Kentucky Passes Constitutional Carry

Thomas DiGennaro | @tom.digennaro

On Tuesday, Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin signed Kentucky SB 150 into law. This bill extends constitutional carry into Kentucky to concealed carry. Prior to SB 150, Kentucky limited constitutional carry to open carry. As a result, the list of constitutional carry states now rises to 16.

The following states now all have constitutional carry:

  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • Idaho (constitutional carry for residents only)
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Missouri
  • Mississippi
  • New Hampshire
  • North Dakota (concealed constitutional carry only, for residents only)
  • Oklahoma
  • South Dakota
  • Vermont
  • West Virginia
  • Wyoming (constitutional carry for residents only)

Kentucky Constitutional Carry

Gun control bills at the federal level such as S 66, HR 8 and HR 1112 are gaining popularity. However, some state legislatures have been rallying around loosening restrictions on guns. In 2019 alone, three states have joined the constitutional carry list. First South Dakota, then Oklahoma, and now Kentucky.

Supporters of constitutional carry argue that there is a correlation between general public safety and constitutional carry. After all, Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire and Idaho report the first, second, third, and fifth lowest crime rates in the country, respectively. They are also constitutional carry states. Moreover, supporters claim that constitutional carry is how the Founding Fathers envisioned the Second Amendment.

On the other hand, opponents of constitutional carry argue that it is reckless and dangerous for anyone to be able to buy and carry a firearm in public. In fact, many law enforcement officials are among the opposition. For example, Oklahoma City Police Chief Bill Citty publicly denounced the constitutional carry bill passed in Oklahoma earlier this year.

Going forward, it appears that more states will join the constitutional carry list. Texas and Alabama are potential additions, with constitutional carry bills also brewing in their state legislatures.

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