News, Opinions, Research, Alerts
concerning the ongoing assault on the
Second Amendment and the
Right to Keep and Bear Arms (RKBA)

The Right to Keep and Bear Arms"The laws that forbid the carrying of arms ... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Can it be supposed that those who have the courage to violate the most sacred laws of humanity ... will respect the less important and arbitrary ones ... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants, they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." — Thomas Jefferson  [quoted from Enlightenment philosopher Cesare Beccaria’s On Crimes and Punishment, 1764; translated by Jefferson and copied into his Commonplace Book of great quotations.]

The Right to Keep and Bear Arms"The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered, as the palladium of the liberties of the republic; since it offers a strong moral check against usurpation and arbitrary power of the rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them." —Justice Joseph Story, Commentaries on the Constitution (1833)

Second Amendment

"He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one."
— Jesus Christ in Luke 22:36

"If the representatives of the people betray their constituents,
there is then no recourse left but in the exertion of that original right
of self-defense which is paramount to all positive forms of government."
— Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 28, 1787

When people say things like,
“don't let this moment pass without acting on gun control,” what they're really saying is
our arguments are so unpersuasive that
they can only succeed when people aren't thinking clearly
.
— Glenn Harlan Reynolds

A gun is like a parachute.
If you need one and don't have one,
you'll propbably never need one again.

“How a politician stands on the Second Amendment tells you how he or she views you as an individual... as a trustworthy and productive citizen, or as part of an unruly crowd that needs to be lorded over, controlled, supervised, and taken care of.”Suzanna Gratia Hupp – survivor of the Luby’s Cafeteria massacre in Killeen, Texas, October 16, 1991– explains the meaning of the 2nd Amendment!

The Right To Keep And Bear Arms
by Mr. Kim Weissman
Perhaps the best defense of the historical context of the RKBA written by a non-historian — includes a number of quality reference links.

What State Constitutions Teach about
The Second Amendment

by David Kopel

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14jan17The Second Amendment: ‘The Palladium of Liberties’
Mark Alexander
“The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered as the palladium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them.” —Supreme Court, Justice Joseph Story, in his 1833 Commentaries on the Constitution.
15oct16“Smart” Gun Glitches Confirm Gun Owner Concerns
As part of his executive gun-control fixes, President Obama has endorsed so-called “smart” gun technology on the premise that if “you can’t unlock your phone unless you’ve got the right fingerprint, why can’t we do the same thing for our guns?” Never mind that smartphone technology is currently far from infallible.
9sep16 When the Death of Justice Comes,
It Will Look Like a Terror Watch List

Charles C.W. Cooke
In 2014, the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon ruled that the terror watch list was “arbitrary and capricious,” and that its use violated both the U.S. Constitution and the Administrative Procedure Act. Now, the executive branch hopes to use that list to regulate the Bill of Rights.
1mar15 The Cruelty of Gun-Free Zones
John R. Lott Jr.
Law enforcement recognizes that gun-free zones leave shooting victims defenseless. Tuesday [Jan. 28, 2014] night, President Obama vowed to "help stop more tragedies from visiting innocent Americans in our movie theaters and our shopping malls, or schools like Sandy Hook."
15sep11 Cooking Up A Collective Right
Dave Kopel
After a heyday from 1968 to 1990, the collective right theory met its ignominious end in 2008, collectively rejected by a unanimous Supreme Court. It was a well-deserved demise of a theory that never should have gained traction, yet did so anyway because of dishonest judicial decisions and gun-ban proponents who repeated the lies until some actually came to believe they were true.
11mar11 Smearing Madison
David Kopel
Like the rest of the Constitution, the Second Amendment is not an obtuse and meaningless poem meant to be understood only by professors with a Ph.D. The Second Amendment, like everything else in the Constitution, is a straightforward legal rule that was written to be easily understood by ordinary people.
27jul08 The United Nations vs. the Second Amendment
David Kopel
Despite protestations to the contrary, the U.N. remains quite interested in constricting lawful gun ownership. Consider, for example, the United Nations Disarmament Programme's publication, How to Guide: Small Arms and Light Weapons Legislation.
11may04 Fighting Back: Crime, Self-Defense,
and the Right to Carry a Handgun

