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Scholarship Highlight: Federal Firearms Crimes, Product Safety Regulations and the Quaker Role in Second Amendment Debates

Posted by on June 1, 2023

In a new article that is forthcoming in the University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, Brandon Beck seeks “to create a holistic framework for thinking about the modern federal approach to firearms by situating it, historically and conceptually, as a fundamentally distinct era within the larger story of federal firearms criminalization.”  Beck separates the […]

The History of North Carolina’s 1879 Concealed Carry Ban: Part II

Posted by on May 26, 2023

This is Part Two in a two-part series on the history of North Carolina’s 1879 concealed carry law.  Part One summarized the historical context and legislative record surrounding the law.  Part Two will address how the law was enforced in one North Carolina county in the decades after it was enacted.   Enforcement of the 1879 […]

The History of North Carolina’s 1879 Concealed Carry Ban: Part I

Posted by on May 24, 2023

Contemporary debates over gun policy often occur in the shadow of history.  As we previously described, the recent debate in the North Carolina legislature over whether to repeal the state’s 1919 law requiring a state-issued permit to purchase a handgun was framed by competing claims about why that law was originally enacted.  Those who supported […]

Student Note Scholarship Highlight: Perspectives on NY’s Concealed Carry Law and a Comparative Evaluation of American and Australian Gun Regulation

Posted by on May 19, 2023

This highlight focuses on recently-published pieces of law student scholarship.  With the end of the academic year, we are going to run a short series highlighting new student notes on firearms-related topics.  First, a note by rising third-year student Morgan Band in the Fordham Law Review evaluates the “Concealed Carry Improvement Act” that New York passed shortly […]

Litigation Highlight: Southern District of Illinois Strikes Down Illinois Assault Weapons and LCM Ban

Posted by on May 17, 2023

On April 28, a judge in the Southern District of Illinois issued a decision in Barnett v. Raoul granting a preliminary injunction of Illinois’ ban on assault weapons and large-capacity magazines (LCMs) enacted earlier this year—the Protect Illinois Communities Act, or PICA.[1]  Two federal judges in the Northern District of Illinois had previously denied motions […]

How Have State Gun Laws Changed Since Bruen?

Posted by on April 28, 2023

In just over ten months since Bruen was decided last June, there has been significant movement on gun regulation at the state level.  On the surface, these developments aren’t all that surprising because they generally track what one would expect given the partisan balance in each state legislature: red states have tended to roll back […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 4/17/23

Posted by on April 17, 2023

On April 6, the federal government filed a petition for certiorari in Cargill v. Garland.  In January, an en banc Fifth Circuit struck down the Trump-era ATF rule prohibiting bump-stock devices after finding that ATF lacked statutory authorization to ban bump stocks because “a bump stock is excluded from the technical definition of ‘machinegun’ set […]

Litigation Highlight: Federal Judge Strikes Down California Law Requiring Certain Safety Features for Handguns

Posted by on April 7, 2023

On March 20, a judge in the Central District of California granted a motion to preliminary enjoin a California law requiring that handguns have certain features before becoming eligible for the roster of handguns permitted to be sold in the state.  The plaintiffs in Boland v. Bonta challenged three specific provisions of California’s Unsafe Handgun […]

Firearms Law and the Decline of Chevron

Posted by on April 5, 2023

The Supreme Court’s 1984 decision in Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. NRDC, Inc. signaled an expanded role for federal agency regulation by generally requiring courts to defer to an agency’s interpretation of an ambiguous federal statute and allowing the executive branch to “make [] policy choices—resolving the competing interests which Congress itself either inadvertently did not […]

Litigation Highlight: Legal Challenges to ATF Rule on Stabilizing Braces

Posted by on March 22, 2023

In January of this year, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) published Final Rule 2021R-08F, “Factoring Criteria for Firearms with Attached ‘Stabilizing Braces.’” The new rule changes the operative definition of “rifle” in the Code of Federal Regulations such that most pistols with attached stabilizing braces (often called “pistol braces”) will now […]

Race, History, and North Carolina’s Handgun Permit Law

Posted by and on March 8, 2023

An effort is currently underway in North Carolina to repeal the state’s requirement that anyone seeking to purchase a handgun first receive a permit from the local sheriff.  The bill passed the house in late February and is on its way to the state senate, but the real question is whether it will garner a […]

Scholarship Highlight: Regulatory Federalism and Firearm Externalities

Posted by on February 20, 2023

Today’s post highlights two new pieces of firearms law scholarship.  First, in a new article forthcoming in the Florida Law Review, Hillel Levin and Timothy Lytton argue that gun industry regulation under PLCAA must accommodate principles of federalism and separation of powers by preserving state autonomy in regulatory choices.  Second, former Center research assistant Noah […]

A Founding-era Analog for Modern Serial Number Requirements

Posted by on February 10, 2023

As Andrew Willinger wrote here recently, in December a federal district court in Indiana rejected a challenge to the federal law, 18 U.S.C. § 922(k), that criminalizes possession of a firearm with the factory-embossed or engraved serial number removed or altered. As Andrew explained, what is particularly noteworthy about the opinion is its rigorous approach […]

