Posts Tagged ‘gun’

Suitable Person

December 9, 2014

In firearms statutes where a license to carry concealed discreetly shall be issued, there is a term used which operates to restrict the issue of said license. The term is suitable person. The gun prohibitionists have taken hold of this term and used it as a way to infringe upon rights guaranteed by Amendment 2 of the Bill of Rights.

It seems to me that we can look back to the origins of gun licensing to get an idea of what is meant by suitable person. I have an idea where this line of thinking will lead me, and I am just beginning this journey.

The Atlantic article from 2011 The Secret History of Guns looks interesting:

Yet we’ve also always had gun control. The Founding Fathers instituted gun laws so intrusive that, were they running for office today, the NRA would not endorse them. While they did not care to completely disarm the citizenry, the founding generation denied gun ownership to many people: not only slaves and free blacks, but law-abiding white men who refused to swear loyalty to the Revolution.

Also:

After losing the Civil War, Southern states quickly adopted the Black Codes, laws designed to reestablish white supremacy by dictating what the freedmen could and couldn’t do. One common provision barred blacks from possessing firearms.

Could it be that the Black Codes speak about suitable persons?

Here is a piece of a time-line:

1791
The Bill of Rights, including the Second Amendment — “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.” gains final ratification.

1837
Georgia passes a law banning handguns. The law is ruled unconstitutional and thrown out.

1865
In a reaction to emancipation, several southern states adopt “black codes” which, among other things, forbid black persons from possessing firearms.

1871
The National Rifle Association (NRA) is organized around its primary goal of improving American civilians’ marksmanship in preparation for war.

Here is an interesting method employed in Arkansas described by Steve D. Jones:

After the Fourteenth Amendment was passed, Arkansas lawmakers banned the carry of handguns by any citizen, white or black. The legislators of this time achieved their goal of disarming free blacks by enforcing this law only against them, not whites.

Here is a well documented history of the racist history of gun control:

Laws Designed to Disarm Slaves, Freedmen, and African-Americans

Here it is:

Gun Control Is “Racist”? The NRA would know by

States, Frederick’s model law recommended, should only allow concealed carry by people with a license, and those licenses should be restricted to “suitable” people with “proper reason for carrying” a gun in public. Thanks to the NRA’s endorsement, these laws were adopted in the majority of states.

New York State Kills 13 In Binghamton

April 7, 2009

My letter to my members of the New York legislature:

I am writing in regard to the tragic event in Binghamton where 13 people were killed by a troubled man. It is a very sad event and I empathize with the families of those taken prematurely from their lives. I also have feelings of anger with the State of New York which has stripped from the people the ability to defend themselves to the best of their ability. Restricting the right to bear arms has not made people safer, to the contrary it has made them less safe.

The State leaves to the people of New York the options of fleeing for safety or dialing 911 and waiting. In this case both options proved useless to the victims. The murderer blocked off the option to flee, trapping his victims in the building. Calling for police in the best case will take a couple of minutes to get a responding officer. A couple of minutes doesn’t sound like much unless you stop to calculate how much mayhem can occur in that time span. I’ll leave that calculation to your imagination, but it does not necessarily have to include the use of guns.

In another State where there is little impediment to law-abiding citizens carrying defensive weapons, the people have another option for protecting themselves and their fellow citizens. There are many examples of situations that begin like that horrifying day in Binghamton. These events end very differently when one of the potential victims is prepared and able to defend him/herself and others by directly stopping the perpetrator. These events produce fewer victims and therefore fewer headlines.

Gun violence is produced by criminals, by nature criminals are not inclined to obey gun restrictions. That leaves law abiding citizens obeying firearm restrictions, at their own peril. The legislature of New York is responsible for this outrageous event which could have been stopped at the outset by one responsible armed citizen. It is time to allow the people of New York to take responsibility for themselves, their families and their neighbors. It is clear that the State cannot be everywhere all the time, nor should it be.

                 THE CONSTITUTION OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
                                ARTICLE XII

                                    Defense

    Section 1. The defense and protection of the state and of the United
  States is an obligation of all persons within the state. The legislature
  shall provide for the discharge of this obligation and for the maintenance
  and regulation of an organized militia.

The people of New York are the militia. The legislature has not regulated but has disarmed the militia. The legislature abdicated its obligation to maintain the militia. The people of New York are suffering the consequences of misguided legislation. Firearms are tools, in the hands of a criminal they represent danger, in the hands of law-abiding citizens they represent safety, in either case it is the hand that guides the tool.