Experts Debate Second Amendment’s Effects on Equality, Inequality in the United States

Experts Debate Second Amendment’s Effects on Equality, Inequality in the United States

The right to bear arms is a right many people hold close. Some view the right as integral for self-defense. Yet, others see it as dangerous, particularly as the epidemic of mass shootings and gun violence only seem to get worse with every passing year. “What you have to do is begin to dismantle the system of anti-Blackness that creates Black people as a threat, as the default threat in American society.” —Carol Anderson, Emory University That is what the WDET Book Club is moving its conversation next: the Second Amendment and gun ownership. Detroit Today explores how the notion of owning a gun changed over time, why so many people have historically been left out of gun ownership and what stands in the way of the American people achieving equality concerning the Second Amendment. Listen: Carol Anderson and Randy Barnett debate how the Second Amendment relates to Black Americans. Guests: Carol Anderson is the Charles Howard Candler professor of African American Studies at Emory University. Her latest book is “ The Second: Race and Guns in a Fatally Unequal America .” Anderson says when she looks at the Second Amendment, she focuses on how the fear of an uprising of enslaved people drove the creation of the amendment. “You had in the Virginia constitutional ratification amendment, Patrick Henry and George Mason arguing that the control of a militia that James Madison had put into the Constitution would leave slaveholders defenseless because you could not trust the federal government […]

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