Jeffrey R. Snyder
To the shock and dismay of gun control proponents, concealed-carry reform has proven to be wildly popular among state lawmakers. Since Florida launched its experiment with concealed-carry in October 1987, 23 states have enacted similar laws, with positive results.
10nov03 Left-wing Scholars Rewriting History,
Affecting Court Decisions

Richard Poe
It is time to purge the "elite bar" of liars and ignoramuses. Too many Americans died to give us our Constitution. Will we surrender it now to the whims of leftist judges and law professors?
2mar03 Firearms and the Fourteenth Amendment
Robert Greenslade
In order to understand the effect of the Fourteenth Amendment on the individual right to keep and bear arms, it is necessary to review some of the legislative history surrounding the Amendment. Ratified by the several States on July 9, 1868, section 1 of this Amendment states in part:
19jan03 Foul Language
Jennifer Freeman
If gun-ban groups were to take an honest approach and say what they mean, the firearms debate would be a non-issue because the overwhelming majority of Americans would find the aims of gun-banners to be contrary to the U.S. Constitution and our innate right to life and self defense.
10nov02 Bullets and Bunkum:
The futility of 'Ballistic Fingerprinting'
John R. Lott, Jr.
When the cartridges used with a particular gun came from the same manufacturer, computer matching failed 38 percent of the time. When the cartridges came from different manufacturers, the failure rate rose to 62 percent.
29oct02 Professor Quits in Probe of Gun Book
Arming America author, professor Michael Bellesiles, who wrote that firearms were rare in early America, has resigned from Atlanta's Emory University after an investigation found he "willingly misrepresented the evidence" in his award-winning book.
24jun02 Constitutional Confusion
Kim Weissman
With the Supreme Court shirking its responsibility, it remains (as it always ultimately is) the duty of this nation's final authority — We, the People of the United States — to decide the meaning of the Constitution.
13feb02 Her Own Bodyguard:
Gun-packing First Lady
The Independence Institute
What a perfect example of how the Second Amendment is really the cornerstone of our Bill of Rights, the guarantor of all others. It was the exercise of her Second Amendment rights that empowered Eleanor Roosevelt to use her First Amendment rights to crusade for the Fourteenth Amendment rights of blacks.
15jan02 A Criminal's Best Friend
Kim Weissman
In spite of the alleged "new spirit" abroad in the country since September 11, rational thinking and common sense are no more common now than they were on September 10.
7nov01 Some Reflections on the Right to Bear Arms
Richard M. Ebeling
"Though it may seem harsh... when I read the advocates of gun control pointing to incidents of private acts of violence against children, I think to myself, how many... children were killed... in the last century by governments?"
1nov01 Reviving the Second Amendment
Robert A. Levy
A review of the recent ruling in US v. Emerson where "the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit joined the Bush administration and respected legal scholars across the political spectrum in affirming the right that each of us enjoy, as individuals, to own a gun."
2sep01 Fundamentally Flawed (Pt. 2) — The Real-World Test of Gun Ban Ideology
We in this country argue the finer points of Constitutional interpretation to decide whether individuals have the right to keep and bear arms, but in so doing we ignore the larger issue — that when honest people are disarmed, criminals find it easier to ply their trade. This is undeniable.
27aug01 Fundamentally Flawed — Gun Ban Ideology
This is the most dangerous presumption of the whole argument, with implications for the utter destruction of our freedom that go beyond the individual right to keep and bear arms.
22jul01 Still a Nation of Cowards
We are asking the government to protect us from ourselves so that we can be freed from that responsibility. This might seem like a logical plan, especially to lazy slackers who aren't willing to assume the basic duties of a free person.
1june01 Gun-Show Bill is Not What They Say
The bill has almost nothing to do with what you've probably heard so far. The so-called "gun-show loophole" headlines are a minor detail and basically obscure what the bill really does.
16may01 Million Mom March Dangerous
To Women And Kids
Liz Michael
Every individual participating in this march or financing this march is effectively sponsoring a future criminal assault on me and people I love, and I hold them as responsible as the criminal himself.
19apr01 Gun Violence and Constitutional Issues
Miguel A. Faria Jr., M.D.
The lessons of history sagaciously reveal that whenever and wherever science and medicine have been subordinated to the state and individual will has been crushed by tyranny, the results have been as perverse as they have been disastrous.
12apr01 Scholars Take Aim at Gun History
and Michael Bellesiles's Arming America
"While Mr. Bellesiles insists modern public policy isn't his 'business,' in a debate that depends so much on knowledge of the Founders' intentions, history is key. His duty as a scholar is to clear up the questions his work has raised."
7apr01 Medical Evidence:
Gun Control Won't Solve Crime
"Much of this information is tainted, result-oriented, and based on what can only be characterized as poor science,” the study concludes.
26mar01 Some Time To Kill
John R. Lott Jr.
Getting the government to release information on the costs of licensing and registration is like cracking the black operations budgets in the U.S. Defense Department.
updated
24mar01
To Preserve and Protect
Your rest in the peaceful darkness of the bedroom is shattered by the sound of breaking glass! At such a moment, would you wish to reach for a copy of the Brady Bill or a loaded handgun from the nightstand next to you?
24feb01 Guns Effective Defense Against Rape
A two-part editorial from the Univ. of Minnesota newspaper The Minnesota Daily.
20mar01 Trust The People:
The Case Against Gun Control

