Gun Rights

Carry a Gun—Without a Permit

If you have to ask permission, it's a privilege, not a right. And maybe you shouldn't bother to ask.



"The eight-year assault on your Second Amendment freedoms has come to a crashing end," President Trump claimed on Friday while addressing a National Rifle Association gathering in Atlanta. "No longer will federal agencies be coming after law-abiding gun owners."

Well, that's a relief. I was afraid the feds were risking repetitive strain injuries. It's time for them to change things up and bash on some other freedoms. Somehow, I'm sure we can count on them to do just that.

But relief for self-defense rights might well be a thing, especially outside the nation's capital. Look, for example, at the growing ranks of states recognizing people's right to discreetly carry weapons without first seeking government approval.

That's a practice I sometimes jokingly call "New York carry," though I inevitably confuse people when I do. New York doesn't encourage carrying a gun without a permit, they protest! Well, actually, it kind of does. When I worked in New York City in the 1990s, getting permission to just legally own a handgun was an ordeal (which I've described elsewhere), and a carry permit was out of the question for anybody who wasn't well connected. For a while, I worked a job that had me returning to my apartment at 4th Street and Avenue B—a gentrifying but still sketchy neighborhood at the time—in the wee hours of the morning. The criminals, along the route, it seemed, had never received the memo about the city's restrictive gun laws. Believe me, I carried.

I met others who did the same. With the city's tight restrictions, most of the guns they owned were already off the books, putting carry permits that much further out of reach. But people still felt the need for protection for themselves and their families. And so they did what they considered necessary and right whether lawmakers liked it or not: New York carry.

When done legally, as is increasingly possible across the country, toting a gun without a permit is often called "constitutional carry" based on the argument that the Constitution is all the license Americans need to exercise their rights. Texas, which loosened some gun restrictions in recent years, may be the next state to drop requirements for concealed carry permits. But if Texans don't move fast, Alabama could beat them to the punch. Or South Carolina could do the honors. Even Wisconsin is considering eliminating permit requirements for concealed carry, with the endorsement of State Attorney General Brad Schimel.

But they're all laggards. New Hampshire eliminated the requirement for concealed carry permits in February. North Dakota did the same a month later. Missouri had them beat, with a measure passed last fall. South Dakota would have followed suit, if the governor hadn't vetoed the bill while insisting that threatening people with arrest and confinement to a cage for carrying the means of self-defense constitutes "protecting the lives of our citizens."

In all, 14 states now have some form of constitutional carry—starting with Vermont, which never imposed any restrictions to begin with. Montana eliminated restrictions in 1991, with other states following. Note that some of those 14 states limit full enjoyment of the freedom to state residents, according to

Why the push to eliminate permit requirements for concealed carry when just getting the authorities to let us legally carry the means for self-defense was such a big deal just a few years ago? After all, the push for carry permits has been successful not just legally, but in its reception by the public. Permits are widely popular and defensive weapons have become an important part of many Americans' lives (much to the distress of opponents).

Well, the philosophical rationale should be clear; if you have to ask permission, it's a privilege, not a right. Permission can be rescinded, and is always exercised at the sufferance of whoever is empowered to say "yes" or "no." A license to speak your mind granted in place of First Amendment protections, or an annual fee to keep the cops from tossing your house as a substitute for Fourth Amendment restrictions on search and seizure, might give you a little breathing room, but each breath would be drawn in the shadow of fears about lost paperwork or pissed-off officials. Owning and carrying the means to defend yourself is no different, with the rights embodied in the Second Amendment at odds with any requirement that their exercise requires a stack of forms filled out and filed.

Then there are practical fears about the ever-simmering controversy over firearms. After the publication of gun owners' names and addresses by news outlets in New York, who really wants to add themselves to lists that may well be harvested by opponents of self-defense rights? Putting yourself on those lists runs the very real risk of painting a target on your back for political enemies, or for officials enforcing potentially tighter laws under a future regime. It's much safer, when exercising freedoms that drive some people into hostile frenzies, to stay under the radar.

Which brings us back to constitutional carry, an improvement on my own New York carry. As it is, plenty of well-intentioned people already carry without permits, in restrictive jurisdictions, out of principle, or to avoid unwelcome entries in databases. Legalizing the practice allows people to deal with dangers to life, limb, and property while also minimizing legal peril.

Well, until the political winds shift again and politicians turn their unwanted attention back to practitioners of self-defense rights. But that possibility is all the more reason to deny them lists of our names to work from.

NEXT: New Orleans Public Defender Investigator Was Criminally Charged by Prosecutor She Was Up Against In Court

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  1. Unless, of course, the 2nd amendment was only referring to state militias. OK, go!

    1. The 2nd Amendment was a compromise between the federalists and the anti-federalists. Militias are mentioned to please the former, however, the 2nd Amendment doesn’t say you have a right to keep and bear arms only if you serve in militias, nor does it say those militias are regulated by the government. Also keep in mind that one person can be a militia.

      Also, the entire Bill of Rights is about INDIVIDUAL rights, so why would the 2nd Amendment be about a collective right to bear arms? That’s like the First Amendment protecting free speech but only for those working for PBS or NPR.

