The Second: Race and Guns in a Fatally Unequal America by Carol Anderson
I first learned about this book on NPR. It is an essential read! Most Americans who rally for the second amendment are not aware of its history. As Carol Anderson points out, the Second Amendment was initially created to protect the rights of state militias. Why? Because those militias hunted down escaped slaves and committed massacres against the black community amongst other nefarious deeds.
The Second Amendment also is not applied equally. White people often use the Second Amendment as an excuse to brandish weapons and even kill minorities and they do so often without consequence. However, an armed black person elicits a massive response from white police. Even the hint a black person might have a weapon can get them killed.
Carol Anderson convincingly argues that the second amendment isn’t about guns, it’s about anti-blackness.
Take the time to read this book today! Click on the link below:
From the New York Times bestselling author of White Rage, an unflinching, critical new look at the Second Amendment–and how it has been engineered to deny the rights of African Americans since its inception.
In The Second, historian and award-winning, bestselling author of White Rage Carol Anderson powerfully illuminates the history and impact of the Second Amendment, how it was designed, and how it has consistently been constructed to keep African Americans powerless and vulnerable. The Second is neither a “pro-gun” nor an “anti-gun” book; the lens is the citizenship rights and human rights of African Americans.
From the seventeenth century, when it was encoded into law that the enslaved could not own, carry, or use a firearm whatsoever, until today, with measures to expand and curtail gun ownership aimed disproportionately at the African American population, the right to bear arms has been consistently used as a weapon to keep African Americans powerless–revealing that armed or unarmed, Blackness, it would seem, is the threat that must be neutralized and punished.
Throughout American history to the twenty-first century, regardless of the laws, court decisions, and changing political environment, the Second has consistently meant this: That the second a Black person exercises this right, the second they pick up a gun to protect themselves (or the second that they don’t), their life–as surely as Philando Castile’s, Tamir Rice’s, Alton Sterling’s–may be snatched away in that single, fatal second. Through compelling historical narrative merging into the unfolding events of today, Anderson’s penetrating investigation shows that the Second Amendment is not about guns but about anti-Blackness, shedding shocking new light on another dimension of racism in America.