Washington, DC—Josh Horwitz, the executive director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence and co-author of the new book, Guns, Democracy, and the Insurrectionist Idea, is available to speak to the press about the current danger of armed political violence in the United States.
In a new book, Guns, Democracy, and the Insurrectionist Idea, Horwitz and co-author Casey Anderson observe that the belief that privately held guns protect us from the excesses of “big government” has become the cornerstone of the gun rights movement. They argue that the National Rifle Association and gun rights groups have it exactly backward: by urging Americans to view guns as “the tools of political dissent,” they undercut respect for democracy and weaken support for the protection of individual rights.
The claim that armed citizens are the best bulwark against tyranny—a claim Horwitz calls the “insurrectionist idea”—has become increasingly powerful, with ramifications well beyond gun policy. In the current debate over health care reform, thousands of individuals on the far right wing of American politics have expressed the view that the Obama administration is "tyrannical." Combine that fact with the recent phenomenon of armed gun rights activists showing up at town hall meetings and political rallies and you have a recipe for disaster.
Mr. Horwitz has described this disturbing confluence of factors in a series of featured blogs at the Huffington Post. In his latest blog, “‘Resistance Efforts,’ Guns and the Constitution,” he states, “The First Amendment is an important right and powerful tool and should not be undermined by a radical interpretation of the Second Amendment. If we let ‘the guys with the guns make the rules’ then the very fabric of our democracy is up for grabs.”
Josh is an expert on the topics of firearm litigation and gun violence prevention, and has testified on firearm issues before the Unites States Congress. He has published opinion pieces in periodicals including the Washington Post, USA Today, and the Journal of the American Bar Association. A graduate of the University of Michigan, he received his law degree from George Washington University, and is currently a visiting scholar at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Reporters seeking to speak with Mr. Horwitz can reach him at (202) 408-0061, x. 1001, or
. For review copies of Guns, Democracy, and the Insurrectionist Idea, cover or author photographs, or more information on the book, contact Heather Newman of the University of Michigan Press at (734) 615-6477, or
The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence seeks to secure freedom from gun violence through research, strategic engagement and effective policy advocacy. For more information about the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, visit www.csgv.org.