When Obama was running for president in 2008, he promised to “fundamentally change America” – a phrase which lucid Americans took as meaning he was going to bring his leftist agenda to bear on us all. And if Obama has had any success as president, it’s certainly been his success in changing us fundamentally from a nation under law to a nation that often looks lawless. From a nation in which one feels secure into a nation in which more and more people are feeling that their security is in their own hands (literally). And this has led not only to record breaking gun sales since Obama’s election, but also to changes in state laws around the country to make it easier for law-abiding citizens to carry a handgun for their own protection.
As a result of this, Wisconsin, which was one of the few states to not have some form of concealed carry law within its borders, now has one thanks to their much maligned Republican legislature and Gov. Scott Walker. With the stroke of a pen in July of 2011, Walker made Wisconsin the 49th state in the union to allow the concealed carry of handguns. (Only Illinois, Obama’s old stomping ground, continues to deny its citizens this option right.)
And while I don’t want to take away from what Walker has accomplished in Wisconsin, during the last few years the momentum has shifted from seeking to allow licensed citizens to carry concealed handguns to allowing all citizens without a felony in their criminal record or mental health problems to carry concealed without a license or a permit. In other words, the growing push abroad is to recognize the 2nd Amendment as a sufficient permit for concealed carry and go from there. After all, the 2nd Amendment does say we have the right not only to keep but also to bear arms.
Arizona’s Gov. Jan Brewer espoused this view on April 16, 2010, when she signed legislation recognizing the right for Arizonans to carry a concealed handgun without a permit. Said Brewer upon signing the legislation: “This legislation not only protects the Second Amendment rights of Arizona citizens, but restores those rights as well.”
At the time, Arizona joined Vermont and Alaska as the only states recognizing what many have come to refer to as “Constitutional Carry”: so named because the foundation of the right to bear arms is spelled out in the Constitution’s Bill of Rights. But since Arizona took that step, Wyoming has followed suit and Kentucky state legislator Mike Harmon has been pushing for Constitutional Carry in the Bluegrass State as well. Moreover, there have been similar bills put forward in at least six other states.
America has a gun culture, which historically speaking, is closely intertwined with our recognition of the God-given duty to preserve our own lives and our own liberty. And as it seems that more and more citizens are realizing this, perhaps we’ll be fortunate enough to see more and more states follow Alaska, Vermont, Arizona, and Wyoming down the path that recognizes not only our right to keep arms, but our right to bear them without infringement as well.
As Ted Nugent put it: “The 2nd Amendment is my concealed carry permit.”