Second Amendment Scholarship

Mark Frassetto, Meritless Historical Arguments in
Second Amendment Litigation
, 46 Hastings Const. L.Q. 531 (2019).

This law review article discusses the frivolous arguments made by many plaintiffs in Second Amendment cases, some of which have unfortunately made their way into district and circuit court decisions. It also discusses post-Heller public-carry litigation, focusing on the serious historical arguments driving these cases, as well as addresses and rebuts some of the meritless historical arguments that have been made and adopted in Second Amendment litigation.

Eric Tirschwell and Alla Lefkowitz, Prohibiting Guns at Public Demonstrations: Debunking First and Second Amendment Myths After Charlottesville, 65 UCLA L. Rev. Disc. 172 (2018).

This law review article discusses the history and case law supporting prohibitions on protests. The article argues that prohibiting guns at protests does not violate the Second Amendment.

Mark Frassetto, The First Congressional Debate on Public Carry and What It Tells Us About Firearm Regionalism, 40 Campbell L. Rev. 335 (2018).

This law review article discusses the first firearm regulation adopted by Congress, a good cause public carry law. The debate and final vote tally strongly support the arguments about firearms regionalism made in other articles that Southern Democrats generally were less supportive of gun laws and Republicans and northerners were more supportive.

Mark Frassetto, The Law and Politics of Firearms Regulation in Reconstruction Texas, 4 Tex. A&M L. Rev. 95 (2016).

This law review article discusses firearms regulation in 1870’s Texas and how a series of challenges to the state’s 1871 public carry prohibition indicate that at the time of the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment there was no right to carry a firearm in public without a specific need.

Opinion Editorials

  • April 28, 2020
    Everytown Law
    The fight over whether the Second Amendment requires that gun stores be exempted from generally-applicable COVID-19 business closure orders rages on. In over a dozen lawsuits filed in states from coast to coast, the NRA and others continue to insist that they are entitled to extraordinary, emergency relief to override states’ and localities’ public-health judgments and open gun stores immediately.
  • April 1, 2020
    Everytown Law
    States and localities all over the country have ordered businesses to close as part of broad efforts to minimize person-to-person contact and slow the spread of COVID-19. Not all of those orders apply to firearms and ammunition dealers, but several do. Litigation over a Pennsylvania order has already resulted in one judicial decision. Lawsuits filed by the NRA and its affiliates are also pending in New Jersey and California; additional challenges may follow.
  • February 10, 2020
    Everytown Law
    Stand Your Ground laws provide broad immunity to those who have used force in self defense, even when they could have safely avoided conflict and even (in some states) to those who were initial aggressors. These laws often leave victims and survivors without any recourse in the criminal justice system.
  • February 3, 2020
    Everytown Law
    Stand Your Ground. Line in the Sand. Shoot First. Make My Day. Twenty-six states have passed Stand Your Ground Laws that massively expand traditional self-defense laws. And no matter what you call them, they all have the same effect on the people of the states that pass them: more people will be killed and their killers will walk free.
  • January 30, 2020
    Everytown Law
    On August 4th, 2019, a gunman in Dayton, Ohio used a pistol equipped to fire high-velocity rifle rounds and a 100-round large-capacity magazine to attack a crowded nightclub. Nearby police responded instantly, ending the shooting thirty-two seconds after it began. Despite the heroic efforts of police, in that 32 seconds the gunman killed nine people and shot and injured 17
  • January 27, 2020
    Everytown Law
    The last few months in Virginia have seen many local governments pass resolutions declaring themselves “Second Amendment Sanctuaries.” A close reading of the text of dozens of these resolutions shows they generally have no actual legal effect — and typically are little more than symbolic political gestures. But by confusing Virginians who reside in these counties about their obligations to follow state law (and, conversely, the obligations of local law enforcement officers to enforce state law and protect the safety of all Virginians), these resolutions threaten public safety.