Blogs > Liberty and Power > The "New Bellesiles"

May 12, 2010 3:23 pm

The "New Bellesiles"

Many years ago, Richard Nixon's public relations team repeatedly deplyed the phrase, the"New Nixon," when announcing Nixon's periodic makeovers. Now, Michael A. Bellesiles, the disgraced former professor at Emory University, and author of the discredited Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture, is similarly trying to remake himself. Will he succeed? I fear that he will. His forthcoming book, 1877: America's Year of Living Violently, seems almost tailor-made to appeal to the anti-free market, anti-classical liberal biases of the profession.

Bellesiles argues that "[c]lass superseded race as the primary area of conflict; abolitionists became social [sic] Darwinists; onetime liberals came to see the wisdom of social control; those who fought for freedom demanded prohibition; elites battled to maintain their power in every corner of the country."

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Michael Green - 8/6/2010

My concern is not whether he appeals to liberal biases, and it disappoints me that that would be the concern here. My concern is whether he is accurate. Arming America was not; he can, correctly, say the NRA was out to get him, but he still seems convinced that he did nothing wrong. If his new book is correctly researched, he is entitled to whatever interpretation he wants, and others are entitled to debate it.

Gary O'Connor - 5/14/2010

Speaking of the Second Amendment, you can get a bobblehead of the author of the Heller opinion (Justice Scalia) and contribute to a worthy cause:;item=170484173397&ssPageName=ADME:L:LCA:US:1123