More of your friends and neighbors, and just plain strangers will be packing heat in the future if a ruling outlawing concealed weapons restrictions is allowed to stand. More than a few Nevada County residents already have the right.
A panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals–known as the “9th Circus” to conservatives for its liberal rulings in the past–decided Thursday that California’s law regarding concealed weapons permits infringes on Second Amendment rights.
California law generally prohibits carrying guns in public places, but allows sheriffs and police chiefs to issue concealed weapons permits to residents who show “good moral character,” complete a training course, and provide a valid reason for needing the gun.
The appeals panel said those restrictions prevent many citizens from bearing arms in public for self defense. The defendants have asked all 11 judges of the court to rule on the appeal, so the ruling is on hold for now. Federal courts have come down on both sides of the issue, so the U.S. Supreme Court will probably make the final decision.
How many people in Nevada County have permits? It’s generally easier to get a permit in a rural county, but the people who have them prefer to keep the information private, as The Union discovered about a decade ago.
Rich Somerville was editing the paper then and he hired David Griner, a bright, young fellow, as his city editor. (Being a bright fellow, he is no longer in the news business.) Griner wondered who had concealed weapons permits in the county, and requested the list from Sheriff Keith Royal.
In accordance with the law, the sheriff first notified permit holders about the request. He said he subsequently received a call from publisher Jeff Ackerman canceling the request.
If the Supreme Court sides with the 9th Circuit, it won’t matter who’s on the list.