April 19, 1775. Battles of Lexington and Concord: The American Revolution Begins. Constituting America. Feb. 24, 2020.
The gun guy and illegal militia founder who became President: George Washington. Our first President understood that armed citizens are essential to American freedom. Reason/Volokh Conspiracy. Feb. 17, 2020.
What arms are "common"? Amicus brief challenging California rifle ban. Reason/Volokh Conspiracy. Feb. 12, 2020.
Magazines over 10 rounds were well-known to the Founders. Third Circuit case challenges NJ magazine confiscation statute. Reason/Volokh Conspiracy. Feb. 11, 2020.
El Dilema Republicano. La Razon (Spain). Jan. 31, 2020. Interview.
Nuevo Asalto al Presidente. La Razon (Spain). Jan. 14, 2020. Interview.
Supreme Court should address lower court nullification of the Second Amendment. Scotusblog. Nov. 20, 2019. with Randy Barnett. Nov. 20, 2019.
Worman v. Healey. Cato Institute. Oct. 24, 2019. With Joseph G.S. Greenlee and Ilya Shapiro.
Heller’s Precarious Situation. National Review. Sept. 12, 2019.
Amicus brief on lawsuits against gun manufacturers invokes NY Times v. Sullivan. Courts should stop abusive lawsuits against the First and Second Amendments. Reason, Volokh Conspiracy. Sept. 4, 2019.
Frank Brownell Museum of the Southwest A small and superb firearms museum in northern New Mexico. Reason, Volokh Conspiracy. Aug. 31, 2019.
In US History, the Right to Arms Is Associated With Liberty, Legal Equality; Gun Control Isn’t. Epoch Times. Aug. 21, 2019.
Trump Must Not Break His Promises to Gun-Rights Supporters. He is following in the footsteps of George H. W. Bush, who paid the price for his betrayal. National Review Online. Aug. 16, 2019.
Daisy Airgun Museum. Wholesome Americana in northwest Arkansas. Reason, Volokh Conspiracy. July 23, 2019.
J.M. Davis Arms and Historical Museum. The world's largest public collection of firearms can be found in a Tulsa suburb. Reason, Volokh Conspiracy. July 20, 2019.
In the Media
Colorado gun sales declined for a third straight year in 2019. But is a bump coming in 2020? Sales are still far higher than they were in 2008. Denver Post. Feb. 14, 2020. Sam Tabachnik.
Under Florida's "red flag" law, judges in Broward County almost always issue gun confiscation orders when police ask for them. Reason. Feb. 11, 2020. Jacob Sullum.
Virginia's Pending 'Red Flag' Law Includes Improvements but Still Falls Short of Due Process Again. Reason. Jan. 29, 2020. Jacob Sullum.
Boy, 4, Who Was Accidentally Shot While Play-Wrestling With His Father Has Died: Officials. CNN Wire/NTD News. Jan. 25, 2020. Petr Svab.
Defending The Second Amendment In Virginia. Townhill Finance. Jan 21, 2020. Daniel J. Mitchell.
Denver Man Gives Up His Guns After Agreeing To Colorado's First Extreme Risk Protection Order. Colorado Public Radio. Jan. 15, 2020. Hayley Sanchez.
Kansas bills would block ‘red flag’ orders that require residents to give up guns. Wichita Eagle. Dec. 29, 2019. Jonathan Shorman.
Colorado’s Red Flag Law Goes Into Effect Jan. 1. This Is What People Are Watching For. Colorado Public Radio. Dec. 27, 2019. Hayley Sanchez.
Supreme Court Watchers See Chief Justice as Possible Fifth Vote to Dismiss Major Gun Case. The Trace. Dec. 2, 2018. Jennifer Mascia.
Presidential hopeful Mike Bloomberg lays out national gun control plan in Colorado church. Denver Post. Dec. 5, 2019. John Aguilar.
Supreme Court Won’t Intervene In Connecticut Gunmaker Case, For Now. Cato Institute. Nov. 14, 2019. Walter Olson.
SCOTUS permits Sandy Hook parents to sue gunmaker. Conservative Review. Nov. 12, 2019. Nate Madden.
Opponents of Prop CC Argue that Colorado Needs to Change Its Budget “Priorities.” But How? Colorado Times Recorder. Nov. 6, 2019. Jason Salzman.
