The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit struck down Chicago’s ban on gun ranges on January 19, calling it “unconstitutional.”
The rules preventing the building of gun ranges were contained in a body of ordinances that allowed gun ranges in “manufacturing” portions of the city only, while “[placing] limits on the distances [gun ranges] can be located in relation to other gun ranges and to residential areas, schools, parks and places of worship,” according to the Associated Press (AP).
The AP also reported that a three-judge panel cited the city’s contention that “the ordinances serve important public health and safety interests” and that gun ranges “attract gun thieves, cause airborne lead contamination and carry a risk of fire.”
The opinion issued by the court, however, countered the city’s arguments, saying:
The city has provided no evidentiary support for these claims, nor has it established that limiting shooting ranges to manufacturing districts and distancing them from the multiple and various uses listed in the buffer-zone rule has any connection to reducing these risks.
Another portion of Chicago’s ban was a prohibition on “anyone under 18” entering a gun range. The 7th Circuit struck this ordinance down, as well.
One of the three judges on the 7th Circuit panel was Diane Sykes, who “was on a list of 11 judges President-elect Donald Trump made public last year as among those he would consider as candidates for the U.S. Supreme Court.”
The 7th Circuit was responsible for striking down Illinois’ ban on concealed carry in December 2012. Striking down the ban, Judge Richard Posner wrote:
We are disinclined to engage in another round of historical analysis to determine whether eighteenth-century America understood the Second Amendment to include a right to bear guns outside the home. The Supreme Court has decided that the amendment confers a right to bear arms for self-defense, which is as important outside the home as inside.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of Bullets with AWR Hawkins, a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.