By Sgt. Patrick Hayes

If you’re a New Jersey resident who wants to practice the “bear” part of the “keep and bear arms” protected from government infringement by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, good luck. To obtain a concealed carry permit – itself an infringement on Americans’ gun rights – New Jersey citizens must show “justifiable need.” They have to convince the State of New Jersey that there’s a specific and credible threat against their person. A simple desire to protect your life, loved ones and your community from potential harm won’t cut it. And so some eight million Garden State residents are denied their natural, civil and Constitutional right to bear arms. On Friday . . .

We’ll learn whether or not the U.S. Supreme Court will take up the Drake case; where a New Jersey resident is fighting for his right to carry a firearm in public without proving “justifiable need.” On the other side, New Jersey justifies “justifiable need” as a “long standing precedent” – as if Constitutional rights have a sell-by date.

Lest we forget, slavery was a “long Standing Precedent.” As was not allowing women or blacks to vote. As was making it difficult for African-Americans to vote (the so-called literacy tests). Then the Supreme Court ruled that all laws supporting these ideas were unconstitutional. The States had to abandon the injustice.

The lower court decisions that upheld New Jersey’s “may issue” (as opposed to “shall issue”) permitting system, that brought the case to the Supreme Court’s consideration, once again reveal the court system’s fundamental prejudice against the supremacy of individual rights over elitism and prejudice. The courts rulings rest on the deeply offensive and wrong-minded principle that a Constitutional right can be set aside for the public good.

They can’t give up on gun control laws that have done nothing to stop violent crime because violent crime is not the point. The laws are designed to protect a class system that puts them at the top of the pile. A system where firearms are a privilege enjoyed by the privileged few, the police, who ultimately answer to them, the guardians of the court system,

I talk with cops from around the country. I get different takes on the issue of “may” vs. “shall” issue. Most law enforcement officers in the south and west see “may issue” laws for what they are: useless gun control trash. Laws that do nothing to stop violent criminals and everything make civilians defenseless and dependent on Big Brother for their protection.

Some police officers in the larger cities in the East -but not all by any means – say these laws “keep guns off the streets.” When I point out that there are plenty of guns and plenty of homicides in their ” gun controlled” cities, that in almost every case the criminal had no right to posses a firearm, that the law prevented them from obtaining a gun, they always use the same excuse: it would be worse without the laws.

These officers are brainwashed to disregard their common sense and refuse to acknowledge what they see every day on the street. And yet the concept is simple. If you have to prove a justifiable need before the State “lets” you have a gun, you’ll probably be dead or injured before that day arrives. That doesn’t make sense on any level – unless civilian disarmament is your real goal. Whether you know it or not.

65 Responses to A Law Enforcement Perspective: Justifiable Need and the 2nd Amendment

  1. So if the Supreme Court decides in favor of common sense, does that mean MD’s “may issue” would go away as well?

    • It would set the legal precedent needed to easily challenge and defeat MD’s “may issue” requirements, and any other state for that matter.

    • Yes, but all the training BS, requirements BS will still be in place. It will be more of if you pass all these requirements, then they cannot deny you.

      • And how much will they charge? One look at NYC or DC’s requirements to even own a handgun and the cost associated with it (and the courts lack of interest in ruling against such onerous fees) tells you what the next step in these states will be if ‘may/non issue’ is finally struck down.

        You’ll still need to be rich or connected to carry, because no one else will be able to afford the training, background check, yearly recertifications, etc…

        • There are other tactics that gun grabbers can employ as well. Look at the Illinois example: the legislature listed something like 22 places where a concealed handgun carry license is not valid. Of course a state could charge several hundreds or even thousands of dollars for concealed carry licenses as well. Finally, nothing stops a state from taking years to process the concealed carry license “backlog” of their own creation … although I am confident the state would promptly move elite applicants to the front of the line.

          The only limitation in applying onerous requirements is the imagination of the gun grabbers.

        • Yes, NY state technically is supposed to either approve or deny an application for a firearms permit within some amount of time (6 months, maybe?), yet people have to wait around a year in some counties. How? Well, you have to schedule an ‘appointment’ just to pick up and start the application process. That appointment can’t be had for months.

          Amazing.

        • Baby steps…once may issue is out of the way, then cases can be mounted on the other BS. This is why the antigun lobby loves the courts. It could take years if not decades to grind though and lots and lots of money.

        • Backlogs? Foot-dragging in the permitting process?

