colorado Militia.


Connecticut 51st Militia

We are a constitutional militia. Our goal is to protect individual freedom and to insure that citizens constitutional rights are not infringed. People in todays society must realize that our “freedom” is slipping away quite quickly and if “We the people” don’t stop the erosion it will be too late. If we want to win “we” must understand where the core of the problem truly lies.

Connecticut 71st Militia

To defend the Constitution of the State of Connecticut and the Constitution of the United States of America. To uphold and to defend the Bill of Rights, seen as unalienable, and given to free men that they may remain free. To insure that all citizens- regardless of race, color, religion, sex, physical characteristics, or national origin- shall have the right and opportunity to due process of law as established and guaranteed by the Great Document which guides this Great Nation.

Connecticut Survivalists Alliance

The Connecticut Survivalist Alliance (CSA) is an all volunteer group dedicated to the Constitutional Republic and the rights declared by our founding fathers, granted to us by God above, and penned in the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution of the United States of America.


Citizens for Better Government

Local community sponsored information gathering and sharing group meets for Fun, Food, and Fellowship in Gainesville, Florida

Militia of Florida


Militia of Georgia

Georgia’s Last Line of Defense

Georgia Militia

Headquarters for G.M.E.R.T.

Militia of Georgia: Toccoa Units

As you all know times are getting worse and all the sheep are worrying which way to run! But we as patriots don’t have a choice but to stand and fight. It is up to us to defend what others won’t or can’t!!



Are you concerned about the safety, security or future of the Untied States of America or even just Illinois state? You may be the type of person that is aware of the serious threats to our American way of life, our freedoms, and even our lives. In the event of martial law, civil unrest or many other declared emergencies, whether manufactured or not, the militia is the response to secure the safety and prosperity of the people, because we are the people. In the event of a threat to America or the state, the Illinois Sons of Liberty will stand to protect our own communities from harm, whether that threat is foreign or domestic. This would require the immediate attention of the People and the militia is that solution.

The Illinois Sons of Liberty (ILSL) is an unorganized militia. As clearly stated by our founding fathers, the “militia” is “the whole people.” The militia is every law abiding, able-bodied man in the United States of America, except those who hold public office, such as judges, legislators, etc.

As defined in 10 US Code, Section 311, the unorganized Militia is comprised of all able-bodied men who are not in the regular Military or the National Guard.
Any man or woman in Illinois who lives in the state and has lived in the state for the past six months, and is not otherwise disqualified, is a member of the “militia-at-large.” MORE


14th Regiment Indiana State Militia

Indiana Militia Corps

The Indiana Militia Corps is redefining the mordern citizen militia with real missions and professional training. We are seeking volunteers to participate in Civil Defense, Homeland Security and Emergency Disaster Assistance programs across the state! Although currently we have members with prior military experience and special training, no military experience or special training is required of volunteers who wish to join. (WARNING: Not recommended due to anti-homosexual and anti-humanist policies.)

Indiana Citizens Volunteer Militia

Our purpose is to assist the Citizens of Indiana and the Nation, in the exercise of their Rights and Responsibilities as Citizens and as Citizen Soldiers. Our authority is recognized in the US Constitution, Indiana Constitution, US Code and Indiana Code.

3rd Brigade Indiana Citizens Voluteer Militia

Our purpose is to assist the citizens of Indiana and the Nation in the exercise of their Rights and Responsibilities as Citizens and as Citizen Soldiers. Our authority /mandate extends from the inharent human right to freedom, and is currently recognised in both Constitutional and Statutory law.

Indianas’ Greene County Militia

The concept of a militia made up of everyable bodied citizen was written into the U.S. Constitution and many documents and laws over the years. The purpose of the militia (reserve or unorganized) is to provide a defensive force for the state and county. Today the focus of the Militia is to train, prepare, and educate. The founding fathers conceived this as a bulwark against tyranny. Every citizen a soldier. This concept ensures that the people will be stronger that the government. The citizen is the master, the government the servant. This concept is not unique to the U.S. Military service is mandatory in Switzerland. A short term is served and then the citizen soldier is returned to his home with his battle rifle and ammo and his gear. Every home is a soldiers billet.

The Southern Indiana Regional Militia

The Southern Indiana Regional Militia as a concept was conceived in 1999 at Knob Creek Ky.The S.I.R.M. is an umbrella organization formed to coordinate and communicate with the many independent units throughout the region.


Kansas State Militia


Kentucky Militia

Tired of watching your right fall to the way side? Looking for others who feel the same way but are afraid of what your friends might think? Join us!

