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Disarmed: The Missing Movement for Gun Control in America (Princeton Studies in American Politics: Historical, International, and Comparative Perspectives)

8 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0691124247
ISBN-10: 0691124248
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Editorial Reviews

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"Goss has written an excellent book, useful to all students of lobbying. . . . This thoughtful, well-documented book should be read and examined by would-be gun control activists and other advocates for social reform."--Choice



"Rarely does a book make a significant contribution to two separate fields, but this work by Kristin Goss does. Readers interested in social movements and social movement theory will find an interesting case study of a movement that never happened--efforts to strengthen gun control laws in the United States. Those who study gun control will encounter a unique perspective on the interest group politics and policy making of firearms regulation. Well-researched and clearly written, the book is insightful and informative. Goss's journalistic background is evident, both in her prose and in the relative brevity of the book. Her arguments are clearly elucidated in a first chapter that should serve as a model."--Harry L. Wilson, Political Science Quarterly

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"Having been involved in the gun safety movement since tragedy struck my family in 1993, I understand full well the history of the gun-control movement and the difficulties it has experienced, particularly in light of today's political environment in Washington. Disarmed is an excellent study of the efforts put forth by so many to reduce gun violence."--U.S. Representative Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY), founder of the Carolyn McCarthy Center on Gun Violence and Harm Reduction


"Kristin Goss has done important work here that fundamentally tells the history of the gun debate over the past twenty-five years and of the efforts of the opposing sides to outmaneuver each other. She deserves praise for research that is remarkable both in quality and in volume, and for presenting a massive body of facts in an extremely readable fashion."--Sarah Brady, Honorary Chair, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence


"This outstanding book combines theoretical import with a highly topical policy issue in a form that is exceptionally readable, engaging, thoughtful, mature, and insightful. Superb and inventive data analysis brings the book's theoretical formulations to life as they are applied to one of the most intractable, controversial, and interesting policy issues of the last century, gun control. No one has examined the issue from this end of the lens--the pro-control side--with such analytical depth and rigor until now."--Robert J. Spitzer, author of The Politics of Gun Control


"This book represents a fantastic project, well argued and well-written and much needed. Focusing on a critical policy topic, Kristin Goss posits a strong new idea for studying social movements--why they don't emerge or maybe why they undermobilize. The smooth, almost seamless movement between social and political theory and case material is, quite frankly, the strongest I have ever seen."--Bryan Jones, author of Politics and the Architecture of Choice, coauthor of Agendas and Instability in American Politics


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Product Details

  • Series: Princeton Studies in American Politics: Historical, International, and Comparative Perspectives
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press (August 20, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0691124248
  • ISBN-13: 978-0691124247
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #518,117 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Kristin A. Goss is an associate professor of public policy and political science at Duke University, where she studies the reasons why everyday people do - or do not - engage in public life. A native of Denver, she holds a BA and PhD from Harvard and an MPP from Duke. Her goal is to visit as many countries as possible before the airlines start charging for water.

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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Acute Observer on July 25, 2014
Format: Paperback
Disarmed: The Missing Movement for Gun Control

Does that sound like an episode for a `Seinfeld' show? Goss is an "Assistant Professor of Public Policy Studies and Political Science" at Duke University. No other information about her background is given. This study began as a Ph.D. dissertation and was then developed into this book. She spent a lot of time on it. You should not read this one-sided book unless you have a good knowledge of the facts about this topic. Her statements are often incorrect. There was no "constitutional amendment prohibiting sales and possession" (p.62). Any good book on Prohibition will explain the history of this movement. It was designed to outlaw the meeting places of workingmen where they could talk about the things that affected their lives and the cure. Their oppression at work led to "industrial drinking". Prohibition did not increase prosperity and reduce crime but the reverse. It led to increasing power for organized crime, which often worked in tandem with the elite. Does Duke U. profit from the poisoning and killing of cigarette smokers?

The flaw, or Big Lie, is its unproven assertion that Gun Prohibition is a good thing; no proof in this book. The 1968 Gun Control Act was followed by increased rates of violent deaths (Figure 2.1, page 41). After it was passed the legal technician who wrote this law admitted that whole sections were taken from the 1930s Nazi Gun Control law. This Nazi law was followed by the worst political oppression and highest rates of violence in 20th century Europe. School shootings were unknown before the 1968 Gun Control Act but became a reality with the next generation. Localities with Gun Prohibition have the highest rates of violent death (Washington D.C.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Acute Observer on July 25, 2014
Format: Paperback
Disarmed: The Missing Movement

Kristin A. Goss, Assistant Professor of “Public Policy Studies” at Duke University, claims there are grassroots sympathizers who can’t be mobilized for Gun Prohibition policies because of a lack of data from one Federal agency. This is dishonest; there is no evidence for the existence of hidden sympathizers at all. The election day results say it is a fantasy. Her dishonest claim is to get a Federal agency to take the side of the privately supported Gun Prohibition groups, since the multi-millionaires who pay for this propaganda have spent all they can afford. The “Million Mom March” was one example of clever advertising to create an ‘AstroTurf’ movement that collapsed when funds were withdrawn by the millionaire who paid their expenses.

Since criminology was invented over two centuries ago they learned that a poor economy creates more crime. If the paid proponents of Gun Prohibition were straight and honest they would ask for an $15 Federal minimum wage, a $50,000 standard income tax exemption, and a 40% tariff on imports to create prosperity at home and fight the ‘Global Warming’ that results from Global Trade. But they can’t, they are only puppets on a string. Those foolish enough to believe Gun Prohibitionist propaganda should better educate themselves. School shootings were unknown and unimaginable before the 1968 Gun Control Act was passed. Teenagers acquired familiarity with guns even if they lived in a city. The most despicable act of Gun Prohibitionists was to create “Gun Free Zones” in schools so as to attract lunatics whose outrages would advance their agenda. An egalitarian society is a safe society.
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8 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Mr Lahey on September 25, 2013
Format: Paperback
This book is required reading for a course in college, as part of the school's effort to push a left-wing agenda. I made sure to get it at the library-I'm not interested in giving money to support someone working to take my rights away.To sum up the book, Goss claims that most people really want gun control (a statement for which she provides little evidence), but their efforts have been thwarted by groups like the Big Bad NRA. But, even though most people supposedly support more gun control, gun control groups just can't raise any money! Like a typical statist, Goss favors "state patronage" which means getting the government to use taxpayer dollars to pay for gun control propaganda (because people are clearly too stupid to know what is good for them, so they must be FORCED to contribute to the cause). The book might be interesting for gun rights supporters, because it will give you a chance to "know your enemy" and understand the mindset and strategies of people in the gun control crowd. But get it at the library and spend the money you would have spent on the book on more ammo, or a contribution to a gun rights group.
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23 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 12, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This excellent book tackles a continuing paradox in American public life: why despite overwhelming public opinion in favor of gun control does America not have an effective gun control movement? Professor Kristin Goss provides an incisive and thoughtful analysis of this paramount issue. The book is compellingly argued and well researched, and is written in a straight forward and concise manner that is rare in academic texts. I am puzzled by the first posted review: did the reviewer actually read Prof. Goss' book? It appears that the reviewer merely used his space to advance his own pro-gun agenda. This book is not a gun control screed, as the first reviewer would have it be. In fact Prof. Goss devotes an entire chapter to problems with the gun banning philosophy. The book is a careful and well-balanced discussion of the political roots one of the most troubling features of American life, the persistence of firearms violence. I highly recommend this captivating book to all who seek to broaden their understanding of the politics of gun control.
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