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Laws for Firearms: Best States for Gun Owners in 2013

by James Tarr   |  March 14th, 2013 383

These days, it’s becoming more difficult for gun owners across the country to find safe haven, as the powers that be on both federal and state levels begin introducing a quagmire of anti-gun legislation hindering the rights of law-abiding citizens. States like Illinois are notorious for their anti-gun agendas, while states like Texas are viewed as a sort of shooters’ paradise.

But just how true are those reputations? To provide you, dear reader, with a primer of gun-friendly regions of the United States, we’ve analyzed all 50 states—and Washington, D.C.—and ranked them to find out which are the most pro-gun based on laws for firearms.

States can score a maximum 10 points per category, with a perfect score of 50. Full disclosure, though: No state attained that perfect score, though two states came awfully close. As was expected, Washington, D.C., kicked off our list with a whopping zero points, and other anti-gun Meccas such as New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and California weren’t far behind. Topping our list of pro-gun states were Arizona, Vermont, Alaska, Utah and Kentucky. Click through the gallery below to see where your state ranked.

States were measured on gun rights/friendliness to gun owners by the following criteria:

  • CCW/Open Carry: Only states that don’t require a permit for concealed or open carry scored a perfect 10 in this category. Everybody else was judged accordingly.
  • MSRs: States with no restrictions on the kind, type or number of modern sporting rifles (ARs, AKs, etc.) that can be owned or purchased scored a 10 in this category.
  • Class 3/NFA: The majority of states allow their citizens to own Class 3/NFA-type firearms (machine guns, suppressors, short-barreled rifles, etc.), provided they follow the federal licensing standard, but not every state is yea or nay.
  • Castle Doctrine/Stand Your Ground: States’ scores were determined based on how strong their laws are regarding self-defense in and out of the home, and whether in the right you’re immune from civil prosecution.
  • Miscellaneous: How pro-gun the state culture is has a lot to do with scoring in this category. Scores are based on the percentage of gun owners in the state, if there are any restrictions on gun or ammunition purchases or magazine capacity, pending pro- or anti-gun legislation, CCW reciprocity, and any restrictions on guns that are not covered in the other categories.


 *Editor’s note: State-specific gun laws are a complicated, frustrating and fluid subject. We have consulted online sources such as the National Rifle Association, National Shooting Sports Foundation and state and law enforcement agencies to compile these rankings. Some states are very hazy on certain statutes, so our data reflects those confusions with general statements based on our understanding of the law. All information is current as of March 14, 2013. Also, for those readers who have expressed their displeasure with our gallery format,  click here for a text-only version.

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  • AmericanIcon

    As good as it is to be #1, it didn’t just happen: We’ve worked long and hard for the past 8 years to enable our citizens to exercise a right that predates the establishment of the nation, despite the reactionaries and hoplophobes moving in from less free states, and the pressure from ‘big money’ to change us.

  • A Rock

    Can I tell you how much I hate slideshows?

    • Ben O’Brien

      We actually did a test to see what was a quicker reader for this article, a straight text list or a gallery, and the gallery came out on top. Our gallery, without a page reload, is as fast as scrolling down the page and reading 51 entries.

      Another point to be made here, A Rock, we do not create galleries for any ad-related reasons. There’s less chance you interact with the ads in a gallery setting as there is if the ads are built into the page.

      Ben O
      Online Editor-in-Chief

      • Michael Bailey

        didn’t mean to reply to this space, ignore, sorry

      • Daniel Cygrymus

        That is nice and all, but a) it is better to give readers the choice of format, and b) it is not working.

        • Ben O’Brien


          There is a link above to the text version of the list. Is the gallery not working for you?

          • thephanatik

            The gallery doesn’t work for me either. What would be superbly useful is a map of the country with each state numbered.

          • Sidney Patin

            Yeah, that would have been good too, with a link to click on any state for the details.

          • Andy Leach

            not working for me either. not in chrome, OR in firefox, on two different computers.

            did your test involve only phone browsing and internet explorer or something?

          • Ian MacEwan

            It works for me in Firefox, so that’s not the issue. I don’t use IE.

          • Shirley Cieszka

            I’m running firefox and it was fine. I was more interested in the article and not in the technology choices for displaying it. Much easier than when you only had newsprint. ;)

          • Jim Mcnevin

            mine worked great in chrome.

          • Melissa LaTour

            works great for me on firefox

          • Jake Peavey

            Works great for me.

        • Neil22

          I’m using Chrome and it works fine, both gallery and text versions.

      • Jonathan Lynch

        I’m running IE and i didn’t have any issues ! Not happy where my state falls but ay least we’re not last !

      • Michael Wienold

        doesn’t work with chrome in Linux. I had to open opera just to get past the second slide.

      • vpustote

        Ben O’Brien… I am so glad that there are actually people out there that care about their viewers on their website. There are websites I actually exit because I am not going to reload a new page to see each top ten item, nor am I going to click “next” or “continue”.

        Although I would have preferred one whole page with everything listed, the content was organized well and it was still easy to access. Plus I also have the ability to scroll super fast with my track pad. With out that I can see how annoying page scrolling can be.

        Either way, great job. I appreciate people who take a second to think about the audience and how they will utilize their website. THANK YOU SO MUCH!

      • Sidney Patin

        I would have preferred a list of the states in order from best to worse, with a link on each state to see the details. As they say, a picture is worth 1,000 words. In any event, it was an interesting to see the comparisons. I still have to shake my head at the ones who fared as the worst states. They are all of the ones with the most crime and the most violent crimes, yet they legislate to keep people from being able to defend themselves.

      • Teddy Salad

        How about next time you list the lower 31 and slide the remaining (top) 20. No one cares about the rest of those states. They can go to H-E-double hockey sticks!

      • Robt.

        The “Gallery” was a terrific idea! My state only ranked at #20 and it showed me how far we have to go just to get to the #1 spot. I’ll keep pestering our congress to pass better and less restrictive laws. Thanks for the open forum and the great info!!

    • Texas Uncensored

      I agree with you, A Rock. I hoped to quickly scan a list. Not doing a slide show.

    • Norm Sauceman

      Don’t understand why A Rock…went by real fast when I flew through looking for the few states I was looking for and guess what??? NO ADS!!

    • Leon De Haan

      It was free to you so stop complaining.

    • Daniel Cygrymus

      Having an easily readable list was too difficult.

    • spatin

      Sure! Don’t hold back!

    • Rich Friedel

      Your from one of those States that rank 57 or is 56 can’t remember how many States Obummer said we have now! You would complain if you were hung with a new rope! BY the way G&A thanks for the information in this story.

    • Stephen Hoemke

      I agree with you. I looked for the text and then had to scroll through all 51 slides to see where the various states ranked. If I want to double check something I will have to scroll through all of them again. I HATE THIS!

      • dylanpolk

        There’s a link to a text-only version right under the gallery.

        Dylan Polk
        G&A Social Media Editor

  • mike2q

    Of all the places I’ve been I think Utah has to be the most gun friendly. It may not rank #1 based on laws on the books but I can tell you that even law enforcement has a friendly attitude toward guns. The term “gun” doesn’t encite crazy responses. It’s not a hobby of the crazy doomsday hermit, it’s an open and accepted hobby of normal educated people.

    Laws on the books are great but atmosphere to me is paramount.

  • Kenneth Kirkham

    Washington 40, Oregon 28? Really. They both suck but really?

    • AK812

      I agree, WA is actually pro gun in most of the state except where all the population is on the wet side. CCW permit is so easy to get, no mag capacity restrictions, no duty to inform LEO, not bad for a blue state. I thought it would place much higher even with it being a blue state.

      • Poodleguy

        I used to work in Spokane whilst living in Idaho & found it to be a gun friendly area. Washington also has a law on the books that prohibits any city, county or municipality from passing any law or ordinance concerning the restriction of firearms in any matter.

  • Dennis Smith

    Way to go ARIZONA!! My state came in 7th but I may still move to Arizona–Plus they have the best governor in the USA.

    • Michael Bailey

      Arizona does not require a CCW to carry concealed. The CCW is a remnant left on the books from before Constitutional Carry. You can get one, but the primary purpose is to allow reciprocity with other states that offer CCW. And you’re high if you think Brewer is the best governor in the country, but we can disagree on that and still work together to make a better gun-friendly environment in Arizona.

      There’s still a lot of work to do here. One positive is the 10th Amendment legislation working its way through the State Senate which will provide for arrest of Federal officers attempting to enforce Federal restrictions infringing the 2nd Amendment. It was held up for a while in Judiciary Committee by two Progressives, but the gun totin’ liberals in the state gave them an earful and it passed committee.

      From here out it should go through the Senate and end up on the Governor’s desk. Then we will see how good of a governor she really is. Arizonans, DO NOT REST!! Get on your Reps, Senators and Governor and push like hell to get this bill across the line. Thanks loads to the AZ Citizens Defense League. The AZ CDL has done more for gun rights in this state in five years than the NRA has done in 50.

      • Michael Bailey

        By the way, that bill number is AZ SB 1112 in the Senate.

        And anyone who cares about their right to keep and bear needs to join the AZ CDL:

        • Aaron Young

          AZ should have scored a perfect 50 pts.

          • Yuuzhan

            not until you can carry on school property when picking up your kids.

        • FredC1968

          I joined last month. AZCDL and JFPFO are my favorite pro-RKBA organizations.

          • FredC1968

            I meant JPFO- Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership.

          • FredC1968

            I meant JPFO- Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership.

          • Diamondback

            You should also support the Second Amendment Foundation out of Washington State.

            They’ve done more to advance 2A PROTECTED rights than any other including the NRA who have actually supported more infringements than anything else over the years and especially in the area of supporting “concealed carry permit” legislation around the country.

            The SAF was the driving force behind both the Heller and McDonald Supreme Court victories with the NRA hanging on to their coattails and, in my opinion, holding them back to some extent.

            I think every gun owner in America should send the SAF a minimum donation of $10.00. That’s approx a one lunch sacrifice and would allow them to carry more fights through the courts from more states.

            Please check them out.

          • FredC1968

            I agree.

          • rick0857

            I agree and have been saying for years that the NRA is one of THE BIGGEST ADVOCATES OF ANTI-GUN legislation in the Nation. They have had their hands in almost every democrat crafted piece of gun laws since the late 1960′s!
            The NRA stands up for hunters NOT GUN OWNERS!!!

      • Scott Worne

        Jan Brewer IS one of the best governors in this country. Arizona may be rated number one here, but Utah has them beat as far as allowing firearms on all school grounds with a permit. This is handy especially when picking up kids from school or visiting them in school. This way a firearm is not left in a car to be stolen and is on the person just in case of a school shooting.
        I recently moved back to Utah from the Phoenix area and do miss the Constitutional Carry that they have there which allows one to carry concealed or open with a round in the chamber. But the economiy in Utah is far better so moving back makes it worth it!

        • Marlene Blakeney

          How is Utah on protection from infringement of 2nd amendment and also on magazine capacities?

        • Travis Sallee

          Actually Scott you may be misinformed. Arizona does allow those holding a CCW to have their firearms in their vehicles on school grounds provided there is no round in the chamber and the magazine is out of the weapon. Most CCW instructors do not inform people of this or they themselves are not aware of it but as it stands that is the law.

          • TXgnnr

            If you are carrying a weapon with the magazine removed and no round in the chamber, you might as well carry a baseball bat. How many time have you practiced seating a magazine, racking a round and acquiring your target UNDER STRESS? I can pretty much guarantee you it will take you a lot longer than you may think, unless you practice, practice, practice. Otherwise, good going Utah and Arizona.

          • Yuuzhan

            especially if its left in your car.

          • Steve T

            I prefer to flick the safety off and fire. Cocked and locked is the only way, or like you said ,a bat may serve you better.

          • Yuuzhan

            thats kinda pointless Travis. That isnt a gun its a brick. Also in your car doesnt do a hell of alot of good does it?

          • Cody
        • Sidney Patin

          I like Nicki Haley too, and South Carolina is a freedom loving state.

        • Poodleguy

          I agree but we are working on it (arming teachers &/or private security on campii). I have spent a lot of time traveling thru & camping in Utah & would like it a lot better if there weren’t so darned many Patel’s running motels, Koreans running liquor stores & the weird liquor laws created by the LDS majority there!!