Kentucky State Militia

The Kentucky State Militia is an all-volunteer assembly of men and women. We have a wide range of skills and talents within our ranks. We are available to all law enforcement agencies and civil departments state wide. We are a pro-government organization intent on salvaging and defending our rights as constitutionally guaranteed to us by our founding fathers. We are, however, disappointed in the current state of our great country. Our personal freedoms and way of life are rapidly vanishing.


The Maryland Citizens Volunteer Militia

The online forum of the Maryland Citizens Volunteer Militia, a place to discuss and debate issues affecting our once noble and now socialist occupied state.

The Citizens Militia of Maryland

Dedicated to locating people with the interest of obtaining a local citizens militia group for the people of Maryland and for the freedom of all Americans.

Maryland Citizens Defense League

The Premier Firearms-Rights and Pro-Liberty Organization in Maryland


Southern Michigan Regional Militia

It shall be the sworn duty of this Militia to protect, defend, support, uphold and obey the Constitutions of the State of Michigan and the United States of America. Notice is hereby given that violations of either the State or National Constitution, by any alliance, nation, power, state, organization, agency, office, or individual shall be met with a fierce and determined resistance.

The Unorganized Michigan Naval Militia

We are volunteer seamen and sailors. Who are commited to protecting our seas and waterways, while protecting and defending the constitution of the united States of America. We are always looking for few good men and women who can commit themselves to preserving the American way of life, especially during this time of terror. The first job of government is to protect the borders. We as citizens must band together to protect our State and our Nation. We must protect and defend the Great Lakes and her ports.

Michigan Militia

Because a well-armed citizenry is the best Homeland Security, and can better deter crime, invasion, terrorism, or tyranny…The intention of this website is to inform, promote and facilitate the development and training of the militia. Everyone is welcome, regardless of race, creed, color, tint, or hue; regardless of your religion (or lack thereof); regardless of your political affiliation (or lack thereof); regardless of anything else: if you are an American, who is capable of bearing arms, or wishes to support someone doing so, then you are the militia…


Minnesota Militia

Minnesota Militia

Army of the Mississippi


Militia of Montana

We, at the Militia of Montana, are dedicated to ensuring that all Americans are educated to make an informed decision as to which direction America should go. Along with being physically prepared to withstand the onslaught which will erupt no matter where we end up, we must at all costs, keep reaching those who have not had the opportunity to decide for themselves. The Militia of Montana has been, and continues to be, a national focal point for assistiing Americans in forming their own grass roots organization dedicated to American’s sovereignty and status as an independent nation among the nations of the world.


North Carolina Citizen Militia

The primary purpose of the North Carolina Citizens [unorganized] Militia is to defend the Constitu-tions of the State of North Carolina and the united States of America against all enemies, foreign anddomestic. It is to uphold and defend constitutional guarantees as documented by the Bill of Rights,and to ensure that all citizens regardless of race, color, religion, sex or national origin retain those inalienable rights and protections established by the Founding Fathers.


The Tall Grass Guard

A team of the Nebraska State Militia. The intention of this website is to inform, promote and facilitate the development and training of citizens for the good of our communities, state, and nation. Discrimination based upon race, ethnicity, gender, sexual preference, political beliefs, and religious beliefs (or non-beliefs) will not be tolerated, and should not prevent us from working together to protect our State.


Rogers’ Rangers Twin State Militia

The Command Staff and members of the Rogers’ Rangers Twin State Militia hope as all patriotic Americans hope to be able to stop the New World Order plans to destroy our Constitutional Republic and our National and individual sovereignty at the ballot box & the jury box before circumstances force us to defensively resort to the cartrige box. Our ranks are full, yet we hope that citizens of the Twin States of Vermont and New Hampshire will join with friends and neighbors in the community to prepare for the mutual defense of the community should it be necessary in the future. Some of the links listed below will help you in organizing your own local militia organization (or “neighborhood watch group” if you prefer to the use of the word militia). Other links will help you to provide yourselves with basic military equipment.


The Patriot Underground

The Patriot Underground is an on and offline organization, of true American patriots homebased in Northeastern Nevada. We are a (Unorganized) Militia. You need not be a Nevada resident to join this organization . We are people from all over the United States from all nationalities who stand together in our inalienable rights in American ethics morals and religious virtues and most importantly willing to defend their constitutional rites to the best of our abilities. We are a active(unorganized) Militia due to the state of Nevada legal system we may not be a Militia unless state controlled, we are privately run and operated and do not answer to anyone. Our activities are very public and open but not illegal by any means.


