An interesting Constitutional Carry Discussion

An interesting Constitutional Carry Discussion

This is a discussion on An interesting Constitutional Carry Discussion within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Over the weekend at an NRA class we had an interesting discussion pop up relative to constitutional carry. To many of us the 2nd Amendment ...

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    Ex Member Array WildRose's Avatar
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    An interesting Constitutional Carry Discussion

    Over the weekend at an NRA class we had an interesting discussion pop up relative to constitutional carry.

    To many of us the 2nd Amendment is as explicit as it can get with respect to infringing on the rights to both keep and "bear" arms. Heller, as flawed as it was in many ways established once and for all what "bear" means using numerous historical references from during and prior to the founding era in arriving at their definition.

    Now in reality we're always probably going to have at least some limits on where and when we may "bear" our arms but just how absolute do you think it should be.

    Following along with Heller there's no chance we'd see a constitutional challenge to such limitations as carrying in sensitive places like lunatic asylums, courthouses, schools, and other secure or sensitive gov't buildings but what about the eligibility to carry at all?

    Should everyone legally eligible to purchase and possess firearms as you read the 2nd and Heller be allowed to carry without any other regulation at all?

    My brother raised a point and while we generally are in agreement about 99% of the time with respect to gun rights I had to differ. He suggested that in order to carry individuals should be required to qualify with absolutely any firearm they are going to carry, not just classes such as revolvers and semi autos but each individual firearm you might choose to carry at any future point in time.

    I found it ridiculous and kindly suggested as much but I would not be at all opposed to some regulations with respect to carrying in public.

    On your own property I could care less and that includes in your vehicle when traveling but when just walking about town or anywhere off property I don't have an issue with a person proving at least some basic level of competency having been demonstrated.

    I also have no real problem with a licensing requirement for concealed carry but for open carry if a license is to be issued at all it should absolutely be on a "shall issue basis" for anyone who applies, at a minimum charge for anyone legally eligible to possess a firearm.

    I can still be persuaded one way or another always leaning towards more freedom and individual responsibility and less towards state power but where I'm lining up now is that in order to carry I would like to see a requirement that within 12 months of the permit being issued or in permitless carry states prior to carrying each person be required to show a basic level of competency such as being able to get 8 out of ten hits within 8" of center mass on a standard b-27 pistol qualification at a distance of 15'.

    I settled on 15' simply because over 95% of self defense shootings occur at distances of 15' or less.

    I may disagree on the level of qualification that should be required I say, 'Thank You Jim" for bringing it up and making me think about it.

    What are your thoughts?
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    VIP Member Array Hoganbeg's Avatar
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    Regulation begets more regulation; this is known.

    Can you name any other guaranteed, fundamental right that requires training or certification in order to be legal? Freedom of speech? of religion?
    "...as politics in Washington and elsewhere grows increasingly un-moored from reality, humanist wisdom provides us with one final consolation: There is no greater lesson from the past than the intractability of human folly." Heather Mac Donald

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    VIP Member Array jmf552's Avatar
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    I heard the president of the VCDL, Phil Van Cleave, give a great answer that applies here. At an event at the state capitol, a retired police captain anti-gunner was complaining to him that the VCDL always criticizes gun legislation but never comes up with solutions of its own. The former cop pressed him on what gun regulations the VCDL would accept.

    Phil said words to the effect: The VCDL is a gun rights and Second Amendment activist group. So we are not in the business of suggesting gun control measures. There are plenty of people proposing gun control measures. Our job is to critique them and if they are a threat to our rights, we will take action to fight them. That is what we do.

    So here's where I see your argument: If you support gun rights and the Second Amendment, don't play into the hands of the anti-gun movement by suggesting restrictions of any kind. There are plenty of people out there who will suggest what you are suggesting and more, and they are not on our side. As gun rights advocates, our job is to hold the line on all fronts. The founding fathers who wrote 2A had no training or permitting requirements. They would have scoffed at the idea. Keep in mind that any permission the government gives you, it can take away. The Heller decision allows for "reasonable restrictions" which is pretty broad, so that is a gun rights battleground and like any battleground, you don't want to give up ground unless it is a ploy to gain ground.

    But dealing directly with your argument: What actual, not theoretical, problem are you trying to solve with a proficiency requirement? I don't see the statistics to show that untrained people are a hazard to public safety because of their lack of proficiency. People who are a hazard to public safety with guns are criminals and people who exercise bad judgement by violating the rules of gun safety. There just aren't that many cases of law abiding citizens trying to defend themselves and accidentally hitting innocent people. People who are not proficient are generally only a hazard to themselves because they will not be as effective in defending themselves as they could be.

