Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine signed a bill into law Monday changing a salient gun law in Ohio.
Senate Bill 215 will allow individuals to conceal carry a handgun without a license requirement. Previously, to carry a concealed weapon, a CCW permit was required. To receive the permit, the individual needed to demonstrate and complete the following:
• The ability to name, explain and demonstrate the rules for safe handling of a handgun and proper storage practices for handguns and ammunition;
• The ability to demonstrate and explain how to handle ammunition in a safe manner;
• The ability to demonstrate the knowledge, skills and attitude necessary to shoot a handgun in a safe manner;
• Gun-handling training
Under the new legislation, none of these needs to be demonstrated. You do not need to prove to anyone that you know how to use or operate the handgun you are concealing. You do not need to go through any sort of gun-handling training. As long as you can legally access a handgun and are 21 or older, you can conceal carry.
Supporters of this bill claim there is no constitutional requirement to have a license or permit to exercise the rights of the constitution, referring to the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms.
However, the continual argument that the Constitution is the end all, be all of American policy should be ignored, given that its intention was supposed to be fluid in nature. There is nothing written in the Constitution about concealing a weapon. Given the impact on an individual’s right to security, as the law stands, it is nice to know that even though we may not know if someone is carrying a concealed weapon, at least we know they have had the proper training and knowledge needed to carry.
Under this new law, there is no way to know the familiarity that a person carrying has with their handgun. Maybe they have gone through a safety course, maybe they’re a retired police officer or maybe they’re a fresh out-of-college 21-year-old who has never even shot a gun before, but wants one for protection. It’s a wide range with no set standard.
This law takes that set standard away. Regardless of how you feel about guns, this law takes away sensible legislation that helps keep all Ohioans safe. Being able to conceal a handgun is a good thing for the protection of yourself and the protection of people around you, but if an individual doesn't know how to operate their handgun safely, all it does is endanger those around you. The goal of the legislators was to make it easier to conceal carry. While that sentiment is understandable on the surface, all it takes is a little bit of contemplation to see how this will become an issue in the future.
We don’t let people drive cars without a license. We don’t let people hunt without a license. It’s not unreasonable or unfathomable to need a CCW to carry a handgun.
Mikayla Rochelle is a graduate student studying public administration at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. What are your thoughts? Tell Mikayla by tweeting her at @mikayla_roch.