Firearms Law Workshop Mini-Symposium, Part III: Framing the Second Amendment: Gun Rights, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties

How we label, characterize, and frame constitutional rights matters. In gun rights discourse, advocates and commentators have referred to the Second Amendment as a “collective,” “civic republican,” “individual,” and “fundamental” right. Gun rights advocates have defended the right to keep and bear arms on “law and order” and anti-tyranny grounds, while gun control proponents have urged regulation based on “public health,” “human rights,” and other concerns. These concepts, vocabularies, and frames have significantly influenced how advocates and institutions have debated, interpreted, and enforced the right to keep and bear arms.