The calls for more gun restrictions or for bans on some or all guns are calls for significant change in our social and constitutional systems.
18feb01 Why Women Should Care about RKBA
Personal defense is an increasingly important consideration in our troubled society. For women, personal defense is a vitally important issue, as men generally outweigh and outmuscle women, and commit most violent crimes.
13feb01 Physician Group Slams Handgun Report
A prominent member of the Assoc. of American Physicians and Surgeons has refuted key details of a study by the Violence Policy Center, in which researchers concluded that women were not safer if they used a handgun for self-defense.
30jan01 Media Slant Changing On Gun Issues
Perhaps they have finally realized that a mountain of evidence shows the futility and counterproductive results of gun control laws.
16jan01 Gun Control Kills
Some of the best research to prove that gun control doesn't work has come from researchers assigned the task of coming up with figures to promote gun control by Jimmy Carter.
11jan01 Handgun Control, Inc. Discredits Itself
HCI’s idea of what the Constitution stands for goes directly against the first paragraph of the Declaration of Independence and all that it entails.
9jan01 Were the Colonists Gun-Haters?
Geoff Metcalf interviews historian Dr. Joyce Malcolm.
Malcolm, a professor and historian, wasn't convinced of the assertions made by Professor Michael Bellesiles in his book, "Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture." Bellesiles claims that the American colonists did not, by and large, own or value firearms.
5jan01 Discussing the Issues:
It's How You Say It
23dec00 NRA Santa
When all of a sudden there came such a jolt, I grabbed for my Mossberg, and whipped out my Colt.
3dec00 Gun Rights: Power to the People
Why don't the politicians want us to own weapons? What are the politicians afraid of? That we're all going to kill each other? I don't think so.
5nov00 Deconstructing the Second Amendment
Stephen P. Halbrook
2oct00 The Blank Tape
 Robert A. Waters
The aftermath? Who wants to read about a former beauty contestant whose face is scarred from knife cuts?
25sep00 Deaths In Merced
"If you survey burglars, American burglars spend at least twice as long casing a joint before they break in. ... The number one reason they give for taking so much time is: They're afraid of getting shot."
–Yale Law School Senior Research Scholar Dr. John Lott
6aug00 Gun Banners Pound On The Table
The louder the anti-gun crowd gets the more they call attention to the facts about firearm deaths and crime. Now rational people are beginning to demand accountability from the gun control extremists and credible, scholarly research is exposing their emotional sham for what it is... outright lies.
20jul00 Has Your Bookshelf Been
Approved by the BATF?
19jul00 Gun-grabbers:
Masters of the New Plantation
Those who would ban the private ownership of weapons of military usefulness to individual Americans today are not just liars ... they're also racists.
9jul00 The Two Most Threadbare 'Gun Control' Lies
I don't know if they're the two biggest lies told by the victim disarmament gang, but they're easily the most threadbare, climbing out of their graves over and over to spread their stench like rotting vampires that have been killed but never properly staked.
27jun00 The Right Of Law Abiding Citizens
How many of those "gun victims" eulogized and exploited by Daschle were only victims because they were rendered defenseless and helpless by the likes of Tom Daschle, Bill Clinton, Sarah Brady, Rosie O'Donnelll, and all the other advocates of gun control?
11jun00 Legally Speaking – Be Careful What You Ask For When Advocating Enforcement
7jun00 When It Comes to Firearms,
Do As I Say, Not as I Do
Few have declared their opposition to guns as strongly as O'Donnell. The advice that O'Donnell has freely given others no longer seems to match what she thinks is best for her own family.
6jun00 A Mother's Choice
He didn't touch me. He didn't rape me. He wasn't allowed to. I had a gun. He didn't. I kept the power he had come to ruthlessly steal.
14may00 Paranoid About Gun Ownership?
Limousine liberals will often ask me, "Why are you so paranoid about the Second Amendment?" The answer is in the facts.
12may00 The Equalizer
It should be recognized that local governments have sought to ban firearms from what is frequently considered one of today's untrustworthy and suspect classes, the urban poor.
7apr00 Anybody Feeling Afraid?
My fear is fuel for my courage, strength, faith and deep knowing that we will reclaim this nation at all costs, and I do mean ALL costs.
7apr00 Women are Champions of
Concealed Carry Reform

