|Don Kates 1989|
The first that I learned of Don Kates was when I ordered his bombshell academic book in 1980. It was Restricting Handguns: The Liberal Skeptics Speak Out, published a few months earlier. Don was a classic liberal, not the leftist “progressive” that “liberal” has come to be known as today.
Don had edited a collection of liberal authors who wrote about why gun control, was a sham. They explained why it could not work, and why it hurt poor people and minorities more than any other group. I read it, passed it around, bought around 20 copies, as I recall, and handed them out.
I ended up corresponding with Don. I and a friend, Norman Whisler, were offered a chance to write, as I recall, for Gun Week, as a result. My career took me to Panama, a few years before email made international writing simple.
I owe Don a good bit for the encouragement that he gave me.
Don was the person who invented, championed, created, nurtured and developed the academic rediscovery of the Second Amendment in the law journals.
He pushed the plan to treat the Second Amendment the same as the First Amendment. The plan was to pursue a legal strategy parallel to the one that was used to incorporate the First Amendment. His strategy worked.
We all owe Don a great deal. He will be missed.
©2016 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.