Thursday, March 06, 2014

San Diego and the "Good Cause" clause

Editorial: Another round in fight over concealed guns - The Orange County Register:

 March 05, 2014:

"Court overturns firearm restrictions, but pressure from Sacramento continues."

San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore recently said he would not pursue further appeals following a ruling by a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that invalidated the county's requirements for issuing concealed weapon permits.


The problem was that San Diego County's stringent rules, coupled with a recent statewide ban on the open carrying of firearms in public, effectively banned the right to bear arms. The discretion to issue permits is left to local authorities, who often require a “good cause” to issue them. Fear for personal safety was not considered adequate cause.

“In California, the only way that the typical responsible, law-abiding citizen can carry a weapon in public for the lawful purpose of self-defense is with a concealed-carry permit. And, in San Diego County, that option has been taken off the table,” Judge O'Scannlain wrote.
The "Good Cause" clause in California is one of the few remaining hold-outs against the "Shall Issue" clause which is currently effective in most American States.

When I got my first CCL ("Concealed Carry License" later retitled "Concealed Handgun License") Oregon had the same kind of rules.  You COULD get a license to carry, but you had to present a viable (believable?) reason why you should carry a concealed handgun.  My justification at the time was that although I was only a college student, I spent my summers working my way through college as a "Summer Replacement Route Salesman" for the  National Biscuit Company.  (NABISCO)  Essentially, I replaced route salesmen, who restocked the shelves with Oreos at grocery stores around the state, and I often received cash payments from the store managers.  My justification was that I was vulnerable to strong-arm robbery, because I carried large amounts of case from time to time.

I did NOT, but I felt no hesitance when I justified my need to carry a .22 Magnum pistol as I tooled around the state in my 1958 Volvo, restocking shelves in mom&pop stores in the Willamette Valley.

Hey, if they *(the state of Oregon)* were going to play games with me, I'll play games with them.  If they were not inclined to play fair with me, I wouldn't worry about playing fair with them!


This is pretty much the same situation as we see in California, 40 years later. 

The "Good Cause" clause is nothing more or less than an invitation to lie to The State in order to exercise your Second Amendment Rights.

It appears that California is finally coming to the real-life realization that anyone who really wants a CHL is going to do whatever it takes.  So .. why not quit making the honest citizen LIE to carry a gun?


In the meantime, the courts are taking a good look at "may issue States"   (AKA: "Good Cause") and realizing that the vetting process for people who lie to get a CHL are pretty much the same folks who would follow t he same legal procedures to get a CHL, if the state wasn't being such a wus about "awarding" a CHL.

The "Good Cause" is nothing more than a test about how competent an applicant is when lying.   It's still  the law in a few states, but frankly it's just another way to make a felon (or a liar) out of an honest person.  It's obviously time to dump this "good cause" clause, and move onto "shall issue" criteria.

That is, if the applicant passes all the tests of background test (not a felon, no outstanding wants or warrants, and not obviously a nutter) ... issue the freakin' license, for goodness sakes!

Yes.  "For Goodness Sake".

We who hold CHL are not typically unbalanced, and are indeed vetted by  at least two character references.  Believe me, the Sheriff's Office vets not only the applicant, but also the references.

How much effort must a sheriff put into searching the background of not only the applicant for a CHL, but also his references?

It seems timely that California look at the consequences of other states issuing Carry Handgun Licenses in other states, instead of stubbornly cleaving to "Good Cause" criteria.

Who knows better than me that I NEED a CHL?  Surely, not the Local Sheriff.


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