        • Diamondback

          Key word Americans have gotten used to: permit.

          The 2A IS a CARRY (or BEAR if you prefer) permit.

          We should demand NO OTHER “PERMIT” be required and that our 2A PROTECTED rights be the same throughout the land.

          Our rights DO NOT CHANGE just because we cross a state line.

          Shall not be infringed is NOT a confusing concept or hard to understand phrase.

          • Steve

            Unfortunately, there is the term “well regulated” in the 2A. To me, it means ‘trained and disciplined.’

            Anyway, in the days when the 2A was crafted, training and discipline was a foregone conclusion . . . kids were raised with guns, and learned how to use them as they grew up. Nowadays . . . AARRGGHH!!

          • Chris Flynn

            I get your sentiment, Steve. But the fact is, there was no Government official, Department, or Agency, local, State, or Federal, going around to properties and giving the citizens an “official” permit to do anything! They didn’t take little Georgy behind his daddy’s barn and make him demonstrate firearms safety OR proficiency. The Government, desperate to justify their rapid growth, started implementing these rules in the last 60 or so years. That’s why, in the 40′s, the Yamamoto supposedly warned about a rifle behind EVERY blade of American grass! The Government CAN NOT allow or deny RIGHTS that come from God! (The real God; not Obama) And the RIGHT to defend ones self is a RIGHT from God! With each provocation, the People become more and more sensitive to this fact! And the Government will find, as Yamamoto also allegedly lamented, “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”

          • Diamondback

            I PRAY you are correct Chris.

          • Yuuzhan

            that applies to a militia not gun ownership.

          • Diamondback

            And the RKBAs is NOT subject to militia service pursuant to Heller v. D.C.

          • XGovAnlst

            It is easy to find in many writings and documents of the day that the “militia” was considered every able-bodied male. It had nothing to do with a formal organization. Later in the Amendment it states “…the Right of the People…”.

          • Diamondback

            I would have no problem with a requirement that we take and pass an AFFORDABLE safety training program ONCE. I believe there should be exceptions though for anyone that served honorably in the military as all military get basic firearm training in Basic Training. Therefore an active military ID or certified copy of a DD214 (? I think that’s correct) should suffice.

            Kinda like the Hunter’s Training CERTIFICATE required to get a hunting permit. I don’t agree with hunting permits either. The wildlife does NOT belong to the government.

            But that is different than having to apply for a “permit” to exercise a constitutionally protected, fundamental, individual, CIVIL right.

          • Wuz nt Me

            A “right” is not a right if it has requirements, fees, and/or permits. A right is absolute. You can only set requirements for privileges.
            You contradict yourself. You said:
            “But that is different than having to apply for a “permit” to exercise a constitutionally protected, fundamental, individual, CIVIL right.”
            OK, so, we would have to have some way of proving that we had this education, right? So instead of calling it a “permit” we could call it a diploma, or a certificate?

            People act as if firearm safety is so difficult. If someone is dumb enough to do something dangerous with a gun then no amount of training is going to make a difference.

            Does Driver’s Ed. stop teenagers from causing accidents? What if you had to take Driver’s Ed. every year from first grade to college?

            Do you think it’s a secret that drunk driving is bad? Did drunk drivers that killed families just not get the memo?

            I DO, ABSOLUTELY agree with you that EVERYONE should have firearms training but, instead of invalidating our 2nd Amendment right by making it a requirement, why not teach it in schools? Why doesn’t the government (that is supposed to preserve our rights) offer free firearm education to anyone that wants it? Instead, after working 1/3rd of my day to pay taxes I have to pay a private organization (the NRA) to try like hell to cut through the bullshit and educate a child on gun safety (Eddy Eagle Program).

            I hope that didn’t sound too sarcastic or condescending or rude even. I just went on a rant. But, seriously follow your own logic ALL the way through to its conclusion and you will see what I mean.

          • Zach Buchheit

            I was raised to shoot and hunt from when I was 5 or 6. Most parents just shove their kids in front of a TV to keep them occupied

          • Wuz nt Me

            Yes, but the term “well regulated” describes the militia, not the individual.
            In the days when the 2A was crafted “well regulated” did mean trained and disciplined and also organized. We have the right to keep and bear arms so that we can form well regulated ,militias so that we may defend our communities, towns, cities and states. Unfortunately, even the people that cherish the Right to keep and bear arms have shirked their responsibility to keep and bear arms favoring instead to let the government “take care of us”.
            There should be no test or requirement to stand between an individual and his rights. A right requires no fee, no form, no test.

          • JonesValley Resist

            Clearly, the word Regulate was used to confirm regularity, to keep Regular. The meaning of this word has been severely manipulated. The same is true concerning Commerce, Regulation defined keeping commerce Rwgular. Today, the word has the opposite meaning, but no matter how much the government manipulates we the people’s freedoms, nothing can change the truth of our founding fathers intent.

          • FiremanGraham

            I agree that “well regulated” was the outcome of the people bearing ams, along with “well regulated” placement of ammunitions.

          • Brett Dent

            I constantly harp on about this too. The 2nd Amendment should be THE standard. There is no need for CCW permits or open carry laws. ANY of these laws infringe on an amendment that states clearly that it “shall not be infringed.”

          • Keystone Kid
          • Keystone Kid

            Well that was messed up. Forget it!

      • Poodleguy

        Apparently you are not living in Az, so where in the US do you reside? Of course we disagree as to whose governor is the best, due to homestate pride no doubt, but just for grins I want to know who your gov is. Btw: we still have the best & toughest Sheriff in America, good ol’ Sheriff Joe!!!!! Arizona also has the finest gun range to be found anywhere, the Ben Avery Range, where I started shooting in 1968!!

        • Michael Bailey

          I was born and raised in Arizona, I’ve lived here for 52 years. I remember when we had governors, mayors and congressmen carrying openly, even while on camera and in town halls. If you take offense to my remarks about Gov Brewer, look further and think critically. Remember One-Eye Jack, Sam Steiger, Barry Goldwater and mayors across the state that used to carry all the time. Think over the legislation you haven’t liked and remember the Governor has to sign those bills into law.

          • Cody

            Michael, You are a tack-driver.

        • Randy Scott

          I like Joe. He’s a fighter, he fights for his people. He protects the Public Trust

      • FredC1968

        I agree. AZCDL is a great organization.

      • Wuz nt Me

        CCW permit isn’t just a remnant, left over and waiting to fall off. It still offers a few benefits that we should already enjoy without a permit.
        - Without a CCW you cannot carry a firearm into any establishment that serves alcohol whether it’s posted or not. With a CCW you CAN carry in an establishment that serves alcohol unless it’s PROPERLY posted with a regulation sign within view of it’s liquor license. *and you cannot consume alcohol while carrying in that establishment.
        -Without a CCW you must pass an FBI background check each time you purchase a firearm. With a CCW you only have to fill out the paperwork and pay for your purchase.
        - As you mentioned, reciprocity. An AZ CCW affords you carry-rights in 34 other states.
        - Without a CCW you cannot carry in national parks within Arizona.

        Once we a allowed to do all those things without a permit then I would call the CCW permit a remnant.

    • Rich Friedel

      And one of the WORST US Senators. JMc

      • Poodleguy

        We know him here as John Wayne McStain. I am super conservative & will be glad when he is finally out of political office. Since I am 7 mos older I hope it is soon, whilst I am still alive to enjoy it!

        • durabo

          I live in North Phoenix, where he is known as Juan McRino.

    • Sidney Patin

      They also have Gaby Giffords and her husband who are doing their best to disarm everyone in the state.

      • durabo

        Giffords and her sleazy retired navy captain are from Tucson, Arizona’s foreign people’s republic, which is in Pima county, home of the disgraceful Sheriff Clarence Dupnik. We have tried to give Pima Co. to the Mexicans, but they won’t take it.

    • Poodleguy

      You got that right, Dennis!! Been here since 1967 & love it. By Comparison, I was raised & spent all of my school yrs in Illinois. Boy, am I glad I escaped!!!!

      • Randy Scott

        They closed the Indiana public shooting ranges to Illinois folks. They would fill up our ranges and the locals couldn’t even get in.

    • christopherbsd

      Unfortunately they also have the dis-honorable scumbag Senator John McCain. Arizonans must stop reelecting this traitor to the United States Senate or risk losing their Constitutional rights.

      • Randy Scott

        I get that, what happened to that guy? We got rid of Richard Lugar when he got goofy. I am thinking we need term limits on all politicians, period. No pensions

    • Jay_B_Siegel

      The problem in AZ is that if you want to eat in a restaurant that serves alcohol the vast majority are posted and you can’t carry there.

    • Yuuzhan

      they also have one of the worst senators. mccain.

  • Sherrill

    51 Slides?!?!?!? No way…

    • nate

      Sherrill D.C is not a state.

    • dylanpolk

      Sherrill, there’s a text-only version linked below the gallery, if you prefer.

      Dylan Polk
      G&A Social Media Editor

  • Matt Shermer

    That’s exactly the reason I’m moving to Arizona, Ohio ranking 35 is not too good considering the laws on the books that we have aren’t as bad as other states…

  • Rooster68

    Texas is a real surprise. Not the laws,they suck and most LEOs turn a blind eye to most of them for a sober law abiding citizen but 36% gun ownership? I don’t know anyone that does not own at least a pistol.

    • lpcustom69

      I have to agree. I don’t know anyone that doesn’t have at least one gun.

    • Lowell T. Leach Sr.

      nor i ,most own several ..i think they refer to the invaders from the south

    • Marine223

      YEP! Florida here, I pick my son up after school 4-5 days a week and have to leave the piece keeper home!Pi$$es me off

      • Poodleguy

        I was under the impression that Fla has a carry concealed law – is that not fact?

        • Marine223

          YES we do have CC ,but you can’t carry onto school property, any school, except possibly private or some college!

    • Jesse Tronier

      Well Texas is in the top most populated states, percentage wise they are very low, some of the lowest. But that 36% goes a long way with so many people. But that data is before the huge gun sales. I’m sure that 2012-2013 continue gun sale blow out insanity. All gun pro states have rocketed in percentage.

      I know here in Utah it is.

  • Terry Falknor

    I think Ohio has a 30 round mag limit.

    • WJH

      In Ohio. Its a little trickier than that haha.

      You can posses/buy any size magazine you want. You are only allowed to have 30 rounds in the magazine at a time. Unless you are at a range. So you cant open carry a Glock with a 33 round magazine fully loaded.

      It makes no sense.

  • Justin Schnepf

    Arizona resident here, Never going to leave this great state. #1!

    • EttaMae Williams Svider

      I agree Justin….I also live in Arizona..a wonderful state.

      • Marine223

        Except for those 2,200 Rattle Snakes Obie let go! Lock & Load!!!! Good spot to open a Gun Range! Ten Extra Points for anything headed North!

    • Adam Carra

      Same here Justin, got to love Arizona, last state to gain
      state hood in the lower 48 and the last bastions of the Wild West, besides that
      you don’t have to shovel snow.

      • Michael Bailey
      • Richard Rowe

        apparently u never heard of flagstaff .never had to shovel snow?

        • FredC1968

          Most of Arizona’s population lives south of the Mogollon Rim. My ex’s kid was born in Tucson and now lives in Phoenix. Most likely she will never get tasked with that chore.

          When I was a teenager, I briefly lived in Ft. Defiance, AZ. That was the only place in AZ where I shoveled snow. After serving as an infantryman and working in northern Nevada, I can say one thing. “I really dislike snow.”

          • Lara Noone

            The amount of snow I shoveled growing up in Flagstaff and Williams makes my back hurt just thinking about it. But it’s worth it not to be inside an oven or dancing on the sun-side surface of Mercury. If there was employment to be had anywhere in Northern Arizona, I’d move back in a heartbeat! On topic, as a kid growing up, I remember “Please check your firearm with the manager” signs on the Smitties. Now I live in The People’s Soviet Socialist Republic of Kalifornia where I’m not even allowed to take my unloaded firearm outside into my own yard! Oh – and I can’t own a “billy, sap, club, or baton”, guaranteeing I must use deadly force every time.