New York Militia Force

The NYMF exsist for one purpose only. To unite all New York Milita under one cause. That cause is a free New York without tyranny. Each Militia has it’s own command structure and is subject only to it’s own leaders. Here we have come together for the sole purpose of information exchange, planning, and combining our forces under one umbrella of a “Commanders Council” When they decide to come against the people, we will not be alone but united in cause and spirit and information.

Fort Eagle

First they came for the hackers. But I never did anything illegal with my computer, so I didn’t speak up. Then they came for the pornographers. But I thought there was too much smut on the Internet anyway, so I didn’t speak up. Then they came for the anonymous remailers. But a lot of nasty stuff gets sent from, so I didn’t speak up. Then they came for the encryption users. But I could never figure out how to work pgp5 anyway, so I didn’t speak up. Then they came for me. And by that time there was no one left to speak up.

The New York Patriot Militia of Orange County

The New York Patriot Militia of Orange County shall, at all times, act with the highest standards and honor. We will continue to work to establish public trust. We will hold public safety at the highest level in everything we do, for it is our countrymen, and the documents that declare our God given rights, that we voluntarily serve. We pledge our lives, our liberty, fortunes and honor that we shall preserve the freedoms and documents that our fore fathers fought and died to claim and establish.

Empire State Militia: 11th Field Force

The militia is the natural adversary of those who promote the socialist New World Order and pervert our republic form of government without the approval of the people. Those who stand in the gap between the people and the constitutional world government invite censure and conflict. The militia does not stand alone. Whenever possible units should work to enlist the support of the community, auxiliary members, and law enforcement. Militia units should in turn support their local elected officials, sheriff, or police force in the lawful exercise of their authority. The militia embodies the spirit and ideals of our forefathers and is comprised of men and women who are committed to defend our Constitutional Republic. An unquenchable patriotic spirit compels us to stand for the individual freedoms, liberty, and sovereignty guaranteed by our Constitution. The militia must stand for what is moral, lawful and right if it is to prevail in adversity.


Unorganized Militia of Champaign County

The primary purpose of a militia group is to defend our families and local communities against forces that threaten our inalienable rights. These forces may be foreign or domestic in origin. While this job is normally the responsibility of our standing army and/or organized militia (National Guard, etc.), it would be foolish, na�ve, and irresponsible to rely on them 100%.

The Unorganized Militia of Preble County

We are a constitutional militia group, who’s main mission is to support and defend the constitution on the United States, along with or familys, friends and neighbors in times of need or civil unrest.

Ohio Unorganized Militia, 3rd Battalion

The responsibility to safeguard the freedom and security of a people, ultimately rests with the people themselves.

Southeastern Ohio Defense Force

The SODF (Southeastern Ohio Defense Force) was incorporated in 1989 as a nonprofit corporation. We are in no way associated with the National Guard or the Army Reserve. We have positions open regardless of physical limitions. Everyone over the age of 17 is invited to apply. The ODF, SODF is a volunteer organization currently supported by members dues. No one recieves pay. Normal training consists of 8 hours of training per month, usually on the 3rd Sunday of every month, but there are a few exceptions. We train members in skills such as rappelling, river crossing, firearms safety, firearms marksmanship, civil defense, survival, disaster preparedness, NBC (Nuclear, Biological, Chemical) threats just to mention a few. We volunteer our time for community functions from time to time. In 1990 SODF members went to Shadyside Ohio and were a vital part in the flood rescue and recovery. We have provided security for teen alcohol and drug prevention dances. From 1993 to date we have provided security for the Village of White Cottage during their Community Days Festival. Our participation in the Muskingum County disaster drills since 1994 has given us a great appreciation and respect for First Responders and other Emergency Personnel. Recently it was decided to expand into a state wide organization. The state wide expansion is growing into five BN’s with the State HQ located in Zanesville, OH. This expansion leaves many positions in the state unifilled. We need volunteers in the following areas, Entry Level with no experience, Trainers, Clerks, Media, Intell, Medics, Self Defense, On Rope, Communications, Security, Etc.


Pennsylvania’s 1st Unorganized Militia

Pennsylvania’s 1st Unorganized Militia

Marietta Pennsylvania Militia

The purpose of the militia as defined by the Constitution is to enforce the laws of the Union (the Constitution), suppress insurrections, and repel invasions (now including terrorist attacks).