          Simple solution. Your check stays attached to the application until its processed. Then IF you’re approved, it gets detached and deposited. If you’re declined, then the whole package is returned to you.

          Let the state gamble time and money for a change, instead of the citizen.

        • Let’s just hope they don’t lose the checks stapled to your application. “Sorry, though your application passes the necessary requirements, it was declined due to loss of or non payment. Have a nice day.”

        • Yes, that is the weak spot I can’t figure a way around…

          Unless the policy is instituted that whoever signs for the application package is required to make good for any missing checks. (Hey, I can dream, can’t I??)

  2. The last sentence is the most important. If the net result of a policy is to deprive someone of their civil rights does it matter whether or not that was the intention? It’s pretty clear that many politicians are talking out of the side of their mouths when it comes to motivation for passing onerous gun laws. When you consider laws don’t prevent crime and often don’t even punish it pushing more laws just doesn’t make sense. Of course unless your goal is to deprive people of their civil rights.

  3. “Some police officers in the larger cities in the East -but not all by any means – say these laws “keep guns off the streets.” When I point out that there are plenty of guns and plenty of homicides in their ” gun controlled” cities, that in almost every case the criminal had no right to posses a firearm, that the law prevented them from obtaining a gun, they always use the same excuse: it would be worse without the laws.”

    IMO, its a matter of perspective and cultural ignorance.

    Police are a reflection of the culture in the area they serve in, for the most part. Gun control laws don’t just deny law abiding people their Constitutional rights-they also deny them the KNOWLEDGE about their rights. That’s the real tragedy at work , because without awareness about your rights, you’ll never know about what you’re being denied .

    How many of those 8 million odd New Jersey residents know they have the right to keep and bear arms? Ill bet very few. Most live under the belief that the privilege to keep and bear arms is dictated by the police and the government,and that’s the end of the matter as far as they’re concerned. Worse, because its what they’ve known their whole lives , some people will fight any suggestion that their ways are wrong.

    There may be bullets zinging around and criminals laughing in the street, but the last thing anyone will want to do in Gun Control USA is tear down the Berlin Wall . Its ceased to be about public safety, and more about clinging to some cultural monolith which says “Guns Should Be Restricted, or Thou Risketh Anarchy.” People in anti-rights areas cling to their laws the way we cling to our weapons and our Constitution. A plain view of the decline in crime in Texas and other shall issue states would make it clear what the logical approach is,but its not about logic- its about cultural identity.

    We view safety as a loaded pistol/shotgun/AR near the fireplace. THEY view security as a charged cell phone and a prohibition on firearms possession by non-government personnel.

    We say security is up to the individual. They say the individual is too stupid to drive to work safely , much less carry a loaded weapon.

    We must fight this not as a strict matter of law, but as a matter of How We Do Things. We’ve tried banning guns and limiting firearms via the law-it didn’t work, and its still doesn’t. We need to sell the argument to the other side that its time to try something radical and different.

    • “they always use the same excuse: it would be worse without the laws.”

      They may even be right, at least in the short term. But that’s not sufficient to abbrogate a Constitutional right. Rather it is an indictment of the “leaders” of these urban areas who have used strict gun control to ameliorate the fallout from their failed policies and the resulting urban decay.

      • Not even in the short term, Anon in CT. There is no place that has expanded the right to KABA that the violence by firearms has gone up, even In the short term, the violence either stays the same, or starts going down very quickly.

        • It would spike for about 30 minutes as 5 muggers and rapist get shot. Then it would decline drastically. That is, if you consider defending yourself a form of gun violence (which, it technically is. It is violence directed at in individual who intended to do unjustified harm to another).

    • “Worse, because its what they’ve known their whole lives , some people will fight any suggestion that their ways are wrong. ”

      You wouldn’t believe the circular logic, strawman, ad hominem, etc… arguments that I’ve had to deal with when I try to educate and/or wake people up regarding their rights here in my home state (NJ).

      As unfortunate as it sounds, the only way to get through to most of these people is for them to actually be victims of their own beliefs and ineffective laws.

      • “the only way to get through to most of these people is for them to actually be victims of their own beliefs and ineffective laws.”

        I wonder what percentage STILL would not abandon their cherished dogma even in that circumstance.

        Didn’t we have an article on TTAG within the last week where a woman was thankful she did not have a firearm in the house during a home invasion…I think it was the one that had to call 9-11 37 times and ultimately had to wait over and hour for the ‘professional help’ to arrive.

