Constitutional Carry Reciprocity Advances 2nd Amendment Rights

Constitutional Carry Reciprocity Advances 2nd Amendment Rights

Recently, some of our good friends issued a statement criticizing federal reciprocity legislation.  We agree with them that the Nugent bill (H.R. 402) has problems, because it would force Americans in “constitutional carry” states to obtain permits in order to exercise their God-given rights. 

But we strongly support our two-pronged strategy to:

(1) Pass the Cornyn/Stutzman reciprocity bill (S. 498/H.R. 923) which would allow Americans from constitutional carry states to carry nationally without any permit, and, 

(2) Work to turn large numbers of additional states into constitutional carry states which would benefit from this legislation.  

People from states which require permits would have to show those permits in order to benefit from reciprocity, but we believe this would be an incentive for those states to adopt a constitutional carry system. 

And to be clear, the Cornyn/Stutzman legislation does NOT create a “national permit” or “national registration.”  To the contrary, this legislation ENCOURAGES states to pass constitutional carry laws which will recognize the right of citizens to carry WITHOUT permits or licenses.

The beauty of the Cornyn/Stutzman legislation is that citizens will be able to carry WITHOUT permits or licenses, not only in their home states, but all across the country, as well.

Think about it: The prospects of allowing Alaskans to carry in New York City — or anywhere else they want — without a permit is one of the most effective advancements for Second Amendment values which we could enact.  

But if there is any “Trojan Horse” here, it is the “Trojan Horse” that comes from Americans (from constitutional carry states) who can carry, without a permit, in other states where the local citizens have been stripped of their Second Amendment rights and have been forced to grovel for permission to carry concealed.  Ultimately, the “locals” are going to look around and ask themselves “Why can that guy (from out-of-state) protect his family, and not me?”

Just to make it clear: 

PRO-GUN RECIPROCITY LEGISLATION LESSENS THE PROSPECTS FOR A “NATIONAL CARRY PERMIT.”  You can take this to the bank:  The idea of a “national carry permit” has, long ago, occurred to Chuck Schumer, and he will implement it at any time he has the political ability to do so.  (Many states already have reciprocal agreements with each other, so Schumer could propose restrictions on concealed carry right now.) But the best way to defeat Schumer is to force New York to recognize the constitutional rights of Americans from non-repressive states. 

WE WOULD BE FOOLS TO IGNORE THE REALITY THAT THE CONSTITUTION MAKES THE RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS BINDING ON THE STATES.  States do not have a right to tear up the Second Amendment. That much was made clear by the McDonald v. Chicago decision in 2010, when the Supreme Court stated Congress does have power, under the 14th Amendment, to protect American citizens who are having their gun rights violated by states and localities.(1)  To this end, the Cornyn/Stutzman legislation would protect American citizens from those states that are violating their constitutionally-protected right to “bear” arms.

VICTORY FEEDS UPON ITSELF.  Rather than just sitting back and playing “defense,” the gun movement is best served by passing attainable legislation to force anti-gun states like New York and California to recognize the Second Amendment values they abhor. 

OBAMA WILL NOT BE NEUTRALIZED JUST BECAUSE WE REFUSE TO PUSH FOR OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS.  Barack Obama has spent every day since the Newtown tragedy working to take away our Second Amendment rights, usually by executive fiat.  Forcing him to fight the pro-active advance of the Second Amendment will lessen his ability to try to do bad things to us. 

Bottom line: Support the Cornyn/Stutzman reciprocity bill.

(1) The Supreme Court correctly acknowledged in McDonald v. Chicago (2010) that, because of the 14th Amendment, the federal government can prevent states from violating the rights listed in the first eight amendments of the Bill of Rights. 
Section 5 of that amendment authorizes Congress to pass legislation to protect such rights from state abuse:  “The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.”  And since there are currently states which are denying people their right to carry guns out-of-state, then Section 5 of the 14th Amendment (via the 2nd Amendment) would authorize the Congress to correct this through legislation.