There is, in fact, only one really good argument in favor of a broad understanding — one that goes beyond rifles for hunting and hobby shooting and handguns in some circumstances for basic protection — of gun rights in this country. It is what you find if you scratch any Second Amendment absolutist, and it has a basis in the English Bill of Rights, which ex-post-facto justified the Protestant overthrow of that country’s rightful Catholic monarch.

If the argument is that you need guns that are technically not the same ones Marines use to kill terrorists but just tricked out to inspire the same amount of fear in onlookers and fire nearly as fast for some hitherto-unspecified moment when it will become necessary to put on war paint and lay siege to Washington, congratulations: You are working in the distinguished intellectual tradition of Jefferson Davis, Ted Kaczynski, and Timothy McVeigh, among other giants of modern conservative thought.