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Shaneen Allen (courtesy

A Philadelphia mother of two is facing three years in prison after she mistakenly entered New Jersey, where she was stopped for a traffic violation and found in possession of a handgun loaded with hollow-point bullets,” reports. A number of readers emailed this story. To a man, they consider it an outrage that a mother – a mother! – should be looking at jail time for the “innocent” mistake of assuming the New Jersey honored her Pennsylvania concealed carry permit. “The gun charge was not proper to begin with at all,” her attorney, Evan Nappen, told, echoing our Armed Intelligentsia’s take on the matter. “She made an honest mistake.” No and maybe . . .

The charge is perfectly proper, legally speaking. By carrying her .380 Bersa Thunder loaded with cop killer bullets [/sarc] into the Garden State, Shaneen Allen broke the law. Like Rhode Island, New Jersey does not honor any other state’s concealed carry permit. Nobody’s. The law sucks, but there it is.

As far as the “honest mistake” part of the statement’s concerned, it’s entirely possible Ms. Allen didn’t know diddly about New Jersey’s carry laws. To their state’s credit, Pennsylvania residents don’t have to take a concealed carry course to get their concealed weapon permit. And Allen ratted herself out to the cop who pulled her over for a dangerous lane change. 

But, as we all know, or should know, ignorance is no excuse under the law. As the Brits would say, the New Jersey Old Bill got her dead to rights, mate. So, is it an “honest mistake” or a “stupid mistake”? Yes. Yes it was. But as much as I support Ms. Allen’s case – highlighting as it does the injustice of any gun law that centers on prohibition – the most important takeaway here is don’t let this happen to you! 

Firearms laws are a nightmare. They vary from state to state – in terms of where, when, how and what you can carry. Falling afoul of these laws is expensive, time-consuming and potentially catastrophic. Even if the prosecutor bows to public pressure and walks down the charges against Ms. Allen, odds are she’s going to lose her gun rights in the Keystone State. Forever. If she ever needs that Bersa to defend herself or her kids, she won’t have it.

Or maybe she will. There are hundreds of thousands of otherwise law-abiding Americans keeping and/or bearing firearms illegally. Far be it for me to tell someone who can’t get the state’s permission to exercise their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms that they should leave themselves disarmed in the face of a potential deadly threat. BUT –

If you have a choice, don’t carry illegally, whether intentionally or unintentionally. Know your state’s laws. Know the laws of the states you’re visiting. Don’t take any one website’s word on firearms law; triple check the information. Know where the state lines are (seriously). And finally, don’t do anything stupid to draw police attention to yourself. Don’t speed, cut people off, argue with strangers, etc.

Again, Ms. Allen has my sympathy. I have a feeling she’s going to become a poster child for pro-gunners’ fight for firearms freedom in general, and national reciprocity in specific. But she is not a role model.

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    • It is. She drove from her home in PA into NJ and claims she didn’t know her permit wasn’t recognized by NJ. I hope someone helps this young mother take this to the SCOTUS. PERFECT example of someone who has a need to take advantage of her 2nd Ammendment riights and how a state took that right away from her.

      • I know it is ( I apologize for my lame attempt at sarcasm) but the article alludes to, in parentheses, that pa is a may issue state

        • PA is shall issue, but I’m sure Philly operates under a defacto may issue system.

          Yes it’s illegal… but Philly is close to NJ so some of the stupid must have crossed the river.

      • It’s a state crime, not a federal one. The 2nd amendment applies to federal laws. I don’t know the New Jersey constitution but presumably it restricts gun ownership, or is at least neutral on the subject.

        • Except the the 14 Ammendment expands all bill of rights laws to apply to states in addition to the federal government. This is stated explicitly, was misinterpreted for decades and then recognized through the invention of substantive due process. The Heller case affirms that the second Ammendment applies to states as well as federal entities.

        • It’s not stated explicitly – please provide the passage that says such. The Supreme Court has decided it will extend some of the bill of rights to the states. What it can give it can take away. The idea of incorporation is malarky. Sure it’s how the modern court decides to see things, but it’s wrong. Many state constitutions mirror the bill of rights, but the federal Constitution applies to federal laws. Another gross overreach of the federal government and judicial system.

