The Right to Bear Arms

Would carrying a gun make you feel safer?

Robert Nash and Brandon Koch thought so. But the state of New York denied them gun permits, saying they hadn’t demonstrated a “special need.”

Why did they have to prove such a “need”? The Supreme Court ruled more than 10 years ago that all Americans have a right to keep and bear arms, no matter where they live.

“Many other courts have thumbed their nose at that Supreme Court ruling,” Alan Gottlieb of the Second Amendment Foundation tells me. He’s excited that the Supreme Court will soon rule on Nash and Koch’s lawsuit over New York’s law.

I understand Nash and Koch’s frustration. I once tried to get a carry permit in New York.

First, I had to read 60 pages of instructions about irrelevant things like “metal knuckle knives” and “kung fu stars,” fill out a confusing 17-page form, get it notarized and then go in person to police headquarters.

There they fingerprinted me, demanded reasons why I should be allowed to have a gun and charged me $430.

I heard nothing from them for half a year. Then they wrote me saying that my application was “denied.”

I called to ask if I could appeal. They said I could try again if I could prove that “special need” to carry a gun. After years of confronting crooks on TV, I actually do have a special need for self-protection. I showed the cops threats on my life.

Not good enough, said the NYC permit department. They turned me down again.

Apparently, my mistake was not bribing the cops. Later it was revealed that the police in the permit department were giving out permits for money.

Scams like that thrive whenever politicians impose too many restrictions on people’s freedom. In parts of California, people got gun permits if they donated to a sheriff’s campaign.

It’s one more reason why Gottlieb is excited about this new Supreme Court case. Court watchers predict his side will win, especially because there are now more originalist judges on the court.

That means it’s likely that soon, almost all Americans will be legally able to carry guns.

Some people say that will be terrible.

“Women are less safe!” says professor Lisa Moore of the University of Texas on TV. “Every vulnerable population, LGBT people, students of color, has more to fear!”

But then why are 58% of new gun owners Blacks, and 40% women?

“An awful lot of women bought a firearm to protect themselves and feel a whole lot safer!” says Gottlieb. “Eight hundred thousand times a year, a person uses a firearm to protect themselves. If you call 911, the police usually get there after the crime is over.

Over the last decades, most states liberalized their gun laws. More allow concealed carry. Gun control advocates predicted that would lead to an epidemic of shootings.

The opposite happened. As concealed carry was legalized, violent crime went down. Especially telling, crime dropped in each state right after the law was changed.

Gottlieb says that’s because “an armed society is a polite society.”

As a reporter who attended only liberal schools and worked in liberal newsrooms, I’d been taught that more guns means more violence. Even after interviewing violent criminals in prison and hearing many say that what they feared most was “not the police” but that the person being robbed “might be armed,” I still believed that more guns meant more crime.

Only when I started researching gun crime and studying the data did it become clear that most of my anti-gun assumptions were wrong.

More guns really does mean less crime.

Photo by LOGAN WEAVER on Unsplash

6 thoughts on “The Right to Bear Arms

  1. I will say this again, guns kill, not people. Guns in the hand of morons and idiots will always produce negative results.

  2. People kill, regardless of guns… compare Moscow and London.. guns are strictly governed, nearly illegal, in both countries and cities yet the murder rate is essentially same over the past decade (fluctuations of course). In 2018 London actually over took NYC. This has only recently change with defund the police nonsense. Look at the top 10 murder cities, all have strict gun control laws, the common sense stuff the left want… they dont work… only the lawful are disarmed… the criminals all still have them… making things illegal does not stop availability, if it did, USA would have 0 heroine, crack and other drug issues.

  3. TRUTH!!! Instead of addressing social, economic, and mental issues, it’s cheaper and easier for political leaders to move towards gun control and it takes away the intent of the 2nd amendment and gives them more power than they should. The founding fathers knew technology was moving towards better firearms. larger capacity ammo and semi-auto firearms tech were around. These firearms were known as repeaters. One such was the Pluck Gun. Repeaters were brought to the Continental Congress for sale to use during the Revolution War. So this B.S. argument about only for hunting and they had no ideal the semi-Auto and full auto weapons is a lie. If you research what a lot of founding fathers have said about gun violence, they knew the dangers and stated the risks were worth it to secure overall freedom. The only ones that benefit from gun control are the ones that want overall control of people. That sounds like a dictatorship and that is something the founding fathers DID NOT WANT to happen here. Remember they came from countries that suppressed their freedoms. Were they perfect, no. Did they enslave and oppress others, yes. But times have changed, but the intent of the 2nd Amendment has not. The right to bear arms shall not be infringed. I think that says it all.

  4. NYS just plays intellectual head games with the 2nd Amendment fundamental guarantee. Let’s be honest here, and recognize that it’s as if the 2nd Amendment reads as follows: “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall be infringed, and all citizens shall be required to ask a designated government official for permission to exercise this fundamental right; and said government official may or may not, at his sole discretion, arbitrarily deny or grant such permission, and to issue a special license, on a limited and restrictive basis, to some of the people; and any citizen of New York State or of any of the States who possesses a handgun without first obtaining such license from such New York State designated official shall be guilty of a felony, punishable by mandatory imprisonment.”

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