The Second Amendment and States' Rights: A Thought Experiment

19 Pages Posted: 6 Feb 2007 Last revised: 1 Mar 2017


Proponents of the so-called "collective right" model of the Second Amendment often assert that the right to bear arms exists only on the part of state militias, and not as any sort of individual right. Without addressing the merits of that claim, this Article examines the consequences of taking such a view seriously as a matter of constitutional law, and suggests that those consequences might be quite drastic.

Keywords: second amendment, states' rights, militia, firearms, guns, gun control

Suggested Citation

Reynolds, Glenn Harlan and Kates, Don B., The Second Amendment and States' Rights: A Thought Experiment. 36 Wm. & Mary L. Rev. 1737-1768 (1995), Available at SSRN:

Glenn Harlan Reynolds (Contact Author)

University of Tennessee College of Law ( email )

1505 West Cumberland Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37996-1810
United States
865-974-6744 (Phone)

Don B. Kates



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