Event Type: 
Session 3: Saturday, June 2nd: 2:00 - 3:50pm
Event Organizer: 
Reading List: 
Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Loaded: A Disarming History of the Second Amendment; Mumia Abu Jamal, Writing on the Wall: Selected Prison Writings of Mumia Abu-Jamal (edited by Johanna Fernandez); Patrick Anderson, “A Black Radical Defense of the Second Amendment"
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
While the NRA has monopolized the discussion of gun rights and the Second Amendment in mainstream public discourse, leftist perspectives on these issues provide a richer context for understanding not only the use of guns against the victims of slavery and colonialism but also the possible uses of guns by Black, Brown, and Indigenous resistance movements. Drawing on the Black Radical Tradition, Puerto Rican movements, and Indigenous resistance, this panel offers a reinterpretation of the relationship between guns, settler colonialism, and leftist organizing. In addition to establishing the connections between the NRA, the Second Amendment, and white supremacy, this panel explores the possibilities of using what Scott Crow calls “liberatory community armed self-defense” as one plank of a broader leftist strategy. By cultivating a realistic perspective on the colonial and racist “gun culture” of America, the Left’s use of armed self-defense can be re-thought in a new light. In the next few years, the Left must acknowledge oppressive gun violence and reflect on the uses of liberatory self-defense.


Patrick Anderson is a PhD candidate in Philosophy at Texas A&M University. His research focuses on the Anticolonial Tradition of Black Radical Thought, especially W.E.B. Du Bois, Frantz Fanon, and Eldridge Cleaver. His dissertation is titled "Anticolonial Amerika" and has written for... Read more
Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz grew up in rural Oklahoma, child of tenant farmers. As a veteran of the 1960s revolution, she has been involved in anti-racist, anti-colonial, anti-imperialist movements, union organizing, and was one of the founders of the Women's Liberation Movement in the late 1960s.... Read more
Johanna Fernández is a native New Yorker. She received a PhD in History from Columbia University and a BA in Literature and American Civilization from Brown University. Professor Fernández teaches 20th Century U.S. History, the history of social movements, the political economy of American cities,... Read more