Books on the 2nd amendment?

Books on the 2nd amendment?

This is a discussion on Books on the 2nd amendment? within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I'm a bit of a history buff, and finding myself more and more interested in reading up on the Second Amendment and the historical basis ...

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Thread: Books on the 2nd amendment?

  1. #1
    Member Array Bardo's Avatar
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    Books on the 2nd amendment?

    I'm a bit of a history buff, and finding myself more and more interested in reading up on the Second Amendment and the historical basis for it.

    I'm curious to know if anyone has any recommendations for some good books on the subject?

    18th-century American history is a good start, but even going back further, into the 17th century and it's basis English law would be good.

    A friend of mine likes to couch the discussion within the context of basic property rights. A well-written analysis of that would be ideal.

    Any suggestions?


  2. #2
    Member Array ThePatriot1776's Avatar
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    Read the collected letters of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison for a start then read the Anti-Federalist Papers alongside the Federalist Papers. It's best to read them in order like Anti-Federalist #1-Federalist #1 and so on. This way you can see and gain appreciation for what liberties we have lost.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    A little light reading.

    I would highly recommend this first one, for everyone interested in the 2A and its origins: The Founders' View of the Right to Bear Arms: A Definitive History of the Second Amendment, by David Young. It's a relatively short (but dense) summary of the body of his research into the Founding era meaning and intent of the Second Amendment and the origins of the RKBA. IMO, it's about as good of a single summary of the origins of the Second Amendment as you're likely to find. It summarizes the 1770's understanding of the language (militia, well-regulated, arms, infringements), as well as the proposed versions, the debates and the constitutional conventions in the several states. Exceptional.

    And very highly recommend this second one, also by David Young. It's the full and complete background source material used for his research and analysis into the founding-era origins and meaning of the Second Amendment. The Origin of the Second Amendment: A Documentary History of the Bill of Rights in Commentaries on Liberty, Free Government and an Armed Populace, 1787-1792, by David Young. Exceptional read, if very, very long. It'll take you 6mos, at the least. But it's well worth it, if you want to know what the actual folks said back in the Founding era, verbatim, without the modern liberty-hating fluff and spin.

    If you don't read anything else, read those two (above).


    The Federalist Papers

    The Anti-Federalist Papers

    The Founders' Second Amendment: Origins of the Right to Bear Arms, by Stephen Halbrook.

    That Every Man Be Armed: The Evolution of a Constitutional Right, by Stephen Halbrook.

    The Heritage Guide to the Constitution, edited by Meese, Spalding and Forte.

    Constitutional Chaos: What Happens When the Government Breaks Its Own Laws, by Napolitano.

    Supreme Court Gun Cases, by David Kopel, Stephen Halbrook and Alan Korwin.

    Gun Control on Trial: Inside the Supreme Court Battle Over the Second Amendment, by Brian Doherty.

    The Constitution of Liberty, by Friedrich Hayek.

    Constitution.org

    THE RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS -- Report of the Subcommittee on the Constitution of the Committee on the Judiciary, United States Senate, Ninety-Seventh Congress, Second Session, February 1982.


    The two recent pro-gun court battles and decisions:

    The 2008 DC v Heller case, represented by Gura & Possessky; including the final SCOTUS court opinion.

    The 2010 McDonald v City Of Chicago case, including all supporting documents and opinions, from the original filing through the appeals and the opinion of SCOTUS.


    As well as a few prior discussions on DefensiveCarry. Such as ...

    U.S. Constitution 101: applicability of protections to all citizens @ DefensiveCarry.com

    Excellent read on the 2A @ DefensiveCarry.com
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, SAF, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

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    ccw9mm,
    That's an excellent syllabus! I would add Les Adams' "The Second Amendment Primer" to the list.
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    Distinguished Member Array BigStick's Avatar
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    If you want a website, someone posted this one a while back that goes a little into the English history and common law:

    THE HISTORY OF THE SECOND AMENDMENT
    Walk softly ...

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    Alexander Hamiliton, by Chernow:



    It has the scope and detail to be pretty fun, and as a bonus, you learn a ton about the Constitution, our Founders, and the writer of many of the Federalist Papers. Short. Only 1,000 pages or so.....

    Few figures in American history have been more hotly debated or more grossly misunderstood than Alexander Hamilton. Chernow’s biography gives Hamilton his due and sets the record straight, deftly illustrating that the political and economic greatness of today’s America is the result of Hamilton’s countless sacrifices to champion ideas that were often wildly disputed during his time. “To repudiate his legacy,” Chernow writes, “is, in many ways, to repudiate the modern world.”


    The tyrant dies and his rule is over, the martyr dies and his rule begins. ― The Journals of Kierkegaard

  7. #7
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by luvmy40 View Post
    ccw9mm,
    That's an excellent syllabus! I would add Les Adams' "The Second Amendment Primer" to the list.
    Yeah, not bad. Have read each of those. Wish I could retain 100% of it, particularly all of the source material from the original congressional debates and ratification.

    Haven't read this one, though, Adams' The 2A Primer. I'll have to add that to my list of "light" reading.

    And I haven't yet picked up a copy of the Chernow's Hamilton, though many here have spoken very highly of it. Sounds like a worthwhile read, an insight into a towering set of values and insights from another age. Imagine how things could change, if we simply all took it upon ourselves to seek such a body of values and insights. The mere attempt by a large part of our citizenry could change everything.
    pittypat21 likes this.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, SAF, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

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