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The Brady’s Were Right, But Dishonest

Now that the Brady’s have chosen to mention at least one aspect of DC law that they were concerned about, it’s possible to actually evaluate their concerns without interference from all the hype and hysterics.

The Brady’s were actually correct to point out that the changes to the DC law would have allowed open carrying of long arms, but there’s a catch.  Technically speaking, it’s never been illegal to carry a long gun on or about your person in DC provided you had a trigger lock on it, and it was properly registered according to DC law.  So even before Heller, you could have slung your evil 50 Caliber Sniper Rifle and walked down Pennsylvania Ave with it, provided you had it properly registered and either taken the bolt out and put it in your pocket, or placed a trigger lock on it.

HR6691 would have repealed the registration requirement, the trigger lock law, and The District’s blanket ban on semi-automatic firearms.  When it repealed the ban on carrying firearms in the home, it did so this way:

SEC. 9. REMOVE CRIMINAL PENALTIES FOR CARRYING A FIREARM IN ONE’S DWELLING OR OTHER PREMISES.

Section 4(a) of the Act of July 8, 1932 (47 Stat. 651; sec. 22-4504(a), D.C. Official Code) is amended–

(1) in the matter before paragraph (1), by striking `a pistol,’ and inserting the following: `except in his dwelling house or place of business or on other land possessed by that person, whether loaded or unloaded, a pistol,’; and

(2) by striking `except that:’ and all that follows through `(2) If the violation’ and inserting `except that if the violation’.

If you look at the section of the DC Official Code that’s being modified here, you would see that it only adds an exception for one’s home and place of business.  The amendment passed the other day, which was to HR6842 is modified thusly:

SEC. 9. REMOVE CRIMINAL PENALTIES FOR CARRYING A FIREARM IN ONE’S DWELLING OR OTHER PREMISES.

(a) In General- Section 4(a) of the Act of July 8, 1932 (47 Stat. 651; sec. 22–4504(a), D.C. Official Code) is amended–

(1) in the matter before paragraph (1), by striking `a pistol,’ and inserting the following: `except in his dwelling house or place of business or on other land possessed by that person, whether loaded or unloaded, a firearm,’; and

(2) by striking `except that:’ and all that follows through `(2) If the violation’ and inserting `except that if the violation’.

(b) Conforming Amendment- Section 5 of such Act (47 Stat. 651; sec. 22–4505, D.C. Official Code) is amended–

(1) by striking `pistol’ each place it appears and inserting `firearm’; and

(2) by striking `pistols’ each place it appears and inserting `firearms’.

So the Brady claim that the bill would have allowed the open carrying of long guns was actually true, but what they failed to mention was this was always DC law.  Their claim that the eventual bill introduced on the house as an amendment to Norton’s bill fixed this “problem” is also true.  But that didn’t stop opponents of this bill from continuing to dishonestly claim all manner of hysterics.

Also not mentioned is that in most US states, it’s perfectly lawful to carry a long arm openly without any kind of license or registration.  I would challenge anyone from The Brady Campaign to attempt to openly carry a loaded AR-15 past the Pennsylvania Capitol Building in Harrisburg, or any other state capital where it’s legal, and see if the police don’t stop to ask you a few questions.

2 Responses to “The Brady’s Were Right, But Dishonest”

  1. James says:

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  2. Alcibiades says:

    Should there really be an apostrophe in “Brady’s”?

    (You might also want to delete that comment above, it is completely spammy.)

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