rights interpretation appeared in the legal journals.31 During the 1990s, 58 law review articles were published supporting the individual rights model; only 29 favored the collective rights model.32 In fact, some went so far as to suggest that “so great is the new ‘consensus’ about the Second Amendment that ‘much as physicists and cosmologists speak of the Standard Model in terms of the creation and evolution of the Universe’ the individual right model could now be renamed the standard model.”33 One commentator suggests that these three elements motivated the rise of the individual right interpretation: “the mass of individual right literature, the endorsement of five prominent scholars, and the use of the term standard model.”34

Another commentator has summarized recent academic writing on the Second Amendment by noting that of the 34 law review articles substantially discussing the amendment published between 1980 and 1996, only 3 endorsed the states’ rights theory.35 He further noted that the three states’ rights articles were prepared for symposia in which antigun groups were asked to provide their positions; two of these were written by “lobbyists for anti-gun groups” and one by a politician.36 In contrast, that author observed that the individual right interpretation had attracted the support of the majority of academics, including some of the “major figures in constitutional law.”37 Another commentator pointed out, however, that a significant number of the articles supporting the individual right model published between 1970 and 1989 were written by lawyers who had either been employed by or who represented gun rights organizations, including the NRA.38

Of course, the dearth of collective rights scholarship may have been the result of the perceived lack of any need for a defense of this interpretation. According to one commentator, “Until recently, there was little reason for


Carl T. Bogus, The History and Politics of Second Amendment Scholarship: A Primer, 76 Chi.-Kent L. Rev. 3, 8-10 (2000) (citing Robert J. Spitzer, Lost and Found: Researching the Second Amendment, 76 Chi.-Kent L. Rev. 349, 366 (2000)). But see David B. Kopel, The Second Amendment in the Nineteenth Century, 1998 B.Y.U.L. Rev. 1359, 1544-45 (1998) (arguing that nineteenth century commentators and courts agreed that “the core meaning of the Amendment was well-settled”: that it protected an individual right to gun firearms).


Id. at 14 (citing Sptizer, Lost and Found, 76 Chi.-Kent L. Rev. at 377).


Id. at 22 (quoting Glenn Harlan Reynolds, A Critical Guide to the Second Amendment, 62 Tenn. L. Rev. 461, 462 (1995)).


Id. at 23.


See Scott Bursor, Note, Toward a Functional Framework for Interpreting the Second Amendment, 74 Tex. L. Rev. 1125, 1126 n.13 (1996).






Bogus, The History and Politics of Second Amendment Scholarship: A Primer, 76 Chi.-Kent L. Rev. at 8-10 (noting that 16 of the 25 articles supporting the pro-individual right model published between 1970 and 1989—nearly 60 percent—were written by such lawyers).

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