        Her reasoning (or someone claiming to be her in a comment on the news site) for not wanting a gun in that instance? She did not want to expose her children to the violence and mess of killing someone in their living room.

        The victim in the story may not have said that…that’s unconfirmed. But I’ll be we have all met at least one person that WOULD say something like that, even after being victim of a crime.

        I also offer Exhibit B: the bike rider guy that got attacked.

        I don’t wish anyone to be a victim of violent crime, but if such victimization won’t convince some people, I have no clue what would.

      • Perhaps. The problem is, whether it’s their moronic economic notions, their eager retreats from freedom, or whatever myriad lunacies their fevered minds dream up, is that once they experience the miserable consequences of their actions, they tend not to draw the proper conclusions.

        Instead, they blame phantasms and re-write reality as fiction. They believe that it’s not the ideas that are bankrupt, but the implementation. The right people weren’t in charge. It’ll be different next time.

        So they move away from the liberal hellscapes they’ve created in Illinois, New York, California and such, inundate perfectly good states like Colorado and Texas, and proceed to ruin them with their same old stale ideas.

    • “That’s the real tragedy at work , because without awareness about your rights, you’ll never know about what you’re being denied.”

      I do have sympathy for the ignorant, really I do. But I think here we are talking about another level of ignorance: WANTON ignorance.

      Any citizen who will not lift a finger to ascertain what his rights actually are should be considered unworthy of said rights.

      That he might enjoy them despite wanton, willful ignorance – that is the wonder that once was America.

      Are Americans (in name only) who actively reject their rights worthy of the name “American”? I’d like to hear others’ thoughts on this topic.

      • “But I think here we are talking about another level of ignorance: WANTON ignorance.”

        At some point, willful ignorance become stupidity.

        There should be a consequence of such stupidity. They should not get to enjoy the same moral and practical protections of society than those willing to at least educate themselves and take action to secure the protections.

        • There should be a consequence of such stupidity. They should not get to enjoy the same moral and practical protections of society than those willing to at least educate themselves and take action to secure the protections.

          The consequence is comfortable slavery, which they already enjoy. I find it as disgusting as you, but I cannot agree with further stripping them of freedom because their stupidity borderlines (or even crosses the line of) dangerous

          Are Americans (in name only) who actively reject their rights worthy of the name “American”? I’d like to hear others’ thoughts on this topic.

          Of course they are. An overwhelming majority of the population in 1775 was either indifferent to or totally against secession from England. Were they any less American at the end of the war? You can’t fix stupid, all you can do is get out of its way or shove it to the side. I’m rather surprised you posed the question, honestly. You strike me as a rather rabid libertarian and I’d have expected you to accept the stupids with a simple sigh and a shake of the head.

        • “I’d have expected you to accept the stupids with a simple sigh and a shake of the head.”

          Your slavery comment is sad….very true, but sad.

          As for the question and your comment quoted here, I think the ‘stupid’ would be easier to ignore or tolerate if those same people were not so actively and rabidly seeking to make us into them.

          One frustration I find with the anti crowd, in particular that segment that has irrational fears of guns, is that no one on our side is trying to force them to own / carry a firearm. We seem to have a much deeper sense of ‘live and let live,’ and face at every turn some proponent of civilian disarmament.

          That’s where the question tweaks my antenna. Don’t like guns (for whatever reason)? Fine. Stay away from them. But to adopt blatant stupidity and use that as your springboard to limit others’ rights is a whole other ballgame. That may be arguable as decidedly “unAmerican.”

        • I actually had a girl I talked to once say that she felt safe without a firearm and she didn’t want one forced upon her. I was honestly left speechless. What do you say to that? What makes anyone think that we want guns forced on them?

        • Ignorant people don’t know enough about a topic to act accordingly. Stupid people may or may not be educated on the topic but they act inappropriately either way.

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  4. “They can’t give up on gun control laws that have done nothing to stop violent crime because violent crime is not the point. The laws are designed to protect a class system that puts them at the top of the pile. A system where firearms are a privilege enjoyed by the privileged few, the police, who ultimately answer to them, the guardians of the court system.”

    Outstanding observation. And will add gun control sole purpose is to keep the guardians of three branches employed. Shall issue is the most cost effective way to end violent crime than any method currently in use..

    • “And will add gun control sole purpose is to keep the guardians of three branches employed.”

      If you are from California you REALLY know that is the honest truth.

