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SAGE Publications

Cover Image: The Politics of Gun Control, 4th Edition
  • Date: 07/16/2007
  • Format: Print Paperback
  • Price: $41.00
  • ISBN: 978-0-87289-417-4
  • Pages: 174
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The Politics of Gun Control, 4th Edition
Robert J. Spitzer, SUNY Cortland


The Politics of Gun Control is a gem: the unique case study that delves into a controversial topic students know something about--or at least have an opinion on--while raising important issues and questions about how the American political system works. Now in its fourth edition, this authoritative and fair-minded analysis of the gun control debate in the United States analyzes every important aspect of the controversy, including its history; the Constitutional right to bear arms; the criminological consequences of guns; and the role and impact of American governing institutions, interest groups, political parties, public opinion, and more.

This fourth edition incorporates new research on the pro-gun control movement, the lapse of the assault weapons ban, Congress’s enactment of liability protection for gun manufacturers, and renewed efforts to expand gun carrying and gun use at the state level, including, most importantly, the enactment of “shoot first” laws in over a dozen states. Whether it is used in American politics or public policy courses, this case study provides an engaging and clear-minded look at one of the most enduringly contentious and compelling issues in American politics.

Formats Available from CQ Press
ISBN: 978-0-87289-417-4 Format: Print Paperback Retail Price: $41.00 Price to Bookstores: $32.80
New to this Edition
This fourth edition incorporates new research on the pro-gun control movement, the lapse of the assault weapons ban, Congress’s enactment of liability protection for gun manufacturers, and renewed efforts to expand gun carrying and gun use at the state level, including, most importantly, the enactment of “shoot first” laws in over a dozen states. Whether it is used in American politics or public policy courses, this case study provides an engaging and clear-minded look at one of the most enduringly contentious and compelling issues in American politics.
Previous Editions
3rd Edition ©2004

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Washington, DC 20037
Table of Contents

1. Policy Definition and Gun Control
Regulation, Public Order, and Public Policy
Guns and Regulation
The Gun Controversy
The Gun Culture
Policy Gridlock
Social Regulatory Policy Analysis

2. The Second Amendment: Meaning, Intent, Interpretation, and Consequences
Historic Roots
The Constitution
The Bill of Rights
The Militia Transformed
Supreme Court Rulings
Other Court Rulings
The Textbook Bill of Rights
Conclusion

3. The Criminological Consequences of Guns
America and Violence
Choice of Weapons
Homicide and Malicious Injury
Suicide
Accidents
Self-Defense
Guns and School Violence
Extending the “Castle Doctrine” to America’s Streetsv Conclusion

4. Political Fury: Gun Politics
Single-Issue Gun Groups: The NRA
Explaining the NRA’s Effectiveness
The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
The Million Mom March
The Gun Control Movement’s Strategic Blunders
The Political Balance and the Invincibility Myth
Public Opinion
Political Parties and Guns
Conclusion

5. Institutions, Policymaking, and Guns
Early Legislative Efforts
The Gun Control Act of 1968
The Firearms Owners Protection Act of 1986
The Tide Turns: The Assault Weapons Ban
The Brady Bill
The Post-Columbine Reaction
Lawsuit Protection for Gun Manufacturers
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms
Conclusion: Furious Politics, Marginal Policy

6. Gun Policy: A New Framework
Federalism: The Great Regulation Dilemma
Gun Policy Alternatives
The Barriers to Gun Control
The Security Dilemma
The Security Dilemma and the Gun Debate
Nonproliferation and Arms Control

Testimonials

“I believe that this is the best text on policymaking in a particular area currently in print. The Politics of Gun Control does an excellent job of introducing undergraduates to the policy area in a way that engages them and facilitates the development of their critical and analytical abilities.”

- Patrick Pierce, St. Marys College
Bio(s)
Robert J. Spitzer, SUNY Cortland

Robert J. Spitzer is Distinguished Service Professor of Political Science at the State University of New York College at Cortland. He is the author of eleven books, and a frequent contributor to many media outlets including the Today Show, Good Morning America, NewsHour With Jim Lehrer, CNN, ABC Nightly News, BBC, CBC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Time magazine, and The Christian Science Monitor, among others.

Sample Pages