Readers Respond

Wild west moves east: Supreme Court opinion upends Maryland gun restriction | READER COMMENTARY

Gov. Larry Hogan outlines plans during a news conference on Jan. 10, 2022 in Annapolis. The governor directed the state police Tuesday, July 5, 2022, to suspend the state's “good and substantial reason” standard for permits to carry handguns after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a similar New York law last month. (AP Photo/Brian Witte, File)

Why the rush to arm more Marylanders?

Why the hurry to arm Marylanders (“Hogan wants to loosen gun law,” July 6)? Maryland has a sensible law that requires individuals who want to pack iron in public to “show a good and substantial reason” to do so. Just because the Supreme Court scandalously overturned a similar requirement in New York state does not mean Maryland needs to hurry to scuttle its sensible requirement. Let the legislature try to find a way that complies with the (outrageous) ruling and still provides us with protection. I do not want to walk into my local Trader Joe’s or NTB Tire store wondering who is " carrying” and in a bad mood that day. Make someone file suit before complying, or at least give the legislature time to adjust our law. Note that it took a long time for states to comply with Brown v. Board of Education. Why should Maryland rush on this one? Sadly, I think the governor is pandering to the right-wing in his disgraceful party in preparation for a presidential run — at the cost of the safety of his constituents.

— Kevin McDonald, Pikesville


Justices should not only pack heat, but court onlookers, too

I believe many of us enjoyed Ms. Patty Nicholls’ satirical letter to the editor regarding the Supreme Court’s recent decision to limit states’ rights to enact gun restrictions (“Let the Supreme Court justices pack heat,” June 30, 2022). I would like to take things one step further and propose that the Supreme Court lift regulations that currently prohibit visitors attending Supreme Court hearings from bringing their firearms with them into the courtroom. Allowing an unlimited number of guns in the courtroom would demonstrate the justices’ sincerity and their trust in their own recent decision.

It is also worth noting that in 2013 Justice Thomas wrote (and Justice Alito signed) a dissenting opinion, wherein the two also opposed a ban on military assault style weapons, citing that the “overwhelming majority” of individuals who used such weapons did so lawfully. Surely then these two particular justices would welcome AR-15 owners (or at least the “overwhelming majority” of them) who visit the Supreme Court building to bring along their military assault-style weapon.


In all seriousness, no one wants guns in any courtroom. What we would like is a little more reality testing and self-awareness on the part of the justices, who live in the developed country with the highest homicide rate, the highest rate of gun ownership (1.2 firearms per person) and the most relaxed gun regulations. With 24-hour security protection the justices live in an America different from everyone else’s, which may somehow allow them to be blind to the obvious connection between U.S. gun statistics and homicides and also allow them to remain insulated from the consequences of their own recent judicial decision. This arrangement may render the justices vulnerable to tossing sound judicial reasoning (and common sense!) to the wind in order to pay homage to an amendment rendered obsolete in the face of 231 years of advancing technology, or to enjoy poorly defined but meaningful paybacks from copping to political pressure.

— Janice Ryden, Baltimore

Hogan is complying with Supreme Court, not ‘loosening’ gun law

I am not a fan of either the current governor or the current interpretation by the U.S. Supreme Court of the Second Amendment. I commend the recent article, “Hogan wants to loosen gun law” (July 6), for its accuracy and evenhandedness. However, I found the headline in the print edition misleading at best.

My understanding is that Gov. Larry Hogan was reacting immediately to the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Second Amendment and was not trying to “loosen gun law” in Maryland. Perhaps “Governor reacts to Supreme Court’s 2nd Amendment decision” would have been a more accurate headline.

— Bernard J. Wasiljov, Westminster

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