      Exhibit A) Leeland Yee

      Exhibit B) The Safe Handgun Roster

      Exhibit C) The shoulder thing that goes up

  5. “Laws that do nothing to stop violent criminals and everything make civilians defenseless and dependent on Big Brother for their protection.”

    Let’s call this by its proper name: PROTECTION RACKET. Except in the mob version, you might get better protection.

    Superb article, Sgt. Hayes. Well done, and thank you.

  6. These officers are brainwashed to disregard their common sense

    Negative. These “officers” have been carefully selected to behave in a certain way.

    They are screened for intelligence — too much is undesirable. They come from backgrounds where authority must be obeyed simply because it is authority. They live in a world where there are two groups — them and us. Then they are granted special privileges and immunities, emphasizing the difference between them and us.

    And then they wonder why we don’t trust them.

    • There aren’t many openings for those who want to be cops here in NJ. And when those jobs become available once in a blue moon, they usually go to family members and friends. This helps preserve the ‘us vs. them’ culture and all the beliefs and prejudices that go along with it. That includes the anti-gun attitude of most cops in NJ (and in other Blue states, I suspect). Don’t forget about the (mostly liberal) judges who have the final say in the carry permit approval process in NJ. They hate guns, too. And if the judges say ‘no,’ why should the cops go against them? Most of the time (99% ?), they don’t.

  7. A couple of things about Drake. First, it was heard in conference this past Friday, and continued to the conference this coming Friday, suggesting that there are four votes to grant cert, but a disagreement as to the precise question the court will agree to decide. This is a good thing. Second, Drake DID have good cause–he services ATMs and often carries large amounts of cash–but NJ decided that his good cause wasn’t “good enough.” Third, though claiming they were applying intermediate scrutiny, the Third Circuit Court of Appeal in actuality applied the lowest level of constitutional scrutiny–rational basis–concluding that despite the complete absence of evidence in the record–literally none, not even legislative findings–that the State’s interest in “public safety” was sufficient to validate the law, notwithstanding the fact that the evidence presented by Drake reflected that NJ (like many California counties) is virtually “no issue.” Thus, mouthing the magic words “:public safety” is sufficient in the Third Circuit to validate carry bans even if there is no evidence to support the proposition that such bans actually work–and ignoring evidence that they don’t. NJ is like big city sheriffs and police chiefs across the country (with notable exceptions like Detroit) who believe–firmly and intractably–that more guns means more gun crime. “It is, after all, COMMON SENSE!” [And all the studies by all of the statisticians that prove otherwise are just plain wrong, fraudulent, something other than right.]

    • Good comment.

      Reading the intentions of SCOTUS is a lot like reading tea leaves, in the dark, after several martinis — but I agree with you.

      If SCOTUS grants cert, I cannot see how Drake will be upheld. It might be sent back for reconsideration, with guidance from SCOTUS, or it might just be reversed.

    • Breitbart News senior legal analyst Ken Klukowski has rather different speculations (and clearly acknowledges that no one knows what is really going on) about what the postponement for a week means. One of his speculations is that it’s possible that they voted against taking the case and one justice is so adamant about wanting to take it that he asked for another week to write a dissent of the denial. Klukowski said that happens roughly 10 times per year (an average of 8000 cases seeking to be heard, and approximately 80 being granted cert).

  8. It wouldn’t surprise me if they declined to hear the case. It sometimes seems to me like either side is too afraid of the backlash that would occur with either decision.

    • That’s the best definition of “gutless” I’ve ever heard.

      This is how I reach an important decision: I ponder it for awhile, choose the one I think is the best, and that’s that. Irrevocable.

      Any other way is womanly, not manly-like. ALL DECISIONS ARE FINAL. Period. It is written.

      • Womanly? I don’t know what kind of women you associate with, but my female friends are all more than capable of strong decision-making.

        I think that cowardly is probably a better word to describe the mindset you are talking about.

      • I would disagree with “womanly”. Women are not the antithesis of men, but their compliment. What you are describing would be cowardice, the actual antithesis of men.

  9. As a native NJ resident, born and bred, I’m really anxious and excited to see how the Drake case plays out. The “high-cap” mag ban already threatens most of my collection, so I would love to see SOMETHING move toward opening NJ as a free state. Trenton, Camden and Newark – some of the most dangerous cities in the country – all form a perimeter around my comfy suburb and MS-13, Bloods and Crips don’t care about mag bans or “justifiable need.” I like where I live and when politics aren’t involved, I think NJ has a lot to offer outside the shadow of mob rules and gang tags. I don’t like to look over my shoulder when I’m present anywhere, and I certainly don’t like to go anywhere I’m not certain I’ll come out of unscathed. I live here and if the gangs and drug traders wish to claim my home, I’d like the freedom to fire when fired upon. For now, the only advice that guides me is something a retired cop told me: “when in doubt, it’s better to be judged by twelve than carried by six.”

