The justifiable need for firearms

Last week, the ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a California law,”requiring citizens to show ‘good cause’ before being allowed to obtain a concealed carry permit” because the law was a direct violation to the constitutions second Amendment. The court further stated that, “the right to keep and bear arms is, in and of itself, a sufficient cause for bearing arms for self-defense both inside and outside of ones home”. In an unprecedented victory the “most liberal” court in America upheld our constitutional right to bear arms. This ruling is a win for those who believe in the constitution and a loss for those, such as our current adminstration, who believe in the malevolent idea of gun control.

Also last week, comes news of a coalition of 19 states requesting the United States Supreme Court to allow them to submit a brief supporting a New Jersey citizens challenge to the ruling of the third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upholding New Jersey’s concealed weapons law. The New Jersey law that the 19 states are challenging is almost identical to the California law, in which, people seeking permits to carry a concealed firearm in New Jersey must prove that they have “a justifiable need” to carry. This directly impacts the right to keep and bear arms both inside and outside of ones dwelling. Astonishingly, the third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals felt the “justifiable need” threshold was not an infringement on our second Amendment.

Regardless of the context of your environment, the New Jersey law and the California law are written in a way that places an unforeseeable event as a requirement to prove your firearm is justifiably needed. Simply put, forcing an individual to show “good cause” or a “justifiable need” to carry a firearm for something that has not happened is analogous to predicting the future.

These latest attempts at common sense gun safety stem from the incompetence of President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder who base their claims without any research, statistics, or factually relevant informations. Emotional rather than factual claims that politicize an event are common principles when it comes to this adminstration’s agenda. One example of such claims came in Obamas latest state of the union address regarding gun control policies he intends to pass, “with or without Congress, to help stop more tragedies from visiting innocent Americans in our movie theaters, in our shopping malls, or schools like Sandy Hook”. The way the Obama adminstration intends to do this is to assert that gun control in the form of universal background checks, bans on concealed carry firearms and bans on rifles of high-capacity magazines, will limit such tragedies from happening.

Neglecting the facts, reality, or common sense is exactly what the President intends to do as he pushes his agenda for gun control. A ten year study of what happened after Massachusetts in 1998 passed the toughest gun-control legislation in the country is precisely the study the adminstration would like to suppress. The law banned, “assault weapons, imposed strict new licensing rules and enacted severe penalties for storing guns unlocked”. The reason being “common sense for the protection of our children and our neighborhoods”, according to then state attorney general Scott Harshbarger.

In reality the law that was touted as being “common sense” was a disaster for its ramifications on law-abiding gun owners. The law didn’t address the criminals. Since 1998, gun crime in Massachusetts has gotten worse, not better. For example in 2011 their were 122 murders committed with firearms as opposed to 65 in 1998. Furthermore, robbery with firearms climbed 20 percent as did aggravated assaults by 27 percent since the law was first enacted.

Relative to the rest of the country, Massachusetts since 1998 has become a more dangerous state and according to the data released by Massachusetts publication on violent crime the murder rate has risen by almost 35 percent since the law was passed.

This example of “common sense” gun control reflects the reality of a law that not only fails to address the problem, but in fact exacerbates said problem. The law was so tough on banning law abiding citizens ability to obtain a firearm that it effectively removed a sense of self-defense in such a way that criminals took advantage. The failure is a direct result of a diseased ideology hidden in the wording of “common sense gun-control” that re-shapes and redefines one’s own justifiable need for self-defense.

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