      1. that’s what those fucks at NPR and the NYT actually believe. Only they are “the press”, not you an me as individuals

        1. Actually, when they talk about the media, they always sound like they’re talking about someone else. But you and me, (unless you own a press, I don’t), aren’t the press. They are. That we have a voice doesn’t make us the press, but you might be able to argue that you’re a journalist if you have a blog, or something.

          But on an unrelated matter, poor Chicago, always the second, (or third) city. When I lived there, handguns were simply not allowed, let alone any kind of carry. So I did Chicago carry: a small black market gun, well-concealed.

          1. Everyone has the same freedom of the press. Journalists don’t have some free press right that the rest of us don’t.

            1. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life.

              This is what I do.,,,,…,.,.,..

            2. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life.

              This is what I do…,.,.,.,.

        2. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life.

          This is what I do…

      2. I think the true wisdom of the second amendment is that it is a last ditch deterrent to tyranny. A well armed populace, that is the government’s inability to know how many might be armed, is a good deterrent to some scumbag calling martial law.
        unless, of course, you are the pussies in Boston who rolled over like beaten dogs.

        1. ^^^

          As they say, the power of the people rests on three boxes. The ballot box, the soap box, the ammo box, in that order.

          1. In the final analysis its only the ammo box, the Sine Qua Non of rights.

            “Political power comes from the barrel of a gun” ~Mao Zedong

          2. Don’t forget the jury box. Nullification is a powerful tool.

        2. If (a big if) someone high up in government were to somehow turn the military against the citizenry, good luck fighting off cruise missiles with your Glock. Sure, the people might slow ’em down for a while, but as soon as “they” cut the electrical power, the highways, railroads, water mains, and sent in the guys with tanks and flamethrowers, we’re out of luck. It’s wouldn’t be muskets vs muskets nowadays.

          Heck, just threatening to close down the Walmarts, McDonald’s, and shopping malls would get most people to give up!

          (America’s bumbling bureaucrats figuring out a way to start up a tyrannical military coup sounds like a weak movie plot anyway.)

          1. Moron.

          2. Reminds me of the “better red than dead” mentality of the decades preceding the collapse of the USSR; they’re just too big and strong to entertain resisting them, so things will go better for you if you just come along peacefully.

            That’s as much a mental game as any actual physical confrontation. If you want to roll over and play dead for your beloved nanny state suit yourself; personally I’m not buying it.

          3. As out ongoing experience in the Middle East shows, tanks and middles are of limited utility in asymmetrical warfare. Also, bureaucratic tyrannies are not from from tank turret; they are run from desks. And, Hollywood to the contrary, most desks will not stop an bullet.

          4. This is such a stupid remark I don’t have the time to set it straight.

    2. “? the people are confirmed by the next article in their right to keep and bear their private arms”
      Philadelphia Federal Gazette, June 18, 1789

      “Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?”
      Patrick Henry

      “The people are not to be disarmed of their weapons. They are left in full possession of them.”
      Zachariah Johnson

      “And that the said Constitution be never construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the Press, or the rights of Conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms; ?”
      Samuel Adams

      “The great object is that every man be armed.” and “Everyone who is able may have a gun.”
      Patrick Henry

      “The constitutions of most of our States assert that all power is inherent in the people; that ? it is their right and duty to be at all times armed; ? ”
      Thomas Jefferson

      “The best we can help for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed.”
      Alexander Hamilton

      Yes, somewhere in there it was all about collective arms under the control of Gov’t…. not about individual rights to arms. Heck, clearly the Bill of Rights was about the rights of States, not indivudals, right?

      1. Something something… “slave owning white men” … mumble mumble… “like, 100 years ago or something” …

      2. I’m not against guns, and for some people, in some environments, it would appear that self defense is occasionally justification to carry a gun. Not to mention sport shooting and such.

        But it seems that the gents who wrote the Constitution didn’t foresee the major changes that came about in weaponry, communication, etc.

        In the 1700s a simple handgun/rifle/musket put a person essentially on a level playing field with any threat, including wild animals, marauders, foreign invaders, occupying armies (eg, the Redcoats, American Indians, a potentially “rogue” tyrannical government, etc). Seems that their point was that we had the right to form somewhat organized forces (militias) to fend off such entities. They had no inkling of tanks, flamethrowers, mustard gas, machine guns, cruise missiles, aircraft, ICBMs, etc. So the idea of an armed populace ready to stand up to such a threat made a lot of sense in the 18th century. Arguably not so much in the 21st century.

        Similar to freedom of speech. It says “Congress shall make no law…”, and the word “no” is a pretty specific term. Yet we know we tolerate and accept many restrictions on speech, such as FCC regulations against “profanity” and such. Seems to directly contradict “no law”. The Founders didn’t seem to anticipate anything like radio, TV, the Internet, etc. If they had, the wording would have probably been very different.

        1. Fuck off slaver.

        2. How’d that work out for Viet Nam? Afghanistan? Nicaragua?

          I sure am glad I will never be one to submit to tyranny just because someone deems it futile.

          P.S. Fuck off Slaver.

    3. Go read the debates on the bill of rights. They are extensively documented and widely available. The idea that the Second Amendment does not protect an individual right is fairly new, entirely a product of Liberal Progressve Statism, and dead wrong.

