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Second Amendment Protections and the Court’s Marginal Deterrence Analysis

Posted by on June 17, 2022

A few weeks ago, Jake Charles raised an important point here when he compared the recent Eleventh Circuit decision in United States v. Jimenez-Shilon with Justice Thomas’ opinion, released the same day in Shinn v. Martinez Ramirez: in contrast to the Eleventh Circuit’s purist text-and-history approach to the Second Amendment, which precludes the invocation of […]

The Myth of the “Massachusetts Model”

Posted by on June 16, 2022

The title of Saul Cornell’s recent blog post—The Myth of Non-enforcement of Gun Laws in Nineteenth Century America—leaves the impression that I will argue that nineteenth-century gun restrictions went unenforced.  I will make no such argument.  In some places, laws regulating the carrying of weapons were enforced strictly.  In others, they were ignored.  Some authorities […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 6/13/22

Posted by on June 13, 2022

In its orders last week, the Court denied cert in the McCloskey’s Second Amendment challenge to their state bar discipline. There’s also one new cert petition based on a license revocation in D.C. Petitions Pending Case Ct. Below Pet. Filed Implicated Law/Issue Status New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen (20-843) 2d Cir. […]

New AALS Section on Firearms Law

Posted by on June 10, 2022

We’re very excited to report a newly approved Section on Firearms Law through the American Association of Law Schools (AALS), which “has the dual responsibility of serving law schools and their deans as their institutional membership organization, and individual law school faculty and administrators as their learned society.” The new  Section, launched just a few […]

Von Lossberg v. State: State Liability for Gun Suicides & the Background Check System

Posted by on June 8, 2022

The Idaho Supreme Court recently held that the state could be held liable in a wrongful death action for negligently failing to add a name to the database used in gun purchase background checks.  In Von Lossberg v. State, the parents of a young man who committed suicide with a gun sued the state, the […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 6/6/22

Posted by on June 6, 2022

We’re down to the last few weeks of SCOTUS opinions and awaiting Bruen any day. The Court has 4 cases it is holding pending Bruen as well, so we will likely see what happens to those soon as well—either the Court takes one or all of them up for plenary review or sends them all […]

Do Mass Shootings Benefit Gun Companies?

Posted by on June 3, 2022

Do gun companies benefit in the wake of mass shootings, such as the one last week in Uvalde, TX?  The answer is a qualified “yes” – but it is a little more complicated than it might seem at first. Answering the question of a company (or industry as a whole) “benefitting” depends on several factors, […]

The Myth of Non-enforcement of Gun Laws in Nineteenth Century America: Evidence vs Ideology in Second Amendment Scholarship

Posted by on June 1, 2022

In his Bruen oral argument, former solicitor general Paul Clement erroneously claimed that there was no evidence of enforcement of restrictive gun laws before the Civil War. The non-enforcement thesis is the latest example of ideology distorting Second Amendment scholarship. Indeed, during the oral argument in Bruen, Justice Breyer took the unusual step of characterizing […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 5/30/22

Posted by on May 30, 2022

At its conference last week, the Supreme Court considered whether to hear Duncan, another challenge to a ban on magazines holding more than 10 rounds. The Court will release orders tomorrow from that conference, but I suspect the case will be held like the similar challenge in ANJRPC. And, since the Court didn’t act on […]

Eleventh Circuit Upholds Federal Firearm Prohibitions For Aliens Unlawfully Present

Posted by on May 27, 2022

On May 23, in United States v. Jimenez-Shilon, the 11th Circuit rejected a Second Amendment challenge to 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(5)(A), which prohibits firearm use or possession by any “alien” who is “illegally or unlawfully in the United States.”  The holding itself is in some ways unremarkable – it joins every other federal circuit court […]

Shinn, Jimenez-Shilon, and the Hierarchy of Rights  

Posted by on May 26, 2022

Earlier this week, in United States v. Jimenez-Shilon, the Eleventh Circuit rejected a Second Amendment challenge to the federal law barring undocumented immigrants from possessing firearms. Dru Stevenson will be guest posting about the case on this blog. But I want to highlight a few aspects of Judge Newsom’s majority and separate concurring opinions—and compare […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 5/23/22

Posted by on May 23, 2022

At conference last week, the Court considered the cert petition in Bianchi, challenging Maryland’s assault weapons ban. Today’s order list has no mention of the case, which signals the Court is likely holding the case pending the outcome in Bruen. This marks the second case in the category of “what arms are protected” (along with ANJRP) that […]

Time To Live: Safer Gun Safes and Smarter Smart Guns

Posted by , and on May 20, 2022

Katrina Brees Tells Her Mother’s Story I know my mom didn’t shoot herself because she wanted to be dead. She did it because she was in unbearable pain and in the throes of a psychiatric episode. My mom, Donna Nathan, loved her life. She loved to dance to Cajun music and The Beatles. She’d grab […]

