I’ll be teaching an online course: The History of the Second Amendment

 

Hullo, everyone. I’m just popping in to let you all know about an online course I’m teaching early next year called The History of the Second Amendment. It’s with a new startup called Chapter, which noticed that pretty much every course they were offering was either progressive or progressive-adjacent, decided that it didn’t want to become an echo chamber, and so asked me to teach one, too. I suggested the history of the right to keep and bear arms as a topic, they agreed, and here were are.

Chapter describes its system as “like a book club, but way more fun.” Each week, I’ll provide a reading list (which could be articles, reviews, videos, podcasts, or primary source documents), along with insights and tips on each one. There will be a community forum in which you can discuss each topic, as well as a rolling Q&A in which I will answer questions — both on their website and, if the topic warrants it, by video. Because people are busy, everything will be “asynchronous” — that is, you can take part whenever you’re free, rather than at times that are set by me. The course will last four weeks, it will cost $40 (actually: $35 for Ricochet members), and it will run the gamut.

Week One will be on pre-Revolutionary America. We’ll explore how the right to keep and bear arms came over with the colonists from Britain, before making its way into the heart of American law.

Week Two will be on the Founding Era. We’ll ask why the Second Amendment was added to the federal constitution, what were the Founders’ intentions in including it, and what did militias have to do with a right “of the people”?

Week Three will be on the post-Civil War period, during which the Second Amendment took on a new meaning — especially during the era of Jim Crow — and was changed by the 14th Amendment.

Week Four will be on the Second Amendment as it exists today. We’ll cover contemporary American jurisprudence, the Heller decision, and the political rebirth of the right.

The course will start on January 24th, 2022. If it interests you, can sign up here: https://getchapter.app/@cooke/guns. And if it doesn’t? Well, I shall cry into my golf cart batteries. Chapter has agreed to knock $5 off the price for Ricochet members if you use the code RICOCHET when checking out, so if you do sign up, make sure you do that.

Published in History, Law
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There are 45 comments.

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  1. Douglas Pratt Coolidge
    Douglas Pratt
    @DouglasPratt

    Excellent. I’ll have to get in on this…and the Ricochet discount is particularly nice!

    • #1
  2. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    Did you get away from your AR-22 when you moved to Florida?

    • #2
  3. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Neat

    • #3
  4. Charles Cooke Coolidge
    Charles Cooke
    @charlescwc

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Did you get away from your AR-22 when you moved to Florida?

    Well, I kept it, for old time’s sake. But, I have five proper ARs to go along with it now.

    • #4
  5. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    Charles Cooke (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Did you get away from your AR-22 when you moved to Florida?

    Well, I kept it, for old time’s sake. But, I have five proper ARs to go along with it now.

    Five?  I have a regulation 5.56, a 9mm that I built, and a .308 in pieces.  What else is there?

    • #5
  6. Charles Cooke Coolidge
    Charles Cooke
    @charlescwc

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Charles Cooke (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Did you get away from your AR-22 when you moved to Florida?

    Well, I kept it, for old time’s sake. But, I have five proper ARs to go along with it now.

    Five? I have a regulation 5.56, a 9mm that I built, and a .308 in pieces. What else is there?

    I wrote a magazine piece a while back about all the different ways you could build ARs — aesthetically as well as technically — and I went a little overboard during my . . . er, research.

    • #6
  7. JennaStocker Member
    JennaStocker
    @JennaStocker

    Thank you for doing this. Every time a gun issue is presented in the media, it becomes increasingly apparent the near-zero level of firearm education and familiarity. An in-depth study of the history of the Second Amendment is a fantastic place to start — maybe an invitation to CNN should be extended?

    You have been a stalwart defender of citizens’ rights, Mr. Cooke, and for that you deserve applause.

    • #7
  8. Victor Tango Kilo Member
    Victor Tango Kilo
    @VtheK

    JennaStocker (View Comment):
    Thank you for doing this. Every time a gun issue is presented in the media, it becomes increasingly apparent the near-zero level of firearm education and familiarity

    And trying to teach an anti-gun zealot about the Second Amendment is like trying to teach a religious fundamentalist about evolution. 

    • #8
  9. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane
    @LoisLane

    Great!  Can I use the code a couple times so I can get the course to give as a Christmas present?  Or is that greedy?

    • #9
  10. Blue Yeti Admin
    Blue Yeti
    @BlueYeti

    Lois Lane (View Comment):

    Great! Can I use the code a couple times so I can get the course to give as a Christmas present? Or is that greedy?

    You can use the coupon code as many times as you want.

    • #10
  11. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    Charles Cooke: Chapter, which noticed that pretty much every course they were offering was either progressive or progressive-adjacent, decided that it didn’t want to become an echo chamber, and so asked me to teach one, too.

    Outstanding!  How remarkable that they even noticed.  They must be humans.  Then that they were bothered, and did something about it.  One of how many is still better than zero of how many, and that ONE speaks highly of them.

