WASHINGTON TWP. - The New Jersey Coalition for Self Defense (NJCSD) in partnership with the Michigan Coalition for Responsible Gun Ownership (MCRGO) filed an Amicus Curiae (friend of the court) brief on Friday in support of the Second Amendment Foundation and Association of NJ Rifle and Pistol Club's case against the State of New Jersey, which will be heard in United States District Court. Amicus Curiae briefs help explain legal issues, and are filed by interested parties in order to help courts reach proper decisions in complex cases.
The case challenges New Jersey's concealed carry permit statute to determine whether it is in compliance with a recent US Supreme Court decision in McDonald v. Chicago which ruled that the Second Amendment to the US Constitution applies to all 50 states, meaning that no state can make a law that violates Second Amendment freedoms.
New Jersey argues that it has the right to regulate guns as it sees fit, and that its laws do not violate Constitutional protections. Plaintiffs in the case contend that Americans have an absolute human right to defend themselves, a Constitutional right to do so with handguns, and that the right to both extends outside the home where the majority of crime occurs, obviating the need for a ‘carry permit’.
The NJCSD and MCRGO posit in their brief that the state’s policies and statutes run afoul of Second Amendment protections and violate Constitutional principles. “Regulating a right into oblivion out of the reach of the citizenry is tantamount to not having those rights at all,” said Robert Kreisler, President of the NJCSD. “Imagine if you will a State in this day and age arguing that they can maintain Jim Crow laws where only certain citizens have rights, granting them selectively to those who are ‘connected’ while denying them to others. It’s repulsive to think of, especially when you pause to consider it's a fundamental right to safety and survival in question.”
The two organizations observe that New Jersey’s exceedingly restrictive statutes have implications for citizens outside the state. "MCRGO is grateful for the opportunity to weigh in on this issue. Not only are we concerned about gun rights everywhere, but we are also interested in the safety of our members and other Michigan citizens who travel to, or through, New Jersey." Said Steve Dulan, attorney for the Michigan group and a member of their Board of Directors.
With some 40 other states having systems by which to authorize firearms carry permits on a fair and reasonable basis to their citizens, it is widely speculated that New Jersey’s discretionary standard will be overturned at some point. Whatever the outcome, appeals are almost certainly to be filed after the District Court’s decision.
The NJCSD is a volunteer citizen’s group founded in 2003 to protect our rights to defend ourselves. For information on the NJCSD, call 877-890-5460 or visit www.njcsd.org to learn more.
The MCRGO is the nation’s largest state-based 2nd Amendment advocacy group with thousands of members. They can be contacted at 517-484-2746, or on the web at www.mcrgo.org
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