Television, Radio, Podcasts
Colorado Inside Out. Mar. 6, 2020. Full episode. Presidential race; Elizabeth Warren says "Kill it" to Bloomberg campaign. Tax consumer lobby proposes 2 billion tax increase. Crazy Denver councilwoman Candi CdeBaca and coronavirus. Disgrace and something nice: RTD axes widely-used buses for sports fan; Tulsi Gabbard soldiers on, while DNC changes rules to exclude her from debates.
Colorado Inside Out. Feb. 28, 2020. Full episode. Vagrants trashing Union Station public spaces. Super Tuesday preview. Legislature repeals death penalty. Paid leave mandate would devastate small business. Denver International Airport’s ingominious 25th anniversary. Disgrace and something nice: Communist China and Iran spread coronavirus; broadban speeds zoom since end of "net neutrality."
Colorado Inside Out. Feb. 14, 2020. Full episode. Denver City Council votes to relegalize licensed "pit bulls." NH primary ends Michael Bennett's presidential bid. State legislature bill aims at private prisons. Allowing males to compete in women's sports is cheating and violates Title IX. Disgrace and something nice: Joe Biden's career of malarky; new offices for Westword.
Colorado Inside Out. Feb. 7, 2020. Full episode. DIA 25th anniversary. State of the Union childishness. Iowa caucus debacle. Colo. legislators working to drive more small businesses out of businesses. Disgrace and something nice.
Colorado Inside Out. Jan. 31, 2020. Full episode. Sen. Cory Gardner votes against calling witnesses for impeachment trial. Problems with reporting of oil and gas severance taxes. Legislative bill to change RTD governance; RTD hires new interim director. Supreme Court lifts nationwide preliminary injunction against regulation to close loophole allowing immigrants to collect welfare. Disgrace and something nice.
David B. Kopel discusses the SCOTUS and the right to bear arms on Lawline. Excerpt from continuing legal education program. Nov. 27, 2019.
Gun Fight: Does the 2nd Amendment stand test of time? KRDO-TV, Colorado Springs. Nov. 19, 2019. Krystal Story.
Gun Fight: What defines an "assault weapon"? KRDO-TV, Colorado Springs. Nov. 19, 2019. Josh Helmuth.
Colorado Insisde Out. July 5, 2019. Full episode. Time machine 1923. The cast goes back in time to discuss the KKK, Denver Mayor Stapleton, alcohol prohibition, and much more. Patty Calhoun as Emily Griffith, Dave Kopel as future Governor and Senator "Big Ed" Johnson, and more. Meet the panel. Denver sheds its cowtown image. Benjamin Stapleton is Elected Mayor of Denver. Prohibition Takes a Tenuous Hold in Colorado. Jazz Sweeps the Country with Colo. Roots.
Latest Monographs & Journal articles
Antecedents of the Second Amendment. Supplemental online chapter 16 to Firearms Law and the Second Amendment: Regulation, Rights, and Policy (Wolters Kluwer, 2d ed. 2017). With Nicholas J. Johnson, George
Mocsary and Gregory Wallace. Covers ancient China, Greece, Rome, the Judeo-Christian tradition, and European political philosophy.
Federal Circuit Second Amendment Developments 2018. 7 Lincoln Memorial University Law Review (forthcoming 2019). With Joseph G.S. Greenlee.
The Second Amendment Rights of Young Adults. 43 Southern Illinois University Law Journal 495 (2019). With Joseph G.S. Greenlee.
The 'Sensitive Places' Doctrine: Locational Limits on the Right to Bear Arms. 13 Charleston Law Review 205 (2018).
History and Tradition in Modern Circuit Cases on the Second Amendment Rights of Young People. 43 Southern Illinois University Law Journal 119 (2018). With Joseph G.S. Greenlee.
Defining "Assault Weapons." The Regulatory Review (Univ. of Pennsylvania). Nov. 14, 2018.
Data Indicate Second Amendment Underenforcement. 68 Duke Law Journal Online 79 (2018). Problems in the Second, Fourth, and Ninth Circuits.
The Colorado Constitution's No Aid to Sectarian Institutions Clause and Its Impact on Civil Rights. Colorado Special Advisory Committee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights. Sept. 2018.
Federal Circuit Second Amendment Developments 2017-2018. Texas State Bar Association. Firearms Law Seminar. 2018. With Joseph Greenlee.
The Right to Arms in Nineteenth Century Colorado. 95 Denver University Law Review 329 (2018).
