By Brian Doherty
"On June 26, 2008, the Supreme Court had its first opportunity in seven decades to address one of America's most impassioned constitutional debates: does the right to possess firearms, as stated in the Second Amendment, apply to individuals? Yes, the Court ruled, it does. And, with that decision, the District's handgun ban - one of the toughest and most controversial in the nation - was ended. In Gun Control on Trial, journalist Brian Doherty tells the full story behind the landmark District of Columbia v. Heller ruling. With exclusive, behind-the-scenes access throughout the case, Doherty takes readers on a remarkable journey - through the legal, scientific, and historical debates; the political battles; and the myths about gun control that have become widespread. But, beyond the legal arguments are the stories of the people involved in the case. Detailed in Gun Control on Trial are compelling portraits of the plaintiffs - individuals willing to fight for their right to protect themselves and their families from violent criminals, the activist lawyers, who worked exhaustively for their clients, and the city officials who fought any attempt to give their citizens the right to self-defense. The Heller decision does not settle every controversy in the gun control debate. What it did do, Doherty writes, is create "a new shape to the arena in which the legal and political struggle over guns and gun control will be fought." Gun Control on Trial describes the ground on which that fight will take place."
- Washington, DC