        • Difference between 1A and 2A-“Congress shall make no law” specifies who is restricted by the Amendment, ie Congress, states make their own decisions. “Shall not be infringed” specifies what will not be done by anyone, Fed, State, or local. If you cannot see that, please explain why they are not combined into one amendment. That is REAL common sense.

          • Why are there any separate amendments? They were all separate issues voted on. 17 amendments narrowed down to 12, 10 of which were ratified 220 years ago, and the 11th ratified twenty years ago.

    • Here’s the problem with PA. It’s shall issue until a sheriff get creative with the character clause and uses any and all reason to deny a LTCF. In one county a 10 year old summary disorderly conduct charge could give the sheriff reason to invoke the character clause where another sheriff might not even look at it. So it’s a provision that gives the sheriff wide latitude to deny LTCF applications. When denials are appealed, they are appealed to the court of common pleas, where a judge can do anything.

      So, while most of the state is shall issue the standards is not the same across the state and some sheriffs are more aggressive with the use of the character clause.

      • except…PA is constitutionally open carry except in a city of the first class (Philly, I know, oxymoron). The sheriff only issues a LTC concealed

    • Yell that people shouldn’t go to NJ? Yell that they shouldn’t break gun laws? Or that they shouldn’t be ignorant of gun laws? In PA, they give you a little handout with your license telling you things like “Your license isn’t valid in all states. Go to [some website] to see a list of the states it’s valid in.” She’s no victim. She played a stupid game and won a stupid prize. Go yell that from the mountaintops.

        • That personal responsibility requires being responsible? Her plight was 100% preventable. All she had to do was know the laws, which were handed to her with her license by the way.

          She has my sympathy. But all she had to do was read the damned handout she got with her license. Or avoid NJ.

        • The point that was being raised is that we need to make known the ridiculous, arbitrary nature of the gun laws in our nation. That our gun rights should be as recognized as much as our rights to drive are. That a woman with children who has committed not crime (keeping in mind that taking hollow points across an arbitrary line is not a crime since a crime requires an injured party) is now facing YEARS in prison. Your lackadaisical, “well she got what was coming to her” response is unhelpful and quite frankly offensive to anyone who supports liberty.

        • Just ask yourselves “What would Shannon do (WWSD)?” Then use the same tactics to do the opposite.

          “It FEELS like she should go free. It’s NOT FAIR that she may go to prison for something that was perfectly LEGAL just miles away. AND JUST LOOK AT THOSE CHILDREN…”

          See what I mean? Then we get Big Al Sharpton and Mr. Rev. Jesse involved, and we can watch Progressives’ heads explode trying to decide which way to jump.

        • @Dino1791, While many probably agree with your point “That our gun rights should be as recognized as much as our rights to drive are”, you make the game changing mistake that surprsingly so many here make, confusing rights and privileges. The concepts and words of rights vs privilieges cannot be used interchangably, as they are legally very different things. Driving on the roads today is a privilege, though constitutionally it is a right, but thats another story. Once you start speaking and thinking in terms of gun rights as gun privileges, you have lost and your privileges will be forever eroded and more tightly controlled.

      • What part of “full faith and credit” eludes you. The NJ statute is in blatant violation of the CotUS. They don’t get to choose which legal documents they will honor from other states.

        “Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state. And the Congress may by general laws prescribe the manner in which such acts, records, and proceedings shall be proved, and the effect thereof.” Article IV, Sec 1, CotUS.

        • Most people misunderstand what the full faith and credit clause really means. It means that states must recognize what’s official in another state, as being official in that OTHER state. So you may not escape civil judgments or criminal convictions simply by crossing a state line. It does NOT mean that just because one state regards something as legal in its boundaries, that every other state must regard it as legal within their own boundaries.

          The infamous marriage example draws upon facts that don’t exist. Many states have different standards for what constitutes a marriage and over the years have denied recognition of marriages even if valid in other states. Examples have included marriages between races, consanguinity, and among minors. Even now, so-called same-sex “marriages” are not recognized everywhere, even if legal in the state where celebrated.