    Great Job, CWC, and great job, Ricochet for getting on this and leveraging it, especially with a repeatable gift coupon.

    See?  I come back, and things just get better!

    • #11
  12. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    EDIT:  Jolly seems to be just a contributor there.  More research — later.

    So… Chapter is run by former Rep David Jolly of Florida, a former Republican (quit the party after losing in 2016 to become an independent) known for being anti-Trump, for gently supporting gay marriage (via libertarian arguments) and for being a leading “bipartisan” ranked member.

    Whatever.  At least his people noticed that the place was setting up on the left and did something about it.  SOunds like he’s setting up something at least useful in general, and doing at least one thing to prevent it from sliding into 100% Wokistan.  Time will tell if this is a token effort or somewhere between here and Damascus.

    • #12
  13. Postmodern Hoplite Coolidge
    Postmodern Hoplite
    @PostmodernHoplite

    OK, I’m in. I’m looking forward to starting the course on 1/24/22.

    (Fair warning…I’m a “2A Absolutist,” and have a bit of a background in this area. I’ll try not to be too much of a “spring-butt.”)

    • #13
  14. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    Postmodern Hoplite (View Comment):

    OK, I’m in. I’m looking forward to starting the course on 1/24/22.

    (Fair warning…I’m a “2A Absolutist,” and have a bit of a background in this area. I’ll try not to be too much of a “spring-butt.”)

    Likewise.  I’ll repress my know-it-all, freedomer-than-thou tendencies in appreciation of the potential new venue for Good Things to spread.

    • #14
  15. EHerring Coolidge
    EHerring
    @EHerring

    Blue Yeti (View Comment):

    Lois Lane (View Comment):

    Great! Can I use the code a couple times so I can get the course to give as a Christmas present? Or is that greedy?

    You can use the coupon code as many times as you want.

    Wow. Solves my problem of what to get someone who  is hard to shop for. 

    • #15
  16. EHerring Coolidge
    EHerring
    @EHerring

    Glad my husband is on ricochet. Now he knows what to get me. Hint hint. 

    • #16
  17. kedavis Inactive
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    I hope there’s something in there about how the 2nd Amendment isn’t just about muskets etc.

    • #17
  18. dukenaltum Inactive
    dukenaltum
    @dukenaltum

    Postmodern Hoplite (View Comment):

    OK, I’m in. I’m looking forward to starting the course on 1/24/22.

    (Fair warning…I’m a “2A Absolutist,” and have a bit of a background in this area. I’ll try not to be too much of a “spring-butt.”)

    Absolutism is the only logical option with a fundamental right.  An authentic second amendment should have no limit on technology.  Misuse of the Right to keep and bear arms should be the only criteria for determining criminality not technology.  In my perfect world, nuclear weapons are covered.    

    • #18
  19. Postmodern Hoplite Coolidge
    Postmodern Hoplite
    @PostmodernHoplite

    dukenaltum (View Comment):

    Postmodern Hoplite (View Comment):

    OK, I’m in. I’m looking forward to starting the course on 1/24/22.

    (Fair warning…I’m a “2A Absolutist,” and have a bit of a background in this area. I’ll try not to be too much of a “spring-butt.”)

    Absolutism is the only logical option with a fundamental right. An authentic second amendment should have no limit on technology. Misuse of the Right to keep and bear arms should be the only criteria for determining criminality not technology. In my perfect world, nuclear weapons are covered.

    Yes, sir! While I am fully aware of all of the logistical challenges that mitigate against the practical reality of a private citizen (or group of citizens) from purchasing, maintaining, operating, and firing an M1A2 Abrams, I hold that any private citizen has the RIGHT to do so. (Basically, “if the Regular Army gots it, we’uns in the militia gots the right to have it, too.”)

    • #19
  20. dukenaltum Inactive
    dukenaltum
    @dukenaltum

    Postmodern Hoplite (View Comment):

    dukenaltum (View Comment):

    Postmodern Hoplite (View Comment):

    OK, I’m in. I’m looking forward to starting the course on 1/24/22.

    (Fair warning…I’m a “2A Absolutist,” and have a bit of a background in this area. I’ll try not to be too much of a “spring-butt.”)

    Absolutism is the only logical option with a fundamental right. An authentic second amendment should have no limit on technology. Misuse of the Right to keep and bear arms should be the only criteria for determining criminality not technology. In my perfect world, nuclear weapons are covered.

    Yes, sir! While I am fully aware of all of the logistical challenges that mitigate against the practical reality of a private citizen (or group of citizens) from purchasing, maintaining, operating, and firing an M1A2 Abrams, I hold that any private citizen has the RIGHT to do so. (Basically, “if the Regular Army gots it, we’uns in the militia gots the right to have it, too.”)

    Before 1860 many of the Artillery and Horse companies in the United States were privately funded and commanded by private citizens.   A free market would develop a weapon to cost effectively defeat a M1A2. Parity is all that is required.     