    There are many people every year who successfully defend themselves with guns they have bought, but never fired. Most defensive shootings take place at contact distance to just outside arm's distance. Why would you need to qualify at 15'? I'm not saying you shouldn't learn to shoot more accurately at longer distances, just that the law should not require it. So is a restriction "reasonable" that accomplishes nothing, but restricts people's legitimate rights?
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    sgb
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    Quote Originally Posted by WildRose View Post
    Should everyone legally eligible to purchase and possess firearms as you read the 2nd and Heller be allowed to carry without any other regulation at all?
    Yes
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    In theory you have a valid point. Just like in theory not everyone should be allowed to have children. There are certainly people that should not be allowed to handle sharp objects. Should we test/ regulate who can buy a knife? And who gets to decide what the qualifications are? What give them the right to decide over you and I? If you are a better shot at a target range than I am, dose that give you the right to be able to defend yourself with me being denied that right? The 2a says right to keep and bare arms. It doesnít say right to keep and bare arms by only a select few who pass a test.
    I understand what your saying, Iíve pondered this myself. Especially when Iím a the range and I see some idiot do something stupid. Like the time the person a couple lane away from me had his weapon fail to fire and he proceeded to look down the barrel of his weapon to see why it didnít go bang (true story by the way). The way I see it, God almighty is about the only one able to decide who should be allowed to carry a gun. It certainly should not be some politicians. And until the good lord give us those rules Fred, Ted, and Ed have just as much right to be able to defend themselves as you, I, and everyone else!
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    In order to speak freely you need to demonstrate you can speak for one minute without using any profanity or ums.

    In order to gather in a religious manner, one must be able to publicly defend the tenets of their faith.

    In order to be a journalist, one must demonstrate at least 45 words per minute on the keyboard.

    In order to gather in peaceful assembly, one must first pass a test on legal civil protest.

    In order to...

    Now thatís just silly.
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    VIP Member Array maxwell97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WildRose View Post
    ...in order to carry I would like to see a requirement that within 12 months of the permit being issued or in permitless carry states prior to carrying each person be required to show a basic level of competency such as being able to get 8 out of ten hits within 8" of center mass on a standard b-27 pistol qualification at a distance of 15'.
    I don't agree at all. Hitting a target at range is not the only reason to have a firearm. It can be just as useful at contact distances. To use an extreme example, what about a blind person? If someone's on top of her, trying to beat or rape her, she should stick a snubby in his rib cage and ventilate him, regardless of her ability to pass a "qualification" on a target range.

    The issue isn't competence, its judgment. The blind person will be inherently incompetent when it comes to hitting a paper target, but that's fine, as long as she exercises appropriate judgment about when and how she can use the weapon responsibly, within her own limitations. If she tries to use her gun to stop a robbery when she can't really tell who's where, she's exercising poor judgment. The same holds true regardless of skill level. If someone barely passes your 8" at five yards standard, and then attempts a hostage-rescue shot at 25 yards, he is also exercising poor judgment, with the same likely outcome.

    There's really no way to test a person's judgment in such matters, and I don't support any meaningless and arbitrary skills test that a government might impose as a substitute.
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    Having moved away recently from California mainly due to that state's onerous gun laws, which result in 99.999% of the people in the part of the state where I lived, the multi-county SF bay area, not being able to obtain a license to carry, I am a firm believer that the anti-gun forces are trying to disarm America by enacting one "common sense" gun regulation after another. There is no pleasing these people. Their goal is to regulate our right to carry right out of existence.

    Nowhere in the 2nd amendment is the word "except". Have you ever noticed that the folks who want there to be more gun regulations are the same folks who don't know anything about guns or even why we carry? The only gun regulation I support is the Second Amendment.
    Last edited by paulinsf; January 31st, 2018 at 11:40 AM.

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    Ex Member Array WildRose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxwell97 View Post
    I don't agree at all. Hitting a target at range is not the only reason to have a firearm. It can be just as useful at contact distances. To use an extreme example, what about a blind person? If someone's on top of her, trying to beat or rape her, she should stick a snubby in his rib cage and ventilate him, regardless of her ability to pass a "qualification" on a target range.

    The issue isn't competence, its judgment. The blind person will be inherently incompetent when it comes to hitting a paper target, but that's fine, as long as she exercises appropriate judgment about when and how she can use the weapon responsibly, within her own limitations. If she tries to use her gun to stop a robbery when she can't really tell who's where, she's exercising poor judgment. The same holds true regardless of skill level. If someone barely passes your 8" at five yards standard, and then attempts a hostage-rescue shot at 25 yards, he is also exercising poor judgment, with the same likely outcome.

    There's really no way to test a person's judgment in such matters, and I don't support any meaningless and arbitrary skills test that a government might impose as a substitute.
    I'm going to have to say it's a matter of both competence and judgement.

    In a perfect world the 2nd, 4th, and 5th Amendments would cover it without question but we don't live in that world.

    On your own property, including your vehicle I have no problem with even most felons being allowed to keep and bear especially after a given period of time following their last conviction.

    In public though I lean towards some level of proof of basic competency I just can't quite figure out where I would draw the line.

    As for the poster who mentioned the blind you are quite correct but even a blind person can hit the B-37 Target at 10' pretty consistently with just a very minimal amount of practice.

    Unlike the exercise of our other basic protected rights when a bullet leaves the barrel something will be damaged, destroyed, wounded, or killed every time whether it's the grass, the ground, or the grandma who just happens to get in the way so there is a very legitimate concern.

    I've been all over the map on this over the course of the last 30 years =/- to initially being opposed to conceal and carry period to the other extreme of no regulation whatsoever.

