(2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution)
Grammarians like to quibble about the significance of the first two commas above, which (grammatically speaking) make the enclosed phrase non-restrictive, thereby freeing gun-lovers and grammarians alike to believe the founding fathers bestowed the right to keep and bear arms not just to the militia, but willy-nilly to just about anyone.
However, if you’re going to nitpick, you really should nitpick the entire amendment. Look at the rest of it. Why the comma between “Arms” and “shall”? Any stout-hearted 21st-century English teacher would tell you that “Arms” is part of the infinitive phrase modifying the subject (“right”) and, therefore, should not be separated by a comma from the verb (“shall … be”). Yet, there’s that comma, separating the two with all the smugness of a 10-foot wall. Hmmmm. What secret agenda goeth there?
And while we’re at it, how about all those capitalized nouns: Militia? State? Arms? Really? Was the writer’s first language German?
The point is that nowhere does the Constitution say “Thou shalt not use common sense.” It’s long past time to do some infringing when it comes to assault rifles, automatic weapons and other instruments of mass destruction.
For more common sense on our Second Amendment folly, see “Why the ‘Citizen Militia’ Theory is the worst Pro-Gun Argument Ever.”