    • #20
  21. Postmodern Hoplite Coolidge
    Postmodern Hoplite
    @PostmodernHoplite

    dukenaltum (View Comment):
    A free market would develop a weapon to cost effectively defeat a M1A2. Parity is all that is required.

    Yes, this is the real intent of the 2A: Parity of the militias of the several states to effectively counter any potential threat posed by a too-strong Regular army.

    • #21
  22. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    Important point: Just because we have no idea how to stop a tank in door-to-door warfare now doesn’t mean we wouldn’t figure it out swiftly when push comes to shove.  It always depends on the human terrain and the tools available at the moment.

    But if unarmed, we won’t stop a damned thing.

    • #22
  23. kedavis Inactive
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    BDB (View Comment):

    Important oint: Just because we have no idea how to stop a tank in door-to-door warfare now doesn’t mean we wouldn’t figure it out swiftly when push comes to shove. It always depends on the human terrain and the tools available at the moment.

    But if unarmed, we won’t stop a damned thing.

    Wolverines!!!!

    • #23
  24. EHerring Coolidge
    EHerring
    @EHerring

    The left thinks we can beat them with our arms. Why do you think they want gun control? And especially why do you think they hate militias and the AR?

    • #24
  25. Charles Cooke Coolidge
    Charles Cooke
    @charlescwc

    Blue Yeti (View Comment):

    Lois Lane (View Comment):

    Great! Can I use the code a couple times so I can get the course to give as a Christmas present? Or is that greedy?

    You can use the coupon code as many times as you want.

    And you’re highly encouraged to do so!

    • #25
  26. Charles Cooke Coolidge
    Charles Cooke
    @charlescwc

    BDB (View Comment):

    So… Chapter is run by former Rep David Jolly of Florida, a former Republican (quit the party after losing in 2016 to become an independent) known for being anti-Trump, for gently supporting gay marriage (via libertarian arguments) and for being a leading “bipartisan” ranked member.

    Whatever. At least his people noticed that the place was setting up on the left and did something about it. SOunds like he’s setting up something at least useful in general, and doing at least one thing to prevent it from sliding into 100% Wokistan. Time will tell if this is a token effort or somewhere between here and Damascus.

    Just to clarify here: Chapter is not run by David Jolly. He’s just teaching a course on it. It’s run by two guys whose politics I don’t know.

    • #26
  27. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    Charles Cooke (View Comment):

    BDB (View Comment):

    So… Chapter is run by former Rep David Jolly of Florida, a former Republican (quit the party after losing in 2016 to become an independent) known for being anti-Trump, for gently supporting gay marriage (via libertarian arguments) and for being a leading “bipartisan” ranked member.

    Whatever. At least his people noticed that the place was setting up on the left and did something about it. SOunds like he’s setting up something at least useful in general, and doing at least one thing to prevent it from sliding into 100% Wokistan. Time will tell if this is a token effort or somewhere between here and Damascus.

    Just to clarify here: Chapter is not run by David Jolly. He’s just teaching a course on it. It’s run by two guys whose politics I don’t know.

    Oh, good stuff!  I musta been lookig at some bad stuff…

    I just went back to source, but can’t claim to have done due diligence.  He’s the top-listed.  Will edit.

     

    • #27
  28. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    BDB (View Comment):

    Important point: Just because we have no idea how to stop a tank in door-to-door warfare now doesn’t mean we wouldn’t figure it out swiftly when push comes to shove. It always depends on the human terrain and the tools available at the moment.

    But if unarmed, we won’t stop a damned thing.

    This aged well in light of Ukrainians fighting back.  

    • #28
  29. Postmodern Hoplite Coolidge
    Postmodern Hoplite
    @PostmodernHoplite

    BDB (View Comment):

    BDB (View Comment):

    Important point: Just because we have no idea how to stop a tank in door-to-door warfare now doesn’t mean we wouldn’t figure it out swiftly when push comes to shove. It always depends on the human terrain and the tools available at the moment.

    But if unarmed, we won’t stop a damned thing.

    This aged well in light of Ukrainians fighting back.

    Abso-foxtrot-lutely!

    • #29
  30. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Postmodern Hoplite (View Comment):

    BDB (View Comment):

    BDB (View Comment):

    Important point: Just because we have no idea how to stop a tank in door-to-door warfare now doesn’t mean we wouldn’t figure it out swiftly when push comes to shove. It always depends on the human terrain and the tools available at the moment.

    But if unarmed, we won’t stop a damned thing.

    This aged well in light of Ukrainians fighting back.

    Abso-foxtrot-lutely!

    I don’t need to stop all the tanks, I need to stop their supplies. I can’t stop drones, but can I get at the drone operators? How about their families? What about the people issuing the orders? In a sectarian Civil War, all bets are off. Tanks don’t work when the people who grow the food won’t let you have it. 

    • #30
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