I am a supporter of the 2nd amendment, not to mention the expansive gun rights afforded us by North Dakota’s state constitution.
Protecting these rights, and pushing back against attempts to curtail gun sales, possession, and carry by people who oppose gun rights is important.
That said, we need to stop creating special gun rights for certain classes of citizens. Case in point, SB2139, which started out as a bill to give those licensed to carry concealed a 10 day window to produce their permit if caught by law enforcement, has been amended to also give elected officials the right to carry concealed in public gatherings.
Here’s the amended portion of the bill. As you can see, there are already a number of exceptions in the law for carrying concealed at public gatherings:
Keep in mind that earlier this session lawmakers passed, and Governor Doug Burgum signed, a law allowing any adult who has been a resident of the state for more than a year to carry concealed without a permit. Elected officials wishing to use to his exemption for carrying at public gatherings must actually have at least a class 2 permit, and in there are proficiency requirements in current law, but I’m wondering why we’re treating these government officials differently than anyone else.
If we’re going to say it’s ok under the law to carry concealed at public gatherings, shouldn’t we all get that opportunity and not just the governing class?
The amended version of this bill passed 86-5 in the House today. It now goes to the Senate since the House passed a different version of the bill than what they voted on. If the Senate concurs the bill goes to Governor Doug Burgum, but to my mind they should either open this loophole up to all citizens or kill the bill.