The right to protect oneself with a firearm is indeed an issue of choice, and an issue that is clearly a woman’s issue.
31mar00 Women and Guns
Violence against women is an extremely serious problem, yet women are constantly told to forgo the most effective means of self-defense.
14mar00 Thugs Still Reign In Taxachusetts
"Under Massachusetts law you can keep a loaded firearm in your vehicle if you're a licensed owner; you can have it taped to the window if you so desire."
5mar00 Gun Control: The Seventh Paradox
Few public policy discussions have become so bitter and divisive as the endless debate over guns. None is so burdened with contradictions and misinformation.
3mar00 Crime, Self-Defense,
and the Right to Carry a Handgun

Since criminals can strike almost anywhere at any time, the last thing government ought to be doing is stripping citizens of the most effective means of defending themselves. Carrying a handgun in public may not be for everyone, but it is a right that government ought to respect.
3mar00 So, You Want To See Me Naked?
Linda A. Prussen-Razzano
I will not trust the future of my security to things like "luck". I will not be a statistic, just so you can feel as if you have "done something."
27feb00 Vin Suprynowicz has ongoing dialog with a reader on the subject of the 2nd Amendment, particularly as it applies to a 'militia'.
Part 1 ~~~o~~~ Part 2
24feb00 Gun Ownership Mandatory in Kennesaw, GA
Crime Rate Plummets
The major press has convienently ignored the almost non-existant crime rate in Kennesaw, Georgia where gun ownership is mandatory.
14feb00 The Uplifters Try It Again
H.L. Mencken, in this article from 1925, skewers the utopian wish for a society free from handguns. Seventy-five years later the issue remains and his words are as appropriate as ever.
13feb00 Gun Control Illogic
The suffering of innocents is irrelevant to left-wing gun ban extremists, the politically correct media, and pandering politicians.
5feb00 National Safety Council Report
Parents have less to fear from firearms than other causes in childrens' accidental deaths.
20 times more likely to die from falls, 5 times more likely to drown.
3feb00 The only question about gun registration...
How exactly would writing down my name, or your name, help arrest criminals or make you safer?
22jan00 Results Are In on British Gun Laws
Police sources were quoted as saying that guns had become "almost a fashion accessory" among young criminals on the street. "Our investigation established that guns are available through means open to any criminally minded individual."
20jan00 The Seven Myths of Gun Control
Ignorance about guns and gun rights has reached pandemic proportions. Most of what Americans think they know about guns is false.
12jan00 The Facts about Gun Shows
Despite what some media commentators have claimed, existing gun laws apply just as much to gun shows as they do to any other place where guns are sold.
26dec99 Cold Comfort
Reason magazine interviews John Lott
19dec99 The Paramount Agenda
The major long-term obstacle to the Clintonistas' overarching agenda to incrementally implement their elite "tyranny of the few" worldview is, as our Founders expressly intended, our Second Amendment rights.
14dec99 Annie's Got Her Gun
A world with violence -- that is to say, with men -- but without weapons is the worst of all possible worlds for women.
12dec99 Federal Threats
It is supposed to be the Congress that passes laws, not a president acting as though he has been anointed king.
8dec99 But No Honest Citizen Needs A Gun ... Right?
I defy anyone to dismiss these 14 harrowing, true-life accounts, often told in the words of the very crime victims who survived their ordeals due to one common factor: The fact that in America, we have a right to bear arms.
5dec99 Doctors Deadlier Than Guns
Kim Weissman
Despite all the anti-gun hysteria from various medical groups, it appears from the Institute for Medicine study that doctors themselves are deadlier, and pose an even greater threat to "human welfare and survival", than the guns they so hate and rail against.
15nov99 Gun Registration & Confiscation Defied
This essay is relevant to all infringements on our Constitution and his arguments are themselves an education in its intent and its true interpretation
10nov99 The Last Line of Defense
The right to bear arms is a matter of individual safety and, ultimately, freedom. The issue goes far beyond gun nuts.
28aug99 "the federal government may not disarm individual citizens without some unusually strong justification."
Scholar's shift in thinking angers liberals

