Reverberations from the federal court decision regarding Washington D.C.’s concealed carry laws are being felt in different ways this week.
This story from USNews.com says a group that advocates for gay Americans to carry firearms says the court victory is a twofold win for them. Pink Pistols leader Gwen Patton says in the story that U.S. District Judge Richard Leon handed the group not only a win with real-world effects but fantastic free publicity for its mission, with his decision on Tuesday.
Leon issued a preliminary injunction against the city’s requirement that residents supply a specific “good reason” to acquire a license to carry a firearm, saying it’s unconstitutional. Many “may issue” cities and states place “good reason” requirements on citizens to get CCW permits, and living in a high crime area where one is likely to be a victim of violent crime isn’t usually enough.
The judge didn’t stay his injunction, meaning a lower standard for reviewing license applications is in place unless either Leon or the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit presses pause as the lawsuit continues, the story says.
“It’s been almost an automatic assumption that gay people won’t fight back, that they’re passive, they’re weak,” said Patton in the story. “We’re putting it out there that you don’t know which of the gay people out there are armed. …Don’t attack gay people because that could be a really bad decision.”
The story says that federal data from 2014 indicates that perceived sexual orientation is as likely as religion to motivate an alleged hate crime.
Pink Pistols was founded in 2000 and has several chapters across the country.
As the members of Pink Pistols and those who wish to carry for personal defense in D.C. rejoice a legislative win, District officials are vowing to fight on after Leon’s ruling, according to this story from Fox5DC.com.
D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine said concealed carry is not the same as gun ownership when it comes to Second Amendment rights, though Leon’s decision says that the right to carry is part of the right to keep and bear arms.
“You can’t ask someone, ‘What is your good reason for exercising that right?,” said Ilya Shapiro, a senior fellow in constitutional studies at the Cato Institute, in the story. “No, it works the other way. The government is supposed to have a justification for restricting your right. That is what this case is about.”
Racine told Fox the District plans on taking the case to the U.S. Court of Appeals.