Professor Sujit Choudhry’s Explanation of Gun Control Debate

Legal scholar Sujit Choudhry is proof that ivory-tower theory and hands-on application of constitutional law are not mutually incompatible. Professor Sujit Choudhry has aided and advised a number of nations on the constitution-building process, to name just a few: Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, South Africa, and Ukraine.

Until recently, Harvard-trained Choudry was the I. Michael Heyman Professor of Law at UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law. He is currently Director of the Center for Constitutional Transitions. Professor Sujit Choudhry is a frequent contributor to

In a recent post to Medium, Professor Choudry piqued his readers’ interest by suggesting that gun control laws were at the same time both constitutional and unconstitutional. That’s bound to provoke a full read no matter on which side of the divide the reader stands, see (

Professor Sujit Choudhry notes that the nation’s highest courts have both ruled in favour of, and rejection of gun-control laws. He further notes that some groups, the NRA for example, assert that all gun control laws are illegal, presumably even those banning machine guns and cannons. The Professor points out that the Supreme Court has no qualms about ruling both for and against gun control. On the against side, they have favoured restricting gun rights for some with mental illness and have taken a clear stand against the right to own machine guns and certain categories of assault rifles, source (

Turning his attention to advocates of gun control, Professor Choudhry notes that they read the language of the Second Amendment concerning citizens bearing arms in a “well-regulated Militia,” as referring to a state militia. And he points out that they also assert that if the provision’s goal had been preserving the right to own firearms, the phrase would have been “the right to keep arms” read more details on

After the Supreme Court’s 2010 ruling in McDonald v. Chicago — which invalidated the right of states to restrict a citizen’s right to keep and bear arms for self-defense — Professor Choudhry observed that although the law could be read to ban almost all gun control law. Gun laws still abound, partly because a violation and a sentence for that violation must precede a constitutional challenge. Even then, an appellant must have the means to challenge. It’s impossible to divine Professor Choudhry’s position, which is probably as it should be, click