          • Poodleguy

            I too can recall the times that I would go up on the rim to go elk or deer hunting & stop @ Christopher Creed bar & check my sidearm behind the bar as well as the same for go-go joints in Phx. People were a lot nicer to one another here @ the time………then came the California Crud!!

        • Poodleguy

          Head 60 miles south & you are out of the snow! We that live in central Az have this thing where we can go visit the snow & then come home to the sunshine!! I really shouldn’t be posting this stuff, the damn’ Californicators will keep moving here!!!

      • Poodleguy

        This state (Az) was only 24 yrs old when I was born!!! We celebrated our Centennial on Valentine’s day (Feb 14) last yr. We are a state known for the nation’s coldest & the nation’s warmest days on the same day!! Go skiing then go home & jump in the pool. No hurricanes, no tornadoes of any consequence, no earthquakes, it just gets hot!!! Safest weather & living conditions in the US, thank you!!

    • Michael Bailey

  • Chris Dines

    Thank God I live in AZ !

  • J.B.

    My state ranked number 9. Good but we will do better. Super majority of Republicans in both houses. Helps to have people who aren’t suffering from a mental disorder like liberalism.

  • cwlf

    One thing that should be added to UT is that people can carry in all public schools in the state including Universities and K-12 (with a permit of course). UT is one of the few states that actually allow university students defend themselves.

  • WJH

    Ohio 35th. And I thought we had it pretty good!

  • Larry Jenkins

    Sorry, but your info is quite outdated and not accurate. Wyoming has had constitutional carry since last July. Open carry has always been legal. Rankings are great, but only meaningful if accurate data is used.

    • James Massman

      Agreed! Oklahoma went Open Carry November 1st, 2012, yet that fact doesn’t show up here.

      • NymRod

        True, I was surprised to see Oklahoma ranked so low as it does have open carry while Texas does not at this particular time and is ranked number 15.
        If Texas HB 700 is passed into law soon then open carry will be legal in Texas as well.

      • Matsuian

        VERY very AWESOME!

        That makes a total of FIVE states with Constitutional carry?

        Only 45 left to go!

      • Guest

        OK also has the stand your ground law as well

      • h87111

        Ditto, New Mexico is also an open carry state. Plus, you can carry loaded anywhere in your vehicle.

    • Matsuian

      VERY awesome!

      That made four states right?

  • Bob W

    Besides the tedium of the slide show, I think there should have been a category (unless it was part of ‘miscellaneous’ but not mentioned) indicating how a state honors the CCW issued from other states. This is an important consideration when traveling through states that one does not live in.

  • libsuk

    Makes no sense to me. Wyomings gun laws and Arizonas are the same in fact Wyomings are even a little better.

  • John Corey Wentling

    CORRECTION: In Arizona there is no duty to inform a law enforcement that one is carrying concealed UNLESS asked. If law enforcement does not ask, it’s not required for one to inform them that one has a concealed weapon on their person or within their reach.

    • wminaz

      My brother in law was a police chief. He said that if an officer wants to see your gun to politely decline so that the serial number will not be associated with your name. I haven’t been stopped while armed so I don’t have any personal experience with this. Here in AZ I kid around and say our gun law is “This page intentionally left blank”

    • Ben O’Brien

      This has been changed.

      Ben O’Brien

      Online Editor-in-Chief

      • Poodleguy

        Okay Ben, can you cite me law to that effect you claim?? If so, please do. Btw: I am an Arizonan, former military & a hunter, shooter for most of my 77 yrs.

  • Byron L. McLean

    There is an error with respect to Class 3 gun ownership in Washington State. RCW 9.41.190 prohibits the buying, selling, ownership, and possession of machine guns, AOWs, etc. However, if a valid transfer of such Class 3 guns occurred prior to July 1, 1994, it is a complete defense to prosecution (basically a grandfather clause). Of course, active duty military and law enforcement are exempt.

  • I_loathe_disqus

    My state is number 9! We’re in the top 10! I wish MO was number one, but ….

    I got so sick of the Chicken Little BS posts on Conservative/Libertarian/Gun Rights sites, proclaiming “Missouri is about to pass the most restrictive gun confiscation law in the USA OMG !!!!!1111!!” when as this slideshow perfectly states , that bill (which isn’t even in committee and may never be) was nothing but political grandstanding for the St Louis mob, going nowhere in the Missouri legislature, with its Republican super majority.

    Meanwhile, our Second Amendment Preservation Act got over 60 co sponsors, and has progressed nicely through our house and senate…Strange how the same Chicken Little’s who made a big deal about the St Louis confiscation act with its 4, count ‘em, FOUR co sponsors never even mention the SAPA.

    The whole thing shows how stupid it is too get *TOO* upset over the prevailing gloom ‘n’ doom sentiments we see on practically every thread on practically every C/L/GR sites. The posters posting nonsense about MO heard about one bill going nowhere, managed to persuade themselves not just that it had a ghost of a chance passing but that it already HAD become law (seriously, some of those posts I saw stated that the bill was PASSED in MO, not just proposed) and so posted panicked nonsense.

    If posters could get one bill in one state wrong…What ELSE is getting absurdly overblown online? What else is being garbled from (eg) one senator saying something stupid in an offhand manner, into a stated US policy under BHO? Ditto one UN minor official, or one EU bureaucrat?

    I don’t favor an absurd optimism-things ARE bad under the BHO Regime, I do not deny this-but again: If one bill in MO that has an exceeding small chance of getting out of committee (assuming it ever gets into it) much less of passing could be garbled into an actual change in MO’s laws…What else, nationally or internationally, is getting garbled and absurdly overblown in online newsites?

    Trust but verify, that’s all I’m saying, as too much gloom leads to despair and just giving up.

    (And Texas posters : You’re at number 15. Not even in the top 10. Could you Puh-LEESE stop with the faux-folksy self-congratulatory BS on practically every gun thread, inviting the rest of us to “come on down” to Texas, where gun rights will never be restricted? Have you looked at your demographics lately? Are you aware that pollsters have found that as a group Latinos favor strict restrictions on the Second Amendment (if not outright repeal) by over 65% ? Think that’s NOT going to affect the kind of politicians being elected in Texas, if it has not already done so? The attitude that rights come, not from a Creator, not even from the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, but rather from the government (civil rights as opposed to natural rights) and hence government is free to restrict or rescind those rights whenever it pleases, is strong in Latinos as a group, just as it is with blacks and white liberals (and an increasing percentage of white moderates and apoliticals). And that IS something to panic over , I fear….)

  • FLCommonSense

    I don’t know why FL is 12 but, if it is mostly due to not having Open Carry, I prefer Castle Doctrine and Stand Your Ground to OC. OC has been shot down twice now by Sherriffs in our state including mine in Hillsborough County (Tampa). Congratulations to my original homestate of Arizona.

    • Steve Thomas

      If I had the opportunity, I would prefer legalized open carry but I would only carry concealed. I would prefer to surprise a criminal if the need arose.

    • Jess James

      The previous punk sheriff didn’t get re elected for threatening to have his deputies to throw down on people that were legally carrying.

    • Michael

      I prefer deterrence and not having to worry about “surprise”, Steve. I’m not a Tactical Ninja, and I’d rather the thug see my firearm and walk away to an unarmed victim and leave me alone, which happens all the time for OC’ers. CC’ers look just like any other disarmed victim. No offense, carry as you wish, but the notion of “element of surprise” sounds a bit Paul Blarton Mall Cop to me. Avoiding having to draw should be the goal, not looking for a cool way to sweep in like Superman and save the day because there was no deterrence that prevented the crime in the first place.

      As to the ranking, it’s silly. Ohio 35? So, Ohio has unlicensed open carry, a culture that is fine with it (I OC daily in central Ohio), we have Shall Issue CHL, we have full state pre-emption (no local laws can override our right to carry), we have our own Castle Doctrine that even extends to our vehicles, we can and do buy silencers and machine guns without an issue (outside of Federal law which applies to everybody), we don’t have permits to buy anything, no waiting periods, a vibrant gun community, and somehow Alabama, number 7 on the list, who is May Issue, no state pre-emption, gets a better rating and is in fact rated only just below Wyoming?!? Good gravy, who compiled this list anyway, and were they using standards that were unlisted here? Geesh.

      • BluesStringer1955 .

        Agree totally with your rationale for OC, but on AL’s laws, you are completely mistaken on both the issues you specifically attribute to our Code. G&A says we’re (AL) a “May Issue” state, but as of August of this year we are fully “Shall Issue.” In fact, EVERYTHING you list above as applying to Ohio, applies here, and only the Shall Issue thing is a recent change. Our preemption law is as strong as any in the nation and always has been since 1901. Our Castle Doctrine/SYG laws are likewise umm….bullet-proof, and they both extend to our vehicles. Those laws are at least five years old.

        We actually should be given back two of the three points that the rankings took from us. One for being Shall Issue and the other for the bogus claim that “Open carry is legal with *some exceptions*.” Even before our new law went into effect, there were no statutory exceptions to OC. In fact, there were relatively few counties/cities where LE stretched its authority to hassle OC’ers, but they did (and sometimes used) have discretion in that regard. The new law eliminates that discretion.

        We should definitely rank higher than WY (if the scores are accurate, which AL’s example admittedly calls into question) because we have a strong Castle Doctrine/SYG law. WY gets a 3-point deduction for that, but gets 10 points for CC/OC. Is WY a Constitutional Carry state? If not (which I don’t think they are), they should have a “9″ in the CC/OC category, giving them a 46 overall rating, and we should have a “9″ in the same category, giving us a 49 overall rating.

  • Jay Leonard

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…….MASSACHUSETTS SUCKS!!!!

    • Marine223

      Bas-turd Chusetts!

      • FredC1968

        Damn Massholes.

    • Shirley Cieszka

      I moved out of that state as soon as I was old enough. Unfortunately too many liberals left VT, MA and ME and moved to my state (NH). They are destroying it. So far they haven’t succeeded in banning guns (though tried). One MA transplant tried to have our license plate motto changed (Live Free or Die).. too violent (lib moron)

      • FredC1968

        Moving to another state than attempting to change the motto seem to be the actions of a Masshole.

    • disqus_go1wp1TJHg

      Back in the dark ages, when I was a kid, Mass was a nice place to live. I don’t recognize her now.

  • Mark Donka

    We in VT are #2 but we try harder. I am proud to live in this State,people believe in Constitutional Rights. But we must always remain vigilant for some of our mis guided representatives. That is why I am running for Congress again in 2014. I will never vote for any increased gun control. Let enforce the laws we have not make more to not enforce.

    • Greyhoundsailor

      VT should have been #1, since you only have to be 16 to carry concealed, while one must be 21 in AZ.

      • Scott Worne

        Vermont is still ran by liberals so it could never be number one.

        • FredC1968

          Not all liberals are anti-gun, and not all Arizonians are pro-RKBA.

    • Poodleguy

      I have a hard time conflating Vt’s good gun laws with the extremely liberal muck that permeates your elected officials. Hmmmmmmm.

  • roberted

    I was surprised Arkansas was as low as 31st, however, that is probably due to the Democrat controlled Congress we finally, in 2102, got rid of. We do still have a Democrat governor, I hope we will be correcting that problem at the next election for governor.

    New pro-gun legislation has been voted in by the current session of Arkansas’ State legislative body. Maybe we will move up in gun friendliness.

  • Wingnut

    I’m not sure I understand WA’s low ranking. I’m a concealed carrier here, and other than reciprocity with surrounding states, have few complaints. The blurb about carrying in a vehicle may be worded clumsily, but is quite similar to many states ranked much higher and is seemingly the focus on why the low ranking.
    WA has a great gun culture as well, at least anywhere outside of Seattle. Being military and having traveled a lot, it is also the easiest state to obtain NFA items that I’ve been to, and they are readily available. And Oregon ranked 28. These few things raised my eyebrows to the subjectivity and a little lack of continuity in this list. But it is somewhat informative.

  • MekongDelta69

    We’re in the 50th ranked state (no surprise). I don’t have CCW, but even going through the process of getting a handgun for the house to protect my family was a long process. However, it did help that I knew the Chief of Police in my town b/c we had both served in Vietnam.

    But soon, it won’t matter what happens in this rotting state, b/c we’re moving down South to be near family and where we’re going is ranked waaaaaaaaay higher than where we are now.

