Last month, California Gov. Gavin Newsom unveiled his proposal for a 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which the Democrat says would “enshrine fundamental, broadly supported gun safety measures into law while leaving the Second Amendment unchanged.”
Although the Second Amendment protects individual liberty by telling the government what it can’t do with respect to gun control regulations, Newsom’s proposed constitutional amendment would tell the government what it must do to restrict individual liberty through gun control.
The California governor’s proposal would ban civilian sales for semiautomatic firearms commonly owned by millions of Americans, strip law-abiding young adults of their right to keep and bear arms, and (in the form of waiting periods and universal background checks) impose many layers of bureaucratic red tape between peaceable citizens and the exercise of their natural right to self-defense.
The notion that this idea would do anything other than gut the Second Amendment is, of course, laughable. And despite Newsom’s insistence that these measures are popular, they’ve been passed only by a small minority of states. His amendment has no chance whatsoever of being passed by a two-thirds majority of both houses of Congress, much less of being ratified by the requisite number of state legislatures.
The reality is that more than 230 years after Congress ratified it, the Second Amendment continues to play an integral role in preserving Americans’ natural rights, particularly from criminals who would harm them.
Almost every major study has found that Americans use their firearms in self-defense between 500,000 and 3 million times annually, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has acknowledged. In 2021, the most comprehensive study ever conducted on the issue concluded that roughly 1.6 million defensive gun uses occur in the United States every year.
For this reason, The Daily Signal publishes a monthly article highlighting some of the previous month’s many news stories on defensive gun use that you may have missed—or that might not have made it to the national spotlight in the first place. (Read other accounts here from past months and years. You also may follow @DailyDGU on Twitter for daily highlights of recent defensive gun uses.)
The examples below represent only a small portion of the news stories on defensive gun use that we found in June. You may explore more using The Heritage Foundation’s interactive Defensive Gun Use Database. (The Daily Signal is Heritage’s multimedia news organization.)
- June 4, Allentown, Pennsylvania: In what police describe as a road rage incident, a group of people in one car aggressively followed another vehicle and threatened its occupants with a firearm, causing that driver to crash while trying to escape. They then fled the disabled car and hid in a nearby auto parts store. The group in the other vehicle found them as a friend driving a truck arrived to pick them up. One person fired several rounds at the truck as the group got out of the car and approached it. A passenger in the truck returned fire with his legally possessed handgun, wounding the gunman and killing one accomplice. The gunman fled and later surrendered to law enforcement.
- June 5, Shreveport, Louisiana: Police said a man shot and wounded his daughter’s boyfriend after he assaulted her, took her keys, and reached for a firearm. Police arrested the boyfriend, who faces charges of simple robbery and battery.
- June 6, Alton, Illinois: A woman armed with an illegally possessed gun showed up to a family member’s place of work in violation of a protection order, physically assaulted her relative, and threatened multiple employees, police said. A co-worker of the relative, also armed, shot the woman, who departed in her vehicle. Police arrested her and she faces several felony charges, as well as one misdemeanor count of child endangerment for leaving her infant unattended in the car during the assault. A local prosecutor determined that the employee’s actions were justified.
- June 11, Tulsa, Oklahoma: A trespasser aggressively approached a homeowner as he was doing yard work and refused to leave the property despite being told to do so, police said. The trespasser cornered the homeowner in his garage and assaulted him with lawn shears. The homeowner escaped, grabbed his firearm, and fatally shot the trespasser when he attacked again, police said.
- June 13, Hartford, Connecticut: Police said two armed robbers entered a store as it opened and pistol-whipped an employee, who opened fire with his own gun, striking and critically wounding one robber. The second robber fled. The employee is recovering from the pistol-whipping.
- June 17, Big Clifty, Kentucky: A woman fatally shot her ex-boyfriend after he forced his way into her home just before midnight, police said. The woman was taken to a hospital “for observation of previous health issues,” but didn’t appear to have been injured. The couple’s former relationship included a “history of domestic violence,” police said.
- June 18, Wilson’s Mills, North Carolina: A man fatally shot a trespasser who accosted his young daughter in their backyard. The trespasser attempted to follow the resident’s two other children inside when they ran to their parents for help. The father shot the intruder, who later died.
- June 19, Cudahy, Wisconsin: Police said a resident came home from work to find an unknown man hiding in his attic, and he held the intruder at gunpoint until officers arrived. Police found drugs and a stolen firearm on the intruder, who they said was on parole for two offenses—a homicide and a hit-and-run involving great bodily harm.
- June 22, Columbia, Missouri: Police said that an armed resident successfully detained a burglar who, after stealing from multiple houses in the neighborhood, broke into the resident’s garage and tried to take his car. Officers said they found a neighbor’s keys on the burglar as well as a wallet and iPad belonging to another neighbor. He had a loaded handgun in his waistband.
- June 23, Las Vegas: When a helmet-clad gunman began indiscriminately shooting a rifle in the lobby of a luxury condo building, an armed employee returned fire, wounding the rifleman and likely stopping a mass public shooting. The employee apparently worked in some capacity in building security, but also worked in a delivery department and wasn’t required to carry a gun for his job.
- June 26, Grovetown, Georgia: Police said that an intoxicated driver fleeing a hit-and-run repeatedly rammed his car into another vehicle that was trapped by stalled traffic. That driver fired his gun several times at the intoxicated driver’s car, ending the assault and protecting himself and his grandmother. The intoxicated driver was charged with DUI, aggressive driving, and other offenses, police said.
- June 27, Houston: A convicted felon with a firearm repeatedly threatened a married couple outside a gas station and pistol-whipped the man. His wife, nine months pregnant, drew a gun from her purse and shot their assailant. Despite being wounded, he continued pointing his gun at the couple, so the husband drew his own firearm and shot the attacker again. The couple held him at gunpoint until police arrived and arrested him. “Thank God we had our guns,” the woman told reporters. “I’ve never been happier to be a gun carrier.”
As these examples help demonstrate, the Second Amendment doesn’t need amending, and peaceable citizens don’t need more barriers to the exercise of their natural right of self-defense.
They need a government that doesn’t resort to Orwellian doublespeak about its goals, pretending to “enshrine freedom” by restricting those rights that already are enumerated in our Constitution.
This piece originally appeared in The Daily Signal