The Second Amendment

Author: Patrick J. Charles
Editor: McFarland
ISBN: 0786452730
Size: 11,37 MB
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“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” Legal historians, analysts, judges and commentators have long disagreed about the original scope and intent of these words, making up the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. Individual right theorists interpret it as protecting the personal privilege to own and carry firearms, while collective right theorists interpret it as only protecting the privilege of a collective society to bear arms in relation to militia service. This book examines the contentions of both groups and concludes that the amendment is meant only to protect the right of an individual to “keep and bear arms” for the purpose of defending the country in a militia force against standing foreign or domestic armies. In crafting his argument, the author examines the Second Amendment in exacting detail. On June 28, 2010, the book was cited by Associate Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer in a dissenting opinion for the landmark case McDonald v. City of Chicago.

Armed In America

Author: Patrick J. Charles
Editor: Prometheus Books
ISBN: 1633883132
Size: 18,90 MB
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This accessible legal history describes how the Second Amendment has been interpreted throughout most of American history and shows that today's gun-rights advocates have drastically departed from the long-held interpretation of the constitutional right to bear arms. This illuminating study traces the transformation of the right to arms from its inception in English and colonial American law to today's impassioned gun-control debate. As historian and legal scholar Patrick J. Charles shows, what the right to arms means to Americans, as well as what it legally protects, has changed drastically since its first appearance in the 1689 Declaration of Rights. Armed in America explores how and why the right to arms transformed at different points in history. The right was initially meant to serve as a parliamentary right of resistance, yet by the ratification of the Second Amendment in 1791 the right had become indispensably intertwined with civic republicanism. As the United States progressed into the 19th century the right continued to change--this time away from civic republicanism and towards the individual-right understanding that is known today, albeit with the important caveat that the right could be severely restricted by the government's police power. Throughout the 20th century this understanding of the right remained the predominant view. But working behind the scenes was the beginnings of the gun-rights movement--a movement that was started in the early 20th century through the collective efforts of sporting magazine editors and was eventually commandeered by the National Rifle Association to become the gun-rights movement known today. Readers looking to sort through the shrill rhetoric surrounding the current gun debate and arrive at an informed understanding of the legal and historical development of the right to arms will find this book to be an invaluable resource.

The Second Amendment

Author: Michael Waldman
Editor: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1476747458
Size: 10,82 MB
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At a time of renewed debate over guns in America, what does the Second Amendment mean? This book looks at history to provide some surprising, illuminating answers. The Amendment was written to calm public fear that the new national government would crush the state militias made up of all (white) adult men -- who were required to own a gun to serve. Waldman recounts the raucous public debate that has surrounded the amendment from its inception to the present. As the country spread to the Western frontier, violence spread too. But through it all, gun control was abundant. In the 20th century, with Prohibition and gangsterism, the first federal control laws were passed. On all four occasions, the Supreme Court ruled against a constitutional right to own a gun. The present debate picked up in the 1970s -- part of a backlash to the liberal 1960s and a resurgence of libertarianism. A newly radicalized NRA entered the campaign to oppose gun control and elevate the status of an obscure constitutional provision. In 2008, in a case that reached the Court after a focused drive by conservative lawyers, the US Supreme Court ruled for the first time that the Constitution protects an individual right to gun ownership. Famous for his theory of "originalism," Justice Antonin Scalia twisted it in this instance to base his argument on contemporary conditions. Waldman shows that our view of the amendment is set, at each stage, not by a pristine constitutional text, but by the push and pull, the rough and tumble of political advocacy and public agitation.

Six Amendments

Author: John Paul Stevens
Editor: Little, Brown
ISBN: 0316373745
Size: 15,12 MB
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For the first time ever, a retired Supreme Court Justice offers a manifesto on how the Constitution needs to change. By the time of his retirement in June 2010, John Paul Stevens had become the second longest serving Justice in the history of the Supreme Court. Now he draws upon his more than three decades on the Court, during which he was involved with many of the defining decisions of the modern era, to offer a book like none other. SIX AMENDMENTS is an absolutely unprecedented call to arms, detailing six specific ways in which the Constitution should be amended in order to protect our democracy and the safety and wellbeing of American citizens. Written with the same precision and elegance that made Stevens's own Court opinions legendary for their clarity as well as logic, SIX AMENDMENTS is a remarkable work, both because of its unprecedented nature and, in an age of partisan ferocity, its inarguable common sense.