Renowned scholar, Laurence Tribe, re-thinks
the Second Amendment
19aug99 The Parable of the Sheep
Not so long ago and in a pasture too uncomfortably close to here, a flock of sheep lived and grazed.
1jun99
updated
8aug99
Ignorance No Longer An Excuse
Will an irrevocable decision you make be based on fact or fantasy?
7aug99 The Big Lie: You Have No Rights
The idea that the Second Amendment doesn't allow individual people to keep and bear arms is so logically bankrupt it's hard to imagine why anyone would use it in an argument.
4aug99 Boundary Violation:
Gun Politics in the Doctor’s Office
29jul99 Embarrassing Second Amendment
22jul99 Worry about the freedom to own
a gun -- even if you don't
by Charlie Reese
25jun99 The Tree of Liberty
The right to keep and bear arms "[is] the palladium of the liberties of the republic," which enables the citizenry to deter tyranny. -- Justice Joseph Story
6jul99 "More Gun Controls?
They Haven't Worked in the Past"
by John R. Lott Jr.
22jun99 Nazi Repression of Firearms Owners
New research on the Nazi confiscation of registered guns - and execution of gun owners - provides a poignant lesson on why Americans have always opposed the registration of peaceable firearms owners.
5jun99 TESTIMONY OF DARRELL SCOTT
FATHER OF TWO VICTIMS OF COLUMBINE HIGH SCHOOL SHOOTING
LITTLETON, COLORADO
5jun99 Lawmaking Hysteria
"The truth has always been available for anyone willing to find it, but few were willing to devote the time."
23may99 Calling All Killers
"Do you doubt that you have a better chance of being hit by a meteorite or of winning the Powerball Lottery jackpot than of being murdered by an NRA member?"
26apr99 "Multiple Victim Public Shootings, Bombings, and Right-to-Carry Concealed Handgun Laws."
A Study by Profs. John Lott and William Landes
25apr99 SPECIAL REPORT
GUN CONTROL IN BLUE
Exhaustive survey of law enforcement officers
19apr99 Guns and the Constitution
Prof. Eugene Volokh, UCLA Law School
4mar99 History Gives Verdict on Self-defense
31jan99 Why Guns
L. Neil Smith

RESOURCE LINKS

The Stentorian
A Web domain devoted to the art and science of political communication
Recommended!

FIREARMS & LIBERTY
One of the BEST and largest online sources of documents and articles!

The RKBA info
from
Congress Action

A Woman's Self-Defense Guide to Concealed Carry (CCW)

Independence
Institute

—::—
David Kopel's
homepage

—::—
2nd Amendment
Project

2nd Amendment & RKBA Source Documents

Second Amendment Foundation

JPFO

Keep And
Bear Arms

Gun Owners
Homepage

Gun Cite
Great Reference Resource

NRA

NRA-ILA
Research

Gun Owners of America

Overlawyered.com

Women &
Guns

Articles by
Prof. John Lott

 

The Emerson case (United States of America v. Timothy Joe Emerson) and why
the Second Amendment MEANS an INDIVIDUAL right to keep and bear arms.

"When the strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are in peace."
-- Luke 11:21 (RSV)

The first among equals - The 2nd Amendment.

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revised: 15sep11