    • It must be nice being an NJ cop, always being given the benefit of doubt. Unlike NJ’s citizenry, apparently. I would move, personally, but then who would fight the good fight? Then again, moving would take your tax dollars away from the slave side of the country and give it to the freedom side. It’s a catch-22.

      • I didn’t realize New Jersey had a citizenry. Can we make a distinction here? Citizens are few; denizens are many.

  10. Sgt. Hayes, let me be blunt: bullshit. The cops you talk to who are supporting “may issue” are corrupt. They are members of corrupt, dishonored departments and they know it full well.

    Here’s the real story, in two case histories:

    http://www.ninehundred.net/~equalccw/colafrancescopapers.pdf – skim it until you get to the underlined bits, and note that the deputy who took down this report verbatim from the prisoner was brutally retaliated against.

    http://www.ninehundred.net/~equalccw/aerosmith.html – same story, this time in New York City.

    There are far, FAR too many examples like this. Agencies that do “may issue” are corrupt from the top down, filled with rank’n’file who are willing to work with corrupt bosses and are hence dishonored themselves.

    I will not assist members of such departments in any way shape or form. I will acknowledge each only as members of criminal gangs.

    • ” said another friend, Bo Dietl, a former NYPD detective who has numerous mob ties”

      Fixed that one right up for ya. Mobster cop, friend of Don Imus.

  11. I am a Florida LEO and a former New Jersey resident. I lived under New Jersey’s oppressive gun laws for twenty eight years. You just can’t fix stupid so I moved away from that which is stupid. I moved to Florida, where citizen can actually exercise their constitutional rights. Sheeple of New Jersey, you get exactly what you have earned and deserve. So when your life is in grave danger, shelter helplessly in-place and cry like babies until someone takes you and your family’s life. Oh, and don’t forget to wear name tags so the M.E’s Office can easily identify your remains. The truth hurts but someone has to say it!

    • The ten stupidest people I’ve ever met were all from Florida – most of them screaming “Doobies!” at the top of their voices.

      But I’m glad you found a better place. Even Florida is an upgrade from New Jersey.

    • Could all the law-abiding citizens of those three cities please leave for the weekend, so than neutron bombs can be set off in them? RSVP.

  12. Slavery was a stupid idea because it gave negros jobs, houses, and protection in a white country. Letting negros vote was as dumb as enslaving them in the first place, and with similar results (there are millions of them here, and they claim entitlements and commit massive crime and fraud). Letting women vote was a bad idea because they will take propaganda easily and they voted to get revenge on white men and felt sorry for negros, so they voted for their own rape and disenfranchisement.

  13. Over the Palm Sunday and Easter Weekends eighty-two (82) people were shot in the Streets of Chicago, IL, Five (5) were young children and thirteen (13) of the total died, Over Monday and Tuesday the Chicago Police Chief and Mayor both complained that the “problem” was they need more gun laws.
    There’s a definition of stupid and strong evidence that the “Protection Industry” operates on the same principles as the “Race Discrimination Industry”. Of course, the apparent majority of these victims were young Black Americans belonging to gangs, using illegally obtained guns (despite Chicago’s Draconian Gun Laws already on the books), but the answer from the Rulers in Chicago is “We need more and stronger gun laws.” It’s a tragic farce.
    Insofar as SCOTUS failing to rule decisively on Concealed Carry or RKBA, I view it as mostly cowardice, rationalized by the Justices’ attitude that the States should regulate Arms, not the Federal Government, conveniently ignoring the NFA 1934, GCA 1968 and Brady Law 1993 (as major examples). So The Constitution of the U.S. is “the supreme law of the land” only when SCOTUS says so in particular instances, but not when the matter might be too controversial? That is an example of making chicken pie out of chicken sh*t. You can do it, but it doesn’t go down very well. I am probably wrong somewhere here, so don’t hesitate to enlighten me (us).

  14. If you think the state has the right to “allow” or grant you “permission” to protect yourself and your family however you deem fit, then you are more than crazy. You are a special kind of idiot. Did they need your permission to walk around with armed guards? That you pay for? Are their lives more important to yours?

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