Pennsylvania State Military Reserve

The Pennsylvania State Military Reserve is a non-profit benevolent, federally (IRS) recognized 501(c)(3) organization. Created for the protection and well being of Pennsylvanians, this opportunity is for the citizen-soldier; proud, serving, and dedicated to community and state. Training is provided in communications, CPR/First Aid, search & rescue, crowd control, and Community Emergency Response Training. No military obligation is required and resignation is at your discretion. Current Philadelphia training is provided the third Saturday of each month. Meetings begin at 1000 hours. Click here for directions. Many positions are available. Opportunities, with qualifications, span from advisors & enlisted, up to direct appointments as commissioned officers. Eligible candidates are between 18-65 years, male or female, with or without prior military service.


South Carolina Civilian Defense Forces

Members of the SCCDF are sworn to defend the Constitution of both the United States as well as the state of South Carolina, against enemies, foreign or domestic. We are also obligated to assist South Carolinians in time of natural disaster as well as National emergency. Members are also encouraged to study subjects such as first respondent medicine, search and rescue, basic firefighting, as well as military skills. Educating the people of South Carolina and its members in it’s history, Constitutional Rights, as well as ways to protect and defend thier families. The SCCDF defends the rights of others, no matter the race, color, or creed. Individuals of leftist, rascist, or discriminatory trains of thought need not apply.


Civilian Special Force Group Fox Hound

To support the South Carolina and United States unorganized militia(s) To defend the Constitution of the State of South Carolina, and the Constitution of the United States. To uphold and defend the Bill of Rights, seen as inalienable by our forefathers, and given by our creator to free men so that they may remain free. To support the County Sheriff, and those lawfully appointed under him. To insure that all citizens-regardless of race, gender, religion or nationality- shall have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, as established and guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States.


Texas State Guard

The Texas State Guard (TXSG) is the second branch of the Military Forces of the State of Texas, operating alongside the Texas National Guard, which is comprised of the Texas Army National Guard and the Texas Air National Guard. The TXSG provides mission-ready volunteer military forces, to assist state and local authorities in homeland security and community service. Texas State Guard soldiers are volunteers between the ages of 17 and 60, and train a minimum of one weekend each month. All serve without pay except if called upon for State Active Duty by the Governor. TXSG soldiers come from all backgrounds and walks of life, many with prior military service.


Virginia Militia

The purpose of the Virginia Militia is to work for the restoration of all constitutional rights affirmed by the Constitution of the United States. We assert that all power is inherent in the people and it is our right and duty, to protect and defend this Republic against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Our success depends on the education of the American people of the threat posed by these enemies, who are working to subvert our Constitutional Republic. We are not advocating the overthrow of the U. S. Government, but we do advocate resistance to Unconstitutional legislation and executive orders. We also advocate resistance to the United Nations and to all forms of tyranny. All persons are welcomed in the Virginia Militia, the only requirement is a love of liberty, and a return to the ideals of our forefathers contained in the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution of the United States.

Virginia Citizens Militia

The Viginia Militia is a organization authorized by the Constitution of Virginia. Many of our nations founding fathers were officers in the Virginia Militia. George Washington was appointed a Major in the Militia over 250 years ago in 1752. Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe, John Tyler, Patrick Henry, Meriwether Lewis and William Clark of the famed Lewis and Clark expedition were all members of the Virginia Militia. In fact, all male citizens between ages 16 and 45 were considered to be members of the Militia and were expected to be able to muster on short notice with necessary arms and equipment to defend the Commonwealth. We seek to continue this tradition and invite all Virginians of good moral standing, regardless of race, age eighteen and older who believe in the Judeo-Christian traditions of our forefathers, the Constitution of the United States and the Declaration of Independence.


Unorganized Militia of Vermont

UMOV – Proudly Serving Vermont since before the American Revolution. UMOV is legally formed per the Constitution for the United States of America and the Constitution of the State of Vermont. UMOV Membership is open to all lawful and peaceable Vermonters age 17 to 45 or 45 to 64 with prior honorably-discharged military service.


Rogers’ Rangers Twin State Militia

The Command Staff and members of the Rogers’ Rangers Twin State Militia hope as all patriotic Americans hope to be able to stop the New World Order plans to destroy our Constitutional Republic and our National and individual sovereignty at the ballot box & the jury box before circumstances force us to defensively resort to the cartrige box. Our ranks are full, yet we hope that citizens of the Twin States of Vermont and New Hampshire will join with friends and neighbors in the community to prepare for the mutual defense of the community should it be necessary in the future. Some of the links listed below will help you in organizing your own local militia organization (or “neighborhood watch group” if you prefer to the use of the word militia). Other links will help you to provide yourselves with basic military equipment.