      1. Though honestly even if it didn’t it would still be covered by the 9th.

      2. Thread corps rape ~~~
        “Liberal Progressive Statism”

        Is an oxymoron. Nothing Liberal about “Progressive Statism”

        Can we not bastardize the word “Liberal” please. I’ll not surrender that word to the left!

    4. Yeah – that darned old militia argument – long since settled keeps popping up.

      The founders wrote “militia” in the prefatory clause, and “people” in the operative clause….but hey – the wealthiest and best educated men of their day simply fucked up the wording right?

      DC vs Heller settled this. Militia membership is ONE reason to exercise the right to bear arms – not the only reason.

      1. Even more important, the phrase “well-regulated,” as it was used at the time, meant something that worked as it should. It most definitely did *not* imply an external regulator, which is how they are reading it today.

        1. the phrases is “well-regulated militia”,(being necessary to the security of a free state),not that the RKBA must be “well-regulated”.
          leftists read as far as “well-regulated”,and stop right there. in both reading and thinking.

          the first phrase says essentially that “militias are a nice thing”,and nothing more.
          it makes NO restrictions,sets no limits on the RKBA.

    5. Before the Civil War, in Dred Scott, the Supreme Court said that “if blacks were citizens they would have the right to keep and carry arms wherever they went”.

      In Cruishank (1876) the SC said that the 2A protected a right “that existed BEFORE the adoption of the Constitution” and “doesn’t depend on [the 2A] for its existence”, and that the 2A protects that right from Federal infringement.

      The militia argument was settled in 1876.

    6. It wasn’t. The Federalist Papers were pretty clear on the matter.

    7. Nothing in the 2nd Amendment says “state,” and nothing in the context of the time implies “state.”

      1. Really? The word State is right there in the middle…

        “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

        Of course, the implication here is the exact opposite of what gun-control idiots want it to mean.

        1. The obviously are using “state” to refer to the union, not individual states.

      2. It says State.. While the Militia clauses of the Constitution it’s self uses the words State, and Union.

        1. There was no national Army, only a national Navy. All ground soldiers were from the States themselves.

          1. The Founders didn’t appear to be big fans of a permanent professional standing army. Seems that they figured Americans would come forward and assemble to protect themselves as needed when threatened, much like the Revolution. The Navy was needed to project commercial power where individual citizens couldn’t go.

    8. Speaking of justification clauses:

      In criminal prosecutions, the trial of facts in the vicinity where they happen, is so essential to the security of the life, liberty and estate of the citizen, that no crime or offence ought to be tried in any other county than that in which it is committed . . . .

      New Hampshire Const. pt. I, art. XVII (1784). Source: The Commonplace Second Amendment

      Question: In New Hampshire, can a crime be tried in a county other than which it was committed? Even when it might actually move the trial closer to the scene of the crime, depending on the location of the county courthouse?

      And if not, how does this illuminate the justification clause of the Second Amendment?

      1. Trials are always in the county where the crime was committed (or allegedly committed) in NH. No idea what that has to do with the second amendment.

    9. From the perspective of federal law, at least, it doesn’t matter what the 2nd Amendment says. There is nothing in Article 1 Section 8 giving the Congress the authority to pass gun control laws.


        1. Actually to make it work they had to combine the Commerce clause and Taxing/Fee authority. That is why it is a felony for non-tax collectors to make the background check call. as tax collectors for the government they can be made to do all kinds of stuff regular citizens can’t.

          1. NFA is a tax stamp act.

    10. Re: bsmith,

      Unless, of course, the 2nd amendment was only referring to state militias.

      Even if it did, the Constitution does not confer rights. We are born with the right to life, liberty and property, the necessary consequence of having a mind. If you have a right to possess things, you have the right to possess a gun.

      Marxians and other leftists will try to argue, unconvincingly, that only the government can bestow rights on people because the government is in charge of protecting them, which is similar to arguing that the burglar alarm in your home owns your home, or that the covered parking lot owns your car, etc. It’s a good example of circular thinking.

      The real reason the government continuously imposes diverse restrictions on gun possession or use is because the government is protecting itself from armed insurrection. Idiots who are easily impressed with the military might of the US armed forces don’t ever consider the psychological effect that killing family and friends has on ordinary soldiers. They never consider that Iran’s Shah was deposed because the army joined the revolutionaries. That’s why the US government and the bureaucracy are always very worried about an armed society. They know.

      1. To anyone who’s tried:

        What do leftists says when natural rights are brought up? I’m curious if they agree at first and then flounder when you start to bring up how their worldview violates them, or if they say something like “natural rights is code for racism!” or otherwise reject the whole concept

      2. I disagree, we aren’t born with any rights. Humans may have more or less common desires and aspirations, but nothing is inherently guaranteed or promised to anyone. Civilized populations form governments and bestow on them the power to protect certain specific rights. If you were born in the rain forest you wouldn’t have any rights whatsoever. You’d have needs and desires (food, shelter, reproduction, etc). But none of those would be your right; you’d have to struggle to attain them against nature, wild animals, or others who might challenge them.

        1. Idiot.

        2. Someone doesn’t understand the distinction between “positive” and “negative” rights.

    11. well,what DOES the Second say there?
      “A well-regulated militia,being necessary to the security of a free state”.
      Hmm,it does NOT say that militias must be “well-regulated”,it does NOT say arms must be “well-regulated”,it does not restrict arms to militias. it really does not say anything,nor imply anything.
      it says militias “are necessary to a free state”,nothing more.
      IOW,just ONE of many reasons why “the right of the People to keep AND BEAR arms SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.”
      Now that second part DOES say plenty,it makes specific prohibition -on government- to keep their hands off peoples arms.
      it says that people have a RIGHT to own and to CARRY arms,….naturally,in a lawful manner.