    (But then again, it’s probably easier to own a gun in North Vietnam or North Korea than here! /sarc)

  • Wee Zlbaj

    NEVER click through a slide show. If no one used them, they’d stopped putting them up.

    I’ll tell you what G&A overlooked to cause Tennessee to rank so low (23rd).

    1. Yes, Tennessee is a Shall-Issue state, but it issues a “Handgun Carry Permit,” not a CCW permit. Concealment is not required and open carry is legal. It has a “Safe Harbor” statute protecting shooters from weapons charges if they’re carrying without a permit but use their firearm in self-defense with justification. That might not entitle it to a “10″ but it should be at least a 9 1/2.

    2. Full marks. No prohibited weapons.

    3. Full marks plus. All NFAs are legal to buy and own. Most CLEOs are noted for being open to signing your Form 4. You may not hunt with a fully-automatic weapon in Tennessee but an SBR or suppressed weapon is just another gun, and hunting with either _is_ legal.

    4. Full marks plus. Tennessee’s Castle Doctrine specifically extends to your automobile and your place of business and provides the victim is immunity from possible civil litigation for injuring the attacker. In the confines of your home and property, you may go as armed as you please, concealed or otherwise, regardless of permit status. If you want, you can put a machinegun pillbox on your front lawn.

    5. Tennessee is steeped in Gun Culture. It was the birthplace of Jonathan Browning (father of John Moses Browning and a noted gunsmith and inventor in his own right), Colonel David Crockett, Sergeant Alvin C. York and Ronnie Barrett. One of the University of Tennessee’s football mascots dresses as David Crockett and carries a flintlock rifle. Tennessee’s Wildlife Resource Agency operates open-to-the-public gun ranges throughout the state. Tennessee has passed its own Firearms Freedom Act, something only seven other states can claim. And hunting is a right guaranteed by the Tennessee Constitution.

    All of which leads me to conclude G&A’s criteria were not sufficiently comprehensive to truly assess which states are the most “gun-friendly,” else Tennessee surely should have least have been ranked in the top 10.

    • Jess James

      I agree with you regarding TN. I like the rifle and shotgun rule as well when one has a license. The only thing I don’t like is the force of law behind the no firearms in businesses signs.

    • Ben O’Brien

      We actually did a test to see what was a quicker reader for this article, a
      straight text list or a gallery, and the gallery came out on top. Our
      gallery, without a page reload, is as fast as scrolling down the page
      and reading 51 entries.

      Another point to be made here, we do not create galleries for
      any ad-related reasons. There’s less chance you interact with the ads
      in a gallery setting as there is if the ads are built into the page.

      Ben O
      Online Editor-in-Chief

  • Dan

    TEXAS…… # 15. I thought we’d be a bit higher than that. But proud we are close to the top.

  • Matsuian

    I don’t get why Alaska gets third place with a 48 when the reason
    stated, “Alaska has no specific Castle Doctrine law, which is the only
    reason it didn’t score a perfect 50″; is exactly the same reason stated
    that Vermont didn’t get a perfect 50.

    Yet Vermont got a 49 for the same reason that Alaska got a 48?

    LOL! OK

    I’m very happy that Arizona has joined Vermont and Alaska in observing “Constitutional Carry” open/concealed carry!

    I hope more states will join us! heck I HOPE all states will join us, but I’m not going to take that one to the bank just yet.


    God Bless America!

    E Pluribus Unum!

    • Calvinius

      Not to mention that by that logic, Arizona should’ve gotten a perfect 50. For some reason, they got a 9 instead of 10 on the concealed & open carry category, despite having the same “no permit required” standard as Alaska and Vermont.

    • AK812

      Also the Stand your Ground law recently passed. I agree it should have held higher.

  • Guest

    My state ranked # 11 However I think Florida is a gun friendly state. We are a stand your ground state and the forefather of the CCW. We would have ranked higher but you can only open carry while during hunting and fishing and only 25% of are gun owners.

    • Marine223

      OR on your own property!

    • dylanpolk

      I would say any state ranked in the top third makes it pretty gun friendly—much friendlier than those in the bottom third, at least.

      Dylan Polk
      G&A Social Media Editor


    These rankings are very arbitrary, subjective, and inaccurate. I am a cerified CCW instructor and resident of both North and South Dakota, and I maintain that both states should rank much higher than many states ranked above us.

  • Peggy Ebbitt

    My state is #1. Can’t do much better than a score of 49!

  • Marine223

    You’all see that ad at the top?Bring enough gun, M1A, 500 yards 18″ black, WITH Peep Sights! We trained with them at Edson Range Camp Pendleton!!

  • Marine223

    HA! Figures DC 51, Illi-noise 40 something here but # 1 in murder!

  • Calvinius

    A new bill was just introduced in the Missouri state legislature that
    would send lawmakers who introduce anti-gun legislation to prison

    And you’re citing that as a positive? That’s exactly the kind of thing that pro-gun forces should never do, because it makes us look crazy by association.

  • USSA

    Wheres the f’in list? Im not clicking a next button 50 times just so they can have more ad views.. stupidity.

    • Drewbie84

      I had the same problem. You can click “Text only version” to get around the stupid ad-soliciting slideshow.

  • William Mdcannold Jr.

    Hurrah for MO – #9 at the top. we’re working our B/guns off during this legislative session to both improve our second Amendment liberty and to cement it in place!

  • Paul Pawlowski

    the slide show is broke

    • dylanpolk

      Seems to be working fine on our end. What browser are you running?

      Dylan Polk
      G&A Social Media Editor

  • Carry TheTruth

    While Idaho does not have a “Castle Doctrine”, the low “ranking” of 2 is only because you read the word “ranking” without the “n”. That is, yer raking Idaho over the Castle Doctrine coals unfairly, kinda.

    I know Idaho Code §19-202A deserves better than a “2″ rating. More like a 6 or 7.

    HOWEVER, Idaho (more specifically, the 2013 Legislators) needs to have a rating of 0 (ZERO) on Open/Conceal Carry for purposely, and with malice, ignoring some 2,000 law-abiding citizen residents who have hand-signed a petition for Constitutional Carry (no permit for CC or OC).

    So, back to that raking Idaho over the coals … you (Guns & Ammo) are forgiven for doing such; you’re really not the ones to have blame laid at your feet.

    HOWEVER, Idaho Legislators, you (collectively, and some personally) have been seemingly raking we, your constituents, Idaho’s law-abiding citizen residents, over the coals this 2013 Legislative Session.

    You have only 2 weeks left (in this Session, when it is slated to conclude) to seek forgiveness from we, your constituents, Idaho’s law-abiding citizen residents, by at least presenting the Constitutional Carry bill (on Facebook, Idaho Second Amendment Alliance; for the record, I do “Like” this page and do volunteer work/stuff for them) for consideration.

    This, especially, Idaho Legislators, since you created a law making a 4″ knife not a concealed weapon simply because a son of a Representative was arrested & charged with misdemeanor conceal carry.

    That, and you won’t repeal a 110 year-old law, written at a time when such laws were wholly designed to discriminate against Black Americans (a link to the article “The Ugly Truth Behind Conceal Carry Laws” is found on the above noted Facebook page), that being Idaho Code §18-3302(12)(a) and (e), granting “officials of a county, city, or state of Idaho” (of which an “official” is anyone “appointed, hired, or elected”; thus making nearly 30,000 Idaho “public servants” [and, perhaps, *every* public servant of any county or city in the U.S.]), exempt from the conceal carry law.

    Thank you, Idaho Legislators, for making us law-abiding citizen residents have to get a background check, pay up to $60, then wait up to 90 days to get our CC permit while you are not required to do this in the least. Nay, our state law [Idaho §18-3302(12)(a)] immediately and with a de-facto standard declares we law-abiding citizen residents as criminals guilty with little or no chance to prove our innocence should we CC without a permit, yet you (collectively and individually) are declared “innocent” from the get-go.

    Either that, Idaho Legislators, or do share with we law-abiding citizen residents what it is like being in such a Constitutionally-elitest group.

    Life is Precious.

  • Laura Doty

    Arizona ROCKS!!!! Living in the mountains is the best and the gun laws are for honest Americans.

  • Jess James

    G&A don’t know as much about Florida as they THINK!. The only real ding we should get is on open carry. The rest of the country didn’t know what “shall issue” was until Marion Hammer showed them. We also gave the model for the Castle Doctrine. They are also misguided if they think only 25% of Floridians have guns. They must have polled the NY liberal snow birds. We can conceal carry with a license anything we can conceal including steel tomahawks, swords etc. The fact that “may issue Alabama” is higher than FL and TX makes the whole damn thing suspect.

  • Jess James

    We only have to inform in Florida if asked. Plus, our information is private and it doesn’t show up with DL or license plate information.

  • chadbag

    Dear Guns and Ammo: What is an assault weapon? Please use the English language, and not the contrived language of the “antis”. If you have to use the words “assault weapon, put “so-called” with it and put “assault weapon” in quotes, like so: ‘so-called “assault weapons”‘ to show your disagreement with the made up term.

  • Carry TheTruth

    While Idaho does not have a “Castle Doctrine”, the low “ranking” of 2 is only because you read the word “ranking” without the “n”. That is, yer raking Idaho over the Castle Doctrine coals unfairly, kinda.

    It should be reasonable to conclude Idaho Code §19-202A deserves better than a “2″ rating. More like a 6 or 7.

    HOWEVER, Idaho (more specifically, the 2013) Legislators needs to have a rating of 0 (ZERO) on Open/Conceal Carry for seemingly purposely ignoring some 2,000 law-abiding citizen residents who have hand-signed a petition for Constitutional Carry (no permit for CC or OC).

    So, back to that raking Idaho over the coals … you (Guns & Ammo) are forgiven for doing such, only because your ratings are based solely on state and federal unconstitutional laws which you have no direct control over.

    HOWEVER, Idaho Legislators, who have direct control over our state unconstitutional laws, have been seemingly raking we, your constituents, Idaho’s law-abiding citizen residents, over the coals this 2013 Legislative Session.

    You have only 2 weeks left (in this Session, when you’ve sated it is to conclude) to seek forgiveness from we, your Idaho’s law-abiding citizen resident constituents, by at least presenting the Constitutional Carry bill ( for consideration.

    This, especially, Idaho Legislators, since you created a law this year making a 4″ knife not a concealed weapon only hafted the son of a Representative was arrested & charged with misdemeanor conceal carry. “Taking care of your own” is not that of a SINGLE person, he being the son of one among your circle, who has been impacted by law but of “taking care of your own *CONSTITUENTS* who, among them, include some 2000 law-abiding citizen residents having hand-signed a petition for Constitutional Carry.

    That, and you won’t repeal a 110 year-old law, written at a time when such laws were wholly designed to discriminate against Black Americans (see “The Ugly Truth Behind Concealed Carry Laws ” at

    That law is Idaho Code §18-3302(12)(a) and (e), granting “officials of a county, city, or state of Idaho” (of which an “official” is anyone “appointed, hired, or elected”; thus making nearly 30,000 Idaho “public servants” [and, perhaps, *every* public servant of any county or city in the U.S.]), exempt from the conceal carry law.

    Thank you, Idaho Legislators, for making us law-abiding citizen residents have to get a background check, pay up to $60, then wait up to 90 days to get our CC permit while you are not required to do this in the least.

    Nay, our state law [Idaho §18-3302(12)(a)] immediately and with a de-facto standard declares we law-abiding citizen residents as criminals guilty with little or no chance to prove our innocence should we CC without a permit YET only doing such toward that of “DEFENDING LIFE” and “SECURING SAFETY”, both state-constitutional rights in Idaho’s Constitution, Article I, Section 1, yet you (collectively & individually) are declared “innocent” from the get-go.

    Idaho Legislators, either “share” your unwarranted and unconstitutional conceal carry exemption with the rest of Idaho’s law-abiding citizen residents or, in the least, do “share” with we law-abiding citizen residents what it is like being in such an “above the law, nay, constitution” elitest group.

    Life is Precious.

