Legal Brief: Constitutional Carry
Legal Brief is a series where the ins and outs, the dos and don’ts of the firearms world are covered. From popular topics to more niche subject matters, the Legal Brief tries to help our reader be the best gun owner out there. Venture Out is an Ohio based outdoor social channel, so therefore most of our articles, videos, and posts, lean towards that fact. Legal Brief is no exception. The things discussed here are geared towards Ohioans. Please, if residing in a different state, follow all the laws and regulations regarding that state. Furthermore, Venture Out is not legal counsel. So please, if you have further questions, seek the appropriate legal authorities on the subject.
Constitutional Carry: What is it
In March of 2022, Ohio Governor DeWine signed into law Senate Bill 215–the legalization of constitutional (or permitless) carry. On June 13th, 2022, that law went into affect. But what does that mean for the gun owners of Ohio? Simply put, constitutional carry forgoes the eight hour required training to apply for a license and then skips the application part completely which includes a background check completed by a sheriff’s office, fingerprinting, and of course, a fee. Additionally, the new law no longer requires citizens to inform Police Officers when stopped if they are indeed carrying. To really dig into what Constitutional Carry means to Ohio’s citizens members of Venture Out audited a concealed carry class with Joe Weyer of Weyer Tactical and conducted an interview with him discussing this very law. The interview can be watched here.
Thoughts from the Class
Joe, himself a second amendment advocate and top firearms instructor, sees constitutional carry as a positive as it furthers cements Ohio as a pro-firearm state. The right to protects oneself and family is not something to be regulated by a governing body, but rather should be unalienable. In the wake of the Uvalde Texas mass shooting, this topic, to some, may be off base. The nation is reeling with emotion, while the President has called for further “common sense” gun control—though to those that are law-abiding, it is nonsensical. Those that are pro-gun are being condemned for condoning the death of children. However, sitting in Joe Weyer’s class offers perspective. People from all walks of life attend, not just firearm enthusiasts. The commonality between all students is their innate desire to protect and defend, because law enforcement will not be there when you need them most. Below are a few important takes always from the class
Joe Weyer in his extensive career in Law Enforcement has never intervened during an active murder, rape, or abduction. Police, he says, are always reactionary. They are there after the fact, to collect evidence and write a report. With this statement, the class went silent. As a society we have been taught that the police are there to protect us—hasn’t that been a long-standing argument for gun control? That police are there when all bad things happen. But in fact, that is a false narrative. We, the individual citizens, have to take our safety, and the safety of our loved ones, into our own hands. Constitutional Carry streamlines that process. It gives everyone the unalienable right to protect and defend.
Another reality of the class, as seen recently in the news is that KIDS are not untouchable. Our homes are no longer a safe haven they once were. The evils of society break down doors and crash windows without families knowing. Technology and the access to information are at a persons fingertips. Temptation is frequent. It is a silent evil that only can be stopped by a parent’s willingness to teach and educate. Humans are communal creatures. Being involved in the lives of our families and the ones we care about is just as important. Keeping our firearms safe, locked up, or well hidden is an important step. But don’t hide away from them. Educate people, especially kids. Take them shooting, educate them properly on the fundamentals of firearms safety. Teach respect.
The use of deadly force is not an occurrence that an individual wants to put themselves in. However there are rules that apply. While Joe goes over a lot of the “nuts and bolts” of various laws and situations, this is perhaps the most important for his students to understand—the when and why of using deadly force in an altercation. Deadly force is defined as any force which carries a substantial risk that it will proximately result in the death of any person (ORC 2901.01(b)). Deadly force is also scaleable, meaning size, age, and gender are all looked at in the eyes of the court.
Five Part test to use deadly force. (Taken from Weyer Tactical)
-First Three the Bad Guy Controls
- Weapon-cause immediate physical harm
- Delivery System-ability to actually hurt or cause harm with the weapon (Tueller Drill. Average person can close 21 feet in 1.5 seconds. Average police officer can draw, aim, and fire in 2 seconds)
- Intent-honest and reasonable belief of danger
-Second Two You Control
- Defendant is not at fault
- Reasonable and honest belief of danger
Other important subjects covered in the class include firearms safety and storage, Castle Doctrine, and interaction with law enforcement. All of this is information and insight is gleaned from a Weyer Tactical CCW class. He doesn’t sugar coat, but bring real facts and truths.
Benefits of Having a CCW
Even though Constitutional Carry is law, citizens can still apply for a CCW license like before. Having an actual license is still beneficial for most people. Something lost in translation is that all people that carry, regardless of license, still have to follow concealed carry law—something that a class teaches. Having a CCW also gives a citizen reciprocity in other states. Currently, an Ohio CCW holder can carry in 40 states, making traveling while carrying simpler. This includes states that also recognize Constitutional Carry. The other benefit is training. If someone wants to attain a higher degree of proficiency in firearms, classes are available. However, most times, ranges or instructors require their students to have a valid CCW license. This gives the instructor assurances that A) the student can pass a background check, and B) that person takes their safety seriously.
Ohio passing Constitutional Carry is an important step in guaranteeing its citizens rights for self-defense and self-preservation. Law enforcement will not be there in a person’s most dire position of need. Carrying and having the tools and skills necessary are critical. Taking a class at Weyer Tactical’s only benefits. While Constitutional Carry is a tremendous step forward in protecting our rights guaranteed to us, attaining knowledge and understanding further develops people as responsible citizens.