      So,WHY is this so hard for people to comprehend?
      I blame it on a leftist education system that turns out cretins.

    12. well,what DOES the Second say there?
      “A well-regulated militia,being necessary to the security of a free state”.
      Hmm,it does NOT say that militias must be “well-regulated”,it does NOT say arms must be “well-regulated”,it does not restrict arms to militias. it really does not say anything,nor imply anything.
      it says militias “are necessary to a free state”,nothing more.
      IOW,just ONE of many reasons why “the right of the People to keep AND BEAR arms SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.”
      Now that second part DOES say plenty,it makes specific prohibition -on government- to keep their hands off peoples arms.
      it says that people have a RIGHT to own and to CARRY arms,….naturally,in a lawful manner.

      So,WHY is this so hard for people to comprehend?
      I blame it on a leftist education system that turns out cretins.

      1. apologies for the double post,I didn’t see it appear the first time.

      2. The militia part is to be sure military grade weapons are not prohibited. A militia unit with pitchforks and torches is pretty ineffective. It was intended to prevent all the madness over magazine size, self loading, and whatever technology comes next. The founding fathers knew arms technology would change, probably for the more deadly, and tried to use plain english to prevent abuse of a natural right.

    13. The second amendment was a provision to prevent the federal government from disarming the states.

      All federal firearms laws are unconstitutional.

      The second amendment does not prevent firearm regulation by the states.

      The 14th amendment does restrict the ability to ban self defense.

      Of course scotus disagrees with me.

      1. If the second amendment does not prevent arms regulation by the states, then the 13th, 14th, 15th do not prohibit states from allowing slavery.
        Sorry, but federal constitutional rights override state laws. I hate to break it to you, but that was settled in the mid 1860’s by force of arms.

  2. New York and New York City have all the gun control laws you could ever want, and the result is thugs beating up people in the park, the subway, etc, sometimes murdering them. Vermont has constitutional carry, and their crime rate is almost zilch.

    With that said, being law-abiding is always the safest course of action. If you engage in civil disobedience with gun laws, no judge is going to give you a break. There are lives that have been ruined over ignorance of NYC gun laws. A marine for example visited the World Trade Center memorial and asked if there was a gun locker where he could store his firearm, the result was legal drama. The same happened to a woman from TN.

    1. In most of the cases I find where an out-of-towner violated the strict (and despicable) gun laws of New York City, it was from sheer ignorance. And it’s no excuse. There’s oodles of information on nationwide carry out there, including the great resource, which details the laws in every jurisdiction, and is religiously updated all the time.

      With regards to carrying off-the-books in restrictive jurisdictions, it’s done, and it’s done a lot. As JD noted in his previous articles, gun control breeds defiance, and often, guns that the authorities don’t know about, greatly outnumber legally-owned firearms.

      From my personal observations, having lived in both restrictive and free jurisdictions in this country, it holds true. I remember growing up in New York State in the 80s and 90s, and a lot of people had guns of all types. Some of which were illegal in NYS, even back then. The simple fact is, people exercised operational security and didn’t blab about the “assault weapon” stashed in a hiding place in their home. Nor did they talk about having carried a firearm on their person, despite the obscene waiting periods for a permit to do so.

      1. In most of the cases I find where an out-of-towner violated the strict (and despicable) gun laws of New York City, it was from sheer ignorance. And it’s no excuse.

        Ignorance absolutely is an excuse.
        One cannot expect everyone to be cognizant of the gun laws of every city in the country.

        1. I kind of agree, but I kind of don’t.

          For the most part, if you live in a free state, you enjoy widespread reciprocity across most of the country. For example, I live in Florida and I don’t think twice about carrying throughout most of the South and as far west as Nevada.

          However, forewarned is forearmed. At the very least, you have to be in a black hole somewhere to think you can conceivably legally carry a firearm in New York City without jumping through a million hoops. In the firearms community, NYC’s draconian laws are always talked about.

          But then again, not everyone who owns a gun participates in the discussions about owning one. I guess it’s up to us to tell our less-participatory friends the reality of things.

          That being said, if I were a firearms instructor, the first thing I would hand out in a class is a reciprocity map relevant to my local area, with a big red “NO-GO” dot over New York City, for example.

          1. The problem with NY is not even carrying, its possessing.

            FOPA in theory will protect you, but NY/NJ officers (particularly when near the metro area) disregard FOPA
            The Port Authority Police take it to a new level by routinely arresting travelers when they declare their firearms at the counter. They have had this behavior affirmed by the Third Circuit.

            The ignorance thing is compelling in urban areas where boundaries between cities not readily apparent, and particularly in states where cities are not preempted in the types of firearm restrictions they can pass.

            Its entirely possible to be in the NYC metro area and not know what city you are in.

            1. The ignorance thing is compelling in urban areas where boundaries between cities not readily apparent, and particularly in states where cities are not preempted in the types of firearm restrictions they can pass.

