The real reason the Second Amendment was ratified, and why it says
“State” instead of “Country” (the Framers knew the difference – see the
10th Amendment), was to preserve the slave patrol militias in the
southern states, which was necessary to get Virginia’s vote. Founders
Patrick Henry, George Mason, and James Madison were totally clear on
that . . . and we all should be too.
In the beginning, there were the militias. In the South, they were
also called the “slave patrols,” and they were regulated by the states.
In Georgia, for example, a generation before the American Revolution,
laws were passed in 1755 and 1757 that required all plantation owners
or their male white employees to be members of the Georgia Militia, and
for those armed militia members to make monthly inspections of the
quarters of all slaves in the state. The law defined which counties had
which armed militias and even required armed militia members to keep a
keen eye out for slaves who may be planning uprisings.
Image from the American anti-slavery almanac, 1836, Flickr Commons