Thursday, March 03, 2011

Welcome, Wyoming

Governor Matt Mead of Wyoming has signed a bill which makes that state the fourth (joining Vermont, Alaska and Arizona) to recognize the Constitutional right of a law-abiding person to carry a firearm for self-protection without first having to beg for permission in the form of a permit.

Other states such as Idaho, Tennessee and South Carolina are considering the same legislation, meaning that this exclusive club stands a good chance of gaining even more members in the near future.

The Brady Campaign and the Violence Policy Center must be ordering Tums by the case right about now, and that scenario couldn't happen to two more deserving organizations.

(link via Unc)


Bike Bubba said...

That means that people will be able to carry freely in Yellowstone! (at least the Wyoming part)

Grace R said...

What's wrong with having to get a permit? You need a license to drive, so why not something like w/ a gun?

Don't get me wrong, I believe very firmly in the right to bear arms if one chooses, but shouldn't there be a certain level of responsibility/skill that goes w/ it, like w/ driving or running a business?

Ken Hood said...

Grace- I'm a permit holder, and I often think the same thing... so I understand your viewpoint.

However, the flip side of the argument is playing out now in Illinois, where recently the Attorney General is trying to publicly "out" all permit holders for anyone to see on a website. Even the State Patrol of Illinois opposes this as endangering public safety for a variety of reasons. (One believable scenario: "I'm a thuggy ex boyfriend who likes to stalk my ex girlfriend...hmmm... I think I'll check to see if she ever got a permit to carry before I go to her house.")

In short... a license to drive is about making your life "a great deal simpler" whereas a license to carry a firearm is often (in the case of single women and others) a "matter of life and death."

In spite of the same safety concerns I have (ability to properly handle a firearm) I think that the need for anyone to be protected from criminal harm outweighs onerous licensing. IMHO anyway.

Douglas Hester said...

Grace, I completely agree with the notion that people obtain the proper training and extensive practice before exercising their Second Amendment rights (and most law-abiding citizens indeed take advantage of the thousands of courses available to them).

The main difference between driving a car and carrying a firearm in public, of course, is that there is no right to drive guaranteed by the Constitution.

Bike Bubba said...

Grace, firearm ownership permits formed the documentation that the Gestapo used to confiscate thousands of firearms from German civilians, including a few thousand from Berlin Jews alone, just a few months prior to Kristallnacht.

See why they just might be a bad idea? The fact of the matter is that gun licensing is generally (New York City, Chicago, Washington DC, etc.) generally a prelude to confiscation--and of course in many countries, far worse than just confiscation.

The question one ought to have is "do I trust my worst political enemies with this power?", and really anyone ought to answer that one with an emphatic "no."