Seventh grade students at Grant Middle School in Illinois were given a workbook containing content that redefined the Second Amendment in light of “reality” today, rather than what the Constitution actually states, which has gun rights activists angry. The Second Amendment clearly states that every American has the right to bear arms, and the government has no authority granted to it by the states to in infringe on this right in any way. That simple definition, written in the document that lays out the government for the American republic, is nowhere to be found in the controversial workbook.
The workbook in question states that the Second Amendment gives people the right to own “certain weapons,” as long as these weapons are registered and the individuals buying the firearm have not been in prison. The paragraph in the book goes on to state that the reason for the amendment was to keep the American government from acting like Britain, which tried to take weapons away from the colonists. If one looks over the Second Amendment as written in the Constitution, there is no mention of “certain weapons,” nor restrictions on owners not having served prison time, despite the workbook claiming that is what the amendment says.
Superintendent Bob Hill says the workbook reflects what happens with the right to bear arms in the culture of 2014. Many parents and activists are calling for changes to be made to the workbook to reflect the actual amendment in the Constitution, but Hill claims this would not be fair for the teacher to fix the issue as the unit on the Constitution has ended. This has parents wondering if the change is a deliberate attempt to indoctrinate children with a Progressive agenda that calls for tighter gun control.
The bottom line is that the textbook is wrong and is misinforming students about what is written in the Constitution, giving them a fundamental misunderstanding about their right to own a firearm. The Second Amendment cannot be redefined by a workbook, in Illinois, or any state, because it violates a right guaranteed to be protected in the Bill of Rights. Every human being has the right to protect themselves against criminals and a tyrannical government, much like the one the Founding Fathers battled with in the 1770s. Self-protection is a natural right, meaning that it is inherent in the nature of all people to desire to be safe from harm, and part of protecting oneself is having access to weapons. Since this is a right that comes from nature, or for those who are religious, from God, no government has the right to take it away, or severely restrict it.
Regardless of whether or not the teacher is finished discussing the subject, the gross error committed here needs to be addressed and corrected. The content clearly states that the Second Amendment contains restrictions that are not present in the actual text. Lying or using a political slant in the classroom is something that should be frowned upon by educators, as well as parents. Children should be presented with facts, so they can have the information needed to draw their own conclusions on political matters. Parent should continue to fight against this kind of workbook being used in school, and the Second Amendment should be defended as is, not redefined, in Illinois, or any other state in the country.
Opinion by Michael Cantrell