Judge right on history of gun owners’ rights

After the Supreme Court ruled nearly a year ago that making it unduly burdensome to acquire a permit to carry a firearm violates the Second Amendment rights of Americans, New Jersey and New York tried a new approach.

The two states attempted to disqualify Americans with permits from carrying a gun at a broad assortment of places — so broad that, as Reason magazine notes, “effectively prohibits the carrying of that handgun virtually everywhere.”

Fortunately, a federal judge struck down the attempt at circumventing the rights to self-defense and to bear arms in mid-May.

One of the hallmarks for the right to bear arms the Supreme Court set forth was historical analogues — testing new policies against the history of our nation and whether similar limitations have ever existed. As Judge Renee Bumb noted, New Jersey failed to avail themselves of the opportunity to offer historical evidence. She was left to comb through the state’s history herself, and what she found was numerous examples of permissiveness toward carrying guns in many of the most similar conditions to which New Jersey attempted to limit the right to carry.

No one should be surprised by what this judge found. Modern sentiments aside, the rights of law-abiding gun owners and the necessity of guns as tools of deterrence and self-defense are ingrained in our nation’s history — and illustrate that guns are not the problem, nor gun control the solution.