So holds today’s Peruta v. County of San Diego (9th Cir. Feb. 13, 2014) (2-1 vote). The court concludes that California’s broad limits on both open and concealed carry of loaded guns — with no “shall-issue” licensing regime that assures law-abiding adults of a right to get licenses, but only a “good cause” regime under which no license need be given — “impermissibly infringe on the Second Amendment right to bear arms in lawful self-defense.” The Ninth Circuit thus joins the Seventh Circuit, and disagrees with the Second, Third, and Fourth Circuits. (State courts are also split on the subject.)From Ace, who digs a little and concludes: Right to Bear (Carry) Arms is Enshrined in the Constitution; The State May Prohibit Open Carry, or Concealed Carry, But Not Both
San Diego County had a rule that, in addition to the acceptable limitations on concealed carry (good moral character (no prison, etc.), a training course, etc.) the Sheriff also required "good cause" to carry, something that indicates the person seeking to carry a gun is outside of the "mainstream" as far his personal level of danger and personal need for self-protection. A generalized claim of the need to protect oneself was not good enough, the Sheriff (and county) said; concealed carry was only permissible if someone could document a particularlized need for self-defense, such has having a restraining order against a threatening third party, or being in discussions with a DA about bringing charges against a potential threatening party, or the like.More from Volokh here and here. We're not done yet; it was not the full 9'th Circus that made the decision, only a panel of 3 judges, and they split 2:1. It could go to the full 11 judge 9th Circus, and if not, it will almost certainly go to the SCOTUS.
Held: That requirement is impermissible. The right of self-defense is enshrined in the Constitution. Citizens of sound moral character applying for a carry license to not have to document or even claim some particularized, outside-the-"mainstream" need for personal self-protection. They have that right generally.