We knew that the gun rights infringers would lose their every loving minds if Bruen was decided in favor of gun rights. The decision is great not because it struck down New York State and City “may issue but not likely” permitting scheme but because it reaffirmed that the people have a right to self defense outside of their homes.

It reaffirmed that ordinary people have the right to carry a weapon for self defense.

Most importantly it stated clearly that the second amendment will be treated as a real guarantee of our rights. No more two tier means-end balancing.

Unfortunately the opinion left a few gotchas in place. The first was “sensitive places” and the other was “reasonable permitting regulations.”

While some states have issued guidance that makes the state “shall issue” others are fighting back. Massachusetts issued guidance that the good cause is no longer needed but everything else about getting a permit is still in place. In my opinion this means that the question of why I want a permit is answered with “All lawful purposes”. California did similar and I believe New Jersey did as well.

Unfortunately places like New York have hit on an attack vector that we expected. New Jersey is looking to go down the same path.

In short, they are going to define as many places as possible as “sensitive” and make them gun free zones. In addition, they are making violations of gun free zones felonies. This means that a CCW that is carrying can lose their rights because they happen to enter one of the many many forbidden zones.

The other way they are making it impossible to carry is by creating a default gun free zone for all private property. The wording is a little unclear but it seems to say that it requires both the owner of the property and the lessee to agree to allowing CCW on or in the property. By the wording it implies to me that in the case of the lessee posting a sign allowing and the owner not posting a sign the CCW could still be in violation.

Note the “on or in” clause.

Imagine if you would that you are a CCW carrier and you decide to go for a drive. You glance at your gas gauge and determine you need gas. You pull into your local gas station to pump some gas. As you do you are now on the property. If there is no sign saying your firearm is permitted, you just committed a felony.

On a practical note, they law calls for “clear and conspicuous signage indicating that the carrying of firearms … is permitted…”. It will not surprise me when we find out that the regulations on signage will require the businesses to buy expensive signs. Consider a simple MUTCD compliant STOP sign is $75 dollars, what do you think a NYS or NJ approved sign will cost?

I believe in both our right to self defense and our property rights. I personally have a rule that on our property if we are having a gathering of people that are not all gun people that concealed carry is allowed but open is not. We have some friends that are to scared of firearms to even look at them in person. That’s fine.

If a business wants to limit firearm possession in their place of business to criminals only, that is their choice. I’ll respect it and take my business else where.

There are many challenges dropping right now against all of the laws being put in place to get around the second amendment now that Bruen has been decided. I’m hoping that they move quickly.

New York State’s Gun Control Bill of 2022
Star-Ledger Begging For NJ to do the same

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By awa

5 thoughts on “Avoiding Bruen: New Jersey, Sensitive Places and Property Rights”
  1. I have to disagree with you concerning the “right” of a business to forbid legal firearm carry. They have a business that is supposed to be open to the public, and that means to everyone. That does not mean that a customer gets to demand that the business owner perform a service not included in his business purpose but it should not mean that the business owner can decide who can and cannot enter the premises, as long as they comply with the law (i.e., no shirt, no shoes, no service health regulations). I grew up seeing the segregation signs in the 50’s and hated them then and hate them now.

  2. I concur with SkinnedKnuckles. A “public facing” business should default to allowing concealed carry. As in, if a member of the public could be expected to enter without an appointment, it should default to a guns-allowed zone, and cannot be otherwise without strong justification.
    Contrast that to businesses that are generally not “walk-in,” i.e. do not provide services to the general public on an on-the-spot basis. For instance, office space for an engineering firm, or a warehouse. Or a chemical plant, which is one of the only really justifiable “no guns” zones I can think of, from a safety standpoint.
    I think the latter should still have to post “no carry” signs if they want to prohibit guns on site; but if so they should also have to provide a means of firearm storage for a reasonable number of staff and customers.

    1. I’ll go one further, a public business should not be able to be gun free. If they serve the public, they serve ALL the public.

  3. IANAL warning in full effect, but I do not see these laws standing up to a legal challenge.
    Two things that stand out.
    First is the sensitive places designation. It is too broad, as noted to the point of including 100% of the state. Not reasonable. If you enter a sensitive place, you have a reasonable expectation of safety. Enter a courthouse, and you get screened, and there are armed guards. Get on a bus, and nothing. If the State wants to restrict your right to self defense, it also creates a reasonable expectation they will provide the security.
    Secondly, the permitting regulations. The word “reasonable” is used in the description. Now… reasonable is not defined, which leaves it up to the “reasonable man” test. And, in my IANAL opinion, that is challengeable as well. If 40+ of the states have may issue permit processes, with maybe a day’s training and basic accuracy qualifications, how does NY or NJ justify the hoops they are forcing you to go through? How is their process “reasonable” when it is significantly stricter than that of the rest of the nation?
    These laws may get passed, but I do not see them surviving a challenge.

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