          Ultimately, the clause is about holding individuals accountable based on what happens in one state, not about allowing one state to impose its rules on other states. To accept the untenable interpretation that the clause as one-way and absolute, would be to reject the irrefutable notion that states are sovereign.

        • Jonathan:

          You make a good point about State’s right but the right to bear arms is a Constitutional right that should not be subject to unrestricted state regulation. The State of New Jersey certainly can hold its residents to a specific standard and it can hold people doing business in the state to the same standards. What it should not be able to do under the interstate commerce clause is to apply those laws to people transiting through the state. If Ms. Allen made a wrong turn and ended up in New Jersey while carrying and was making way back to PA then the state should not be able to prosecute her. In fact, under FOPA they supposedly cannot. If Krispy Creme Christie were smart he would immediately issue a full pardon and take this out of the prosecutor’s hands. It would be good politics.

      • Couldn’t agree more. How many times has she “forgotten” that she can’t carry in NJ before and not been caught? Respect the laws of the state you’re traveling through.

        • COMMENT MODERATED Any State that violates the Constitution thereby not upholding that States part of the bargain to be protected and included into the Union should be expatriated and all Federal funds and benifits witheld.

        • I believe I’ve read elsewhere that she only had the permit for a couple weeks. This was a case where she made a mistake, and tried to do the right thing as she understood it (i.e., told the cop at the traffic stop that she had a PA CCW, and was carrying). She was actually told by a judge at a preliminary hearing that she was in this trouble because of her honesty. And to give the judge credit, he had not discretion in how he could handle the case. The only one NJ law gives any discretion to here is the county prosecutor.

          NJ legislators are forever crying about the victims of gun violence, and trying to implement new laws that do nothing to actually address that violence. As Evan Nappen said about this case, this woman is a prime example of the many victims created by bad gun laws.

  1. And never confess anything to a cop. They aren’t your friends. I’ve never been asked to step out of the vehicle and I don’t know anyone else who has except for DWI. The less the cop knows the better.

    • Some states are “shall notify” if speaking to a police officer. Remember that crazy Ohio cop who threatened to kill a motorist for allegedly failing to notify?

      • Fortunately I live squarely in flyover country – Iowa – and don’t have to inform any LEO of my weapon, although in some circumstances it would be wise to do so. I figure if I’m asked to step out of the vehicle and the weapon is on my person, as opposed to in the console, I would inform the officer. I would personally take the same chance when traveling in another state, even risking running afoul of their laws. By my reasoning, even if you run the risk of breaking yet another inane law, your risk of being caught/victimized is much lower. At worst they could only accuse you of not informing the officer ‘right away’. Anyway, this goes WAY beyond concealed carry. Cops are not your friends. Most of them are nice enough people, but it is their job to trap you into confessing crimes. Often crimes of breaking laws you had no idea existed, like the unfortunate mother from Pennsylvania. It doesn’t matter that you’re generally a good person who tries to obey the law, they are there to trap you when you break the deliberately vague and deceptive laws they lay out like snares. They are no more trustworthy than the criminals they purport to protect us from.

      • The “duty to notify” clause is one of my most serious grievances with Ohio’s concealed carry laws.

  2. Just because its illegal doesn’t mean its right. What if she was looking to protect her family? I think there is a bigger issue here besides ignorance.

    • The bigger issue is the full faith and credit clause of the CotUS. Now that the last domino of IL has fallen, NJ does not have a fig leaf to ignore a type of legal document issued by all 50 states.

      “Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state. And the Congress may by general laws prescribe the manner in which such acts, records, and proceedings shall be proved, and the effect thereof.” Article IV, Sec 1, CotUS.

    • I think you meant to say, “Just because it is illegal doesn’t mean it is wrong.”

      At any rate this woman harmed no one. Since there is no victim, how can there be a crime? Therefore, this is a case for jury nullification!!!

      • Who’s harmed if a pervert sneaks into your home and rifles through your wife’s underwear drawer, stealing or breaking nothing, and you two never find out?

        Trampling of property rights, like disregarding a state’s laws, is its own injury. Now, you’re right, this particular law should be jury nullified, but because it violates the Constitution and (should) shock the conscience of the jury. That’s a different justification than supposedly nobody having been directly harmed, however.