In the Courts and Congress
Rupp v. Becerra. No. 19-56004. 9th Circuit. Feb. 3, 2020. Amicus brief of Firearms Policy Coalition/Foundation, Second Amendment Foundatoin, Madison Society Foundation, California Gun Rights Foundation, and Independence Institute. By any standard, the semiautomatic firearms banned by California are in "common use," and therefore they may not be prohibited.
Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs v. Attorney General or New Jersey. No. 19-3142. 3d Circuit. Feb. 3, 2020. Amicus brief of Professors of Second Amendment Law, Firearms Policy Coalition/Foundation, Madison Society Foundation, California Gun Rights Foundation, and Independence Institute. Repeating firearms predate the Second Amendment by two centuries; by the time of the Second Amendment, repeaters holding more than 10 rounds were well established. Accordingly, New Jersey's confiscation of all such magazines is unconstitutional.
Worman v. Healey. No. 19-404. U.S. Supreme Court. Oct. 24, 2019. Cert. petition amicus brief. Massachusetts ban on common arms violates Supreme Court precedent. The Supreme Court should bring order to the conflicting lower cases about bans on common arms.
Espinoza v. Montana Dept. of Revenue. No. 18-1195. U.S. Supreme Court. Sept. 18, 2019. Merits amicus brief. Many state constitutions, including Montana's, prohibit government aid to "sectarian" educational institutions. According to the original meaning, on the nineteenth century, "sectarian" did not refer to religion in general, but only to religions that were considered extreme, heretical, fanatical, or bad.
Remington v. Soto. No. 19-168. U.S. Supreme Court. Sept. 4, 2019. Amicus brief of Professors of Second Amendment law, Cato Institue, Firearms Policy Coalition, Firearms Policy Foundation, California Gun Rights Foundation, Madison Foundation. and Independence Institute. Appendix of professor biographies.
RMGO v. Polis. No. 2018SC817. June 3, 2019. Colorado Supreme Court. Amicus brief of Colorado Law Enforcement Firearms Instructors Association, 32 County Sheriffs, and the Independence Institute. The ban on magazines over 15 rounds harms public safety and law enforcement. Motion for leave to file amicus brief.
People v. Vivian Claudine Brown. (Ill. 2019). Amicus brief on behalf of State’s Attorneys Stewart J. Umholtz and Brandon J. Zanotti, Professors Of Second Amendment Law, Firearms Policy Coalition, Firearms Policy Foundation, Citizens Committee For The Right To Keep And Bear Arms, Millennial Policy Center, Independence Institute, and Carlisle Moody. Illinois FOID licensing law for firearms possession cannot be applied to peaceable possession of a lawful gun on one's own property by a person who is not prohibited from owning guns.
New York State Rifle and Pistol Association v. New York City. No. 28-280. May 14, 2019. Amicus brief for Professors of Second Amendment law, Second Amendment Foundation, Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership, Millennial Policy Center, and Independence Institute. Appendix of professor biographies. The Second Circuit upheld New York City's ban on licensed handgun owners taking their handguns out of the City. The ban is contrary to good practices for safety training. The doctrinal errors found in the Second Circuit decision are prevalent in other circuits, demonstrating the need for further guidance from the Supreme Court.
U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, written testimony on "Red Flag Laws: Examining Guidelines for State Action." Hearing on mental health and gun legislation. Kopel starts at 31:36. March 26, 2019. Supplemental Questions for the Record, from Sen. Grassley.
Pena v. Horan. Cert. petition. No. 18-843. Feb. 1, 2019. Amicus brief for Second Amendment law professors, Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, Mountain States Legal Foundation, Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership, Independence Institute, and Millennial Policy Center. California's "microstamping" mandate creates a de facto ban on all new models of semiautomatic pistols. The Ninth Circuit opinion uphold the ban was based on speculation and refusal to consider the plaintiffs' evidence.
Mance v. Whitaker. Cert. petition. No. 18-663. Dec. 20, 2018. Amicus brief for Second Amendment law professors, Independence Institute, and Millennial Policy Center. Challenge to federal ban on interstate handgun sales between consenting states. Argues that Court should take the case to explicate the proper test for Second Amendment challenges, due to conflicts in the lower courts, and nullification of the Second Amendment in some courts.
U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. Dec. 6, 2017. Written testimony on: Bill to ban bump stocks and some gunsmithing. S 1916; Fix NICS Act, S. 2135; Bill to allow indefinite delays in background checks, S. 1923; interstate carry reciprocity, S. 446. Video of testimony (Kopel starts at 2:31:28). Written responses to Questions for the Record for Sen. Grassley.