Good News For Gun Owners; “Good Reason” Law Shut Down

The news is a depressing, idiotic, maddening mess on just about every front, so let’s take a moment to highlight a positive development for liberty that just happened in, of all places, the District of Columbia.

Bearing Arms reports that DC gun owners have just won a major victory over the district’s nakedly-unconstitutional “good reason” law, which requires people applying for a concealed carry permit to demonstrate that they have a “proper reason” to want to carry a concealed weapon, such as “good reason to fear injury to [their] person or property.”

This end-run around the Second Amendment, according to some estimates, is believed to be responsible for shutting down a staggering 80 percent of applications for concealed carry permits.

Fortunately, though, things are finally changing, as Bearing Arms’ Erika Haas details:

[I]n July, Second Amendment supporters – and D.C. residents who simply wished to protect themselves, their homes and their families – finally got some good news.

A federal appellate court shut down the “good reason” law, calling it a clear violation of our Second Amendment rights.

“The individual right to carry common firearms beyond the home for self-defense—even in densely populated areas, even for those lacking special self-defense needs—falls within the core of the Second Amendment’s protections,” the judge wrote.

In October, we got even more good news: the District of Columbia decided not to appeal the decision.

The change is already bearing fruit, with the National Rifle Association reporting that October saw more permit-based NICS checks for District of Columbia residents than January through September combined.

As TFPP’s Seth Connell reported back in June, the court’s blocking the enforcement of the “good reason” law was already enough to result in a spike of concealed carry permit applications:

Granted, 85 permit applications is not all that many in a city consisting on over 600,000, but the application rate is what is key here. In the previous six months, only 61 applications were received for carry permits. Now, in just under two weeks, ten days to be exact as of the original report, after the order, 85 have been filed. That’s an increase of over 2,500%!!

Now that residents are no longer required to demonstrate an actual threat to life and limb, residents who understand the dangers of the real world are taking advantage of this opportunity to take back their right of self-defense.

Indeed, the very premise of the law would be laughed out of any court in the land if we were talking about any constitutional right other than guns. Do people have to go before some state panel to give a “good reason” for expressing controversial speech? Running a newspaper? Joining a civic organization? Attending a particular church or espousing certain religious beliefs?

Of course not. The essence of individual rights is that the decision whether or not to exercise them belongs solely to the individual. Others can like or dislike their neighbor’s choices all they want, and are free to exercise their own rights in protest, but at the end of the day these are decisions that are as close to sacred as the law can get.

And sorry, liberals, but the Bill of Rights lists the “right to keep and bear arms” among them, plain as day.