  • Richard Woodworth

    I’m glad my state of Georgia is at least in the top 13 for gun friendliness. I don’t have my CCW yet but have bought five guns in the last two and a half years with no problems, I moved to Georgia 34 years ago. I would not have moved here by choice but did under duress, (another story) because of the
    “Good ‘Ol Boy” politics. But now it is more of a rational state to live
    in politically, and it’s natural beauty and easy-going lifestyle are wonderful, and I must mention the wonderful seasons without devastating weather extremes. The gun ranges north of Atlanta are all really fine and affordable as well.
    Think ‘Tom Price’ Fed House (R). and ‘John Albers’ State Sen (R) whom both live not to far from me and are both champions for our cause.

  • Mak-Attack

    Where does G&A get their info?? There is def one thing tht is very suppressive,&thts mis-information. Maine,my state, ranked 29th. We have the castle doctrine &also “no back down.” -what they wrote is ridiculous. Where do they get this info?? I’ve had more than one cop in Maine say to me,’if u shoot them outside your door,make sure you drag them over the threshold.’ We also have open carry & shall issue. &I know more than 40% own guns here. How many others of you out there have found glaring indescrepancies with wht was said abt your state??

  • tookewldaddio:


  • john

    Vermont doesn’t allow you to own silencers, and Stand Your Ground/Castle isn’t on the books, but is generally ruled in favor of.

  • RON


  • j. b

    The author might want to check his facts a little better. This is some pretty shoddy research work. :(

    • dylanpolk

      Sorry you feel that way. Can you point to an example?

      Dylan Polk
      G&A Social Media Editor

      • Blue Haven Guns

        How about the fact that Utah, ranked 4th, doesn’t allow open carry of a loaded gun without a permit, and quite a few states ranked worse do allow unlicensed open carry. Texas also has no open carry, yet it’s ranked 15th above many others that do.

  • Vance Campbell

    I don’t think that they did their homework on Louisiana. We have a good open carry law, I don’t know anyone who has been turned down for CCW, our castle doctrine is solid and extends to your vehicle, and I promise 44% ownership rate is incredibly low. We came in 17 but were behind Texas where you can’t open carry and only 33% ownership?

  • BenjiMac

    I don’t know why Virginia is ranked significantly lower (higher number) than at least two states that do not allow open carry. Virginia is shall-issue with concealed carry, and does not require a license for purchase or for open carry. The explanatory breakdown might be published somewhere, but is not obvious.
    Besides carry without a license, another reason for open carry is that if somebody spots an intended/legal concealed gun there is no violation of the law, unlike Texas where concealed carriers often become unintentional lawbreakers.

  • Jack

    Looking at your criteria, SC has a “no duty to retreat” and some of the best castle doctrine laws in the nation. I am glad that 42% of my fellow residents own guns.

  • Roger

    I was really surprised that North Carolina came in ahead of Virginia. I’ve lived in both states, and Virginia is far more gun friendly. For example, you can open carry in Virginia – it’s legal in NC, but if you try it you’ll probably soon be talking to a cop in most parts of the state. Then, too, Virginia does not require a pistol purchase permit, easy to get in most NC counties but inconvenient nonetheless. I also lived in Michigan just a few years ago, and I’d say NC is pretty close to Michigan and should be rated about the same, maybe a little lower as Michigan recently did away with their pistol purchase permit requirement that was similar to NC’s. No offense to North Carolinians – I grew up there and love the state, just think it’s a shade too blue when it comes to guns. Then again, we were the last state to secede in 1861!

  • Paul L Fisher

    Wisconsin 25th? Not sure why. Open carry with no permit, permit requirements for concealed carry are very lenient, we CAN own machine guns, we can carry in churches unlike GA or MO (without permission), we can carry inside the state Capitol.

  • John Thompson

    G&A is wrong about WI. We CAN own full autos here. There is no “state of flux” about SBR’s and suppressors. If anything, we are one of the better NFA states. Also, the “no carry on buses” is not a statewide thing, it’s local, only in the liberal cities…never mind that the gangbangers probably carry everywhere anyway.

    • dylanpolk

      “State of flux” is the NRA-ILA’s words, not ours. Also, the NRA-ILA had this to say about machine guns: “State law provides exceptions to the general ban on possession of a machine gun and those include, for use in a scientific purpose; the possession of a machine gun not usable as a weapon and possessed as a curiosity, ornament or keepsake; or the possession of a machine gun other than one adapted to use pistol cartridges for a purpose manifestly not aggressive or offensive.”

      Hope this clears things up.

      Dylan Polk
      G&A Social Media Editor

      • Tony Milio

        NRA-ILA is wrong. Period. It’s true that the state laws specifically prohibit “machine guns”, “silencers”, and SBRs, except for allowances in certain cases. And those cases include if the individual gets the standard ATF NFA approval, which would be required anyway. So really it’s not state restricted. The NRA is just making political hay where there is none.

        WI has also been an open-carry state forever, and even the Democrat governors cited this as a strength of our gun laws as a rationale for why they didn’t feel the need to pass concealed carry. The only “uphill battle” Governor Walker has done regarding gun laws is to pass concealed carry and that was a slam-dunk since the legislature had passed it prior to his term. And the NRA actually sued Walker for wanting people to take a class for a concealed carry permit. (I personally support classes, but then I’m averse to irresponsible ignorance and where I work we teach youth firearm safety.)

  • Gatnos

    Tennessee got a bad rap. Carry permits in this state provide for open or concealed carry, a fact apparently not considered by the perosn putting this together.

  • Proud Louisianian

    Louisiana should be MUCH higher, if not number 1 after the citizens voted for Amendment 2 in last years election. It gave Louisiana the strongest protection against future gun control in the entire nation. 73% of Louisianians voted for it.

    It opens the door for concealed carry without a permit and many other benefits.

    FAIL on these rankings!!

  • Jesse Tronier

    I live in Utah, great state. But Arizona I knew has always been the better gun state.

  • Neumainer

    Maine should have ranked higher, IMO. There are good reasons for the restrictions on carrying in vehicles here – there is still a problem with people doing “Rolling” hunting out the car windows which is extremely unsafe, in addition to being illegal. I’d prefer to see stats on gun ownership per household instead of per person, as well as number of guns owned per household.

  • Randall Perry

    To clarify: Indiana is an Open or Conceal carry (the permit is License to Carry Handgun and goes either way). There are no training requirements and little waiting to issue the permits. Indiana Code _does_ allow carry on school property (if you are dropping off kids or picking up)…or if the school board declares you to be ‘security’ (could be parent, teacher, janitor).
    Thanks for the graphic!
    (Certified NRA Firearms Instructor)

  • Kenneth Marcum

    Just a note.
    Indiana is not a traditional “Open Carry” state, BUT – With an
    Indiana permit, Open Carry IS legal for residence in Indiana. Even so, it’s
    very rare to see citizens open carry here. Example of proof; armed security officers
    carry openly in Indiana. Security companies require no special permits from the state to have their guards carry standard law enforcement type duty weapons.
    The only requirement is that the officer/guard himself must have a valid
    personal protection permit. I am an ex-police officer and an ex-security company owner within the state of Indiana.

  • Richard Godin

    God bless Arizona, AT and its good people !

  • Norm Sauceman

    Can’t believe Vermont is number 2…Tennessee needs to get closer to number 1…

  • Drewbie84

    Little known Ohio law: ownership of high-capacity(30+ rounds) magazines is legal, as is ownership of guns that use them, but if you insert a high-capacity magazine into a firearm, you’re breaking the law.

    • WJH

      It has to be loaded past 30 rounds to be illegal. Ranges dont apply.

      Its a retarded law

  • Guest

    Thanks for the slide show. I was great. Thank you for the time that it took to inform the public of where there state stands. I was shocked to see Michigan at 33rd. I thought we were better then that.

  • Leon De Haan

    Thanks for the slide show and all the time it took to informed the public about where their state stands. I was shocked to see Michigan at 33rd. But again we have been under an liberal leadership for years. I did expect a better rating. Maybe it is time to move or to change things.

  • Awelowynt

    You missed something for IL. SBRs are now allowed in IL on a limited basis. If you are a historical reenactor or have a C&R, you can jump through the NFA hoops for an SBR.

  • Steve Jasper

    SBR’s are legal in Illinois as of January 1st, 2013. All you need is a C&R FFL.

  • Herb Brown

    OKlahoma gets dinged on NFA? That’s funny I’m currently waiting on another stamp to add to my collection..Did we get credit for Open Carry?

  • EricsBizTweets

    Magpul should come to North or South Carolina

  • Trooper357

    Sorry, your entry for Minnesota contains a fairly significant error. We
    do NOT have Castle Doctrine here. Our legislature passed a bill last
    summer instituting Castle Doctrine and also prohibiting the government
    from confiscating guns during any emergengy (such as that jerk Ray Nagin
    did in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina). However, our moronic
    governor, Mark Dayton, vetoed it. I guess the State Police officers
    surrounding him at all times are all the protection anyone here in
    Minnesota needs. What an idiot!

  • Vhyrus

    This list is pretty crap. As a former resident of New Mexico and a current resident of South Carolina I can tell you that NM is way better about guns than SC.

  • John

    You left out a few great things about Wyoming. Like they passed a right to carry concealed law without a permit a few years ago. You don’t have to announce to law enforcement. And they actually do have some castle doctrine laws, they are working to strengthen them. Either way having lived in both Utah and Wyoming, I know Wyoming beats Utah for being a gun friendly state and you ranked them higher? Need a little more research next time, and get rid of the slide show.

    • dylanpolk

      There’s a link to a text-only version right below the slideshow.

      Dylan Polk
      G&A Social Media Editor

  • Paul Poole

    Excellent info. I was saddened to see my state at number 30. Will have to move to Montana or Wyoming…..always liked those states better anyway.

  • Kevin Davis

    very proud of my great state of KY. :)

  • WJH

    Something that wasnt included that should is state preemption

    That matters a lot

  • Joshua

    There is a mistake in the article. The “Castle Law” in California is something different than other states. It creates a legal presumption that an intruder in your home presents a threat to the level justifying deadly force.

    A defendant is not required to retreat. He or she is entitled to stand
    his or her ground and defend himself or herself and, if reasonably
    necessary, to pursue an assailant until the danger of (death/great
    bodily injury/ )
    has passed. This is so even if safety could have been achieved by
    retreating.- CA jury instruction on justifiable homicide. (Cf. Calcrim Jury Instructions section 505). So we are a bit better than present in that respect.

  • Tabitha Dowling

    I love living in Arizona. <3

  • Tabitha Dowling

    I love living in Arizona. <3

  • Jared Stock

    If Gary Herbert signs Utah SB 73 that should take Utah to at least the Top 2 if not #1. Glad to be a citizen of this state!

  • Renée Siefers

    I’m very happy with Indiana’s stance on guns, I’m an avid promoter of CCWs to mothers, as I am a mother to a 2 year old and I’m never without my permit or my sidearm. However when I visit my husband in Illinois (He works there 5 days a week) I have to leave everything behind which makes the visits very few and far between!!

  • Jon

    I think you really underrated Idaho, I guess it was because of the vagueness of stand your ground laws in this state. it is a shall issue state but you will never get turned down for a ccw in this state

    • Pat Emery

      ID got a bad rap. ID is very gun-friendly.

    • Blue Haven Guns

      No shit! Idaho belongs in at least the top 10.

  • Galen Beesley

    Well my state didnt score in the top ten but hey it is better than so many other states

  • Joel Beasley

    I think Utah might be a 50 score now. HB 76 is just waiting to be signed and we’ll be a Constitutional carry state too.

    • Pat Emery

      I don’t know what’s happeining to UT. I alsways go through UT on my way to ID because I want to transport firearms when I go see family. Going through NV is out of the question with their ridiculous laws. Keep the faith UT. Make your state reps do the right thing!

    • Zabilde

      Sadly our RINO Gov Vetoed 76, we don’t get to move up this year, unless the Legislature decides to over-ride. They had the votes when it originally passed, but maybe not anymore.

  • Ben Warford

    While New Hampshire ranks high on the list our rights are under attack more so now than ever before. I am very concerned. I get emails twenty times a day to support the fight against the gun grabbers and fight the FED. There is nothing that can be done about the fed we are on the verge of collapse that’s why they want the guns. We must keep our guns we will need them very soon. Bury them some where so they can’t get them and be ready it’s going to get bad.
    Good luck, Ben in NH

  • Pat Emery

    Proud to be a Native ‘Zonie! We jealously guard our freedom here. May God bless & protect Arizona & the United States of Amrerica.

