In response to multiple domestic terrorist attacks targeting military personnel, the Department of Defense just released new regulations authorizing concealed carry on military bases.
While concealed carry on military bases is now permitted, according to this new Defense Department directive, this does not mean that just anyone can carry a concealed firearm on a military installation. Specifically, the new policy will allow certain service members to apply for permission to carry a privately owned firearm “for personal protection not associated with the performance of official duties.”
According to the directive, military service members wanting to take advantage of this new policy permitting concealed carry on military bases must be at least 21 years old, meet all federal, state, and local laws, and receive permission from a commander with a minimum rank of O-5 (Lieutenant Colonel or Commander). Personnel will only be permitted to carry a personally owned firearm “when there is a general or specific threat of possible harm directed against them when that threat relates to the person’s official duties or status.”
Also, personnel who want to carry a privately owned firearm on a military installation must acknowledge “they may be personally liable for the injuries, death, and property damage proximately caused by negligence in connection with the possession or use of privately owned firearms that are not within the scope of their federal employment.” Furthermore, only applicants with a clean disciplinary record will be considered.
Finally, the new policy only authorizes concealed carry on military bases for up to 90-day increments, which may be extended if a specific threat exists to justify the need to carry a personally owned firearm.
The new regulations also give commanders authorization to permit personnel at recruiting stations and reserve centers to carry concealed firearms as well.
So, this new regulation is more akin to a “may issue” concealed carry law than a “shall issue” or a “constitutional carry” law. The new policy also does not recognize any state concealed carry permits.
While this new Defense Department directive regarding concealed carry on military bases does not go as far as some people hoped, it does still provide members of the military with some more tools protect themselves from domestic terrorist attacks and other threats.
What do you think? Does the new policy go far enough? Or should the Defense Department further loosen restrictions regarding concealed carry on military bases?