Ninth Circuit Strikes Down CA’s Law Restricting Young Adult’s Ability To Purchase Rifles

Posted by on May 18, 2022

Last week, in Jones v. Bonta, a split panel of the Ninth Circuit ruled that California’s restriction on rifle purchases by 18- to 20-year olds violates the Second Amendment. The case is a major victory for gun-rights proponents, but that victory is likely to be short-lived. The en banc Ninth Circuit tends to reverse panels […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 5/16/22

Posted by on May 16, 2022

There weren’t any new cert petitions filed this past week, but in its order list this morning, the Court denied cert in the Cassidy and Turner cases. Petitions Pending Case Ct. Below Pet. Filed Implicated Law/Issue Status New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen (20-843) 2d Cir. 17-Dec-20 Challenge to New York’s good […]

Announcing the Center’s New Executive Director

Posted by on May 13, 2022

After serving as the executive director since the Center opened in February 2019, Jake will be joining the faculty of Pepperdine University Caruso School of Law this summer. The Center’s subject-matter experts and founders, faculty co-directors Joseph and Darrell, will continue to oversee the mission and work of the Center, and they recently completed a […]

Scholarship Highlight: New Research and Arguments about the Second Amendment

Posted by on May 11, 2022

There’s been a spate of new Second Amendment scholarship, including a just published piece by the Center’s own Joseph Blocher (with co-author Eric Ruben). There are also a couple of wide-ranging student pieces skeptical about/supportive of different gun regulations. Eric Ruben & Joseph Blocher, “Second-Class” Rhetoric, Ideology, and Doctrinal Change, 110 Geo. L.J. 613 (2022) […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 5/9/22

Posted by on May 9, 2022

Another week with no new relevant cert petitions filed. The Cassidy case—challenging the MA requirement of a permit for home firearm possession—goes to conference this Thursday along with Turner, which challenges trial questioning about firearms. Both are probably unlikely grants, but Cassidy stands a greater chance than Turner, given that the respondents waived the right […]

Text, History, and Tradition: A Workable Test that Stays True to the Constitution

Posted by on May 4, 2022

Last week Professor Charles highlighted the burgeoning legal controversies involving “ghost guns” (homemade firearms that have no serial numbers) to illustrate what he perceives to be problems with a judicial test based on text, history, and tradition (THT). As an advocate of the THT Test, I offered a response, which Professor Charles graciously accepted. I […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 5/2/22

Posted by on May 2, 2022

No new cert petitions this week. But during this next month, we’ll see several responses filed in major cases, including GOA and Morin (in which the Court called for a response, indicating at least some interest among the justices). We are expecting Bruen to come down any day now, since it’s the last case argued […]

Missouri Supreme Court Revives Lawsuit Against State Second Amendment Protection Act

Posted by on April 29, 2022

Missouri enacted what it called a “Second Amendment Protection Act” (SAPA) in 2021. As I’ve written previously about the law, it not only bars state officials’ assistance with the enforcement of federal gun laws, but also purports to nullify some of those laws in the state. The law has faced a number of lawsuits, including […]

Ghost Guns, History, and the Second Amendment

Posted by on April 27, 2022

The Biden Administration recently pushed out a new rule to restrict “ghost guns”—firearms without a serial number. The rule would require that kits for homemade do-it-yourself firearms are manufactured only by federal firearm licensees (FFLs) and that the kit’s frame or receiver be marked with a serial number. It also requires that any FFLs or […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 4/25/22

Posted by on April 25, 2022

No new cert petitions filed this week. The Court had scheduled Morin v. Lyver for conference last Friday, but then asked for a response, which is due May 12. We’re also still waiting for something to happen with Aposhian. Other than that, two pending case have been scheduled for conference and we await Bruen any day […]

A Fascinating New Case on Parking Lot Laws

Posted by on April 22, 2022

In a remarkably interesting decision issued a few weeks back, a federal district court in Kentucky declined to dismiss a lawsuit for wrongful discharge based on Kentucky laws that forbid employers from taking adverse action against employees who store guns in their cars in the company’s lot. In Sheard v. Novo Nordisk, Inc., No. 3:20-CV-152-BJB […]

Exporting Open Carry Bans?

Posted by on April 20, 2022

Many states are becoming territorial about their residents. So territorial, in fact, that at least some legislators are proposing ways to functionally use their state’s criminal code extraterritorially. Proposals to criminalize conduct that facilitates women seeking abortion care outside the state have cropped up in Missouri. Other states target different sorts of conduct they deem […]

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