        • First of all, I second Um Yeah’s comment that the pervert did harm me when he/she illegally broke into my home.

          More importantly, I do not support the idea that a state can pass any arbitrary law whatsoever and that anyone who “violates” such arbitrary laws has “harmed” the state. Suppose a state declares that wearing blue shirts are illegal and I wear a blue shirt. What “harm” have I caused to the state? Who or what is the victim?

  3. I am licensed to concealed carry in 38 states (major pain to get done) and every instructor DRILLED into the classes about reciprocity and to be careful of other states gun laws. Her instructor must not have, which is IMO reprehensible, since NJ is so draconian, right next door to her. Having said that, it still falls on her to understand the gun laws in neighboring states. This was a really, really unfortunate case of someone who thought she was doing the right thing but who was unaware of the laws in NJ.

    The really sad part is that criminals in NJ carry concealed all the time and a lot of them never get caught.

    • What instructor?

      In PA you can get an LTCF just by being a resident. No classes required (like Utah or Florida).

      • GA has no class requirement either. My question is…at what point did she allow the cop to find the gun? I have argued this over again that when pulled over for a moving violation, the cop asks for your license and proof of insurance. Hand those two documents over and wait for him to return with the citation. The fact that a gun is in her purse or love box is protected by several amendments. Self incrimination is one. DO NOT CONSENT TO A SEARCH! If he asks if you have any drugs or weapons in the vehicle, you must use the phrase “I do not consent to a search”. He will search anyway saying your answers are evasive giving him cause, but that will not hold up in court as you clearly stated that the search was against your consent therefore illegal and anything found will be unusable as evidence in court since it was illegally obtained.

        • Wow, someone would really have to be an idiot to follow internet-degree lawyering like that. All a police officer needs it reasonable suspicion to search certain areas of a car for a weapon (US v Vinton). Not probable cause!

          Here’s an idea… if you’re already in violation of the law and a cop asks you if you have a weapon, just lie and say no. At least you’ll be breaking the law slightly less stupidly than by following the advice of copblockers who spend their free time on probation.

          Or stay out of states like NJ…

    • I believe that virtually every concealed carry instructor out there discusses reciprocity, many doing so at length. I do not believe you’re licensed in 38 states, though, as in you hold 38 different licenses/permits, as opposed to holding a single license that is recognized in many states via reciprocity.

      For starters, every other license but that of your state of residence would necessarily be a non-resident license. By my count, only 29 states even offer non-resident licenses. Beyond that, there are usually major strings attached to getting a NR license. Must own property there, must own a business there, must have some kind of secondary residence there (like a vacation home or rental), must be employed there for a certain amount of time (as in working on a temporary project for your employer), and other conditions I may not even be aware of. Even NR licenses typically require course completion (yes, even with UT and FL, though not PA) and typically that must be conducted within the state. (I know UT’s can be conducted out of state, there may be some others.)

      It would cost many thousands of dollars to get all of those licenses, even if you had eligibility as a non-resident, and that’s before we get into the whole “may issue” tar pit, or the “shall issue” states that still leave enough wiggle room to be de facto “ain’t never gonna issue, so don’t try.” And that’s still giving you credit for the few no permit required states, which you don’t even deserve since you specified “licensed” in 38 states.

      • PA is Shall Issue in name only. See:

        Some municipalities use the “character and reputation” clause to deny permits to people who haven’t committed any crime. Like being charged but having charges dropped, or having too many parking tickets. Or, I shit you not, having a gun stolen from you. If that’s what you’d call Shall Issue, then I’m really interested in what May Issue means to you.

        • In layman’s terms….may issue is when you apply for a license, they ask why, you say self defense, they say they don’t think you need it and revoke your ap.
          Shall issue… apply, they check your background and if you’re legally allowed to have one, they are required by law to issue….regardless if they don’t think you need it.
          In Pennsylvania, only cities of the first class ( which are Philadelphia and ( I believe) Pittsburgh) have differing laws about carry, which still enable you to carry but I’m not sure if its concealed or open

        • Shall issue… apply, they check your background and if you’re legally allowed to have one, they are required by law to issue….regardless if they don’t think you need it.