              The fact that it was also solved/addressed/settled prior to the 14th speaks volumes about the civility of equality as well.

            2. New York City has been a corrupt crony-ist state since the Dutch owned it. To get anything done you need connections at City Hall. New Yorkers love this system since everyone of them believes that they have a special “piece of the action”. Whether it’s cab drivers or bankers, they all view themselves as having a vested interest in some form of corruption (although they will never use that word to describe what they have) and therefore will not merely tolerate, but totally support that system.

              I left that city in 1972 and have never even considered moving back.

    2. Cont’d…

      One guy I knew growing up, he was the victim of an armed robbery at his place of business. Down the line after he moved out of the state to a comparatively free jurisdiction, did he fess up to having carried a small pistol after that incident. He just didn’t talk about it. He had the marked advantage of being ostensibly single (i.e. no wife or kids messing around the house) so it was easy for him to find a gun, and carry it without anyone noticing.

      When he felt the need to train, he just drove over to Vermont and went somewhere to shoot. He was breaking state and federal law, but he didn’t care, as his life was more important than some words on paper put into place by the Cuomo mafia. Yeah, Mario was a dick – where do you think Andrew and Chris learned it from?

      In other instances, I’ve read anecdotes from places like Sweden where people discreetly arm up. They practice excellent op-sec, and go about their business. They research and don’t do dumb things like walk into a government building while armed.

      People are going to break laws if they feel it’s unjust and contrary to their best interests. Whether it’s guns, the medicinal use of marijuana, religious use of psychedelics, or what have you, they are going to do what’s best for them.

      1. “carried a small pistol after that incident. He just didn’t talk about it”

        Weapons are to be felt, not seen.

      2. I read about a year ago an article praising Germany for how they had strict licensing but still managed to have the second highest registered ownership rate in Europe. In the last sentence it was casually mentioned that it was estimated that there were four times as many unregistered guns as registered. (IIRC 20 million unregistered, 5 million registered)

    3. I’m pretty sure that there are some significant differences between NYC and Vermont… other than just the gun laws.

      1. maple syrup!

        1. These boys get that syrup in ’em, they get all antsy in their pantsy.

    4. I think there are a few other differences between New York City and Vermont besides the gun laws. You really need to compare to another large city with less restrictive gun laws.

  3. New York carry

    I’m sure one of the gun/history loving get-off-my-lawn types can set me straight. I thought New York carry was already a thing? The fog of my memory recalls a method of carry where an empty gun is carried openly while a backup, condition 1, is concealed. The name/notion/idea being that the empty gun can readily be given up or dropped as a feint. The haze of my memory suggests New York carry coming from NYPD officers who would routinely/expediently drop their regulation or issued .38 in favor of more useful armament.

    Am I wrong?

    1. I think you might be confusing New York carry with a New York reload. Down here in the South, we usually refer to a gun carried illegally, and without a holster as Mexican carry.

  4. “No longer will federal agencies be coming after law-abiding gun owners.”

    Does that mean Trump will change 4473 back to not stating that legal use of marijuana in the state is not a reason for the feds to deny your 2nd Amendment in the country?

    1. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!11!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. AL has open carry, c’mon down Antifas.

    1. Oh, Christ, why would you wish that many toxic rotting bodies on AL? You KNOW moonbats are only partially biodegradable, and their corpses and clothing constitute hazard to the environment!

  6. Hope Arkansas gets the message.

  7. Great article, except Montana law still requires a permit to carry concealed inside city limits.

    Irrelevant to me, however, as I stopped asking The Crown for permission about 17 years ago after my first and only concealed carry permit expired.

    1. what are the consequences of being caught?

    2. So basically, Montana has not passed a preemption law yet that forbids cities from deviating from state law on guns?

      1. Montana has partial preemption (cities/towns/counties can ban at assemblies, parks, and public buildings)

        State law says permit needed for concealing within city limits. So you just simply OC.

  8. Around here there is a debate about allowing people to legally carry firearms on college campuses.

    The opponents say that it is “magical thinking” to say that [people with] guns deter or stop crime.

    Yet these same people feel that incantations legislation and totems placards will stop criminals from carrying guns.

    Magical thinking indeed.

    1. You live in Austin too?

  9. Basic right, no permits. Permits allow for tracking and the publication of names you mentioned. Great article.

  10. the Constitution is all the license Americans need to exercise their rights.


  11. You know why I like Tucille? Because he’s got the proper amount of dismissive, angry disdain for the state and its petty bureaucrats.

  12. Does that mean that felony dildo salesmen in Alabama will have their second amendment rights restored?

  13. Concealed carry is of no use to me, I don’t carry a purse. Besides, Open Carry is the right guaranteed by the Constitution, concealed carry can be banned.

    “[A] right to carry arms openly: “This is the right guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States, and which is calculated to incite men to a manly and noble defence of themselves, if necessary, and of their country, without any tendency to secret advantages and unmanly assassinations.”” District of Columbia v. Heller, 128 S. Ct. 2783 (2008) at 2809

    “We therefore hold that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment incorporates the Second Amendment right recognized in Heller.” McDonald v. City of Chicago, Ill., 130 S. Ct. 3020 (2010) at 3050.