  • Bowserb

    G&A, thanks for doing this. In spite of a few minor law changes, it is good info and 100 times more valid than the polls quoted in the TV media. Best part? Texas beat PA by several places. To my PA bragging friends: Nya Nya Nya!

  • Michael Z Williamson

    I question the methodology.

    They place IN at 16. IN restricts virtually no weapons. IN does not require training for CCW, and issues lifetime licenses ($125, or $25 for 4 years). That other states with stricter requirements refuse to recognize our license is a negative on their part, not ours.

    TX with a training requirement at 15. SC with more expensive licenses and a training requirement at 14. GA with both more expensive licenses and a training requirement at 13. FL with a training requirement, more expensive licenses and no open carry at 12. MT at 11, partly due to their Firearms Freedom act, which is a nice sentiment, but will not be supported by the Feds or Courts so is not relevant until the unlikely case it gets federal acknowledgment.

    NH at 10 is arguably better, with no license needed for open carry, but still has a training requirement. MO at 9 is ridiculous, given the cultural attitudes in STL and the hoops to jump through for a CCW.

    Kansas I can’t speak much on, but again, requires training requirement for a right. Alabama at 7 isn’t officially shall issue, so it needs to be, to avoid future problems. Wyoming is well-placed at 6th. KY fits in 5th, but again, training requirement.

    Utah fits 4th well, since they do allow guns in schools/campuses. Alaska in 3rd seems fair. VT and AZ clearly hold the top.

    I place IN above anywhere with a training requirement, below anywhere with constitutional carry, and dock a point for our ban on carry in schools. So I’d put us in 7th place. Look for us to enter the top 5 before the end of the decade.

    • CZ Fan

      You’re obviously not familiar with gun laws of Missouri if you think the ranking is ridiculous. Missouri should actually be ranked higher, though you do have a case for Indiana being ranked higher, too. Attitudes in St. Louis are not really relevant since Missouri preempts all local ordinances, as most states do. Missouri should get more points for CCW for two reasons the editors of G&A didn’t consider: Missouri has Constitutional Carry in one’s own automobile, age 18 and up, resident or not. Also, Missouri accepts ALL other state permits, the only state to do so. Indiana might deserves to be ranked higher, but not higher than Missouri.


    Florida’s ranking is misleading because of the restrictions on CCW: you cannot attend a city council meeting or be on a University campus at all with CCW. I am in Indiana, and I also know that neighboring KY has no such restrictions.

  • Zabilde

    Just a couple points, you marked Utah down because it does not accept Vermont’s CCW permit, that’s because Vermont has no permit to accept. But then again our RINO Gov just vetoed our attempt at a constitutional Carry Bill on Friday. We are very dissappointed, it passed with sufficient margin to over-ride his veto but we wonder if the Legislature will choose to even hold the over-ride vote.

  • Brian Richardson

    Question… As a Maine native (Maine-ah), I’m fuzzy on one thing. While thankful we ARE an open carry state, I can’t seem to find the part of the law that requires a ‘license’ for open carry in a vehicle. Would someone please clarify? Do you need a state ID or driver’s license, or is a Concealed Firearms Permit(Yes, our laws suck badly enough that no other ‘dangerous weapon’ is covered under a CFP) required for open carry in a vehicle?

  • CZ Fan

    Missouri should be ranked higher on CCW (and higher overall) due to two unique firearms freedom features unseen in other states. 1) No license required for CCW in one’s car, even for non-residents. 2) Missouri recognizes ALL other state CCW permits.

  • Ryan Farnsworth

    Maybe I can help clear up the ambiguity found in Idaho:


    Idaho Jury Instructions

    Criminal Instructions


    Current through September 1, 2011


    INSTRUCTION NO. _______

    the exercise of the right of [self-defense] [defense of another], one
    need not retreat. One may stand one’s ground and defend [oneself] [the
    other person] by the use of all force and means which would appear to be
    necessary to a reasonable person in a similar situation and with
    similar knowledge[; and a person may pursue the attacker until [the
    person] [the other person] has been secured from danger if that course
    likewise appears reasonably necessary]. This law applies even though the
    person being [attacked] [defended] might more easily have gained safety
    by flight or by withdrawing from the scene.


    State v. McGreevey, 17 Idaho 453, 466, 105 Pac. 1047 (1909); State v. Dunlap, 40 Idaho 630, 637, 235 Pac. 432 (1925).

    instruction may be used with homicide or with battery. The committee
    suggests that the bracketed language at the end of the second sentence
    only be used where the facts indicate that the defendant pursued his

  • jfm76

    So if :CCW/Open Carry: Only states that don’t require a permit
    for concealed or open carry scored a perfect 10 in this category.
    Everybody else was judged accordingly.
    How did Arizona NOT score 10? Giving them a perfect 50/50? lol

  • Jose Vega

    I dont know why the slideshows stops moving after I click on one picture

  • Blue Haven Guns

    Idaho gets 32nd place? WTF? Shall issue CCW, broad open carry, no restrictions on guns or magazines, recognizes all states CCW’s. Seriously, Idaho should be in at least the top ten.

  • Jim Beach
    • CZ Fan

      Always proud to do poorly on that test.

  • Shit Neck

    Wyoming rank is BS, we have constitutional carry and the highest per capita ownership. Should be Number 1!

  • Michael Bradley

    You need to FACTCHECK yourself. Pennsylvania gun ownwership at 34.7 % … I’ve lived here all my life and know very few people that DON’T own guns … You rank PA 20th on the slideshow, yet 33rd in the text . C’mon man ! No proofreaders there ?

    • CZ Fan

      The two rankings are two different things. The firearms ownership rate does not figure into the rankings of best states for gun owners at all. Though I have some issues with their methodology, it is you who misread in this case.

  • Heath Purser

    Wow.. some people will cry about any and every thing.. on the bright side, we made #7! Not bad!

  • Heath Purser

    For those complaining.. I keep my carry pistol on me everyday when I puck my son up at school, even though we “arent allowed” to carry on school grounds. If you are a kaw abiding citizen and dont give anyone a reason to search you, then you should be fine. Also, Alabama IS an open carry state by default. There is no law against open carry, therefore its not permitted nor regulated. I open carry on occasion and have never had any problems. What worries me is the growing trend of yuppie, politically correct, gun grabbing liberals that seem to be popping up everywhere in Alabama now days. We need to ship their butts to MA if the want to live in that type of area..

    • CZ Fan

      If you admit you carry on school grounds against the law, you are not a law abiding citizen. What you really mean is if you don’t draw further attention to yourself, you won’t get caught breaking the law.

  • Eric Gregory

    open carry is allowed in Texas but only for long guns

    • ImYer Huckleberry

      Open carry is still permitted if you travel through several counties in Tx

  • Chad Scott

    Idaho’s rank is absolutely bullshit. It is one of the few states that allow shooting and plinking on public land without a permit. The castle doctrine ranking is way to low just because it says “tumultuous entry.” Trust me in Idaho you can shoot someone that has broken into your house In fact that includes a fenced yard as well. The rank of 2 on that is ridiculous. I have lived in 8 different states and Idaho is the easiest to acquire any type of firearm, and acquire a CCW permit of any of them. You have Kansas above them and it is a pain in the ass to get a CCW here in Kansas. Your ranking system is to narrow and you have to much variance in your scoring system.

    • ImYer Huckleberry


      • Chad Scott

        Hold on let me see if I can speak redneck…Thanksfercontributin

  • Allen Davis

    Colt, Remington, Magpul, and any others you are welcome in Arizona!

  • bill

    Georgia still as more off limits places than California for where you can and cant carry :/

  • bghy

    surprising about New has Concealed Carry..Open Carry and legal to carry loaded in your vehicle

  • Tony Frantzen

    funny,ha-ha highest ranking states ,all voted for b o.

  • Chris Hall

    You got Ohio partially wrong
    viewed as a magazine restriction
    ORC 2923.11 Weapons control definitions

    (E) “Automatic firearm” means any firearm designed or specially adapted
    to fire a succession of cartridges with a single function of the
    trigger. “Automatic firearm” also means any semi-automatic firearm
    designed or specially adapted to fire more than thirty-one cartridges
    without reloading, other than a firearm chambering only .22 caliber
    short, long, or long-rifle cartridges.”

  • ATDavidD

    Re: Ohio and magazine restrictions: having a magazine that holds over 30 rounds somehow magically transforms a semi-automatic rifle into a fully-automatic rifle. Imagine that–varying the size of the magazine affects how the rifle operates, at least in the minds of some legislators.

  • f hugger

    i would have thought ohio would have ranked better than 35th. there was no mention of the percent of ownership. just remember, ohioans may be armed for the occasion.

  • beachmom H

    In Maine we can open carry even if not in a vehicle.

  • f hugger

    i may just bag up my marble collection here in the buckey state and head for arizona. while alaska, vermont, utah and new hampshire seem friendly enough, it’s way too cold in those places for my pansy ass.

  • dba_vagabond_trader

    Believe it or not CT does not have a law against open carry but you’ll be arrested for some other offense without a doubt.

  • Kevin Lipperman

    New Hampshire is where I am and knew we had awesome progun laws but coming from ny I still feel that nh is best in the nation I love it been here for over a year alrady


    Az Vet
    I knew there was a lot of good people in our state government, can’t say much for our senators though!

  • Adam Long

    god bless texas! im proud to live in texas!

  • AK812

    Alaska placed, #3 but you forgot to add somethings to may have bumped it up higher. We do have a Stand Your Ground law that was recently passed. Also HB 69 which is a 2nd Amendment preservation act, meaning guns, accessories and ammo possessed by Alaskans are exempt from federal laws and any federal agent trying to enforce them will be prosecuted. Also we are able to manufacture machine guns in state as long as everything is made here in Alaska and stays here. No CCW permit required(but available for reciprocity in other states and NICS exemption, getting mine next month), open carry is legal and common. The only negative that we have is the requirement to inform LEO that your carrying, not a big deal to me as generally the LEO up here are very gun friendly.

  • RS

    Where can we get the raw data in a spreadsheet format? It would be great if we could sort the data etc.

  • Matthew Sawyer

    I was surprised Michigan ranked 33/50. Much worse than I expected. I expected MI to be in the top 25, not the bottom 20! There were some states where I perceived gun laws to be much more harsh and they ranked better. At least we’re not New Yuck, New Jersey, Illinois or California, four of the harbingers of gun violence despite having the strictest laws!

    • Dana King

      Especially considering MI has CCW reciprocity with more states than any other.

  • Jay_B_Siegel

    From a practical perspective Arizona is far from number one in my book, there are way too many posted businesses and restaurants. Here in Texas there are far fewer. From a practical perspective one can carry concealed in far more places in Texas than Arizona. Yes, you need a license in Texas, but you need a permit in AZ to carry anyplace that sells alcohol and isn’t posted. Net result, Texas is far better.

  • TXgnnr

    For all you slide show whiners out there. Have you gotten so incredibly lazy that you can’t click your mouse 49 times? My God what a bunch of whiners. For those of you with Firefox ans Chrome that are complaining, are you running the most current version. Is your operating system up to date, do you have the most current version of Flash Player. Being in the IT industry I have discovered over the years that even a computer can’t heal the ID10T virus.

    Personally, I think the authors of this project did an excellent job and should be commended for doing the research instead of being bitch at by a bunch of cry babies. Is it any wonder America is going down the tubes at light speed?

  • TXgnnr

    Before you jump on my case, YES I am aware of the format issue when it comes to the absence of question marks. I guess I was so irritated, punctuation was not at the top of my thoughts.

  • Joel Heifferon

    Sorry Ben O, but there is no possible way a gallery is quicker than a numbered text list. Additionally, instead of having to click 50 times, you would have to click on the ones that interested you, if set up a link for each one.

    Regardless, It’s good info.

  • HoboPete

    Im in massachusetts. $100 for the firearms class or a 2 month wait for the hunting class which also counts towards getting your license. They have class A ltc, Class B ltc, and FID. In the few towns you can actually get an ltc, seems to take another $100 and about 6 months to get it. Still has an AWB on the books, so only pre-ban high cap mags are allowed. Place where I live you cant even have a knife longer than 3 inches(still riddled with crime). The Governor has also proposed a whole new list of laws, including a 1 gun per month law. Im glad that I found this list, so I can plan out the next place to move.

