January 02, 2013 Articles

Book Review: Firearms Law and the Second Amendment: Regulation, Rights, and Policy

We review the very first law-school textbook covering the Second Amendment.

By Bobbie K. Ross – January 2, 2013

Nicholas J. Johnson, David B. Kopel, George A. Mocsary, and Michael P. O'Shea
Firearms Law and the Second Amendment: Regulation, Rights, and Policy 
Aspen Publishers

Second Amendment jurisprudence and the practice area of firearms law have become much more intriguing to lawyers at all levels of experience, law students, and even legal-minded laypersons—especially after the Supreme Court’s decisions in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008) and McDonald v. City of Chicago, 130 S. Ct. 3020 (2010). In Heller, the Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment conferred an individual right to keep and bear arms. In McDonald, the high court held that the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms is a fundamental individual civil right fully applicable to the states through the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

The idea of individuals litigating firearms-related cases without having any sort of firearms background—or having never even fired a firearm—is somewhat of a scary idea. These cases have the potential to affect one of our most important civil rights. It is a frightful concept indeed to have people litigating firearms with little to no understanding of how they work. Thankfully, law-school professors Nicholas J. Johnson (Fordham University School of Law), David B. Kopel (University of Denver School of Law), George A. Moscary (University of Connecticut School of Law), and Michael P. O’Shea (Oklahoma City University School of Law) have stepped in to fill that void of knowledge concerning firearms and the laws surrounding them with their textbook, Firearms Law and the Second Amendment: Regulation, Rights, and Policy.

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