    “But the majority implicitly, and appropriately, rejects that suggestion by broadly approving a set of laws ? prohibitions on concealed weapons…” Heller dissent at 2851

    “[T]he right of the people to keep and bear arms (art. 2) is not infringed by laws prohibiting the carrying of concealed weapons…” Robertson v. Baldwin, 165 US 275 – Supreme Court (1897) at 282.

    1. ‘Open Carry is the right guaranteed by the Constitution, concealed carry can be banned”

      2nd amendment doesn’t specify open carry only. It specifies keep and bear.

      1. Diane Reynolds – By your logic, human sacrifice is protected by the 1st Amendment.

        1. Not if the intended sacrifice is carrying.

  14. The day is coming when articles like this are no longer written, as the 2nd amendment becomes a fully liberated inalienable right, finally escaping the claws of the neo-con 80s-90s-00s anti-crime dogma and stigma.

    If congress does not act, and state legislatures don’t act, the SCOTUS has a slew of cases set to rule the day and set the right free. Everyone has the inalienable right to self defense, no matter where they are, or what they are doing.

    The bottom line is that as long as the weapon has legitimate defensive effects that are discriminate in nature, then it’s a weapon of common self defense and thus legal to own.

    The next American generation will battle on whether or not it’s appropriate to remove these rights from felons who have fully served their punishment, and/or are convicted of non-violent offenses. It makes zero sense to remove the right of self defense from someone simply because they may have stolen $200 as a teenager, or to with hold them eight decades after an individual is “fully rehabilitated.”

    The matter of rehabilitation is black and white, either they are rehabilitated and thus fully trusted with all rights, or they aren’t, and still pose a threat to society. If they aren’t fully rehabilitated and thus we don’t trust them to enjoy all their rights, then they shouldnt be set free. Withholding rights from these individuals inherently leads to failure in rehabilitation.

  15. What does the phrase: “A well regulated militia” actually mean?

    If you were to ask a “progressive” they would naturally default to their insular understanding of the word regulate, which is to control, legislate, and restrict.

    The problem with this relatively naive definition is that it simply ignores history, falls apart under basic scrutiny, and fails under the law of parsimony.

    The phrase is actually a statement of intent and desire to ensure the proper military readiness of the militia. It’s that simple.

    The phrase “well-regulated” was in common use long before 1789, and remained so for a century thereafter. It referred to the property of something being in proper working order. Something that was well-regulated was calibrated correctly, functioning as expected.

    In the military, the functionality of a military unit is a measurement of military readiness. As many of us know here at SMCC, military readiness is a calculation of unit manning, training, and equipping. These are the measurements still in use today by our standing active and reserve military.

    In reference to a militia, military readiness is solely a measurement of equipment. Manning is not a concern due to the inherent nature of the militia (all able bodied men). Training is not a concern because militia’s aren’t formally trained until they are enlisted officially.

    1. Equipping was the only aspect of military readiness that the founding fathers were able to influence. They could not afford to provide arms for all able bodied men, and the anti-federalists believed providing arms to the militia would actually make the militia a standing Army. So they compromised in a radical way — they put the responsibility of equipping the militia on its own members, and they ensured that the government would not stand in their way to meet that responsibility by removing any chance of infringement.

      In essence, the founders wanted the militia to be prepared.

      You can test this by simply exchanging the words “regulated” with “prepared” or “equipped/trained/manned”. They all make logical sense. It makes sense that a prepared militia is necessary to the security of the free state.

      Now swap in the words that progressives wish the phrase meant: “well controlled” or “well restricted”. Ask yourself, does it make sense that a well controlled militia (which is composed of all abled bodied citizens) is a necessity for the security of a free state? Isn’t a free state comprised of all citizens? This clearly does not make sense. Nor does this definition make sense in context with the second half of the 2A.

    2. “15: To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

      16: To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;”
      – – – – – – – –
      “Amendment II
      A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”
      – – – – – – – –
      Nothing in the above actually requires the Militia to be Enrolled under military discipline to be “trained”.

      The fact is this is the only training allowed to the federal government if firearm safety is an issue to be dealt with. Even more so when it is realized that the uninfringeable weapons are up to and including current military issue personal use weapons.

      In a world as education heavy as we have today, the idea of a pre-enrolment trained militia; including the use of equipment, possible rank, rating, and book learning discipline, seems more reasonable then trying to create unconstitutional weapons bearing training requirements.

      1. Is someone claiming training is a requirement?

        Slight correction though, the distinction between what weapons are allowed and what’s not is whether it’s “offensive” or “defensive” in nature. Defensive weapons are those in common use for self defense, and allow for discrimination in effects. Offensive weapons are those in common use by the military and do not allow for discrimination of effects. This is why bombs, grenades, claymores, post ban automatics, etc… are not covered by the 2A, their effects are not inherently discrimatory, the user of the weapon can not limit their effect to the immediate self defense threat.

        1. The second amendment is not a defensive only amendment. The militia is expected to be able to function with the full time military, and have the same capabilities. Militia usually do not have the same effectiveness, due to the difference in skill level with a full time military unit.
          I would also submit that inclusion of fully automatic weapons as not having “discrimination of effect” is incorrect.

  16. Is the National Guard the militia referenced in the 2nd Amendment?

    No. The National Guard is not considered to be “the militia” that the founding fathers referenced within the 2nd Amendment.

