Proposed Statewide Amendment 3 is a serious protection for Alabama’s gun owners

by Cameron Smith  |  published on November 4, 2014

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Alabamians love their guns…period. It is almost impossible for a politician to run for office in the state without at least one picture of him or her firing or carrying a gun. Many in Alabama hold the U.S. Constitution’s protections as the baseline of a right that is far more fundamental.

The Declaration of Rights contained in Alabama’s Constitution of 1901 states that “every citizen has a right to bear arms in defense of himself and the state.”

On the November ballot, Alabama’s voters will have to opportunity to approve or reject a statewide constitutional amendment declaring that the right to bear arms is a “fundamental” right. More importantly, Statewide Amendment 3 would provide that any restriction on the right to bear arms by state or local government is subject to strict scrutiny.

Over the last few weeks there has been some confusion about what strict scrutiny means. It does not give politicians a new ability to place additional restrictions on the right to bear arms. Neither does it mean that a liberal legislator or activist Alabama judge would be able to scrutinize the gun rights of Alabamians.

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