Gun owners' next victory in DC

Robert A. Levy writes in a recent op-ed piece in the Washington Post that while last year's Heller ruling lifted the ban on gun ownership in the home, "The court did not address, and was not asked to address, firearms carried outside the home."

In fact, he notes, the law in D.C. still states that '[n]o person shall carry within the District of Columbia either openly or concealed on or about their person, a pistol, without a license.' Currently, the city affords no process by which to issue such a license."

"A first violation of the carry ban is punishable by a fine of up to $5,000 and imprisonment for up to five years," Levy writes. "Does the Constitution mandate that the nation's capital allow firearms to be carried outside the home? The right to bear arms, the court said in Heller, is an 'individual right unconnected to militia service.' To 'bear' means to 'carry.' More specifically, when used with 'arms,' the opinion said, 'bear' means 'carrying for a particular purpose -- confrontation.' Nothing in that formulation implies a right that can be exercised only within one's home … "