          Exactly my point. See my other comments here which explain that they’re not required to issue you a license if you meet all of the requirements. They have a “character and reputation” clause that is very subjective and is used very subjectively to deny people licenses. Hence, they “may” issue you a license if you meet the requirements, or they “may” not.

          The cities of the 1st class thing is about whether people need a license to open carry, and at this time only applies to Philadelphia. Outside Philly, no license is needed to OC.

        • Yup. You need LTCF to open carry in Philly. Based on what I’ve heard form others, you should not consider open carrying in Philly anyhow unless you are at a rally. You don’t need a permit for open carry here in Pittsburgh. Philly is more like Maryland or NJ than it is PA.

    • Do you have to produce some sort of government issued ID card to get a permit to carry? If so, then yeah, what you said.

    • PA is not Shall Issue. Google this, and then please stop spreading misinformation:

      (3) investigate whether the applicant’s character and reputation are such that the applicant will not be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety;

      Philadelphia, in particular, is very keen on finding peoples’ character and reputation such that they’re not eligible for a license. No matter how many times you say it is, PA is absolutely, positively, not Shall Issue.

      See also:

      But proponents say that it’s necessary because Philadelphia has unusually strict criteria for obtaining a concealed-carry permit. Philadelphia, according to police and gun owners, relies heavily on a clause that allows denial of a permit based on “character and reputation” alone.

      The men interviewed by the Daily News had varying reasons for seeking nonresident permits from Florida or other states, including having been denied a Philadelphia permit because of unpaid parking tickets.

  4. Please dear Jesus go look into the various 2A legal insurance offering BEFORE you end up in some insane situation. You are going to need lawyers pronto once the handcuffs go on.

    • She is SOL. Gay is the new black. Now if she and her female partner were in a State that did not recognize her same sex marriage, then you can bet this would be front page headline news and the lawyers would be lining up to take the case pro bono.

  5. Anyone conceal carrying needs to be aware of the law. I am keenly aware because I live in Illinois. I really hope someone gets behind this young mother and fights this s#it.,,and don’ tvolunteer anything to cops.

  6. Training. These are the things that should be covered in training.

    I recently moved from one state to another. I know my training for CCW is valid in the current state, but I won’t even apply for this state’s CCW until I’ve taken a training class. This is the #1 reason I support training requirements for CCW. Not because I can’t shoot, or lack the judgment on when to shoot, but because I don’t know what is legal with this state’s CCW.

  7. Better idea: Make simple mistake laws a misdemeanor at the most.
    I can’t think of any reason why missing your exit on the highway and getting pulled over should result in a felony.

  8. Pa is “shall issue”. Philadelphia is an exception. There have been attempts by locals to pass regulations or laws contrary to state law. There is legislation in the works to clear up any confusion and clearly deny locals to pass regulations opposed to state concealed and open carry laws. Pa is not the only state to have this problem.

  9. Ignorance or mistake of law IS a defense in NJ. See NJS 2C:2-4. Ignorance or mistake as to a matter of fact or law is a defense if the defendant reasonably arrived at the conclusion underlying the mistake and…It negatives the culpable mental state required to establish the offense. (So the Brits can go pound sand.)

  10. Whaever happened to STFU? She ratted herself out. If the cop was a decent person, he or she was probably saying to herself or himself, “Ah, sh1t, why did she tell me that?”

    • Even if the cop wasn’t a decent person, I’m sure that thought crossed their mind because the time and paperwork required for booking a gun felony anywhere is a MUCH larger PITA than writing a simple traffic ticket. Especially with two upset small kids in tow.

  11. This brings up something that I’ve been considering. I’m moving a friend back from NYC next week and my Missouri permit is good in every state on the way home except New York (IL I can keep in the truck). No way to bring a carry gun along the way?

