A federal appellate court ruled on Thursday that the right to carry concealed firearms outside of the home is not protected by the constitution. The decision comes after a challenge was made in court to guidelines in San Diego and Yolo counties that say a person must prove they have “good cause” in order to be granted a concealed weapons permit. “General protection” does not qualify as sufficient cause in these counties. Similar restrictions have been upheld by courts in New Jersey, New York and Maryland.
“The historical materials bearing on the adoption of the Second and Fourteenth Amendments are remarkably consistent,” wrote Judge William Fletcher, going back to 16th century English law to find instances of restrictions on concealed weapons. “We therefore conclude that the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms does not include, in any degree, the right of a member of the general public to carry concealed firearms in public.”
The plaintiffs immediately announced their intention to appeal the decision, but with a replacement for Justice Scalia yet to be appointed, it is doubtful the Supreme Court will be taking up the case anytime soon. The decision was touted as a victory by gun safety advocates.
“The devastating impact gun violence has on our communities underscores the need for common sense gun safety laws,” said Ms. Harris, a Democrat who this week earned a spot in the runoff election ballot for an open U.S. Senate seat. “The ruling ensures that local law enforcement leaders have the tools they need to protect public safety by determining who can carry loaded, concealed weapons in our communities.”