D.C.s Bad Joke: New Gun Law
The District, rebuffed by the Supreme Court last month in a landmark decision on its 32-year-old gun ban, could soon be headed back to court over a new gun law that could take effect as early as Wednesday.
The D.C. Council will vote Tuesday on emergency legislation that will require handgun owners to keep their weapons disassembled or under lock and key in what gun rights advocates see as direct defiance of the Supreme Court ruling.
That ruling said the District could not bar residents from "rendering any lawful firearm in the home operable for the purpose of immediate self-defense."
The Washington Times said in an editorial, It is clear that the D.C. Council has no intention of taking a reasonable track toward responsible gun ownership. Seemingly, City Hall intends to make it as difficult as possible for law-abiding citizens to own a gun.
Proposals include potential gun owners taking a firearms test.
Then there is the ballistic imprint. The Maryland State Police Forensic Sciences Division issued a January 2005 report that said the state's gun fingerprint policy was ineffective in helping solve crimes.
Another issue is the registration itself. The council should require a time limit for the D.C. police to issue registrations, rather than leave open the possibility of residents waiting indefinitely to receive them.
The worst requirement of the emergency legislation: "The applicant takes his or her completed application to a licensed firearm dealer to take delivery of the pistol. If the dealer is outside the District, the dealer transports the pistol to a licensed dealer in the District to complete the transaction." The hitch? There are no licensed gun dealers in the District.