      • I said that because I’m trying to see if anyone has experience with the law in NYC. Are you allowed a firearm in your home? Vehicle? I know I can’t carry in public, but is it impossible for me to pass through NY with a firearm?
        I’m from Missouri. You don’t need a thing to have a gun in your home or vehicle, or open carry. It’s hard for me to imagine a place in the U.S. where you could be arrested as this woman was. If it was unloaded would it have made a difference? In my CCW class they said they abide by the strictest law if you don’t know for transport, which is gun and ammo in different compartments. Is New York / Jersey more stringent than this?

        • I used to live in Misery, near Springfield. I never did get a CCW permit there mainly because I moved here to Georgia and it didn’t make sense to spend money twice. But anyway.

          New York City is probably the single worst place in the country for transporting ANY firearm, but particularly handguns. IF you enter NYC with a long gun, it had best be a manually operated (i.e. pump action) weapon with a magazine capacity of 5 rounds or less, locked away in a hard case in trunk of your vehicle with the ammo also separately locked away

          In other words….forget it!!!



  12. I got my PA LTCF from one of the counties surrounding Philadelphia about 1.5 years ago. I have many friends that also got their PA LTCF recently in all of the five counties in the Philadelphia area, including a few from the City itself. None of my friends had any trouble at all in obtaining their permits. You just have to complete all of the paperwork properly, not be a prohibited person, and Philadelphia is slower (60 days – even though the law allows only 45 days) than the surrounding counties. They do make a big deal out of parking tickets in Philadelphia. You can’t get anything from the City (building permits, licenses, etc.) if you owe money to the Philadelphia Parking Authority.

  13. But if a Marine does the exact same thing in Mexico, everyone suddenly thinks mistakes should be forgiven.

    Both places are a mess, and that’s why anyone with a lick of sense would be more cautious when nearby with a weapon. Don’t cross hostile borders with guns.

    • “Don’t cross hostile borders with guns”

      That is the opposite of what I believe…

  14. It may be time for some Sheriffs (if Governors aren’t able) to start blanket deputizing all residents of the county who can legally possess a firearm. Put them on salary for a dollar a year, give them a class, a badge, tell them they are off duty and not allowed to enforce laws unless ordered in writing by the local Sheriff, but they will enjoy all the perks and privileges of a peace-officer such as un-infringed national reciprocity. There will be no need for a CHL, CWP and none of the BS like this from anti-gun-a-stan.

  15. Yes everyone, she should have known it was illegal (unconstitutionally so).

    But that’s hardly the fvking point, for goodness sake.

    What she was doing is her civil, natural and constitutionally protected RIGHT.

    This is a rights issue, not a “let’s all show how much we support any law on the books, no matter how immoral” issue.
    Get with it, folks.

  16. I think some people are missing the point. It’s very obvious she was ignorant of the laws and she is not the smartest . But she does not deserve what is coming to her/ The point is that it is your god given right to own and carry a gun for defense. The government is the one breaking the law. The idea is to have massive civil disobedience/ revolution and then we won’t have to worry about stupid laws enacted by stupid politicians. Are you ready to disobey the illegal law?

  17. Guh. My first thought is: why the hell couldn’t that cop clear his throat and tell her to turn around and head back to Pennsylvania? But of course, maybe that happens all the time. We’re not going to hear about those cases, naturally. This is a just a plain bummer.

  18. I saw a Brian Aitkin facebook post that 3yrs would not be the actual sentence, that would be the earliest she would be eligible for parole.

  19. She should know to research the reciprocity laws of any state she enters with her firearm. Not to do so is irresponsible. Just because you passed your CPL class does not mean your education is over.

  20. This is bullshit. I understand, in a technical sense, that we should follow our laws. The problem is that the laws clearly didn’t protect this women. We’d be better off if everyone broke this law to the extent where enforcement would not be feasible.

    • The spirit of the law and the letter of the law are two different things. This incident violated the spirit of the law. On the other hand, anyone can claim they simply made a mistake, even if they’re walking away from a botched robbery. We can’t tell the intent and I’m sure NJ doesn’t want to seem weak on their “strong” gun laws, even as they strong-arm mothers that did make an honest mistake. Maybe the hypocritical governor can grant her a pardon?

  21. 1. Is there a website where someone can easily access reciprocity laws?

