Fuzzy Math & 49 States With So Called Carry Rights
NJ carry permits in the hands of the regular citizens can be compared to Sasquatch. We know he's out there but no one has every seen him.
Manasquan, NJ –-(Ammoland.com)- Citizens of this great country carry firearms on their person while out and about, it's a civil right guarantee thing.
I read about it in the Bill of Rights.
In 2010 the Supreme Court finally ruled what we gun guys knew all along, that the pesky 2nd Amendment was good in all 50 states.
As with most things, the losers aren't going down without a fight. Consequently there are states that are operating as if the recent court ruling in McDonald v. Chicago never happened. For this reason we still categorize states as shall, may and no issue as pertains to firearm carry permitting. It's never a good idea to lump things in broad categories but for the purpose of making a point, here goes.
Shall, May And No
No issue states are just that, they have no mechanism for citizens to apply for a permit/license. Your civil rights are 100% denied. Illinois and the District of Columbia are still no issue. May issue are those squishy in-between states that let some bureaucrat decide if you're worthy. New York and California fall into that category. Some people are more equal than others in these states. Shall issue states treat firearm carry permits like driver's licenses. So long as you meet the minimum requirements you get one. You can't be denied on a whim and some civil servant can not change that. Pennsylvania and Florida are examples of shall issue states. In regard to the “and bear” part of the 2nd Amendment, all states fall into these three broad categories, sort of.
Within the shall issue camp are four Constitutional Carry states. Alaska, Vermont, Arizona and Wyoming let you exercise your freedom as the Founding Fathers intended. You don't need a permit to carry, the right is not infringed. There are combinations as well. For instance you can still get a carry permit in a Constitutional carry state. Citizens have that option. You need one in order to gain reciprocity in non-Constitutional carry states. So for instance, you live in Arizona and can carry your pistol without a state issued document. You get one anyway so that when you travel to Texas your rights are recognized.
Lately we've been reading about the success of states that have gone Constitutional. Wyoming is the latest. Then there is the victory for Wisconsinites who's state will go from no issue to shall issue. When the Wisconsin law goes into effect, residents can apply for permits and carry a concealed firearm legally. Wisconsin used to be like Illinois in that they did not have a carry permit available. Ironically, Wisconsin was/is like California because you could open carry without a permit. In California you can only open carry unloaded and there better be an empty mag in the frame otherwise the loaded mag in the belt (the one that has not yet been inserted into said unloaded gun) becomes part of the gun. Therefore, according some some genius judge who created that precedent, the gun is loaded and you get arrested. The empty mag in the gun is necessary so that the loaded mag is in a condition of not being a part of the holstered gun. I'm definitely not sure how a revolver fits into that matrix.
Can we all agree that California is a weird place?
Within some may issue states are counties/regions that function as shall issue. In New York and California there are sheriffs that hand out carry permits to just about anyone. Then you have places in those same states such as New York City and San Francisco that are functionally no issue. These states are dysfunctional in that respect but at least some citizens in some areas have civil rights.
Then there's New Jersey.
Technically the Garden State is may issue. I say technically because there are laws on the books that allow common folks to apply for and receive a carry permit. The only problem is that anyone attempting to receive approval runs into a Joseph Heller routine. If your not familiar with the bit in Catch 22 where Yossarian finds the circular logic that is the book's namesake, go rent the movie.
“You must be insane to fly bombers missions if the enemy is trying to kill you. That's a good enough reason to get a deferment from further sorties. You must be sane to realize this and therefore denied deferment for asking.”
That's New Jersey in a nutshell. Sure we have carry permits for firearms and anyone can apply. No you can't get one because you must be up to something just for asking. I'm being sarcastic but the underpinning of the law and administrative code leads me to believe this. After all, why would anyone need a gun but to shoot someone. And if you're going to shoot someone then we will not allow you to carry that gun. In poetic terms it is the NJ equivalent to a Catch-22. New Jerseyians know it as the dreaded “justifiable need” clause. You need one to be approved but no one has a need that a judge can see as justifiable.
Do you get it now? Legally NJ is a may issue, functionally NJ is a no issue.
NJ carry permits in the hands of the regular citizens can also be compared to Sasquatch. We know he's out there but no one has every seen him. Seriously, there are a few ordinary people who are not law enforcement and have unrestricted carry permits, but they are statistically insignificant.
I've come across one and read about another. One chap who will remain anonymous, is a gun guy. He also is politically active and as he put it, had a cordial relationship with one of those judges who hold court over carry permits in his county. Because he knew the judge professionally and politically (they are both active in local politics) he was able to get a limited carry permit without much trouble. I'm guessing it was so he could carry a gun and a bag of cash from his store to his parked car without committing a felony. After two years the judge must have decided that the guy was totally trustworthy with his pistol and gave him an unlimited carry permit.
I'm happy for the man but outraged at the arbitrary and capricious manner in which the NJ judiciary doles out Constitutionally protected freedoms. You can't shop a county clerk or sheriff then take up residence in a different NJ county for the purpose of getting a carry permit. You could do that in NY and CA. For us, you need to leave the state if you want a resident permit. Of course NJ doesn't honor any carry permit from any state so they deny civil rights equally.
Jeff Muller, of motorcycle gang mistaken identity kidnapping fame, is my other example. He finally got a carry permit as reported by NJ.com but not without much drama. The poor guy had to wait forever and he still gets reviewed in two years. Mr Muller can be denied because his justifiable need lost its luster in the eyes of some judge. I'm happy for this guy too but angry that some lawyer in a black robe gets to make that decision. In NJ the lawmakers and judges count Amendments in the Bill of rights like this: one, three, four, five . . .
I promised there was a point. Here it is.
NJ is a no-issue state.
I cringe every time some journalist writes about Wisconsin joining the rest of the country or that Illinois has not. The reason? Because of the cavalier way NJ gets lumped in with the may issue states. It usually goes something like this: “Illinois is the only state that doesn't issue handgun carry permits” or “now 49 states issue handgun carry permits” or “Wisconsin joins 48 states that issue handgun carry permits”.
You can not get a carry permit in NJ. It is impossible. NJ is functionally a no issue state. You don't believe me? Try and find someone with one. We are not talking about retired cops or the limited carry that armored car drivers can get. I'm talking about the regular law abiding citizenry. I would even challenge you to try and get the form to fill out. Go to your local police station and ask for the form to start the paperwork. After the look of confusion fades I would guarantee that most clerks will say they don't have a form. It would probably be true, they most likely haven't printed any in decades.
So whenever you read something that references NJ as a state that issues carry permits whether by inference or directly, write a scathing comment. I don't care if it's a 2nd Amendment supporter or a darling of the gun control movement. Make sure you get colorful with mature words like jerk and idiot. Moron and mutton-head works too.
Remember that when a lie is repeated long enough, even by folks on our side, it morphs. Don't let it go unchallenged. Our guys will take their medicine and admit the mistake.
The rest won't listen to logic or facts so have grade school fun by hurling some insults.
Hat Tip: www.2ndamendmentnj.