FAIRFAX, Va. – The right to self-defense scored an important victory on Tuesday when the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit struck down Washington D.C’s unconstitutional restrictions on issuing concealed carry permits. Today's ruling in Grace v. District of Columbia builds on the landmark Supreme Court case, District of Columbia v. Heller, which held that the Second Amendment guarantees the individual right to keep and bear arms for self-defense.
“The Second Amendment protects the fundamental, individual right of Americans to not only keep arms, but also to bear arms. D.C. residents have suffered under a near total ban on their right to carry a firearm for self-defense,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director, National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action. “Today’s ruling is an important step toward protecting the constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens.”
The decision overturns D.C.’s requirement that citizens prove they have a “good reason” to obtain a concealed carry permit. For the overwhelming majority of permit applicants, this results in a de facto prohibition on their right to carry a firearm for self-defense.
In the majority decision, Judge Thomas Griffith wrote “At the Second Amendment's core lies the right of responsible citizens to carry firearms for personal self-defense beyond the home", and that "The good-reason law is necessarily a total ban on most D.C. residents’ right to carry a gun in the face of ordinary self-defense needs.”
“Governments should not be allowed to take constitutional rights away from law-abiding citizens,” Cox concluded. “This decision demonstrates that the right to carry a firearm outside the home for self-defense is clearly protected by the Second Amendment.
Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America's oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group. More than five million members strong, NRA continues to uphold the Second Amendment and advocates enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation's leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the armed services. Be sure to follow the NRA on Facebook at NRA on Facebook and Twitter @NRA.