“Because the right to bear arms includes the right to carry firearms for self-defense both in and outside the home, I find that the District’s ‘good reason’ requirement likely places an unconstitutional burden on this right. Accordingly, I hereby GRANT plaintiffs’ request for a preliminary injunction and enter an order that enjoins the District of Columbia from denying concealed carry licenses to applicants who meet all eligibility requirements other than the ‘good reason’ requirement. . . .” With that, as Eugene Volokh reports, DC District Court Judge Richard Leon has ruled that, in keeping with the Heller decision, the nation’s capital must be shall issue . . .
As Judge Leon wrote,
Because the Second Amendment’s text places the right to “keep” and to “bear” arms on equal footing, it follows that the right to “bear” arms for self-defense also lies at the core of the Second Amendment’s protections. Indeed, the purpose of the Second Amendment, as articulated by the Supreme Court, supports this conclusion. . . . The need for self-defense is, of course, greater outside the home than it is within it. . . . Furthermore, I note that plaintiffs here are the very type of “law-abiding, responsible citizens” whose Second Amendment rights are entitled to full protection under Heller.
And who are those plaintiffs? The original case, Grace vs. D.C., was brought by Matthew Grace and the Pink Pistols.
The Pink Pistols is an international organization dedicated to the legal, safe, and responsible use of firearms for self-defense of the sexual-minority community. Chapters may be found across the United States and Canada. Though the Pink Pistols is for the GLBTQ community, it is not solely composed of the GLBTQ community, and all are welcome to join.
As Volokh notes, this likely won’t be the court’s last ruling on the case. Expect an appeal by the District and a stay until the case can be heard by the DC Circuit. And maybe then by the Supreme Court. How’s that for driving home the importance of who selects the next two or three justices?