Private-Property Default Exceptions, Firearms Training, and Multi-Tiered Licensing

Posted by on January 11, 2023

This post is part of a mini-symposium on “Private Property and the Second Amendment,” which includes Jake Charles’ post Bruen, Private Property & the Second Amendment, and Robert Leider’s post Pretextually Eliminating the Right to Bear Arms through Gerrymandered Property Rules.  Stay tuned for additional response posts that will run on the blog in the […]

Scholarship Highlight: A New Perspective on the Initial Aggressor Doctrine

Posted by on January 5, 2023

In a new article forthcoming in the North Carolina Law Review, Cynthia Lee surveys the current state of the “initial aggressor” doctrine–under which an individual who initiates a violent confrontation loses the right to claim that he or she acted in self defense–and proposes several changes to the doctrine to discourage gun violence and ensure that […]

Pretextually Eliminating the Right to Bear Arms through Gerrymandered Property Rules

Posted by on December 23, 2022

This is a guest post that is part of a mini-symposium on “Private Property and the Second Amendment,” responding to Jake Charles’ earlier post Bruen, Private Property & the Second Amendment.  Stay tuned for additional response posts that will run on the blog in the coming weeks.   When the Supreme Court required public school desegregation […]

Litigation Highlight: Federal Judge Rejects Challenge to Oregon’s Ballot Measure 114, but the Measure is Enjoined by a State Court

Posted by on December 14, 2022

On December 6, a federal judge in the District of Oregon denied a motion for a TRO and preliminary injunction of Oregon’s Ballot Measure 114, a ballot initiative that narrowly passed in the November election.  Measure 114 enacts a permit-to-purchase requirement, mandates safety training, fingerprinting, and a criminal background check to obtain a gun permit, […]

Litigation Highlight: Judge Finds Challenge to Fee-Shifting Provision of New California Law is Not Moot

Posted by on December 9, 2022

On December 1, Judge Roger Benitez[1] of the Southern District of California ruled in Miller v. Bonta that a challenge by gun dealers and gun-rights advocacy groups to the fee-shifting provision in California’s new firearms law is not moot, and permitted the lawsuit to proceed.  California passed S.B. 1327 on July 22.  The law is […]

Litigation Highlight: New York Officials Alleged Ghost Gun Manufacturers Created a Public Nuisance – Now the Settlements Have Started

Posted by on November 23, 2022

On June 29, only six days after the Supreme Court struck down a New York law requiring gun owners to show a special need to carry concealed handguns in public, New York officials filed two civil lawsuits against manufacturers of so-called “ghost guns.” The first lawsuit was filed by the state attorney general, Letitia James, […]

2022 Midterms Gun Watch

Posted by on November 11, 2022

In the same vein as our SCOTUS Gun Watch reports, this post summarizes the results of two major gun-related initiatives that were on the ballot in Tuesday’s midterm elections. Iowa Amendment No. 1 Iowa voters considered a ballot initiative that would add the following provision to the state constitution: The right of the people to […]

Assault Weapon Bans, Grandfathered Guns, and Market Prices

Posted by on August 12, 2022

On July 29, the House of Representatives passed the Assault Weapon Ban of 2022 (HR 1808). The bill would prohibit the sale, import, or possession of new “assault weapons” and large capacity magazines, as defined in the bill.  The definition section includes not only features or components that bring a weapon under the ban, but […]

Empirically Testing Waiting Period Restrictions to Challenge the Underlying Legal Paradigm

Posted by and on July 26, 2022

[This is a guest post based on a paper that was presented at the Center’s 2022 Firearms Law Works-In-Progress Workshop.] Initially, this paper started as a primarily empirical study of the relationship between waiting period restrictions and some outcome variables of interest like per capita suicide and homicide rates. Many states that have a waiting […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 7/18/22

Posted by on July 18, 2022

After the frenzied activity of the past few weeks, the Supreme Court in now in summer recess.  We’ll be doing these posts every other week, instead of every week, through the summer. We’re keeping an eye out for any major developments in the four cases that the Court GVR’ed following Bruen:  Association of New Jersey […]

The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act: What Does the Law Do and How Might It be Impacted by Bruen?

Posted by on July 15, 2022

In the aftermath of tragic mass shootings in Uvalde, Texas, and Buffalo, New York, a bipartisan committee introduced the “Bipartisan Safer Communities Act” (or BSCA) in the Senate on Tuesday, June 21. By week’s end, the bill had passed the Senate. The House of Representatives followed suit on Friday, and the bill was signed into […]

Guns and Banks: New Laws & Policies

Posted by on April 7, 2022

When gun manufacturers or dealers face civil liability for misuse of firearms, the liability costs eventually shift to investors (shareholders or owners), liability insurers, commercial lenders, or creditors (the debts they own now carry more risk), and indirectly to future customers, who may face price increases. Financial institutions (which I will call “banks,” though this […]