Professor Adam Winkler, a Second Amendment scholar and expert on gun history and gun policy issues, has contributed to and been widely sought after by national media to provide comment after a mass shooting in Las Vegas on October 1, 2017 left 58 people dead and nearly 500 wounded.
Addressing the issue of gun deaths, Winkler wrote an op-ed for the Los Angeles Times, arguing that public discourse on gun violence and gun control in the U.S. needs to shift away from discussions about mass shootings to look at day-to-day gun violence. He also wrote an essay for the New York Review of Books, in which he asserts that the National Rifle Association has gained influence by “selling an extreme, no-compromise’ interpretation of the Second Amendment. An article he contributed to The Atlantic explains why the Supreme Court won’t impact gun rights.
As a guest on Face the Nation, Winkler discussed how to address gun control effectively, while on National Public Radio he talked about why other developed countries that are peers to the U.S. – which has the highest rate of gun ownership in the world – have fewer mass shootings, even with high rates of gun ownership. In a Bloomberg Q&A, he offers insight on whether we’ve reached a watershed in the debate over the Second Amendment.
Interviewed on various issues related to gun rights and gun control, Winkler was quoted by TIME on the source of the NRA’s power and The New Republic in a discussion about the National Rifle Association’s new strategy for growth, which includes launching its own video streaming service. He spoke to CBS This Morning about “bump stocks,” an adaptive device used to accelerate the gun fire of a semi-automatic weapon, and NBC about a potential push by Senate Republicans to make bump stocks illegal.
“No constitutional rights are absolute,” Winkler told The Huffington Post on the potential for courts to restrict gun rights. “And the court will generally allow laws to burden rights where the government has compelling reasons to do so, and protecting human life is the most compelling of reasons.”
The Washington Post interviewed Winkler for several articles, one on gun ownership and the history of the NRA, and another on the District of Columbia weighing the possibility of asking the Supreme Court to review a U.S Court of Appeals ruling that struck down the city’s restrictions on carrying concealed guns. “The NRA throughout its history had been moderate on the issue of guns,” Winkler said in a third article about how the NRA’s extreme-right view today is a change from years past.
Talking to The Atlantic, Winkler acknowledged the uniqueness of mass shootings that makes them a very challenging problem to solve.
Additionally, Winkler spoke to The Guardian for an article about the meaning of the Second Amendment. The Detroit Free Press, along with numerous other regional outlets, cited Winkler on how mass shootings are apt to harden the beliefs of people who support more lenient gun laws, as they embolden the public to call for more restrictions.