“How Gun Control Came to Britain” | History News Network

The historian Luke Reader offers hope for a path to gun control through the British example. He recognizes that in Britain “there has never been a domestic gun culture. Nor has there ever been a right to bear arms [there hasn’t been here either until the Supreme Court declared (falsely) that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to bear arms],” but he points out that it’s possible to change the momentum in favor of gun control through popular movements.
He’s right. Even if it looks bleak at the moment, we have to keep trying. We majority of Americans support gun control. So we have the power to defeat the NRA; what we’re missing is the will.

Read the entire article here: History News Network | How Gun Control Came to Britain


Why the Second Amendment is not an individual right

The false belief that the Second Amendment confers an (absolute) individual right continues to prevent us from regulating guns, with tragic consequences. Yes, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the majority (5), declared that it was an individual right based on an original intentist interpretation of the amendment. Therefore, we must abide by this interpretation as long as Heller is in force, but that does not mean that Scalia’s interpretation of the history is correct. One of the problems, among many others, with original intent as a method for interpreting the Constitution is the fact that justices are not historians.  Too often original intent has been used to mask the individual preferences of the particular legal scholar. After spending years studying the history of the Religion Clauses of the First Amendment this fact has become all too clear.

If we are ever going to significantly decrease the senseless killings (as well as the large number of accidental deaths and suicides) that are made possible by the unregulated gun market, we need to debunk the Second Amendment myth that gun ownership is an individual right that can never be infringed. Gun regulation will not completely eliminate gun violence, but it can significantly decrease the violence (as it did in Australia).

Therefore, I want to include a few links by two prominent historians and one legal scholar who show why the Second Amendment fundamentalists are wrong:

  1. “To Keep and Bear Arms,”: This essay by Gary Wills is long, but worth it. He carefully and comprehensively destroys the arguments of what he calls the “Standard Model” school (i.e. the Second Amendment dogmatists who insist that the amendment confers to them an absolute individual right).
  2. The brief from the Pulitzer Prize winning historian Jack N. Rakove in the Heller decision.
  3. “How the NRA Rewrote the Second Amendment,” written by the author of The Second Amendment: A Biography, Michael Waldman. This essay deals more with the political movement that created the Second Amendment orthodoxy that now plagues us.

Please read and share these links!


“Why Aren’t Pro-Life Evangelical Christians Appalled by America’s Record of Gun Violence?”|History News Network

Lawrence Wittner’s answer: “The embrace of guns by many white Protestants is bolstered by a number of arguments linked to their religious assumptions. One contention is that the United States was established by God and, therefore, the Second Amendment to the Constitution (which they allege guarantees individual gun ownership) is sacred. Another is that depriving people of ‘self-defense’ deprives them of a God-given right. In addition, they tend to believe that corrupt, un-Christian values, rather than the easy availability of guns, lie behind the frequency of gun massacres.” This sounds about right to me. But now what? There is no amount of reasoning or evidence that would convince them to change their mind on gun control.
Wittner also speculates on the reason why the U.S. has such a high gun death rate.
Read the entire article here:

History News Network | Why Aren’t Pro-Life Evangelical Christians Appalled by America’s Record of Gun Violence?