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Articles on Second Amendment

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A gun rights advocate walks through the rotunda of the Kentucky Capitol. Some lawyers argue that the 1689 English Bill of Rights created the legal basis for public carry of weapons in the U.S. Bryan Woolston/Getty Images

Why are medieval weapons laws at the center of a US Supreme Court case?

Many gun rights advocates claim that the right to carry guns is a universal right that has spanned centuries and nations. History tells a different story.
Dozens of people attended an open carry rally led by Joey Gibson, leader of the Patriot Prayer group, on May 20, 2018, in Seattle. Karen Ducey/Getty Images

Gun rights at the Supreme Court: Justices will consider if the fundamental right to keep a gun at home applies to carrying weapons in public

The Supreme Court ruled in 2008 that you have a constitutional right to have a gun in your home. Now, the justices will consider how far outside of the home that right extends.
The Second Amendment declares the importance of state-government authorized militias, like these National Guard troops guarding the California State Capitol building. AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

Why the Second Amendment protects a ‘well-regulated militia’ but not a private citizen militia

A recent federal court ruling appeared to expand Second Amendment rights to private citizen militias, which a historian of early America explains is not what the founders intended.
A San Franciso police officer displays several ‘ghost guns’ – untraceable firearms with no serial numbers or manufacturing marks. AP Photo/Haven Daley

What are ‘ghost guns,’ a target of Biden’s anti-crime effort?

A scholar of untraceable firearms explains what they are and why President Joe Biden’s administration is seeking to restrict their manufacture and use.
People who want to restrict guns have a point, but so do people who say those laws make little difference in mass shootings. George Frey/AFP via Getty Images

In gun debate, both sides have evidence to back them up

Stricter gun control laws may make mass shootings slightly less common, but other policies may work better to prevent mass shooting deaths.
A woman places painted rocks at a memorial to those killed in the 2018 Parkland, Florida, school shooting. AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee

Why do mass shootings spawn conspiracy theories?

When many people believe the government is trying to take away their guns, events that make guns look bad can be misinterpreted as part of that nonexistent plan.
Pete Musico, left, is one of the founding members of the Wolverine Watchmen, as is Joseph Morrison, right. Both were charged in the plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. (Jackson County Sheriff’s Office via AP) Jackson County Sheriff’s Office via AP

Plot to kidnap Michigan’s governor grew from the militia movement’s toxic mix of constitutional falsehoods and half-truths

A scholar of militia movements describes the ‘peculiar’ – and erroneous – principles that right-wing militias subscribe to, including believing themselves to be defenders of the Bill of Rights.
People gather outside the U.S. Supreme Court building as news spread of Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Sept. 18 death. AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

3 ways a 6-3 Supreme Court would be different

A 6-3 conservative court will hear a broader range of controversial cases, shift interpretations of individual rights and put more pressure on local democracy to make policy decisions.
The Constitution is interpreted differently by the alt-right. Shutterstock/Joseph Sohm

How the alt-right corrupts the Constitution

The growing number of self-taught, right-wing experts on the Constitution believe not only in the rights of white people, but have a comprehensive – if not comprehensible – view of the Constitution.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler shakes hands with Aalayah Eastmond, a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, during a hearing on guns violence at Capitol Hill on Feb. 6, 2019. AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

How a ‘missing’ movement made gun control a winning issue

Gun control bills passed recently by the House of Representatives may never become law, but they are still a sign of important change.
Candlelight vigil at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Florida. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

US gun violence in 2018: 3 essential reads

Scholars helped put a persistent problem into a larger context with their research.

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