A Well Regulated Militia

Author: Saul Cornell
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0195341031
Size: 18,26 MB
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A leading constitutional historian argues that the Founding Fathers viewed the right to bear arms as neither an individual nor a collective right, but rather an obligation a citizen owed to the government to arm themselves and participate in a well-regulated militia.

American Justice 2014

Author: Garrett Epps
Editor: University of Pennsylvania Press
ISBN: 0812291301
Size: 10,38 MB
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In this provocative and insightful book, constitutional scholar and journalist Garrett Epps reviews the key decisions of the 2013-2014 Supreme Court term through the words of the nation's nine most powerful legal authorities. Epps succinctly outlines one opinion or dissent from each of the justices during the recent term, using it to illuminate the political and ideological views that prevail on the Court. The result is a highly readable summary of the term's most controversial cases as well as a probing investigation of the issues and personalities that shape the Court's decisions. Accompanied by a concise overview of Supreme Court procedure and brief case summaries, American Justice 2014 is an engaging and instructive read for seasoned Court-watchers as well as legal novices eager for an introduction to the least-understood branch of government. This revealing portrait of a year in legal action dramatizes the ways that the Court has come to reflect and encourage the polarization that increasingly defines American politics.

The Founders Second Amendment

Author: Stephen P. Halbrook
Editor: Ivan R. Dee
ISBN: 1615780149
Size: 16,18 MB
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Stephen P. Halbrook's The Founders' Second Amendment is the first book-length account of the origins of the Second Amendment, based on the Founders' own statements as found in newspapers, correspondence, debates, and resolutions. Mr. Halbrook investigates the period from 1768 to 1826, from the last years of British rule and the American Revolution through to the adoption of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and the passing of the Founders' generation. His book offers the most comprehensive analysis of the arguments behind the drafting and adoption of the Second Amendment, and the intentions of the men who created it.

Gunfight The Battle Over The Right To Bear Arms In America

Author: Adam Winkler
Editor: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393082296
Size: 12,59 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A provocative history that reveals how guns—not abortion, race, or religion—are at the heart of America's cultural divide. Gunfight is a timely work examining America’s four-centuries-long political battle over gun control and the right to bear arms. In this definitive and provocative history, Adam Winkler reveals how guns—not abortion, race, or religion—are at the heart of America’s cultural divide. Using the landmark 2008 case District of Columbia v. Heller—which invalidated a law banning handguns in the nation’s capital—as a springboard, Winkler brilliantly weaves together the dramatic stories of gun-rights advocates and gun-control lobbyists, providing often unexpected insights into the venomous debate that now cleaves our nation.

The Second Amendment Controversy Explained

Author: Theodore L. Johnson
Editor: iUniverse
ISBN: 0595241883
Size: 14,66 MB
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Many strongly and dogmatically believe the Second Amendment to be an individual right. Many others just as strongly and dogmatically believe the Second Amendment to be a collective right. Therefore the book title seems to state a promise too good to be true or impossible to fulfill. However the book thoroughly, fairly, and clearly presents the relevant facts such that the promise is fulfilled. The text traces the legal basis for the contradictory positions in a readable fashion. It shows the intended meaning of the Second Amendment and documents the reasoning of those who disagree. Also included is a discussion on the philosophical foundations for each of the positions. The last few chapters present some of the Second Amendment's implications on the country's legal and social structures. Following each chapter are human interest accounts of the use of firearms. The appendices provide extensive resource materials (relevant court decisions, constitution convention notes, federal law, Constitution letters of ratification, etc.) for further study and for verification that the book's handling of the Second Amendment is fair, accurate and complete. The appendices comprise a basic Second Amendment Reference Library "for the people."

Original Meanings

Author: Jack N. Rakove
Editor: Vintage
ISBN: 0307434516
Size: 10,59 MB
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From abortion to same-sex marriage, today's most urgent political debates will hinge on this two-part question: What did the United States Constitution originally mean and who now understands its meaning best? Rakove chronicles the Constitution from inception to ratification and, in doing so, traces its complex weave of ideology and interest, showing how this document has meant different things at different times to different groups of Americans. From the Trade Paperback edition.