Arizona’s Permissive Gun Laws in Spotlight After Shooting

After the recent shootings in Tuscon, Arizona, some have been questioning the need for stricter gun control laws in Arizona. Arizona’s gun control laws are among the most permissive in the country.  It is one of only three states not to require a permit to carry a concealed weapon. Arizona also allows workers to take their guns to work, despite any workplace ban on firearms, as long as they are kept in their locked vehicles. A new state law also allows people with concealed-weapons permits to take their guns into restaurants and bars.

Under federal laws, anyone who has been “adjudicated as a mental defective,” as well as those involuntarily committed to a mental health facility, cannot buy a gun. Administrators at Pima Community College banned the alleged shooter, Jared Loughner, from the school last year due to concerns about his mental well-being, but the incident wasn’t of a serious enough nature to appear in a background check.  Federal law also prohibits “unlawful” drug users and “addicts” from buying guns, based on recent convictions, or multiple arrests over the past five years. Mr. Loughner had previously gotten a 2007 drug paraphernalia charge expunged after completing a diversion program and failed a drug test when trying to enlist in the Army in 2008.  However, popular sentiment among Arizonians seems to oppose stricter gun control measures in the state.