Bringing concealed weapons across state lines would be legal under a bill the House of Representatives passed Wednesday.
Under the legislation, states would recognize concealed carry permits from all other states, even if the states’ permitting standards differed.
Congressman Steve Knight, R-Palmdale, was one of 13 California representatives to cosponsor the bill, which will go to the Senate next week.
“I have long been an advocate for protecting Americans’ Second Amendment rights to defend themselves and their families,” Knight said in a statement to The Signal. “At the same time, I was a police officer for 18 years and I fully understand the need to increase measures to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals.”
This bill accomplishes both goals, Knight said, and believes the bill does not loosen federal laws prohibiting felons and violent criminals from owning a firearm. Also, the bill increases National Instant Criminal Background Check System precautions, the congressman cited.
“The provisions in this bill would ensure that Americans who are legally allowed to carry a handgun in their home state are not unduly arrested or prosecuted when simply exercising this right when traveling to other states who also allow handgun carrying,” Knight said.
If all states had permitting processes as strict as California’s, there should be no concern, according to Rich Nagler, formerly with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and current owner of Adam’s Armory in Stevenson Ranch.
As a rule of thumb, Nagler does believe people ought to have the right to carry concealed weapons and does not think carrying them leads to any more shootings. Often times, he said it helps civilians protect themselves when law enforcement officials are not around.
While California requires those with a concealed carry permit to go through two days of training, not all other states take such precaution, he cited. Though, he’d be in favor of the bill if it could ensure uniformity across all states.
“If someone has gone through the training, I’m not objected to it at all,” Nagler said. “If all the states had the same requirements as California, I’d be wholeheartedly for it.”
Though, permit tests are not always sufficient to verify if someone is fit to carry a weapon, according to Stephen Daniels, host of the Talk of Santa Clarita podcast.
“Anyone can pass a test, but you can’t really monitor intent,” Daniels said.
Daniels said concealed weapons make him feel less safe because there is no way to tell who has one or why.
“They have the right to carry a weapon, but I have my right to peace of mind,” he said.
While the bill creates an even playing field for concealed carrying, Daniels emphasized the need to put guns in context, whether that be the context of each state or time period. While he holds anti-gun beliefs now, Daniels grew up pro-gun in Kentucky.
“Thinking what applies for some place in Montana will apply in Los Angeles County or Santa Clarita just isn’t realistic,” Daniels said. “I believe we should repeal the Second Amendment. It’s a dated amendment based on the time the Constitution was written. Times have changed and society has evolved.”