Local gun shop owner gives ‘thumbs up’ to Supreme Court decisionPublished 5:17pm Friday, July 2, 2010
By JESSICA SIEFF
Niles Daily Star
Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court decided to allow gun owners to challenge state restrictions on arms in a controversial and split vote.
For Michigan gun owners, the news is double-sided.
In some opinions, the state is relatively easy on firearm restrictions compared to other states, including Illinois.
But it also means those who feel the need for tighter restrictions could open that door.
Robert Farr, a retired police officer and owner of Farr and Sons Sporting Goods in Niles, said there is also the added chance that states across the country might continue to do what they please when it comes to gun laws.
“I give them a thumbs up on that,” Farr said of the Supreme Court’s decision. “We have a fairly new concealed outfit here, it isn’t that old … but there are still some restrictions.”
Farr is happy the state requires those interested in owning a firearm to take certain classes in order to obtain a license, though he said he doesn’t quite like the need to pay to renew the license.
“Every five years you have to go back and get that license and pay $100 or something,” Farr said.
At Farr and Sons, customers are friends and friends who stop in often to sit and chat about various subjects over coffee.
Farr said the topic of restrictions on firearms is discussed often.
“It’s on most people’s minds,” he said, adding the second amendment, the right to bear arms, is still as relevant today as it ever was.
But he questions the Supreme Court’s decision.
“If they make it the law of the land, I don’t know if the state could surpass that or not,” he said.
There is a possibility should opposition to current laws arise, gun owners in the state could still see restrictions tightened.
“It’s just got to be challenged,” Farr said.
As a longtime firearm owner, Farr said it’s his opinion that “any person that has a good background that’s not a criminal, not a drunk, not a person with mental problems, if they want to like a driver’s license … they have the right to carry a gun.
“They should at least have the opportunity to carry it if they want to,” he said.
The Supreme Court’s decision does not affect the right to bear arms ultimately but does open the door to challenges on both sides to either ease or tighten restrictions.
Whether or not that actually happens remains to be seen.
The timeless argument of how to keep firearms out of the hands of those who do harm with them is one that will always be had, Farr said.
“They’re going to have them whether you’ve got them or not,” he said.