Our mission is an attempt to prevent America from becoming a nation of helpless cowards, and train ourselves and others to function during terrorist attack or disaster. Our focus is mainly training others, so they can go out and train others, and so on and so forth. We wish to bring skills to the average person, that could be crucial to survival should a disaster or terrorist attack cause a situation where the police and military could not come to our aid, and to deal with such situations until they arrive, in a lawful and sane manner. By training others, we wish to provide persons highly trained to help lead and coordinate larger bodies of citizens, who have neglected to train, should the need for these skills should ever arise. Basic combat training for civilians. We hope to establish a larger pool of trained persons than what currently exists. And of course, we wish to establish an environment where no terrorist group, from without or within, would be stupid enough to attack the American public with small arms, or in small armed groups. Go ahead. Make our day. KISSATA sincerely hopes to be of value in networking and bringing like minded individuals and organizations together on a national level, and bring some level of standardization to all such groups, and break away from the current situation of fragmented and secretive localized groups as they are now, and distance ourselves from the politically motivated, racists, egomaniacs, and those who engage in illegal activities.


Sauk County Riflemen Wisconsin State Militia

The Sauk County Riflemen is an unorganized volunteer militia group. Our mission is to defend the Constitution people and property of Wisconsin and the United States of America against all enemies either foreign or domestic.

The Winnebago Militia

The Winnebago Militia is an legal, constitutional militia group established for the people whom reside in Wisconsin. Anyone can join, and defend their rights! We aim to uphold the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the Wisconsin Constitution above all else. To fight any unconstitutional laws, maintain the right of Wisconsinites to defend their life, family, and property, from any threat; whether that threat may be foreign, or domestic.


West Virginia Security Corps

Alarmed by the overgrowth of government, the erosion of our freedoms, the systematic destruction of the American economy by globalists, and the general decline of our nation – the citizens of West Virginia formed the West Virginia Security Corps.

The links above represent only the local militia groups which have web pages. Many militia groups exist in this country and do not have web pages. If you would like a web page built and hosted for your local militia group, please e-mail us.

And some Oath Keepers  for Your Consideration

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We would recommend the term: "Unregulated Militia," as opposed to "Unorganized." 

The connotations of "unorganized," suggest vigilante or mob overtones. 

Several of the Supreme Court Rulings use the term "Unregulated" for the bulk of the People's Militia which are not in the paid service of the Federal Government or in the service of one of the several states of the Republic. 

This group consists of every able bodied man. Since Women's Rights it would also include every able bodied woman. It is the Unregulated Militia, that makes up the overwhelming majority of the Militia. It is also, this Unregulated Militia, that Congress has never fulfilled its Constitutional mandate to Arm and train. And the expressed purpose of the Unregulated Militia is to "Execute (enforce) the Laws of the Union," (the written Constitution and Public Laws made pursuant thereto); Suppress Insurrections ( by those in the Civil Government or Military Service); and to Repel Invasions, (of our secured Rights, our Person, our Houses, our Papers or Effects). And to enforce these liberties upon all in Civil Government, In Military Service, or exercising the Police Powers of the State (Federal or State); the Constitution preserves the Rights of the private individual person to access any American Court of Law through the Right to Petition for redress of grievance. 

These petitions, are not a list of names of individuals begging their government Officials to hear their grievances. These Petitions are the great Common Law Writs, which when Constitutionally secured Rights are involved, take precedence over all other lesser matters before the Court and must be heard immediately. Writs of Prohibition, Writs of Error, Writs of Habeas Corpus, etc. etc. 

When the Freedom of Speech, the Right to Assemble for the Common Good, and the Right to Petition their government for Redress of grievances in the US Courts fails; The Second Amendment provides that the people may lawfully rise up in Arms against the tyranny. And that is exactly why Congress has never obeyed its mandate concerning the Unregulated Militia. 

The popular misconception is that you must join the Militia. This is far from true and a deliberate deception by the PTB. (Powers That Be). If you are an American between 18 and 50 years of age, The US Supreme Court has ruled: "You are the Unregulated Militia!" In your hands alone, are entrusted the last defense of our freedoms. Concerning the universal Laws of Cause and effect. Those who will not defend Freedom and Liberty, do not deserve liberty and will not for long enjoy it at the sacrifice of others. The fearful can never enter the Kingdom of Heaven, nor can they ever be free. Resist Evil and it will flee from you. Fear it, and it will enslave you. Keep up the good work, call forth that which is greater in all men.

