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Gunfight : the battle over the right to bear…
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Gunfight : the battle over the right to bear arms in America (original 2011; edition 2011)

by Adam Winkler (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1154177,669 (3.54)6
"Author Adam Winkler, a professor of Constitutional law, uses the landmark 2008 case District of Columbia v. Heller, which invalidated a law banning handguns in the nation's Capitol, as a springboard for a historical narrative of America's four-centuries-long political battle over gun control and the right to bear arms. From the Founding Fathers and the Second Amendment to the origins of the Ku Klux Klan, ironically as a gun control organization, the debate over guns has always generated controversy. Whether examining the Black Panthers' role in provoking the modern gun rights movement or Ronald Reagan's efforts to curtail gun ownership, Winkler weaves together the dramatic stories of gun rights advocates and gun control lobbyists, providing often unexpected insights into the venomous debate that now cleaves our nation"--Provided by publisher.… (more)
Member:mjarsulic
Title:Gunfight : the battle over the right to bear arms in America
Authors:Adam Winkler (Author)
Info:New York : W. W. Norton & Company, 2011.
Collections:Kindle-new, Your library, Read
Rating:****
Tags:law

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Gunfight: The Battle over the Right to Bear Arms in America by Adam Winkler (2011)

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Showing 4 of 4
This 2016 book takes as its premise that there is a strong constitutional basis for an individual right to bear arms in self-defense, and that there would be due to dozens’ of states’ constitutions even without the Second Amendment. That said, Winkler aims to discomfit both “gun nuts” and “gun grabbers” by arguing that this individual right was historically consistent with substantial amounts of regulation, including universal gun registration and even—in the supposedly Wild West—requirements that cowboys coming into town surrender their guns to the sheriff while they were in town. In 2018, I can’t share Winkler’s hope that the Supreme Court’s decision affirming an individual right will calm “gun nuts” down enough for them to agree to sensible, historically grounded regulations, even if gun sales have dropped now that a black man is no longer president. ( )
  rivkat | Apr 11, 2018 |
Uneven look at the issues of guns in the US. I had high hopes for the book. I saw this cited in a newspaper and thought it sounded like an intriguing book. I wasn't expecting to have my mind changed or anything like that, but it seemed like a good history to read.
 
Unfortunately, that's not it. While there's fascinating and interesting information, the book was really tedious. The reviews that call this "highly readable" or similar are puzzling, because I did not feel that way at all. Sometimes the text is interesting (such as relating individual anecdotes or the history of the NRA) and sometimes some of it is really not, such as descriptions of court cases or what seems like tangential rambles.
 
Also think he tries a bit too hard to be "moderate." There's stuff to offend those who are pro gun freedom and pro gun control. But I've seen several reviews that question the historical accuracy of his work. I'm not 100% sure what to think, other than this book really didn't feel like the super approachable text for a layman it was advertised to be.
 
If you're into reading up on the Second Amendment and Supreme Court case arguments, this might be a good read. Otherwise, I'd skip it.
 
  ( )
  HoldMyBook | Feb 11, 2018 |
Probably the single best book on the tangled history of gun ownership and gun regulation in the United States. There's plenty here to upset and offend extremists on both ends of the question. Winkler makes it clear that America has a long history of gun ownership AND gun regulation, and until the 1960s, no one thought the two ideas conflicted in any way. ( )
  BruceCoulson | Dec 30, 2013 |
Very helpful overview of the history of gun ownership and gun regulation in the U.S. I learned a lot about both sides of the debate. I especially like the way he weaves the Heller vs. Washington D.C. case throughout the book. His final chapter provides an excellent summary of where the debate currently stands. Everyone who feels passionately about this issue, regardless of which side they are on, would benefit from reading Winkler's treatment. ( )
  dreding | Mar 26, 2013 |
Showing 4 of 4
Adam Winkler's "Gunfight" is a potboiler of constitutional interpretation and is both a vital history and an intellectually satisfying, emotionally rewarding tale of a great case.
 
This is an engaging and provocative legal drama about the six-year courtroom journey of District of Columbia v. Heller and a fascinating survey of the misunderstood history of guns and gun control in America.
 
Such passages provide the reader with some illuminating historical perspective and try to project a balanced kind of reasonableness on the part of the author. But Mr. Winkler, who teaches at the University of California, Los Angeles, tries too hard in these pages to present himself as one of the few rational voices in a debate he says is dominated by hard-liners and hotheads on both sides.
 
Mr. Winkler could have avoided these topics, as most liberals have, but he didn’t; as a result, I respected him - until I read “Gun Fight.”
 
Although the structure is formulaic, and the feisty-lawyers-taking-on-the-establishment theme is stale, Winkler writes entertainingly. The book is occasionally glib but never dull.
 
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To Melissa, for her enduring inspiration; and to Danny, for her smile.
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Jason McCrory and Dan Mott were the first in line.  It was early Sunday evening, and McCrory pulled his rabbit fur hat tight around his ears to...
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"Author Adam Winkler, a professor of Constitutional law, uses the landmark 2008 case District of Columbia v. Heller, which invalidated a law banning handguns in the nation's Capitol, as a springboard for a historical narrative of America's four-centuries-long political battle over gun control and the right to bear arms. From the Founding Fathers and the Second Amendment to the origins of the Ku Klux Klan, ironically as a gun control organization, the debate over guns has always generated controversy. Whether examining the Black Panthers' role in provoking the modern gun rights movement or Ronald Reagan's efforts to curtail gun ownership, Winkler weaves together the dramatic stories of gun rights advocates and gun control lobbyists, providing often unexpected insights into the venomous debate that now cleaves our nation"--Provided by publisher.

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