The Second Amendment is becoming more fashionable as more states are stripping onerous gun licensing requirements and simply going “Constitutional carry.” New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu signed legislation adding the Granite State to now 25 percent of U.S. states that permit legally-eligible citizens to carry handguns with no permits at all.
By the end of 2017, there could be up to 17 states–or 34 percent–that have gone to Constitutional carry, according to the Crime Prevention Research Center. Charles C.W. Cooke at National Review thinks the déluge is coming after that.
In 1990, some form of “constitutional carry” obtained in just 0.25 percent of the geographical area of the United States, and for only 0.22 percent of the population. Today, those numbers are 42 percent and 18 percent, respectively. Put another way, in a quarter of a century “constitutional carry” has expanded 168-fold and been applied to 81 times more people (relative to the size of the overall population).
New Hampshire was a predictable addition to the list of states; it’s a place where gun-toting is considered not-so-shocking. Back in the 1980s and ’90s I had a concealed permit there, which was not difficult to obtain. A trip to the police department, a signature, and it was done.
By the end of the year, we may see another five or six (Georgia legislators introduced a bill this session, but it probably won’t get anywhere) states shift to permitless carry.
If the trend continues, all but the most liberal states (with the highest gun crime rates), may allow you to drive from practically coast to coast without calling your lawyer or consulting an NRA publication for where you’re allowed to go.
That will be a refreshing change.