Do Americans have a constitutional right to bear arms? Or is this power vested solely in government? Recent years have seen a sea change in scholarship on the Second Amendment. Beginning in the 1960s, a revisionist view emerged that individuals had a "right" to bear arms only in militia service—a limited, collective right. But in the late 1980s a handful of scholars began producing an altogether persuasive analysis that changed thinking on the matter, so that today, even in canonical textbooks, bearing arms is acknowledged as an individual right. Stephen 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.
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An extraordinarily important work.
This book not only informs any discussion of the Second Amendment, it reminds and educates us all about the context, in which The Bill of Rights became part of every American's birthright. The actual wording in the Second Amendment is hardly longer than a bumper sticker. This book so thoroughly explains everything about why the right to bear arms was one of a short list of enumerated rights and why it remains a key test to see if we remain free citizens, or are becoming subjects of a federal government crown. No matter your positions on the issue of "gun control," you will learn so much about The Great American Experiment, which was the first to codify the promise of freedom. I wish this book was a common a read in high schools so that Americans can find a new appreciation of, and passion for, a government that answers to its citizens, rather than one where its citizens fear the power the government has over its people. It certainly would be great if every judge and justice, in this country, would read it.
Storm Jenkins, San Francisco