Wow, where to start with this thread?
First, everyone in the world is born with the inherent human right to life, liberty, and property.
Therefor, everyone in the world has the right to defend their life, liberty, and property from attack by whoever (individuals, groups, or governments). Human beings also have a self-evident right to use tools to help meet their goals. Self evident because the use of tools is part of what makes us human. Firearms are, in our era, arguably the best but certainly a legitimate and viable tool suited to a person protecting their life, liberty, and property.
In conclusion, human beings have a basic and inherent human right to keep and bear firearms in order to protect their life, liberty, and property.
Conveniently, the Founding Fathers of the United States recognized and acknowledged this. They had a first hand view of how difficult it could be to practice self determination when the government maintained a near-monopoly on firearms.
As a result, they wrote the 2nd Amendment into the Bill of Rights. The existence of the 2A does not CREATE the right to keep and bear arms. That right is an inherent human right as outlined above. The 2A and the rest of the BOR was imperfectly written by imperfect people in an attempt to "enshrine" certain principles. However, I tend to agree with some of our Founders that simply writing the BOR was a dangerous and short-sighted move. Take for example the words of Hamilton in Federalist no. 84:
I go further, and affirm that bills of rights, in the sense and in the extent in which they are contended for, are not only unnecessary in the proposed constitution, but would even be dangerous. They would contain various exceptions to powers which are not granted; and on this very account, would afford a colourable pretext to claim more than were granted. For why declare that things shall not be done which there is no power to do? Why for instance, should it be said, that the liberty of the press shall not be restrained, when no power is given by which restrictions may be imposed? I will not contend that such a provision would confer a regulating power; but it is evident that it would furnish, to men disposed to usurp, a plausible pretence for claiming that power. They might urge with a semblance of reason, that the constitution ought not to be charged with the absurdity of providing against the abuse of an authority, which was not given, and that the provision against restraining the liberty of the press afforded a clear implication, that a power to prescribe proper regulations concerning it, was intended to be vested in the national government. This may serve as a specimen of the numerous handles which would be given to the doctrine of constructive powers, by the indulgence of an injudicious zeal for bills of rights.
Yes, Hamilton and others argued AGAINST even having a BOR. The anti-BOR folks argued that no BOR is needed because the government has NO POWER to restrict the rights of the people, unless explicitly laid out in the Constitution. From elsewhere in Federalist no. 84:
It has been several times truly remarked, that bills of rights are in their origin, stipulations between kings and their subjects, abridgments of prerogative in favor of privilege, reservations of rights not surrendered to the prince. Such was Magna Charta, obtained by the Barons, sword in hand, from king John. Such were the subsequent confirmations of that charter by subsequent princes. Such was the petition of right assented to by Charles the First, in the beginning of his reign. Such also was the declaration of right presented by the lords and commons to the prince of Orange in 1688, and afterwards thrown into the form of an act of parliament, called the bill of rights. It is evident, therefore, that according to their primitive signification, they have no application to constitutions professedly founded upon the power of the people, and executed by their immediate representatives and servants. Here, in strictness, the people surrender nothing, and as they retain every thing, they have no need of particular reservations. "We the people of the United States, to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this constitution for the United States of America." Here is a better recognition of popular rights than volumes of those aphorisms which make the principal figure in several of our state bills of rights, and which would sound much better in a treatise of ethics than in a constitution of government.
The people retain everything. So by writing the BOR and the 2A, Hamilton worried that they were creating a "colorable pretext" to restrict or deny the very rights the BOR was supposed to protect. However, the pro-BOR people were more numerous and won out in the end. They argued that future Americans would not be so stupid as to argue to take away their own rights, and the BOR provided protection that made it worth the risk.
However, the Gun Control Advocates in this thread and the world at large are proving Hamilton to be correct. You argue over the wording of the 2A. You argue over what "arms" entails and so on. You are in fact turning the BOR into a "colorable pretext" to RESTRICT the right to keep and bear arms. All the while pretending not to understand that the right to keep and bear arms is an inherent human right regardless of the existence of the Constitution, BOR, or opinion of the Supreme Court and so on.
On a more personal side, I see people in this thread that simply cannot see the need or reason to carry a gun. You see carrying a gun as something exceptional. "Why do you feel the need to carry a gun? What are you scared of? What do you think is going to happen? Why do you carry a gun to _____ place?" And then you never seem to be satisfied with the answer. The problem is that you see the gun as something exceptional.
When I wake up and get ready to leave the house, I put on underwear, pants, a shirt, a belt. I brush my teeth. I put on socks and shoes. I make sure I have my keys, wallet, and phone. I put on my holster, with a gun in it. I leave the house.
I do not agonize over or debate over or justify the "need" to wear my gun to a particular place or time any more than I do in regards to my shoes or belt. I simply do it. It effects nothing and no-one. When I get back home and settle in, the holster comes back off just like the shoes. So if someone asked me why I felt a need to wear a belt when I went to the library, I would not really know how to answer them. I would just think they were kind of weird and needed to mind their own bees wax. Same with the gun.