Today a federal judge has struck down a Washington DC gun ban that has disallowed citizens from carrying guns outside their homes.
This is another win for gun rights and freedom in general as the nation’s capital has been a gun control haven for anti-gun activists.
According to Fox News,
Judge Frederick Scullin Jr. wrote in his ruling in Palmer v. District of Columbia that the right to bear arms extends outside the home, therefore gun-control laws in the nation’s capital are “unconstitutional.”
“We won,” Alan Gura, the lead attorney for the Second Amendment Foundation, told Fox News in a phone interview. “I’m very pleased with the decision that the city can’t forbid the exercise of a fundamental constitutional right.”
Gura said he expects the District to appeal this decision but added, “We’ll be happy to keep the fight going.”
The decision leaves no gray area in gun-carrying rights.
Attorney Alan Gura commented on his blog that banning a right that is listed in the bill of rights is “not going to fly”:
In 2012, I won Moore v. Madigan, 702 F.3d 933 (7th Cir. 2012), which struck down Illinois total ban on the carrying of defensive handguns outside the home. With this decision in Palmer, the nation’s last explicit ban of the right to bear arms has bitten the dust. Obviously, the carrying of handguns for self-defense can be regulated. Exactly how is a topic of severe and serious debate, and courts should enforce constitutional limitations on such regulation should the government opt to regulate.
But totally banning a right literally spelled out in the Bill of Rights isn’t going to fly. My deepest thanks to the Second Amendment Foundation for making this victory possible and to my clients for hanging in there. Congratulations Americans, your capital is not a constitution-free zone.
Take a look at the decision that was handed down by the United States District Court of the District of Columbia in the Palmer v DC case below:
In light of Heller, McDonald, and their progeny, there is no longer any basis on which this Court can conclude that the District of Columbia’s total ban on the public carrying of ready-to-use handguns outside the home is constitutional under any level of scrutiny. Therefore, the Court finds that the District of Columbia’s complete ban on the carrying of handguns in public is unconstitutional.
Accordingly, the Court grants Plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment and enjoins Defendants from enforcing the home limitations of D.C. Code § 7-2502.02(a)(4) and enforcing D.C. Code § 22-4504(a) unless and until such time as the District of Columbia adopts a licensing mechanism consistent with constitutional standards enabling people to exercise their Second Amendment right to bear arms.4 Furthermore, this injunction prohibits the District from completely banning the carrying of handguns in public for self-defense by otherwise qualified non-residents based solely on the fact that they are not residents of the District.