After a woman in New Jersey was murdered by her boyfriend while she was forced to wait for permission from the state to purchase a handgun for her own protection, Gov. Chris Christie and the state of New Jersey launched a commission to see if the state's gun laws needed reforming. The commission released its report on Monday, and said what was already patently obvious: New Jersey's laws should be relaxed.
The New Jersey Firearm Purchase and Permitting Study Commission wasestablished on the eve of Christie's presidential campaign last June.
Late Monday afternoon, the commission released its report through the governor's office, calling on the state to "broaden ... the statutory requirement that an applicant must demonstrate a 'justifiable need' to carry a handgun."
Those who can can demonstrate an urgent need for self-protection "by articulating serious threats, specific threats or previous attacks which demonstrate a special danger to the applicant's life ... could obtain a carry permit if they otherwise qualify."
The commission was created partly in response to the murder of Carol Bowne, a Berlin Township woman murdered in her driveway by her ex-boyfriend, against whom she held a domestic violence protective order, while her application for a handgun permit was still being processed.
"New Jersey citizens should be permitted to defend themselves and not encounter unlawful delays and impediments," Christie said in a statement released to media.
The governor praised the work of the study commission for providing "a set of recommendations that I am proud to wholeheartedly embrace. We will work through the Attorney General to put these changes into effect as quickly as possible."
In April, Christie pardoned Shaneen Allen, who was arrested for carrying a concealed weapon in New Jersey. Allen was a licensed CCW holder in her home state of Pennsylvania.
When a state's gun laws regularly disarm and arrest those who are in need of protection, it's clear that there might just be a problem.