Private Arms and Civil Unrest: Lessons from the Black Freedom Movement

37 Pages Posted: 5 Nov 2020 Last revised: 10 Nov 2020

Date Written: November 1, 2020

Abstract

The turmoil of 2020 amplifies the American conversation about the utility and legitimacy of firearms during periods of civil unrest. This article engages that conversation through the lens of the Black American experience. The principles drawn from this treatment help frame a sphere of legitimate gun use during periods of civil unrest and underscore the enduring importance of firearms as a resource for individuals whom the state cannot protect. These principles emerge from a considered philosophy and practice of arms developed by a people who have a long history of confronting violent threats that the state has been unable or unwilling to stop.

Keywords: guns, civil unrest, civil rights

Suggested Citation

Johnson, Nicholas James, Private Arms and Civil Unrest: Lessons from the Black Freedom Movement (November 1, 2020). Liberty & Law Center Research Paper No. 20-09, Fordham Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 3723039, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3723039 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3723039

Nicholas James Johnson (Contact Author)

Fordham University School of Law ( email )

140 West 62nd Street
New York, NY 10023
United States

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