Several high-profile cases have revived and reshaped the debate over Americans’ right to bear arms. Most recently, the Supreme Court in 2008’s District of Columbia v. Heller struck down a law banning handguns in the nation’s capitol. But the battle has been going on for centuries. And no wonder – the language of the amendment itself, historian Adam Winkler reminds us, is “maddeningly ambiguous.” Gun control laws have been enacted and retracted, with varying degrees of success, from colonial times until now. In his new book, Winkler takes us on an historical journey of gun rights and restrictions, starting with the founding fathers, continuing through the Wild West, Prohibition, the Black Panther Movement, the Brady Bill and up to the present. In doing so, he illuminates our country’s long and fiery dance around the Second Amendment, as well as the social, racial and other factors that have divided our nation over this locked and loaded issue.
Adam Winkler is a professor of Constitutional Law at the UCLA School of Law and author of Gunfight: The Battle Over the Right to Bear Arms in the United States. (2011 W.W. Norton & Company). His book takes a profound middle-of-the-road position, detailing the importance of the right to bear arms throughout American history, while also showing how that right has been balanced with laws to enhance gun safety since the founding era. His writings have been cited by the Supreme Court of the United States, as well as lower courts. Winkler is a frequent contributor to The Huffington Post and The Daily Beast. His commentary and opinion pieces have been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, The New Republic, the Los Angeles Times, CNN, National Public Radio, The Tavis Smiley Show, and The National Law Journal. Adam Winkler is the youngest son of Academy-Award winning producer Irwin Winkler (Rocky, Raging Bull, Goodfellas). You can join him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter at @AdamWinkler.
Also joining BROADSIDED is Ladd Everitt, Director of Communications for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence. Coalition members include religious organizations, child welfare advocates, public health professionals, and social justice organizations. The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence (CSGV) seeks to secure freedom from gun violence through research, strategic engagement and effective policy advocacy. Among the issues his organization addresses are: gun show loopholes, microstamping, conceal and carry laws and assault weapons.
In this position, Ladd is responsible for developing and managing a wide range of communications activities in support of the organization’s overall mission.
Program Note: This is not the first time these two gentlemen have locked horns on the issues of guns. For a video of a recent meeting between them and a look at what Ladd Everitt had to say about it, click HERE. All very polite, but these two men are at odds on many aspects of the issue. An interesting read…
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