May 29, 2012

EMILY MILLER: Drive Across America, Armed: Congress should force anti-gun governments to obey federal transport laws.

Rep. H. Morgan Griffith, Virginia Republican, has sponsored legislation that would amend current law to make it clear that individuals who transport their guns from state to state may stop for food, gas and vehicle maintenance. They also may seek medical treatment, tend to an emergency, stay overnight and conduct other activities incidental to the transport.

These things are legal already, but because the law does not spell it out in explicit detail, gun-grabbing areas take advantage of the ambiguity. Mr. Griffith’s language would force states and localities to pay the attorney bills for anyone who is arrested for illegal transport if they are exonerated based on this proposed law.

“The beauty of this is that the fear of having to pay the legal fees will make sure they bring charges that are valid and founded,” said Mr. Griffith, a former defense attorney, in an interview with The Washington Times. “It only has to happen one time, and every risk-assessment manager in the United States of America is going to inform their police that you better make sure he’s violated the law before you arrest him for having a locked gun in a case in the trunk, because that’s going to cost them a lot of money.”

This seems like a valuable civil rights law, and entirely consistent with my analysis in Second Amendment Penumbras.

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