   Whoever said that the founding fathers didn't think 

that all citizens should have guns is living in their 

own little world.

The following quotes by the authors of the Second Amendment, their contemporaries, various state and federal courts, and others should be useful in the debate over whether that amendment protects a right of individuals or only the military. 

The Second Amendment 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." 

"On every question of construction (of the Constitution) let us carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text, or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed." (Thomas Jefferson, letter to William Johnson, June 12, 1823, The Complete Jefferson, p. 322) 

"The whole of the Bill (of Rights) is a declaration of the right of the people at large or considered as individuals.... It establishes some rights of the individual as unalienable and which consequently, no majority has a right to deprive them of." (Albert Gallatin of the New York Historical Society, October 7, 1789) 

"The right of the people to keep and bear arms has been recognized by the General Government; but the best security of that right after all is, the military spirit, that taste for martial exercises, which has always distinguished the free citizens of these States....Such men form the best barrier to the liberties of America" - (Gazette of the United States, October 14, 1789.) 

"No Free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." (Thomas Jefferson, Proposal Virginia Constitution, 1 T. Jefferson Papers, 334,[C.J.Boyd, Ed., 1950]) 

"The right of the people to keep and bear...arms shall not be infringed. A well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country..." (James Madison, I Annals of Congress 434 [June 8, 1789]) 

"A militia, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves...and include all men capable of bearing arms." (Richard Henry Lee, Additional Letters from the Federal Farmer (1788) at 169) 

"What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty.... Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins." (Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts, spoken during floor debate over the Second Amendment [ I Annals of Congress at 750 {August 17, 1789}]) 

" disarm the people - that was the best and most effectual way to enslave them." (George Mason, 3 Elliot, Debates at 380) 

"Americans have the right and advantage of being armed - unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms." (James Madison, The Federalist Papers #46 at 243-244) 

"the ultimate authority ... resides in the people alone," (James Madison, author of the Bill of Rights, in Federalist Paper #46.) 

"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any bands of regular troops that can be, on any pretense, raised in the United States" (Noah Webster in `An Examination into the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution', 1787, a pamphlet aimed at swaying Pennsylvania toward ratification, in Paul Ford, ed., Pamphlets on the Constitution of the United States, at 56(New York, 1888)) 

"...if raised, whether they could subdue a Nation of freemen, who know how to prize liberty, and who have arms in their hands?" (Delegate Sedgwick, during the Massachusetts Convention, rhetorically asking if an oppressive standing army could prevail, Johnathan Elliot, ed., Debates in the Several State Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution, Vol.2 at 97 (2d ed., 1888)) 

"...but if circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude, that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people, while there is a large body of citizens, little if at all inferior to them in discipline and use of arms, who stand ready to defend their rights..." (Alexander Hamilton speaking of standing armies in Federalist 29.) 

"Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation. . . Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms." (James Madison, author of the Bill of Rights, in Federalist Paper No. 46.) 

"As civil rulers, not having their duty to the people before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as the military forces which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow citizens, the people are confirmed by the article in their right to keep and bear their private arms." (Tench Coxe in `Remarks on the First Part of the Amendments to the Federal Constitution' under the Pseudonym `A Pennsylvanian' in the Philadelphia Federal Gazette, June 18, 1789 at 2 col. 1) 

"Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American... The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state government, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people" (Tench Coxe, Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788) 

"The prohibition is general. No clause in the Constitution could by any rule of construction be conceived to give to Congress a power to disarm the people. Such a flagitious attempt could only be made under some general pretense by a state legislature. But if in any blind pursuit of inordinate power, either should attempt it, this amendment may be appealed to as a restraint on both." [William Rawle, A View of the Constitution 125-6 (2nd ed. 1829) 

"I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people, except for few public officials." (George Mason, 3 Elliot, Debates at 425-426) 

"The Constitution shall never be prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms" (Samuel Adams, Debates and Proceedings in the Convention of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 86-87) 

"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people always possess arms, and be taught alike especially when young, how to use them." (Richard Henry Lee, 1788, Initiator of the Declaration of Independence, and member of the first Senate, which passed the Bill of Rights, Walter Bennett, ed., Letters from the Federal Farmer to the Republican, at 21,22,124 (Univ. of Alabama Press,1975)..) 

