Nation’s Capital Backs Down From Gun Ruling

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Washington D.C. officials have announced that they will drop their pending appeal over a federal ruling eliminating the district’s long-enforced public gun ban. A Federal court determined last year that D.C.’s ban on public carry was unconstitutional, setting in motion the city council’s new, severely restricted policies on issuing concealed-carry permits.

Attorney General Karl Racine said, “We need to focus our energies not on litigating old laws, but defending new ones that our leaders enacted in good faith to comply with court rulings while still protecting public safety.”

Opponents have good reason to question the “good faith” of that compliance, however. Washington D.C.’s provisional carry policies are still among the strictest in the nation. Under the new rules, applicants must prove their safety is in imminent danger before being issued a permit. While that’s better than the old laws – where citizens could only keep registered firearms in their homes – it’s still not good enough. It violates both the spirit and the letter of the Second Amendment, and that’s why it’s the subject of two simultaneous legal challenges.

Meanwhile, Republican Senators Marco Rubio and Jim Jordan are seeing what they can do in Congress to get those laws changed. The pair introduced legislation on Thursday meant to remove gun-control power from the D.C. City Council, move D.C.’s gun laws closer to federal regulations, allow D.C. residents to buy firearms in Maryland and Virginia, and repeal the strict registration system enacted by the council. Rubio and Jordan also hope to put in place a “shall issue” policy for concealed carry permits in the capital.

“For years, the District of Columbia has infringed on its residents’ Second Amendment rights and rendered them vulnerable to criminals who could care less what the gun laws are,” said Rubio. “This legislation will finally allow D.C.’s law-abiding residents and visitors access to firearms for sporting or lawful defense of themselves and their homes, businesses and families.”

Rendered them vulnerable to criminals who could care less what the gun laws are. That’s a beautiful way to put it, and it gets to the heart of why restrictive gun laws in D.C. and elsewhere are so asinine. In an ostensible effort to make our communities safer, anti-gun liberals refuse to admit that registered permit-holders pose no danger to the public. Making it difficult or impossible for law-abiding, stand-up citizens to carry guns does as much for the common good as teaching rapists not to rape. Oh, wait, there’s another concept the left loves.

This fight is important, if only because the Constitution is being mocked in its very home. If we can’t abide by the founding document in the city that represents America, what chance do we have of winning the larger war for personal freedom?