The House of Representatives passed HR-822, The National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act, which would allow citizens who have a permit to carry a concealed firearm in their state the ability to do so in any other state.
The reaction by anti-Second Amendment “activists” such as New Jersey’s two U.S.senators, newly appointed New Jersey state senate president, Loretta Weinberg, editorial writers and others, including political science professor Brigid Harrison, was swift. They oppose the bill because they claim New Jersey is “not” Alaska or other states that allow citizens to exercise their rights to carry a concealed firearm, and that HR-822 violates states’ rights.
On the contrary, the Second Amendment states unequivocally, 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 (emphasis added). In other words, the Bill of Rights outlines the people’s “natural rights,” that government recognizes those rights and the people charge the government to protect those rights.
In other words, the states cannot abolish what is clearly a fundamental human right, the right to self-defense, without which other rights are irrelevant. If human beings cannot protect themselves and their property, then what good are the other rights we have if we are dead or severely wounded? Thus, the Second Amendment recognizes every citizen’s right to thwart violent acts against him or her.
Moreover, critics of HR-822 imply, without any evidence, that states with liberal concealed carry laws have more crime. The data show just the opposite. In addition, they assert that New Jerseywould be turned into the “wild west” if visitors bring in their concealed firearms into the Garden State. Again, there is no credible evidence that concealed carry laws create shoot em ups anywhere in the country.
In states where concealed carry laws are liberalized, crime goes down, because criminals do not know who is “packing heat.” Criminals prey on the defenseless. That is why New Jersey’s “may issue” permit regs are grossly anti-Second Amendment and anti self-defense.
In New Jersey, which has issued only about 1,000 concealed carry permits, crimes still occur, especially in cities, where drug gangs and other criminals have firearms while peaceful residents are unarmed thanks to anti-Second Amendment legislators and governors.
If concern for the safety and security of inner city residents is supposed to be high on the agenda of Senators Menendez, Lautenberg and Weinberg, they sure have a strange way of expressing it with their support for virtual total disarmament of residents living in high-crime neighborhoods.
The right to self-defense is a natural right of the people. Any attempt to restore that right should be applauded not condemned. HR-822 is a step in the right direction, finally allowing Americans to defend themselves no matter where they travel in the United States. For New Jerseyans, liberalizing the concealed carry permit process will reduce crime in high crime neighborhoods.
If Senator Weinberg wants to help inner city residents live in a more peaceful and secure environment, she should take the lead and introduce legislation that restores the people’s Second Amendment rights in New Jersey, including liberalizing the right to carry a concealed firearm.