"The great object is that every man be armed" and "everyone who is able may have a gun." (Patrick Henry, in the Virginia Convention on the ratification of the Constitution. Debates and other Proceedings of the Convention of Virginia,...taken in shorthand by David Robertson of Petersburg, at 271, 275 2d ed. Richmond, 1805. Also 3 Elliot, Debates at 386) 

"The people are not to be disarmed of their weapons. They are left in full possession of them." (Zachariah Johnson, 3 Elliot, Debates at 646) 

"Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?" (Patrick Henry, 3 J. Elliot, Debates in the Several State Conventions 45, 2d ed. Philadelphia, 1836) 

"The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed." (Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist Papers at 184-8) 

"That the said Constitution shall never be construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of The United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms..." (Samuel Adams, Debates and Proceedings in the Convention of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, at 86-87 (Peirce & Hale, eds., Boston, 1850)) 

"And what country can preserve its liberties, if its rulers are not warned from time to time that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms....The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants" (Thomas Jefferson in a letter to William S. Smith in 1787. Taken from Jefferson, On Democracy 20, S. Padover ed., 1939) 

"Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined" (Patrick Henry, 3 J. Elliot, Debates in the Several State Conventions 45, 2d ed. Philadelphia, 1836) 

"The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government." -- (Thomas Jefferson) 

"Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people's liberty teeth and keystone under independence ... From the hour the Pilgrims landed, to the present day, events, occurrences, and tendencies prove that to insure peace, security and happiness, the rifle and pistol are equally indispensable . . . the very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil interference - they deserve a place of honor with all that is good" (George Washington) 

"A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks. (Thomas Jefferson, Encyclopedia of T. Jefferson, 318 [Foley, Ed., reissued 1967]) 

"The supposed quietude of a good mans allures the ruffian; while on the other hand, arms like laws discourage and keep the invader and the plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property. The same balance would be preserved were all the world destitute of arms, for all would be alike; but since some will not, others dare not lay them aside...Horrid mischief would ensue were one half the world deprived of the use of them..." (Thomas Paine, I Writings of Thomas Paine at 56 [1894]) 

"...the people are confirmed by the next article in their right to keep and bear their private arms" (from article in the Philadelphia Federal Gazette June 18, 1789 at 2, col.2,) 

"Those, who have the command of the arms in a country are masters of the state, and have it in their power to make what revolutions they please. [Thus,] there is no end to observations on the difference between the measures likely to be pursued by a minister backed by a standing army, and those of a court awed by the fear of an armed people." (Aristotle, as quoted by John Trenchard and Water Moyle, An Argument Shewing, That a Standing Army Is Inconsistent with a Free Government, and Absolutely Destructive to the Constitution of the English Monarchy [London, 1697]) 

"No kingdom can be secured otherwise than by arming the people. The possession of arms is the distinction between a freeman and a slave. He, who has nothing, and who himself belongs to another, must be defended by him, whose property he is, and needs no arms. But he, who thinks he is his own master, and has what he can call his own, ought to have arms to defend himself, and what he possesses; else he lives precariously, and at discretion." (James Burgh, Political Disquisitions: Or, an Enquiry into Public Errors, Defects, and Abuses [London, 1774-1775]) 

"Men that are above all Fear, soon grow above all Shame." (John Trenchard and Thomas Gordon, Cato's Letters: Or, Essays on Liberty, Civil and Religious, and Other Important Subjects [London, 1755]) 

"The difficulty here has been to persuade the citizens to keep arms, not to prevent them from being employed for violent purposes." (Dwight, Travels in New-England) 

"What country can preserve it's liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance. Let them take arms." (Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, Dec. 20, 1787, in Papers of Jefferson, ed. Boyd et al.) 

(The American Colonies were) "all democratic governments, where the power is in the hands of the people and where there is not the least difficulty or jealousy about putting arms into the hands of every man in the country. (European countries should not) be ignorant of the strength and the force of such a form of government and how strenuously and almost wonderfully people living under one have sometimes exerted themselves in defence of their rights and liberties and how fatally it has ended with many a man and many a state who have entered into quarrels, wars and contests with them." [George Mason, "Remarks on Annual Elections for the Fairfax Independent Company" in The Papers of George Mason, 1725-1792, ed Robert A. Rutland (Chapel Hill, 1970)] 

"To trust arms in the hands of the people at large has, in Europe, been be an experiment fraught only with danger. Here by a long trial it has been proved to be perfectly harmless...If the government be equitable; if it be reasonable in its exactions; if proper attention be paid to the education of children in knowledge and religion, few men will be disposed to use arms, unless for their amusement, and for the defence of themselves and their country." (Timothy Dwight, Travels in New England and NewYork [London 1823] 

