Was the Concealed Weapons Law constitutional?

Some are now arguing in the courts that the Concealed Weapons law passed a month ago violated the Missouri state constitution. That a constitutional ammendment was necessary as opposed to just legislation.

From the Missouri State Constitution:

The revised, 1875 version

That the right of no citizen to keep and bear arms in defense of his home, person and property, or in aid of the civil power, when thereto legally summoned, shall be called in question; but nothing herein contained is intended to justify the practice of wearing concealed weapons.

The latest, 1945 version

That the right of every citizen to keep and bear arms in defense of his home, person and property, or when lawfully summoned in aid of the civil power, shall not be questioned; but this shall not justify the wearing of concealed weapons.

Proponents of the legislation argue semantically, while this says the right to bear arms doesn’t inherently justify concealed weapons, the constitution doesn’t inherently prohibit the legislation.

I think this hinges on the definition of the word ‘justify’, which is a slightly more complicated word than the word, ‘is.’ But not by much. It may also hinge on the definition of the word “this”.

0 thoughts on “Was the Concealed Weapons Law constitutional?

  1. John

    Fortunately not quite. Even if the law passed is constitutional, you still need a permit to buy a gun, and a second permit to carry it concealed. You have to go through a short safety course to get the concealed-carry permit.

    Those who just have a permt to own a gun, I believe, may theoretically be allowed to walk around with it unconcealed. In a holster like you suggest. But acquiring that initial gun permit does require at least a background check.

    I wouldn’t want to test this theory out though. You are definitely allowed to just store it in your car glove compartment. Much has been made out of this loophole. Can anyone say Road Rage? I knew you could.

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  2. Laura in DC

    The 2nd amendment affirms the right of an armed, organized militia. It does not say anything about individual gun ownership rights. A strict reading of the amendment would mean it would only pertain to organized groups with a permit. And it does not say that citizens are allowed to own every type of gun out there…I think the government certainly has the right to allow citizens to be armed but ban certain weapons.

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  3. John

    Laura…I mostly agree with you. However, the 2nd ammendment is to the US constitution. This entry was about the Missouri constitution. The Missouri State Constitution has a paragraph in it that either prohibts the carrying of concealed weapons, or just advises against it. How one interprets that paragraph is crucial to whether or not the recently passed Missouri law permitting concealed weapons is constitutional – from a State Constitution perspective.

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