Monday, May 30, 2016

Tennessee's morning after law

Heizer PKO45
Today, Memorial Day 2016, we remember those who gave their last full measure for the United States. Others, too, have given much through blood, sweat, tears, and maimed bodies to protect our Constitutionally guaranteed rights.

With that in mind, turn your attention to a  little known law in Tennessee which appears to absolve someone of the crime of possessing a firearm with the intent to go armed, but only after the fact.


See, here's the way it currently works in Tennessee. First, the Tennessee Constitution authorizes the Legislature to regulate the wearing of arms with a view to prevent crime. Nothing else. Nada!
But - -
Legislatures and bureaucrats have historically ignored the state and federal constitutions.

Here's the link to the morning after statute:
Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-17-1322 Defenses.
  A person shall not be charged with or convicted of a violation under this part if the person possessed, displayed or employed a handgun in justifiable self-defense or in justifiable defense of another during the commission of a crime in which that person or the other person defended was a victim.
So, a lady is deprived of her Constitutionally protected right to carry a defensive handgun on her person, but, if the handgun is used in justifiable self-defense, no prosecution. You might say, her rights are restored the morning after the event.

Yet the Republican super-majority  in Tennessee can't get a Constitutional Carry bill out of committee to the floor, where the light of day would assure its passage. Then the only obstacle would be the governor, who has publicly stated that he will sign the bill if it comes to his desk:

The Republican legislative leadership can fix this problem next year if they refuse to stack committees with gun-grabbers.

Smell a fish?


  1. The legislative leadership always stacks one committee with their loyal friends who hold secure seats. That committee will kill any bill as instructed by the leadership.

    Blame the leadership, and your representatives, when bills die.

  2. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

    1. Good copy and paste from the Dec. Do you have a comment?

  3. This is a problem for sure. As a retired Detective from Nashville I had the misfortune to come up against this law several times. I saw several people charged with possession of a firearm when the self defense law should have taken precedence over the carrying law.
    Fairview Tn. had an infamous event in the arrest of Tracy Clark in 2006. Here is a link to the Court of Appeals ruling in which the judges found that the law DOES NOT prohibit the arrest of someone but merely provides a defense AFTER a full trial...The trial judge had ruled that the case was a self defense without conducting a full trial. By implication, this means that even the Police cannot go to a scene and make a determination about self defense in order to not charge someone. I saw the Nashville District Attorney's office charge people several times because of this ruling...

    1. Thanks for your contribution. More light is shed . . .

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