It’s a Damn Shame


Our civil rights as gun-owning Americans are being simultaneously restricted and expanded, depending on where you live. It’s extremely confusing about what’s legal and illegal right now, so I’ve chosen just to let things play out because any reporting I might do could easily change tomorrow, based on jurisdiction and case, and I’d have no way to update the print copy of the magazine. So you can find a lot of current gun-owners’ rights news using Gun Tests+ to stay abreast of rules for pistol braces, frames and receivers, forced-reset triggers, AR bans, standard-capacity magazine bans, and other legal matters that affect how you can protect yourself and your family. 

I say that last phrase, “protect yourself and your family,” specifically because actions taken to protect others is fraught with peril. I would admire you for trying to save someone being attacked in a situation outside your home or your immediate space in public, but I can’t recommend doing it in most states or cities in the country. So many urban prosecutors will throw you in jail for fighting back against crime in their cities that it makes sense to be smart, and judicious, in how you deploy lethal force to save your own life or the lives of your loved ones. Of course, that makes the lives of blue-city dwellers forfeit because the cops can’t be everywhere, but crime surely is. As Oliver Anthony points out in the lyrics of “Rich Men North of Richmond”: “It’s a damn shame what the world’s gotten to; For people like me and people like you; Wish I could just wake up and it not be true; But it is, oh it is.”

It’s a damn shame what the world’s gotten to in places like Colorado, where a federal judge ruled in November that the right to keep and bear arms does not include a right to acquire guns through commercial sales. U.S. District Judge John L. Kane ruled the Second Amendment doesn’t cover sales of firearms when he refused to enjoin Colorado’s three-day-waiting-period law for gun sales. Judge Kane wrote in Rocky Mountain Gun Owners v. Polis, “After examining the language of the Second Amendment using the Supreme Court’s analysis in Heller, I find that… the plain text does not cover the waiting period required by the Act. This conclusion is bolstered by the fact that the Act is a regulation on the commercial sale of firearms and thus is presumptively permissible.”

 “From this reading of the plain text, it is clear the relevant conduct impacted by the waiting period — the receipt of a paid-for firearm without delay — is not covered,” he wrote. (As a legal matter, Colorado Governor Jared Polis is the named defendant in the case.)

It’s a damn shame what the world’s gotten to in Israel, where atrocities by the terrorist group Hamas will sicken even the hardest-shelled observer. Further, it’s eye-opening to read and see how the Israeli government has kept its citizens disarmed with legal restrictions much like we have in many U.S. states. It only took the deaths of thousands of Israelis to roll back those restrictions and allow broader firearms ownership. As a result, more Israeli citizens have applied for firearms licenses in the last month than in the previous 20 years. National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir announced that his ministry has received more than 236,000 new applications for firearms licenses since October 7. Of those applications, he said 31,048 conditional permits for private weapons have already been issued. Better late than never.

  — Todd Woodard


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