The Second Amendment is incorporated through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and is thus protected from infringement from state or local governments.
Petitioners filed suits against respondent municipalities for effectively banning possession of handguns by private citizens. The district court upheld the ordinances, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed. The Supreme Court granted certiorari.
Are the municipal ordinances violations of the Second Amendment?
The Court held that the Second Amendment protected the right to keep and bear arms for the purpose of self-defense and that the Second Amendment was fully applicable to the states. Self-defense was a basic right and was the central component of the Second Amendment right, and the Court had recognized that the Second Amendment right applied to handguns, which were the preferred firearm to keep and use for protection of one's home and family.