The Supreme Court of the United States is taking up it’s Second Amendment case, and in my opinion they picked an excellent one.
While there are a myriad issues we would like to see SCOTUS bring the hammer down on, especially in areas where the regional circuit courts simply bolster the prevailing attitude of the locals, that is unrealistic. While it was cheap for New York to conveniently fix their transport law and avoid the hard gaveling they so richly deserve on the issue, and they avoided by doing so, it appears their time has come.
The law at issue in the case, New York Rifle & Pistol Association v. Corlett, is similar to gun-control measures in other states. To receive an unrestricted license to carry a concealed firearm outside the home, a person must show “proper cause” – meaning a special need for self-protection. Two men challenged the law after New York rejected their concealed-carry applications, and they are backed by a gun-rights advocacy group. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit upheld the law, prompting the challengers to appeal to the Supreme Court.
On the bench is what are commonly referred to as “May Issue” carry permits, a legal standard that a few states still hold to that gives the state unlimited space to deny their residents the right to defense of themselves outside the home. They do so by making the resident show ’cause’ for why they need a permit to defend themselves and carry a firearm to do so. This effectively prevented anyone who did not have clout with their local officials, or at least a business reason like handling large amounts of cash for deposit, from getting a permit. You have to prove you are under special or specific threat outside those normal risks the public face, even though those risks are very real, which is defeating the purpose of carrying since demonstrating that heightened risk may mean you needed the firearm yesterday… Threats come quickly, and government offices move ponderously… no more so than when those offices are headed by people opposed to the notion they are charged with processing.
May Issue is an unfair and highly subjective policy. It is a policy that engenders cronyism and preferential treatment. It is a policy that laughs at notions like ‘objective standards’ and it willfully violates the rights of state residents who live in those states, using the lower regional courts to shield them as the lower courts toss it to SCOTUS to (eventually) rule on the notion.
That time is now, and we can hopefully look forward to a substantive win as ‘Shall Issue’ becomes the national standard, not simply the majority prevailing standard. Where if you meet the legal requirements to carry a pistol, meaning you have no legal prohibitions against doing so, than no subjective criteria will block you from applying for and obtaining a permit. Your right to carry, absent legal prohibition for a criminal offense or mental diagnosis, will be sustained. Period.
Even Illinois went with a shall issue system after being forced to implement a carry permit, as the sole remain state who had held out against allowing their residents the right to conceal a firearm at all. It says a lot about what the powers in Chicago saw as the writing on the wall and allowed Springfield to enact that Shall Issue emerged. Granted they still made it fairly arduous, but it is an objective standard.
While this won’t give us national reciprocity, it is the largest step in that direction, a crucial step and one that can squash one of the most egregious gun control hold outs that have been allowed to remain unchallenged.
Objective standards of CCW permitting is not too much to ask. Not forcing your law-abiding citizens to shill out a ‘reason’ for you to trust them with their right of arms is only right. Using “public good” or “public safety” is an atrociously weak argument when permit-less and shall issue states abound and they are not rampant blood filled wastelands of the apocalypse, in fact their crime trends seem to follow the same logical progressions as anyone else.
Shall issue, nationwide. Hopefully. It certainly looks like the typical spots are terrified of the outcome, judging from a few headlines.