  • Random Dude

    Sorry guys. WA does not have a “Stand Your Ground” law. It has only previously favorably sided with those in defense situations

  • Wee Zlbaj

    Five more I forgot to mention in my earlier post in Tennessee’s favor:

    State constitution enumerates gun ownership as an individual right.

    Retired LEOs automatically are conferred HCP status.

    Reciprocity: Tennessee honors ALL other state’s weapons permits or licenses.

    Concealed Carry is legal in restaurants that serve adult beverages, provided the armed individual abstains.

    And established shooting ranges are immunized against civil suits for noise.

  • Patrick Henry

    The comments regarding Maine’s Castle Doctrine are incorrect. Maine Castle Doctrine Law specifically states one DOES NOT have a duty to retreat when confronted when in/on one’s own property. The only caveat is that IF SAFELY feasable, one must warn the offender to depart before employing deadly force……whisper, “hey dirtbag, leave.”

  • Leonard Urban

    The “Ad Choices” banners cover up the text of the article so that you can’t the entire explanation, unless of course, you click on all of the ads I suppose. VERY irritating…

  • smokey

    As a Michigan resident I feel a lot more free than a 33rd rating. We recognize almost all other state CCW licenses. (Called a Concealed Pistol License here) Civil suits are not allowed unless guilty under criminal trial. Castle doctrine is strong. You are not required to retreat if you are anywhere you are allowed to be legally. License to purchase is only required in private sales and then only if you don’t have a CPL. You can purchase as many guns at a time as you would like. Open carry is allowed. If we could just get rid of our “pistol free zones” it would be much better. We do have two anti gun Senators but Levin isn’t running next time. Hope we can replace him with someone more firearms friendly.

  • Susan Jay

    i didn’t agree with utah being so high, since in they have laws to have three actions prior to being able to fire the gun.

  • ak Stone

    I don’t understand OKLAHOMA being 30th. Only comment is NRA says we follow FED law on Class 3 crap. Everyone has to last I knew. No State laws on Class 3 except we can use legal silencers on our property. No statistics on how many own firearms. That’s cause we’re not stupid enough to tell anyone who owns what. We have all the Castle, Stand your ground, on owned and unowned property, Handgun permit carry, concealed or open. Everything higher ranked states have and we have and mostly had it before they did, also no confiscation laws. Don’t understand why you rated us that way. Carry licence for reciprocal purposes cause everyone carried before. Sheriff’s with balls to stand up and say they will not enforce Fed laws that go against 2nd Amendment and arrest any who think they are going to. Next to Texas who’s No licence carry means having a gun in your vehicle, I like Oklahoma’s cause I want mine with me. No restrictions on assault weapons, Magazines, ammo, etc. Same laws as other states, only our state with a lower rating. Only reason I can think of is you are berating us because of crap spreed about Sen. Coburn by detractors trying to raise money at His expense. I got a written letter from him and his stand was exactly want he said and did in the end. I read for weeks all the crap about Coburn and knew it was garbage, just like he told me. Other than that not being the case, my personal opinion is you have screwed Oklahoma and you don’t know anything about us. If you where confused about Oklahoma’s laws or whatever, you should have called some Org. in the state. Didn’t your momma tell you never believe anything on the internet? This article reconfirms it for me!!!

  • Al Do

    Thanks for doing the ranking. I enjoyed it.

    That said, I hate to get technical on terminologies, but I also dislike the use of CCW abbreviation strongly to describe/mean “concealed carry” or permit. CCW can mean “concealed carry weapon”, which includes things other than a firearm, depending on individual state laws. CCW can be used to mean “Carrying of Concealed Weapon”, but it’s in no way abbreviated to mean a permit or license. You used the label “CCW” in conjunction with “Open Carry” to mean “concealed carry” and in the Utah slide you used CCW to mean carry “permit”. (A side note: Utah issues a Concealed Firearm Permit. PA’s License is ALWAYS abbreviated to be LTCF as License to Carry Firearms is its full name, not “LTC firearms”).

    For a professional publication, I think it’s important that you get the terminologies correct and use them correctly (“CC” or the label and permit/license for the rest if you don’t go the full length of naming the actual terms for each state’s license).

  • Cp Staley

    Why does Va only get an 8/10 on MSR’s when in the description of the caption for the state, it states there are no MSR restrictions? Is it due to the shotgun restrictions?

  • Bobcat

    Someone needs to recheck Oklahoma’s rating on Class 3/NFA. I don’t see any state resrictions beyond the Federal requirements yet they got a “4″ in the area.

  • cliff

    moved to Arizona from new York-need I say more.

  • Larry Hill

    With Colorado’s new law, their MSR score should drop from 9 to 0, placing them in 41st place.

  • Jason VanMeter

    I left Pennsylvania last week because when I voluntarily committed myself in 2004, I was 302′d without my knowledge. I went back to Camp Pendleton to finish my enlistment in the USMC. I came home and learned I couldn’t buy a gun forever in PA. I am living in CA where I can. Irony is a bitch. I plan on moving to AZ in the future. I am glad to see it on the pro-gun list.

  • Ray Ake

    my home state of Georgia is #13,,2nd. state lived in is Texas #15 and where I live now,,Missouri is #09,,not bad at all..look’s like I have lived where VERY FEW liberal’s live..some time’s life can be real great..I have no pity for those people who chose to be controlled by IDIOT’S..

  • NY Gunner

    Let’s sing a few bars of the “I Love New York” theme! 50/50!?? I gotta get outa here!

  • Craig S. Andersen

    Washington State was clearly ranked based on incomplete or misconstrued information about our laws. In the State of Washington, currently, one can carry a concealed firearm with a proper license. Washington is a shall issue state. Washington State does not allow Class III firearms or some Class II firearms. However, Washington does allow AOWs and suppressors with proper BATFE paperwork. Moreover, military-pattern semi automatic firearms are lawful for any citizen to possess without restriction beyond the NCIS background check. Consequently, I would subment that the State of Washington is closer to red than blue in terms of our gun laws. However, the forces or disarmament and pacification never rest and we have a liberal governor so this is no time to rest on our past achievements.

  • fred

    illinois sucks

    • Crusty Rusty

      They forgot to mention that you can’t buy ammo without the FOID card, either.

  • Poodleguy

    Just one more huge reason that I have lived in Arizona for the last 45 yrs & yes, I carry 24/7. 1st rule in a gunfight: HAVE A GUN!!

  • Michael B

    Effective this summer, Arkansas will have an open carry law. Furthermore, within a personal residence, retreat is not necessary and a person may use deadly force. Arkansas also has reciprocity with 38 states and we don’t have to have permission from the state to own a handgun. Finally, given that our legislature is now controlled by conservative Republicans, I believe we should be ranked much better than G&A’s rating.

  • John St Charles

    South Dakota’s rank is way off it scores 94% out of 100 concerning total firearms freedoms Wisconsin 58% Tenn 84% Virginia 84% and so on SD is in the top 8

  • hermannr

    I must disagree with your rankings. IMHO ID and WA are much better carry states than OR, yet they are both ranked lower. WA almost down with the “Anti” states.

    Or gives local governments the right to restrict loaded UN-licensed OC, neither WA or ID allow local governments to restrict UN-licensed OC. OR does allow NFA under federal law, but which is more useful? Being able to know that everywhere you go as an UN-licensed carrier, the laws are the same? or having to worry about what the local laws are so you do not inadvertently become a criminal? basically unlicensed OC is very important, as well as very consistent laws in all jurisdictions. In ID and WA you can OC without any fear of a “gotya” you did not know about.

    ID recognizes all state’s license to carry, OR recognizes no states. WA recognizes several. ID and WA “stand your ground” laws are not based on laws, they are based on the state constitution and court rulings. Much harder to change than a regular code.

    I’m sorry, I know our carry laws in ID and WA are not perfect, but IMHO, they sure beat OR. Think about this: WA will issue to anyone that is not a federally prohibited person, resident or not, no government mandated extras required. Fill out your paperwork, get your fingerprints taken, and in 30 days or less (resident, 60 days non-resident) and you have you CPL. OR will only “shall issue” to their residents. Citizens of states that border on OR can apply for a “may issue” (for reason) CHL, others cannot.

  • bhdchris

    I’m happy about being #1… Arizona is a great State…
    We’ll get rid of McStain real soon….

  • Jeanie

    I don’t know when this information was posted, but it seems out of date. Alaska castle doctrine laws were signed in 2006: and the Stand Your Ground law passed in April 2013:

  • Arin Davidson

    PA has no licensure restrictions on on-foot open carry, however it requires licensure of a Concealed carry and open/conceal carry in a motor vehicle. Under PA law the state is considered a traditional carry state, as in how it was considered in europe ages ago when only criminals concealed their weapons.

  • gone or rea

    I live in New Yorkistan, hate it, I have no idea how such wide varying gun laws between states is permitted. Imagine the outcry if the same logic were applied to driver’s licenses ?

  • eph4_15

    Thanks for Sharing. I am disappointed that so many of the states I have favored in the past, have gone down hill so much, but God willing, We will straighten MOST of them out. Those states that dont will suffer.

    I would REALLY like to see a comparison chart with the details of how each state fared in each area. Thanks again, God bless, Lock & Load.

  • Bozo_Profundo

    For the most part, the more liberal the state, the more totalitarian the laws. What is it about liberals that they love police states?

  • kelly curtis

    ARIZONA, BITCHES!!! What is real bullshit is here in Yuma, you can be an outstanding law abiding citizen while driving around in your car and pass over the Colorado River into Cali and become a felon. Worse, you can leave ammo in your car, even one single empty 9mm casing, and spend 2 years of your life in jail paying off bribes to get released (I know this person). Someday, hopefully soon, Jesus will cause an earthquake to remove cali from the face of the earth and we will have beach front property. And I hear liberals don’t float.

  • Brian Mumford

    This article is WRONG about Ohio. Ohio is limited to 30 round magazine because anything that can fire more than 31 rounds without reloading is considered a fully automatic rifle under state law. You won’t find a lot of legal 33 round Glock magazines, for example, in Ohio as a result.

  • Tal Creech

    The poll for this article is complete BS, the listing should have included ties. It really isn’t fair to say that Texas (15) is any better or higher ranked than West Virginia (21) when they have the same score (45 points).

  • LibertyDwells

    I’d have to disagree with Indiana’s ranking. There’s almost no state restriction on anything. The state has preemption. Shall issue(long before Floriduh made a big deal of it), with lifetime permits. Anything is legal (except SBR’s, oddly enough). Ownership is far higher than the % listed (Gary isn’t big enough to skew the numbers that much). The state should easily be in the top 10.

  • Thomas Kemmett

    You are wrong about Ohio, we are permitted to have an open carry gun in a car or truck. Give me a break, you really put Ohio in the same category as New York and California? We are permitted to own sporting type rifles, high cap mags, etc. Please do some fact checking.

  • Bart Allonyou

    My state had 45 points (PA) but was ranked 20th while Texas had the exact same points but was rated 15th. Shouldn’t all states that scored 45 points be tied for 15th?

  • Josh H

    Fix Washington, Unfortunately MG’s are not legal for citizens unless they were owned prior to July 1, 1994 with a valid NFA stamp.

  • Dave

    While my state (Massataxholechusetts) ranked a shameful 48, Some of your information is incorrect.

    1) It is a “shall issue” state. Although, too much discretion is given to the Chief of Police in your particular locality.

    2) You CAN buy and sell “assault style” weapons manufactured after 1994 but there ARE regulations as to the configuration of it. no collapsible stocks, flash suppressor has to be permanently attached, etc.

    3) Class 3 can be owned with a federal license. So, I don’t know why it was rated 0.

    4) As for the 12.8 % of residents owning guns,,,,,,,, I’m certain that even before Newtown it was higher than that. Since Newtown, the police departments have been processing and issuing record numbers of LTC permits. And gun purchases by first time owners is STILL going strong.

