Duke Center for Firearms Law
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About Jake Charles

Center Executive Director and lecturing fellow.  Charles writes and teaches on the Second Amendment and firearms law. His primary academic interests include the theoretical, conceptual, and methodological issues confronting nascent Second Amendment jurisprudence and the immunity and related questions surrounding affirmative litigation against the firearms industry. His scholarship has appeared or is forthcoming in the Virginia Law ReviewNorth Carolina Law Review, and Law & Contemporary Problems, among others.

Written by Jake Charles

Where Are All the Second Amendment Circuit Splits?

Posted by on August 16, 2019

Gun debates are notoriously contentious and controversial, and they seldom lead to consensus. Gun litigation is a different story. In the hundreds of Second Amendment challenges in the federal courts since Heller, there has been surprising judicial agreement. Among federal courts of appeals, there is near-consensus on most questions. There are some noteworthy circuit splits, […]

Common Cause, Clear Standards, and Heller’s Second Amendment

Posted by on August 14, 2019

  In Rucho v. Common Cause, the Supreme Court declared that partisan gerrymandering is a nonjusticiable political issue.  Two factors seem key to the Court’s holding: the difficulty of finding a manageable standard to assess such claims and the thorny expansion of judicial review into an area of deep political controversy. Some of these same […]

Book Mini-Symposium: Guns in Law

Posted by on July 30, 2019

We’re happy to announce another mini-symposium on the blog. This time, we have pieces from the contributors to the book Guns in Law, a collection of articles published this year by the University of Massachusetts Press and edited by Austin Sarat, Lawrence Douglas, and Martha Merrill Umphrey. The contributors will summarize the main themes of […]

The Similar Debates Over Gun Rights and Abortion

Posted by on July 29, 2019

Arguments about the right to keep and bear arms and the right to reproductive autonomy share a number of similarities. And, shortly after Heller, Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson underscored similarities in the how Court’s decisions in Roe and Heller removed controversial political issues from the realm of democratic choice, in what Judge Wilkinson thought improper […]

Hofeld on International Responses to Mass Shootings

Posted by on July 26, 2019

The Minnesota Journal of International Law recently published a comparative paper from Zachary Hofeld, Studying Abroad: Foreign Legislative Responses to Mass Shootings and Their Viability in the United States. From the Introduction (footnotes omitted): As difficult as they are to relive, the horrors of Newtown, Orlando, Las Vegas, and Parkland conceal a horrifying truth: mass […]

Twitter Series: Historical Gun Law a Day

Posted by on July 23, 2019

The Center’s Twitter account—@DukeFirearmsLaw—has been a way for us to get out information about the Center, interesting scholarship and cases, and news about this blog. And we’ve recently started amplifying laws from the Repository of Historical Gun Laws. Through our new hashtag #HistoricalGunLawADay series, we’ve been highlighting one new historical law every single day, showing […]

Litigation Highlight: United States v. Class (D.C. Cir. 2019)

Posted by on July 22, 2019

Last Friday, the D.C. Circuit decided a big Second Amendment case, in which a defendant challenged his conviction for violating the federal law banning firearms on “Capitol Grounds.” In United States v. Class, the panel upheld the regulation against Second Amendment and Due Process challenges. The decision adds important context to the “sensitive places” doctrine […]

Mini-Symposium: Teaching Firearms Law

Posted by on July 8, 2019

Especially since the Supreme Court’s 2008 decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, there has been an increased interest not only in writing about firearms law (check out Joseph’s post here), but in teaching classes on it as well. Our admittedly unscientific evidence—personal experience and conversations with others—suggests that student demand is high, and that […]

Scholarship Highlight: Recent Firearms Law Articles

Posted by on July 3, 2019

In the past few weeks, there’s been some interesting Second Amendment and related firearms law scholarship published. Joseph Blocher highlighted one such paper last week. Here’s a few more that have caught my eye recently.

“A Rogue’s Gallery of Offenses,” Part II: Davis and Law Enforcement

Posted by on July 1, 2019

Last week, I wrote about the Supreme Court’s decision in Rehaif v. United States and how that decision, along with United States v. Davis, produced interesting lineups and may lead to big changes in the enforcement and prosecution of gun crimes. Today, I want to focus on Davis—and what it means for the future.