A recent article written by attorney J. Scott Kappas for Handguns Magazine chronicles the ten worst states for U.S. citizens to travel in with a handgun. Interestingly enough, none of the offending states are located in the Southeast or the West. Predictably, seven of the ten are located in the Northeast. Here is the list, ranked in order.
1. Washington, D.C.
4. New Jersey
5. New York
9. Rhode Island
As I wrote in an earlier column, there is an effort underway in Congress for states to be able to reciprocate the Carry Concealed Weapon (CCW) permits nationwide. This would allow CCW permit holders to legally carry their concealed weapons when they travel outside their home states. Under this law, their CCW permits would be honored by the various states much in the same manner that driver's licenses are honored state-to-state.
The bill is numbered H.R. 990 and is titled the "Secure Access to Firearms Enhancement (SAFE) Act of 2003." The bill's chief sponsor is John Hostettler (R-8th/IN). I would think all gun owners would want to get behind this bill.
On the other hand, President Bush is pushing for an extension of the Clinton "assault weapons" ban which is scheduled to sunset next year. Republican Leaders in the House of Representatives are saying the extension will not clear the House, but with pressure mounting from the White House for the extension, nothing can be taken for granted.
Gun owners certainly need to lobby their congressmen to be sure they resist Bush's efforts and vote against granting the extension. If it did pass the House, it doubtless would pass the Senate and Bush would sign it.
In the meantime, be very careful about traveling with a handgun in the above listed states. Obviously, they have never heard of the Second Amendment. As a result, visitors to those states could find themselves equally victimized by both the criminals and the criminal justice system.
© Chuck Baldwin
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