"It was believed, that by placing the arms in the hands of the citizens themselves, they would consider them as their own property, and take care of them as such; and they would become better acquainted with the use of them than if they were only put into their hands occasionally. Besides, it would be more strictly complying with the constitutional provision, "that the right of the people to bear arms shall not be infringed." Having them in possession, they would be ready for any emergency which might occur...." [U.S. Militia Bill - Pg. 434-5.]<quoted text>
Does this sound familiar, GayDavyQ?
"...It was argued, in favor of a reconsideration, that this amendment might defeat the object of the bill, which was to put arms into the hands of every young man when he attained the age of 18; that this amendment placed it in the power of the state legislatures to lay up the arms in armory, or put them into the hands of a favored party, instead of arming the nation, the arms might be locked up from the people--it would be arming the government against the people, and not placing the people in a situation to defend themselves against any oppression with which they might be menaced from whatever quarter it might come. Allusions made to the period when McPherson's Blues threatened the peace of the city of Philadelphia, and to the Embargo times, in order to shew that the arms would he safer in the hands of the people, than laid up in armories by the states..." [Congress - Pg. 458-9]
[The Weekly Register. Baltimore, Sat., Feb. 15, 1812. Vol. I, No. 24. Printed and published by H. Niles, Water-street near the Merchants' Coffee House, at $5. per annum.]