The chronologically arranged set begins with Colonial laws regulating firearms, then proceeds through debates regarding the Second Amendment and laws that prohibited slaves from possessing guns. The use and regulation of firearms in the "Wild West" is explored, as is the era of Prohibition and organized crime in the 1930s. Later chapters cover the impact of 1960s-era racial and political violence and assassinations on gun laws and attitudes; the struggles over gun control and gun rights in the Reagan, Bush, and Clinton administrations; the increased clout of the NRA during the Bush administration; and the impact of events ranging from the Sandy Hook Massacre to the Supreme Court's District of Columbia v. Heller decision. Documents include laws, speeches, court decisions, Congressional debates, and more, giving college students and other interested readers the opportunity to evaluate each document—and each period—for themselves.
This accessible book breaks the gun control debate into digestible topics: history, effectiveness, comparison with other industrialized countries, legislation and court cases, individuals and organizations, and reliable further resources. Readers seeking confirmation of their preconceptions will be disappointed; those looking for a thorough presentation of all the issues will be richly rewarded.
“When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.”
“An armed society is a polite society.”
Who hasn't heard these engaging assertions, time and time again? Burned into the national consciousness by years of targeted, disciplined messaging by the National Rifle Association and others, they are just a few of the bumper-sticker slogans that have defined the gun control debate in America. Long ridiculed by gun control advocates, they are the first words that come to mind for most Americans when the gun issue is discussed.
This is the first book both to acknowledge the profound and deadly impact of the gun lobby's bumper-sticker logic on the gun control debate and to systematically expose the misguided thinking at the core of the pro-gun slogans. Indeed, the author contends that the gun lobby's remarkable success in blocking passage of lifesaving gun laws is the result, in large part, of its relentless and effective use of these simple and resonant messages. Their persuasive power has been a largely ignored influence on the current politics of gun control, in which the gun lobby wields unprecedented power in the Republican Party, while many Democratic Party leaders see the policy benefits of stronger gun laws as not worth the political risk of standing up to the NRA. The book contends that the current political stalemate over guns will never be broken until the pro-gun slogans are exposed as the cleverly disguised fallacies that they are.
Rich with details about the rhythms of daily life in the mid-twentieth-century South, The Best of Enemies offers a vivid portrait of a relationship that defied all odds. By placing this very personal story into broader context, Osha Gray Davidson demonstrates that race is intimately tied to issues of class, and that cooperation is possible--even in the most divisive situations--when people begin to listen to one another.
What is happening to the sea turtle, and how can it be stopped? In this fascinating scientific detective story, Osha Gray Davidson tracks the fervent efforts of the extraordinary and often quirky scientists, marine biologists, veterinarians, and others racing against the clock to unravel a complicated biological and environmental puzzle and keep the turtles from extinction. He follows the fates of particular turtles, revealing their surprisingly distinct personalities and why they inspire an almost spiritual devotion in the humans who come to know them. He also explores through vivid historical anecdotes and examples the history of man's relationship to the sea, opening a window onto the role played by humans in the increasing number of marine die-offs and extinctions.
Beautifully written, intellectually provocative, Fire in the Turtle House reveals how emerging diseases wreaking havoc in the global ocean pose an enormous, direct threat to humanity. This is science journalism at its best.