"It is not certain that with this aid alone [possession of arms], they would not be able to shake off their yokes. But were the people to posses the additional advantages of local governments chosen by themselves, who could collect the national will, and direct the national force; and of officers appointed out of the militia, by these governments and attached both to them and to the militia, it may be affirmed with the greatest assurance, that the throne of every tyranny in Europe would be speedily overturned, in spite of the legions which surround it." (James Madison, "Federalist No. 46") 

"The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered, as the palladium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them. And yet, though this truth would seem so clear, and the importance of a well regulated militia would seem so undeniable, it cannot be disguised, that among the American people there is a growing indifference to any system of militia discipline, and a strong disposition, from a sense of its burthens, to be rid of all regulations. How it is practicable to keep the people duly armed without some organization, it is difficult to see. There is certainly no small danger, that indifference may lead to disgust, and disgust to contempt; and thus gradually undermine all the protection intended by this clause of our national bill of rights." (Joseph Story, Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States; With a Preliminary Review of the Constitutional History of the Colonies and States before the Adoption of the Constitution [Boston, 1833]) 

"The tank, the B-52, the fighter-bomber, the state-controlled police and military are the weapons of dictatorship. The rifle is the weapon of democracy. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military. The hired servants of our rulers. Only the government-and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws." (Edward Abbey, "The Right to Arms," Abbey's Road [New York, 1979]) 

"You are bound to meet misfortune if you are unarmed because, among other reasons, people despise you....There is simply no comparison between a man who is armed and one who is not. It is unreasonable to expect that an armed man should obey one who is unarmed, or that an unarmed man should remain safe and secure when his servants are armed. In the latter case, there will be suspicion on the one hand and contempt on the other, making cooperation impossible." (Niccolo Machiavelli in "The Prince") 

"You must understand, therefore, that there are two ways of fighting: by law or by force. The first way is natural to men, and the second to beasts. But as the first way often proves inadequate one must needs have recourse to the second." (Niccolo Machiavelli in "The Prince") 

"As much as I oppose the average person's having a gun, I recognize that some people have a legitimate need to own one. A wealthy corporate executive who fears his family might get kidnapped is one such person. A Hollywood celebrity who has to protect himself from kooks is another. If Sharon Tate had had access to a gun during the Manson killings, some innocent lives might have been saved." [Joseph D. McNamara (San Jose, CA Police Chief), in his book, Safe and Sane, (c) 1984, p. 71-72.] 

"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 constitutional privilege." [Wilson v. State, 33 Ark. 557, at 560, 34 Am. Rep. 52, at 54 (1878)] 

For, in principle, there is no difference between a law prohibiting the wearing of concealed arms, and a law forbidding the wearing such as are exposed; and if the former be unconstitutional, the latter must be so likewise. But it should not be forgotten, that it is not only a part of the right that is secured by the constitution; it is the right entire and complete, as it existed at the adoption of the constitution; and if any portion of that right be impaired, immaterial how small the part may be, and immaterial the order of time at which it be done, it is equally forbidden by the constitution." [Bliss vs. Commonwealth, 12 Ky. (2 Litt.) 90, at 92, and 93, 13 Am. Dec. 251 (1822)] 

" `The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.' The right of the whole people, old and young, men, women and boys, and not militia only, to keep and bear arms of every description, and not such merely as are used by the milita, shall not be infringed, curtailed, or broken in upon, in the smallest degree; and all this for the important end to be attained: the rearing up and qualifying a well-regulated militia, so vitally necessary to the security of a free State. Our opinion is that any law, State or Federal, is repugnant to the Constitution, and void, which contravenes this right." [Nunn vs. State, 1 Ga. (1 Kel.) 243, at 251 (1846)] 

"The provision in the Constitution granting the right to all persons to bear arms is a limitation upon the power of the Legislature to enact any law to the contrary. The exercise of a right guaranteed by the Constitution cannot be made subject to the will of the sheriff." [People vs. Zerillo, 219 Mich. 635, 189 N.W. 927, at 928 (1922)] 

"The maintenance of the right to bear arms is a most essential one to every free people and should not be whittled down by technical constructions." [State vs. Kerner, 181 N.C. 574, 107 S.E. 222, at 224 (1921)] 

"The right of a citizen to bear arms, in lawful defense of himself or the State, is absolute. He does not derive it from the State government. It is one of the "high powers" delegated directly to the citizen, and `is excepted out of the general powers of government.' A law cannot be passed to infringe upon or impair it, because it is above the law, and independent of the lawmaking power." [Cockrum v. State, 24 Tex. 394, at 401-402 (1859)]