    The reason is remarkably straightforward: the National Guard is capable of being deployed on foreign soil, while “the militia” is prohibited from deploying on foreign soil by Article 1 of the US Constitution.

    Technically, the National Guard is the active duty’s primary “reserve force” because it maintains the ability to conduct all six of the Army’s warfighting functions.

    In contrast, the US Army Reserve is a complimentary reserve force, that can not perform all six warfighting functions, specifically, it lacks the ability to conduct “movement and maneuver.”

    Under US Law, the active component is also called “Component 1.”, the National Guard is called “Component 2.”, and the US Army Reserve is called “Component 3.”. I should note there are additional Components (4-6), but they have no bearing on this discussion. But the numerical order of the components supports their classification.

    When the government speaks of “the reserves,” it does so to the inclusion of both the National Guard and the US Army Reserve. In contrast, if it speaks of the “Army Reserve” it excludes the National Guard.

    With that said, historically the National Guard was at one time considered to be “the militia.” that the founding father’s referenced in the 2nd Amendment.

    1. That all started to change under the Militia Act of 1903, which began to implement federal standards on the state militias on an elective basis by authorizing states to receive federal appropriations if they agreed to regulate according to federal standards.

      The National Defense Act of 1916 federalized all EXISTING state militias as the “Army’s primary reserve”, and changed their name to the “National Guard.” The act also created the first “active guard reserve” positions on the Army’s Headquarters Staff, which centralized command reporting and formally codified the supremacy of the federal government’s chain of command over the National Guard.

      Prior the NDA of 1916, the federal government was prohibited from using state militias to conduct foreign offensive operations. This prohibition is implicitly set out by the Constitutional wording on the purpose of the militia, which is “to execute the laws of the Union, suppress insurrection and repel invasions.” The federal government organized separate federally appointed volunteer armies to create a deployable reserve force. Many of the volunteers for these federal militias came from the state’s militias.

      1. The National Defense Act of 1933 increased the federal mandate over the National Guard by requiring the members of the National Guard to swear an oath to both the state and federal government dually.

        The US Congress’ authority over the National Guard and the US Army Reserve has shifted from those enumerated in regards to regulating a militia, to those enumerated under the authority to raise and support armies.

        When the state militias formally became the National Guard in 1916, they lost their ability to be the militia as conceptualized in the Constitution. The states then failed to actively regulate their state militias outside of the National Guard. I can only assume they yielded their right to do so because it was costly, and it was easier to default to federal military standards.

        The States ignoring their ability to actively regulate their militias in the same fashion they had done before the NDA of 1916, does not eliminate their capacity to do so, nor does it invalidate the concept of a militia separate from the national guard. Instead, states have reserved their funds by passively regulating their militias in concept alone.

        1. As of today, Title 10 U.S. Code ? 311 – “Militia: composition and classes” distinguished between the national guard and the militia:

          (a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.

          (b) The classes of the militia are?
          (1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and

          (2) the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia.

  17. I come from Missouri.
    — We have CCW Constitutional Carry; I still have a CCW permit from before.

    I will Renew it.. WHY.
    — Because even though it is no longer really a permit. it speeds up stops by the police because their database shows a passed records check.
    Also the documents gives added privileges:
    For most holders violations are “criminal”; misdemeanors and felonies
    For permit holders violations are shared between “infractions” illegal but not ‘criminal’, and “criminal”; misdemeanors and felonies.
    Infractions are fines only.. and by Statute the holder is assumed by law to have forgotten they are carrying.. so are asked too remove the firearm. only if they refuse are they hit with the fine enough fines and it only then becomes a criminal matter. and loss of carry.

    So yes I will keep renewing my law abiding certifcation.

    1. “Their database”….yes, the same database that they probably openly share with hard left denialst states such as NJ, NY, and CA.

      Better hope you don’t conceal carry while driving through these states, the database you love makes you a target.

  18. Before you try the New York Carry, know that it comes with a mandatory one year prison sentence if I understand it correctly.

    Unless you’re lucky enough to get one of us on your jury…

    1. You have to get caught first.

      As they say, concealed means concealed.

  19. LOL, the writer is writing from Arizona the most gun friendly state in the union and doesn’t even mention Arizona. Just move here with your gun and don’t be hassled by the Nazis in other states. And if you don’t feel like carrying concealed wear it on your hip. I guarantee you the border crossers shopping at Wal-Mart will give you lots more room instead of constantly bumping into you when they don’t see a gun on your hip.
    Just move on over to “free America”…. it’s a dry heat but worth it!

  20. Same basic principle with prescription laws. Your doctor decides whether or not you will be allowed to purchase a medication. Prior to 1938 these laws didn’t exist. But the FDR administration’s leftist thinking was that people were “incompetent” to make decisions of this nature. Nor were their neighborhood pharmacists allowed to make the choice for them despite the fact that pharmacists are likely more knowledge about the effects of a medication than doctors are.

    Same basic principle here. You are incompetent to make such decisions for yourself. Only someone authorized by government is allowed to make the decision for you. Guns or medical drugs, only someone authorized by the government is allowed to be the one to give you permission to buy medicine or carry a concealed firearm.

  21. Ineresting piece, but you forgot Maine, which went constitutional carry last year.

  22. Right/on

  23. When people use guns to commit crimes it’s called “NY Carry”?

    Another reason I’m glad I don’t live in NYC.