    2. If this was a male nobody would make it a news story.

    • This is a very accurate resource that aggregates states’ firearm laws and has proven many times from my perusing of it to be more up-to-date than even some states’ own constitutional online information:

    • The male in prison in Mexico is a huge story. I receive several fundraising emails per day about him. The males in DC who were imprisoned for possessing magazines and empty shell casings made the news. So did the guy Christie pardoned for having guns in his car.

  22. Only Law Enforcement in the capacity as “ACTIVE” can carry JHP in NJ. Once retired it’s FmJ’s. even the local P.D.

    • I have no idea what is in the water in New Jersey, but they’re completely obsessed with HP ammo. Guns are bad, but having HP ammo for your “bad gun” means that you’ve crossed into the realm of the Truly Evil.

      There is no other state where the press and the politicians are so HP obsessed.

  23. Wow, we are quick to throw her under the bus.

    Yes she did take her gun into an area where it is illegal, but as MLK said “One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.”

    There are a myriad of laws in this country that do nothing to stop crime. They simply turn otherwise law abiding folks into criminals. Jersey’s refusal to recognize any carry permits is a good example.

    Maybe that is why NJ has the law that way. Maybe as Ayn Rand said, “The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws.”
    I for one would support her legal defense with the hope of repealing this unjust law.

  24. I live in PA and work in NJ. There are 2 different routes I drive that take me right past public shooting ranges. I’d LOVE to put a gun in the trunk of the car so I could conveniently stop at the range while on the way home, but I do not want to risk ending up in a NJ prison for years for transporting a firearm into and out of the state. For those of you that live far from NJ and NY, it really is THAT BAD

    • find out if either of those ranges have rental lockers. If not, suggest they put them in. We have at least 1 range up north here that does this, and everyone is happy; the range makes some $ on the rental lockers, the renters get to kill some paper whenever it suits their fancy without having to abide by the insane travel laws.

      • You’re missing the point: How are you going to legally GET your weapon TO the locker?

  25. Actually ignorance of the law has long been recognized as a reasonable defense within common law systems. It had long been recognized that you can not e guilty of a crime you reasonable didn’t know was a crime. Traditionally a conviction for a felony required “mens rea” or bad intent. Without bad intent one cannot be guilty of a felony. It is only in the last few decades that our country has moved away from traditional common law structures into the world of strict liability law. The strict liability system has of course long been recognized by despotic governments around the world. Just think about what that means when are are working to make our legal system more like Nazi Germany’s or the USSR’s.

    • That is a shift from “the people are the most important part of the country” to “the State is the most important thing in the country”. The State is worthy of breaking or bending the rules, but not the people, which is a familiar theme as you alluded to in despotic regimes. Scary stuff if you’re one of those people that managed to peel away from the TV.

  26. I carry in Jersey. I think a better tip would be about deep concealment and never telling cops anything that could incriminate you. Hell I’ve carried my pocket pistol in NYC while making idle chit chat with a NYPD officer. I knew I wasn’t travelling by subway and I wouldn’t be caught.

    I’d rather risk jail than go defenseless for myself and my family.

        • Your definition of Fascism is a little strange. If a person chooses to violate a law then accept the consequences when you get caught. The Freedom riders sat at lunch counters because they felt the law against it was unjust but they honored the law by submitting to arrest. It is not civil disobedience to exempt yourself from unjust laws. Civil disobedience requires to honor the law by accepting the consequences of your actions. Breaking an unjust law just because is simple law breaking.

          I believe what you are advocating is called anarchy, the absolute enmey of liberty.

    • And don’t make the mistake of lumping yourself in with truly law-abiding citizens. We don’t need anarchists deciding which individual laws are inconvenient for them.

  27. I never understood how ignorance was not an excuse. Sure, when direct harm to person or property is concerned it’s blatantly obvious you shouldnt do that. But for all the ridiculous non-crime laws we have on the books why doesnt ignorance count? They differ widely from state to state and sometimes from town to town. They cause no harm to person or property. We get all bent out of shape when a US citizen is busted as a driving female in Jerkistan or a US citizen is locked away by Dear Leader for god knows what but here ignorance is no excuse?

    Every law should have to pass the ET test. If ET landed here today would it be reasonable for him to suspect in any way whatsoever that carrying an object around could be illegal? Of course not.

