By Julia Craven, huffingtonpost.com
As much as America loves her guns, she has never liked the idea of seeing them in black hands.
Before the Revolutionary War, colonial Virginia passed a law barring black people from owning firearms — an exercise in gun control as racial control. In 1857, in his notorious Dred Scott decision, Chief Justice Roger Taney summoned the specter of black people freely enjoying the right to “keep and carry arms wherever they went.” Surely, he argued, the founders were not “so forgetful or regardless of their own safety” to permit such a thing. When black people armed themselves against white supremacist attacks following the Civil War, Southern state governments passed “black codes” barring them from owning guns. After the Black Panthers openly carried to signal to California police officers that they would defend themselves against racial attacks in the late ’60s, then-Gov. Ronald Reagan signed a state ban on open carry into law.