    We can lose all our rights through lawful due process up to and including the right to life so obviously The BOR allows for some restrictions, we just have to as a community decide where we want that line to be drawn, come together and keep fighting like hell to keep moving the bar towards more freedom and individual responsibility and less regulation until we reach a point at which both we and they can live with where the pendulum eventually settles.

    The more input the better guys and gals so pleas contribute.

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    Ex Member Array WildRose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paulinsf View Post
    Having moved away recently from California mainly due to that state's onerous gun laws, which result in 99.99% of the people in the part of the state where I lived, the multi-county SF bay area, I am a firm believer that the anti-gun forces are trying to disarm America by enacting one "common sense" gun regulation after another. There is no pleasing these people. Their goal is to regulate our right to carry right out of existence.

    Nowhere in the 2nd amendment is the word "except". Have you ever noticed that the folks who want there to be more gun regulations are the same folks who don't know anything about guns or even why we carry? The only gun regulation I support is the Second Amendment.
    I'm with ya most of the way there Brother but the 2nd doesn't exist in a vacuum. The 4th and 5th provide for the exceptions.

    Congrats on successfully escaping Stalag K.
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    Lots of people make the argument for basic competency. Again... who decides, and on what basis, and how much correlation is there between basic training and an increase in "safety"?

    The laws of this country are founded on a premise of innocent until proven guilty. If someone does something stupid with a gun, and especially if someone is hurt or killed, THROW THE BOOK AT THEM. At that point they have actually done something to merit punitive action.

    What you are proposing is punitive action (the restriction of rights) based on what someone MIGHT do. That is NOT freedom. Your idea may, or may not, make the general public safer. Whether it does or doesn't, it is a restriction on freedom.

    I am not in favor of this restriction on freedom, even if it makes the world a little more dangerous. If people who ACTUALLY CAUSE HARM with a gun are punished promptly and appropriately, every time, any problems will eventually take care of themselves. People will learn the risk to their own freedom if they go out with a gun, and are not competent to use it.

    THAT is how freedom works. It resists restriction on our rights to the greatest extent possible, without regard to your FEELINGS about PERCEIVED safety...
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    VIP Member Array jmf552's Avatar
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    WildRose: OK, let's put 2A aside for the sake of argument for a minute. On what set of facts, not assumptions, do you base your feeling that there should be a proficiency requirement? I ask because I don't think we should create government regs based on feelings. If we must have regs, they should directly impact real, significant problems. I'm not aware that a lack of shooting proficiency is causing a huge problem in society. The middle of the road research on the topic says there are a few hundred thousand defensive gun uses every year. If there were facts to back your feeling, I would expect to see at least several thousands of cases where someone went to defend themselves, missed due to inaccuracy and hit an innocent person. But I don't see that. What actual facts do you see?
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    MJK
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    Quote Originally Posted by GraySkies View Post
    I am not in favor of this restriction on freedom, even if it makes the world a little more dangerous. If people who ACTUALLY CAUSE HARM with a gun are punished promptly and appropriately, every time, any problems will eventually take care of themselves. People will learn the risk to their own freedom if they go out with a gun, and are not competent to use it.

    THAT is how freedom works. It resists restriction on our rights to the greatest extent possible, without regard to your FEELINGS about PERCEIVED safety...
    Couldnít agree more.

    Laws are meant to deter undesirable behavior through punishment ex post facto. Punishing law abiding citizens by preventing them from exercising a fundamental right when they commit no wrong is contrary to the founding principles of our republic.

    I vote no quals, no restrictions. Period.
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    Distinguished Member Array Scouse's Avatar
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    It is so interesting, this idea that we need to affix conditions, any of them, to my (or yours) ability, to place a handgun, on a belt. And venture out of your dwelling with it. With the express purpose of defense of your person. As a citizen of this great Country.

    But the reality of being in a place that rules apply, as in where we live, my Wife and I Florida for instance.

    We have to learn to live with these restrictions. I am perfectly satisfied with these conditions, as they apply to me. Not when I travel to the Communist State of Calafornia.

    So for a law that would allow me to be able to lock my Gen 4 Glock 19 into my suitcase, and visit a washroom, as soon as I deplane, and in my own description, Gear up! I would like that, and maybe, the way things are going, it might happen.

    How can I justify this desire? Because there are people, who are by definition, are criminals, who any time they desire, put a pistol on their person, and venture out, into the same places I am in. Armed.

    And these individuals pose a threat to me and mine. A threat that at this time I can not address well, being 82 years of age, without my gun. This is my honest belief.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Libertywheel View Post
    In order to speak freely you need to demonstrate you can speak for one minute without using any profanity or ums.

    In order to gather in a religious manner, one must be able to publicly defend the tenets of their faith.

    In order to be a journalist, one must demonstrate at least 45 words per minute on the keyboard.

    In order to gather in peaceful assembly, one must first pass a test on legal civil protest.

    In order to...

    Now thatís just silly.
    Um never killed anyone, miss-typed words never directly killed anyone, failure to articulate ones position never killed them, but stray bullets have.
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