California has some of the strictest gun control laws in the country. Recently, the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals made those laws more strict.
The court declared that California counties have the right to deny applications for concealed carry permits if the applicant cannot show “good cause” for needing to carry a concealed firearm in public. The ruling gives each county the power to determine what good cause means.
A Significant Victory for Gun Control
In its ruling, the court stated that the Second Amendment does not protect the right of a gun owner to carry a concealed firearm in public. Judge William A. Fletcher, writing for a 7-4 majority, wrote, “The Second Amendment may or may not protect to some degree a right of a member of the general public to carry a firearm in public. If there is such a right, it is only a right to carry a firearm openly.”
The court reasoned that because the Second Amendment does not protect the right to carry concealed firearms in public, any prohibition or restriction a state may choose to impose on concealed carry – including a requirement of good cause – is legally permissible.
Gun-control advocates are praising this ruling, in which the court overruled a 2014 decision that stated California could not outlaw both the open carrying of guns in public and carrying concealed weapons at the same time. In place of that decision, the court now says that California can restrict concealed carry permits if the person applying for the permit cannot point to a specific and compelling reason why he or she needs to carry a gun in public. Continue reading →