  28. Is it any wonder why I moved from New Jersey to Florida in 1991? As a LEO I can carry anywhere in the US but when I go to New Jersey, I reluctantly leave my off-duty weapon home. I do not want to be placed in a position of fighting for my freedom because New Jersey has a long history of ignoring federal laws when it comes to guns. Yes, I have the right granted to me by federal law but I cannot afford to pay for a legal defense or miss work because of a false arrest.

  29. Here is an invaluable resource for anyone who carries a gun:

    Consult it whenever you travel armed.

    I am very cautious when I do a cross country. I will still put my gun in a case in the trunk when transit Illinois even though under the law I can carry in my car. I don’t want to give a hostile LEO a reason to harrass me.

        • I think the problem is that we are divided and that is how the left will win. Gettysburg is a nice reference. Tell me if you have ever heard of this one…”United we stand, divided we fall”.

        • That is a non sequiter. You pick fights that you can win or at least do damage to your opponent. To continuing the Pickett metaphor charging an impregnable position that results in complete defeat isn’t noble. It’s just stupid. Interestingly Southerns romaticize Pickett while condemning Grant. There was not a whit of difference between Pickett’s Charge and Grant’s (really Meade’s) attack at Cold Harbor.

          • Picking only fights that you can win seems more like bullying than righteousness. Your militaristic examples are not applicable in this case. Look at the immoral laws in history that have been overturned by repetitive losses by the freedom fighters. Winning battles sometimes emboldens your enemy to come back harder. Show them the error in their ways and you not only defeat them, you make an ally for the next battle.

          • I saw it. Doesn’t strike me as insightful. Unjust laws are unjust laws no matter who or why the person is prosecuted for it. We are simply differentiating between illegal and immoral. You seem to side with the law no matter how obtuse. I believe that is why you were called a fascist. Hitlers police were legally arresting dissidents.

        • I assume you saw Band Brothers. Remember with Sobel told Winters you salute the rank not the person?

          Same with the Law. When you engage in Civil Disobedience you honor the Law while targeting a particular law. You honor the Law by submitting to arrest and punishment for disobeying a particular law.

          (The upper case/lower case is intentional.)

      • You’re talking about people supporting your particular interpretation of the Constitution. I’m for the Constitution too. I, along with most people and the SCOTUS, just interpret the sentences a little differently than you do.

  30. The reason that ignorance of the law is no excuse is supposed to be because a crime is morally and obviously wrong. I do not need to know that murder is illegal to abstain from it.

    When the law criminalizes non-crimes, and particularly when it is set up in such a complicated way that it’s nigh impossible to know what innocent act is illegal in any one square inch of the country that you might happen to set foot on, that principle ought to be reevaluated…

    • And, + another 20.

      Crimes against Paperwork, where the only victim is some form improperly filled out, do not represent society’s values and do not exist to improve lives.

      Failure to fill out a form harms who and how? It only harms the bureaucracy.

      Yet, these laws have come to surpass (in number) the kinds of laws that DO represent values (laws defining and punishing murder, robbery, rape, burglary, etc). Failing to: Permit for this, register that, fill in a form…CRIMES?

      To equate that sort of think with the unjustified taking of a life or sexual assault is, actually, quite criminal.

      This is the ‘moral equivalence’ we’ve reaped by sowing the institutionalized notion that ‘government is all-knowing.’

  31. There are no Constitutional gun laws in this country. “shall not be infringed” means exactly that. Additionally, from Article IV of the Constitution:
    Section 1. Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State.

    And although I don’t like the 14th Amendment we have to live with it, Section I of the 14th Amendment states:

    Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

    I would suggest that NJ anti gun laws violate the Constitution on all three counts above.

    • Laws within a state should only apply to citizens of that state. She should be protected under PA law as that is her legal residence. Simply visiting a State should not change your ability to abide by the laws of your home State since you had no representation within the State that by virtue of free travel, you find yourself within. I know this is not current law, but I wish it were.

  32. Practical commentary ! For what it’s worth , if anyone is requiring a Bank of america direct deposit form download , my family came across a fillable document here

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