Murder, Self-Defense, and the Right to Arms

23 Pages Posted: 29 Jun 2014

Date Written: July 1, 2013


Despite being well aware of crime and uprisings, the framers of the Bill of Rights made a policy decision to guarantee a constitutional right to keep and bear arms, a constitutional right that “shall not be infringed.” Courts should not ignore the policy decision of the framers, and courts should not supplant the framers’ policy decision with their own. Empirical research shows that there is no gun control measure that has reduced murder, violent crime, suicide, or gun accidents. Thus, even under intermediate scrutiny, the government cannot prove that there is a reasonable fit between its objective of applying a gun control law to all people — both law-abiding and non-law-abiding — and its governmental justification to reduce crime.

Keywords: Second Amendment

Suggested Citation

Kates, Don B. and Beard, Alice Marie, Murder, Self-Defense, and the Right to Arms (July 1, 2013). Connecticut Law Review, Vol. 45, No. 5, 2013, Available at SSRN:

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