Society claims that there is a benefit to knowing who is expressing their Second Amendment rights and making sure that they’re skilled enough to not harm others by improper handling. This has caused many states to require their citizens to have licenses to concealed carry firearms. I will take no real position on the benefit, but let us assume that society is right that there is a benefit to having a register of LTCs, that any good gun owner doesn’t want to accidently harm innocents and is willing to undergo special training.
The question then is who is responsible for paying the fees that come along with licensing to carry.
I argue that it is everyone in society that should foot the bill.
The Second Amendment is the written expression of mankind’s inalienable right to self defense. So, whenever any government, group, or entity seeks to impose obstacles to individuals owning and carrying, in self defense, a firearm of any kind they are wrongfully causing harm to said individual. With no other right do we see or would we accept such a burdensome cost placed on the expressor. Think if we were to charge people for a public speaking license and demanded that they take speech classes before they could go outside and voice their opinions on the government. Suffice it to say there would be a wholescale revolution on our hands. Even if the training is done at the consent of the individual, harm is still wrongfully being caused because you are imposing an artificial cost on the exercise of a natural right. Also, it is society and government who gains the benefit or “safety net” of a LTC register. Anyone who has tried to get a license to carry knows that fees for the process can be anywhere from about $100 to $500 and months to years to have all the paperwork filed. This is quite an obstacle for a citizen who is only guilty of the terrible misdeed of wanting to express their rights. The party guilty of harm in this situation is rather every single person is seeking to hamstring the individual’s expression of a right. Since society is the one gaining the “benefits”, then it should be society who ought pay the cost; if you bought the products, you pay.
As such I recommend that the fees for acquiring a license to carry be turned into a tax levied on all of the people governed under the law. In this way the harm will be incurred by all who gain the “benefit” of licensing to carry. Then the governed can have a discussion if the benefit they see from licensing responsible gun owners who make up the minor amount gun crime is worth the taxation.