    1. Almost missed this one. Troll.

    2. I believe it’s called NY Carry when otherwise law abiding citizens take it upon themselves to carry a weapon to defend themselves, in defiance of City and State laws to the contrary.

      Criminals carry regardless of what any laws apply, and misuse them to prey on others.

      Do you understand the difference? Of course in the mind of someone like yourself, who eschews any notion of natural law or inherent or inalienable rights, both parties are equally criminal, one for engaging in harmful and predatory behavior and the other for simply choosing to defy a law that renders them defenseless and totally dependent upon the State for their well being.

      Of course the police have no duty to protect you, only to respond to calls and clean up and investigate AFTER the crime has been committed.

      Many of us do not buy into that little paradigm, and instead believe we do have inherent rights including the right to self defense, and take it upon ourselves to do so if necessary. We do not prey on others, engage in criminal enterprises, or endanger the safety of others. We do not believe the means to a “safer” world is the arbitrary and effective disarmament of all persons [the vast majority of whom are law abiding as described above] in a hapless effort to make it theoretically more difficult for criminals to get guns. Instead we would suggest that efforts be made to severely punish those who do engage in criminal violence.

  24. I own 12 guns, am a member of the NRA, and am a licensed concealed carrier.

    I very strongly oppose Bloomberg’s “common sense gun control,” but I’m okay with a requirement to get a carry permit. I think the permits should be granted on a “shall issue” basis, meaning that if you meet the requirements you must be issued a permit. You should NOT have to show “a good reason” to get a carry permit.

    I do think that a state/local background check, and a reasonable written test, are okay. I’m not sure about proving proficiency; if this is included, the requirement should not be onerous, given that most gun battles happen within 10 feet and therefore a great aim is rarely necessary.

    I also think there should be nationwide carry permit reciprocity. The current patchwork is needlessly complicated, and in some states too restrictive.

    1. “if you meet the requirements”; THERE’S the rub.
      Then you get places like NJ,NYC,Chicago,LA,or DC where they set the “requirements” so high,virtually nobody can get a permit without “knowing someone”,making huge donations to somebody,or being a celeb.

      So,I have to disagree with you about needed a permit to exercise my Constitutional RIGHT to be armed off my own private property.

      We desperately need Constitutional Carry. And firearm safety and law training in high school. or even younger.

      I also feel that EVERY HS graduate should have to take 6 months basic military training,with few if any exemptions.
      (blindness,extreme physical impairment,stuff like that. NO “conscious objector” garbage.)

      1. I strongly agree with you about “reasonable” requirements, and I share your misgivings. But here we are, on the Reason site. I am plenty cynical, but for the moment I am indulging a (very) small measure (restrained) idealism. And reason.

        Some points:

        1. For now, NJ, CT, NY, et al hide behind “may issue.” If it goes to “shall issue,” it would at least theortically be a significant advancement. The magic bullet? Nope. There are no magic bullets, not even the 200gr .357 magnum rounds that I shoot with my Dan Wesson 715.

        2. Standards for the “shall issue” granting of a concealed carry permit could be national, to a significant degree, if “shall issue” became the law of the land.

        3. States could remain free to allow permitless carry within their borders, but Congress could mandate a single standard for reciprocity. It would be higher than I suspect you might want, but I’m (possibly) willing to take the chance in return for 50-state CCW.

        4. When it comes to that language, and the regulatory backup, I have a considerable (not unlimited, but considerable) faith in the NRA to embed the right language in law and regulation.

        (CONT’D BELOW)

        1. 5. Concealed carriers currently have an enviable track record. I very strongly want to keep it that way. One way to screw it up, in my opinion, is to have too loose a national standard. Better, in my view, is to have a (somewhat) higher national standard, with individual states free to be looser within their own borders. If experience over time shows that permitless carry “works” in a practical sense, then push later for a lower national standard.

          6. I realize that I’m not pure enough for you, but I am looking to the long term. I want concealed carry reciprocity to succeed, and am willing to make this a multi-stage process.

          7. Finally: I am no lawyer, thank God. But I did read the Heller decision more than once. It authorizes a lot of gun control. The 2nd amendment will never, in my opinion, be as wide-ranging or as absoute, in the real world, as the 1st, because guns are always more lethal than poison pens. Therefore, I think gunners (and I proudly include myself as one of them) should think about the real world.


          * I am an NRA member, but that’s all. I am not in any way, shape, or form their spokesliar. I say this in the interest of heading off at the pass any strange accusations. Maybe I’m too paranoid, as the result of being excoriated by many a liberal as a ”paid Exxon troll,” I am accustomed to everything as the price of independence.

      2. I tried to reply, but this website ate my comment. Screw it.

        1. I see I jumped the gun, pardon the pun.

  25. Someone oughtta buy the Brave New Books property in Austin and rent it to the bookstore. They put up just such a sign and the spineless landlord, doubtless fearing blacklisting and coercion, booted them out.

  26. what Rachel explained I’m amazed that anyone able to earn $400000 in four weeks on the computer . you could check here………….

  27. what Rachel explained I’m amazed that anyone able to earn $400000 in four weeks on the computer . you could check here………….

  28. that’s what those fucks at NPR and the NYT actually believe. Only they are “the press”, not you an me as individuals
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