Delaware lawmakers came to their senses when they removed a highly unconstitutional law from the state’s firearm laws. Prior to the Delaware Supreme Court’s ruling on December 7, law-abiding citizens were prohibited from carrying firearms in a state park. The court voted three to two in favor of “killing the ban” under two major premises: that criminals are not going to abide by such a law anyway, so it only disarms the law-abiding citizen, and that, of course, the Constitution applies to state lands where people may need a firearm for defense.
The ban has been effective since 1962, prohibiting all firearms in Delaware state parks. However, in 1979, firearms for hunting were deemed the only exception to this rule. Of course, this was never a substitute for being armed for defense, as it only applied to specific hunting hours in a controlled zone. It did not permit other activities, such as target shooting either. For some reason, the state did not think the ban was unconstitutional when it was examined this past January. Almost a year later, however, two groups took the state park departments to court to try to overturn the ban once more.
The Bridgeville Rifle & Pistol Club and Delaware State Sportsmen’s Association initiated the motion against the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environment Control as well as the Delaware Department of Agriculture. Reaching the verdict that it is unconstitutional, the ban that has prevented many firearms owners from protecting themselves in state parks was finally killed. Justice Karen L. Valihura, James T. Vaughn Jr., and Gary F. Traynor drafted the “reversal of Superior Court’s determination,” which went into effect at the time of signing last week.
Americans with the legal right to own a gun find them to be a necessary safety precaution, especially in the wilderness of a state park. Anything can happen in a remote place, and large animals also pose a threat. Being so far out from civilization with no defense is a death sentence against malicious intent or a wild animal when all some citizens want is to be able to go camping or hiking without worrying about being attacked.
In response to a need for defense out in the wild, those in favor of the ban stated earlier this year that, “A threat with a firearm is diminished when firearms are prohibited in the area.” Obviously not, Judge T. Henley Graves; refer to point A. Also, since 1979, firearms have not been completely prohibited. Guns for hunting are were still permitted. Up until the recent ruling, hunters could be armed for sport while other civilians could not be.
Thankfully this time around, the state even admitted that the previous ban implied “that outlawing possession of firearms in an area makes law-abiding citizens safer because criminals will, for some reason, obey regulations,” which we all know is fantasy thinking. Rather, citizens will now be safely armed if a need arises for defense.
In fact, the trade-off for protection against attack and homicide risk is great, considering that the only reason to reach for a gun in such an environment would likely be life or death. Such a ban will not prevent mass shootings, as many recent gun control pushes have been primarily addressing. In many state parks, the masses are generally very spread out over a large area.
However, liberal lawmakers insist that firearms in parks may equate to violence when people at parties and festivals add alcohol into the equation. Of course, the two should never be mixed, however, this is basic firearm safety, and a ban should not be used to micro-manage gun owners’ decisions if they were determined safe enough to possess a gun.
While it was a struggle, it is refreshing that Delaware was finally able to recognize the Constitution’s importance and comprehend the logic behind the inefficiency of gun control laws. Just the other day in New York City, a gunfight broke out between several individuals who had illegally obtained firearms, despite New York’s gun laws. Chicago regularly features similar headlines as well, among many other stories that end the same way.
Loosening gun restrictions that only apply to law-abiding citizens is the only way decrease safety threats by increasing the chances that the right person will be carrying a gun in a shooting. Delaware gun owners can now enjoy state parks in confidence thanks to the state finally recognizing that the Second Amendment is not optional.