    All in all, the state SUCKS, but it’s not the worst state for gun ownership, and certainly better than what you portrayed it here. I can walk into a gun shop and after some paperwork I can walk out with a rifle, shotgun, pistol or revolver. Have to show a permit to buy ammo, but no paperwork for it.
    I’m definitely moving to a more gun friendly state in the near future. Our current Goobernor is so liberal it’s pathetic.

  • Joseph Cocozza

    This is why I moved from NJ to PA.

  • Kevin Lawlor

    fucking Connecticut!

  • Black&Tans01

    You guys are sooooooo lucky in the USA. Not a lot of people have gunsin the uk but all the druggies and cookoos commit all the murders and dangers. Then people get overreattive and scared. Complain and the gun laws fall to shit. How r we ever meant to defend ourselves or compete for the uk?! Ps ur police are amazing. Ours r shit!!!!!!

  • Matthew lefevre

    I’m so glad I live in the gun free state of Vermont. I buy my guns in town ata Mobil gas station. I can carry my gun concealed or unconcealed. No firearms card needed. No waiting period. The last hand gun I bought I received in 10 minutes and the owner through in a box of ammo. I keep a gun near my bed and a gun in my car! With a gun in my car I better not drive into the PATHTIC gun states of New York or Massachusetts !!! Vermont is very libral with two of the most liberal federal seators in the country . But, they know that if they vote for gun regulation they wi LOSE reelection in this state. Finally, if you look at the crime rate as to per capita Vermont’s population we have the lowest crime! Criminal know we all have gun! In Chicao , go example, criminals know people don’t have guns and that’s why the crime rate per capita in Chicago is sky high. Illinois is another pathetic gun right state. Vermont gun regulation Rules!

  • no_tubes

    I live in WA, and IMO, we should have been higher (better) on the list than Oregon. Oregon has a private sales ban at gunshows, and buyers are subject to an OSP background check (instead of NICS) that takes forever, and often has 30 day delays.

  • Diamondback

    What about the other 7 states that Obamao visited during his 2008-09 campaign?

  • obloodyhell

    This page ain’t working for sh**… it goes one click in and then freezes.

  • Mongo

    Well it seems that G&A does not know squat about gun laws, at least as far as I can tell from looking at the NFA rankings that were given. Here are the errors/stupidity I noticed in a quick look down the list.

    VT – No suppressors so why a 10?

    AL – No SBR

    KS – I’m not sure on the latest Kansas laws on NFA. I know they now have many but not sure if any are restricted.

    MO – no suppressors

    MT – No DDs

    IN – No SBS

    Now they gave LA an 8 but it has every thing NFA wise so once again they are screwed up.

    NC – they gave it a 10 but it is extremely hard in certain areas to own NFA items.

    VA – they gave Virgina an 8 yet it allows all NFA items bu they must be
    state registered. Seems better than those states that got 10 to me.

    WI – another 8 but allow every thing again. Seems if there is state
    registration of NFA then they give it an 8. I consider state
    registration less restrictive than no allowing items like SBR or SBS.

    OK – they gave this a 4 in NFA. WTF, OK allows all NFA?

    AR – got a 10 but has state registration of pistol cal MG over 30 cal. Should be an 8 if they were consistent.

    Ohio – they said no mag restrictions, they are wrong, there is magazine
    restrictions but I think they are 30 rnds. Some one from Ohio can
    correct me on this.

    MN – they gave NFA a 3, but you can have all but suppressors. MGs
    are C&R but that not as bad as none like some states like WA that
    got a 3 also but do not allow any real NFA.

    MD – once again an 8 but allows all types of NFA just state registered.

    IL – gets a 2 by allowing only AOW? WTF kind of scale are they using here?

    CT – gets a 2? I hate the commie shit hole that it is but they allow all
    NFA there, the MGs just have to be full auto only, no select fire. This
    is one messed up scale they are using.

    NJ – gets a 2 for NFA when they have a never issue MG permit just like Cali that got a 0 for the same thing?

    So just looking at NFA rankings I see the above errors. How much you want to bet that the other rankings are just as screwed up?

  • L999here

    Indiana does NOT restrict castle doctrine to private property. You are able to defend yourself anywhere you have a legal right to be…which is EVERYWHERE in the State of Indiana.

  • Jack223

    I was hoping West Virginia would score in at least the top ten.

  • NameNotGiven

    Disagree with listing Washington DC as last. I don’t think this listing system takes into account practicalities.
    Example 1: I moved into DC with a weapon last year. I had NO waiting period and was in and out of DC firearms office in two hours with my weapon registered and in ossession. Cost for all paperwork: $48.

    Example 2: A DC buddy I take to range wanted to buy his first gun.
    Step one: He ordered one on line sent to DC FLL. (DC wait time of ten days started from moment he ordered gun).
    Step two: he took half hour free online course.
    Step three: When ten days from initial order were up he went to DC firearms office, filled out paperwork, took an open book written test (easy) was photographed and printed, and walked out with gun (FFL and DC fees total $138). Total time 10 days from order and 2.5 hours in firearms office.

    Now sure I am against all of the DC rules, they are silly and criminals are not affected. They constitute a slippery slope and scapegoating of law abiding and dont adressses real causes of crime. Agreed.

    BUT compared to waiting 80 days in New Jersey for the simple permission to order a handgun!?!?! (and where DC “no issue” and NJ’s “may issue” is the same as no CCW anyway)

    You guys should use actual PRACTICAL considerations. It is WAY easier and faster to get a handgun in DC than in NJ.

    Look at the NJ gun forums for to see what the actual level of hassle and wait times are!

    I have friends in Oregon (one of your “best” states) have three times the wait to get signed off than in DC

  • FredC1968

    You have to like Arizona. Even the liberals carry.

  • wildmanjeffsmith

    how can wyoming rate so high on the list when it’s castle doctrine law requires you to retreat outside your house?

  • dbt3481

    Cool, in the top 10. Notice the ability to exercise freedoms goes from red state highest to blue states being the least free.

    Remember that next time you vote.

  • David Brouwer

    You got the facts wrong on Texas. Texas does have open carry for long guns.

    • Johnny Graf

      That is better than nothing however you need to lobby your reps to allow open carry of hand guns; better yet, lobby them for concealed carry without any permit like Arizona has.

      • David Brouwer

        I agree, a right should not require a permit at all

  • disallusioned vet

    It sucks to be a new yorker eve if I do have a carry conceal and many guns. we are being sold out by our leaders

  • Model12

    For each of the five criteria, did you weight any of them more than others? Just trying to figure out how you chose the order of states where the overall score was tied.

  • Nenerx3

    Alaska has castle doctrine, and enacted the stand your ground law when the trayvon martin case was in full effect…

    I know this cause I live here.

  • Randy McClinsey

    for someone like me living in ny with a background cosisting of numerous firearms and firearm related hobbies it is very hard not to pack up and leave when there are several states with in a few hours drive that rank in the top 20 or better,especially being that my state is at the dead bottom except for dc.if it was not for my wife having a great job and having to have my kids start over in a new school system i would be outta here, BUT, if things don’t start turning for the better soon it may be time for a fresh start!

  • STCopper

    What I find comical is that the states with the most restrictive guns rules have the highest levels of gun crime and violence. NY, NJ, CA, Wash DC, IL (Chicago), Maryland (Baltimore), Mass (Boston), etc…. Also, I find it amazing that those states that don’t have stand your ground and castle doctrine laws again suffer more crimes/violence per capita then those who are allowed to defend themselves. The proof is usually in the pudding, I guess those states don’t get any.

  • Johnny Graf

    The Arizona law allows for one to discharge his gun so long as you are 1/4 of a mile from any dwelling otherwise permission by the owner must be granted. Well we were doing some target practice 1/2 a mile away from the opposite direction of a neighborhood shooting tannerite with some friends and we had all our goodies laid out on a blanket, AR-15, AR-10; multiple 30 round clips, a .41 mag boot pistol, and a Barrett .50 caliber and a Barrett .416 when two police officers pull up. These friends of mine were visiting from California for the weekend and some of them never shot this type of hardware therefore they thought that we were doing something wrong and they thought the officers were going to arrest us and confiscate our firearms. I went up to the officer with my AR-10 still in hand as I didn’t have time to put it back in the trunk. The officer simple said to us “sir please drive up the road another mile as a neighbor heard you shooting and is a bit concerned”. We obliged and moved up the road. The officer never asked for our licensed or inquired to look at our firearms; he didn’t care. The officer then said “please enjoy yourself today”. …………the moral of the story is Lord I love Arizona.

    • Johnny Graf

      I forgot to mention that Arizona allow suppressors so long as the suppressors are made from a company within the state of Arizona.

  • Doria Greer

    Arizona rocks, thats why we live here. Also, if you guys ever need once fired brass check out Diamond K Brass they are based in AZ..

  • h87111

    Unlike what is reported here, New Mexico is an open carry state. Also, loaded guns may be carried anywhere in your vehicle – concealed or not concealed. Your vehicle is counted as if it was your home.

  • HoosierGunOwner

    That statement about standing your ground in Indiana only applying to private property is not true. If you see a person using dangerous or deadly force against you or third party and you feel like you or a third party’s life is in danger you can use deadly force if reasonably necessary anywhere that you are allowed to carry a firearm.

  • Kimberly Perry Gayheart

    My state came in #5. So glad for Kentucky but sure do not like our present Governor.

  • Chris Flynn

    37th??? We have some work to do, Colorado!

  • kwethington1

    Laws for Firearms: Best States for Gun Owners in 2013

    by James Tarr | March 14, 2013

    Maryland not in paragraph three of this article. Perhaps Mr. Tarr, Sirr, you need to understand that “may” means will not unless there is an overriding political pull and influence being put on state officials that decide this matter. They don’t prosecute the felony gun crimes 93 percent of the time, buy rather, instead of putting a law into effect that would help poor neighborhoods the most become safer they look at the statistics of those who will be arrested and sentenced and play the political card. Politics ahead of actually helping black and white poor. The latinos here are mostly either illegals or , according to an ICE briefing I received, 55 percent claim legal residence using fraudulent documents,

  • InconvenientTruthsYouHate

    The “top ten” are really just 3 ties for the top 3 slots. I see nothing in the scoring which explains the order of the states in these ties, so I believe it to be arbitrary.
    States 10 though 6 are in a tie, and WY could just as easily have been called 10 as 6. States 5-3 are tied, and 2-1 are tied.
    My state shares the #3 slot, so I’m pretty happy about that.

  • BluesStringer1955 .

    I have been anxiously awaiting this year’s ratings because my state
    (Alabama) implemented a new set of gun laws that did three very
    significant things for gun owners; converted from “May Issue” to “Shall
    Issue,” clarified restrictions on law enforcement that makes open carry
    much easier and less risky for those who engage in the practice (there
    are no specific “exceptions” as our state’s rating picture indicates),
    and we now accept EVERY other states’ permit now. There were also other
    changes, but those are the most significant.

    It appears to me
    that the rating for Alabama was simply copied from last year’s ratings,
    with only a “7″ for “CCW/Open Carry” and a “47″ overall. We should be
    tied for 1st with a “49″ it would seem to me. In fact, with
    Constitutional Carry now the law in AZ, we should be tied for 2nd with
    only one point deducted for our permission slip requirement for
    concealed carry. Our SYG and CD laws are as strong as any in the nation.
    We have NO duty to inform unless asked by a LEO in an official contact.
    Our protections regarding OC are:

    §13A-11-7(c) says “(c) It
    shall be a rebuttable presumption that the mere carrying of a visible
    pistol, holstered or secured, in a public place, in and of itself, is
    not a violation of this section.” You may still be questioned by a law
    enforcement officer who is “fishing” to find out if you are a prohibited
    person. According to §15-5-30 LEO must have “Reasonable Articulable Suspicion” of a crime or Probable Cause in
    order to question you. §15-5-31 will allow a LEO to disarm you during a
    stop – but only if §15-5-30 has first been met to make the stop lawful. A
    CC license/permit is needed to “Conceal on or about the person” or to
    transport in a vehicle loaded/accessible.

    Maybe next legislative session we can get to #1 by instituting Constitutional Carry, but for now, we should be tied for 1st unless at least one state gets a clean “50″ for having 10s in all categories except “CCW/Open Carry” when they should not have had one point deducted in that category. If that happened, then we should be tied for 2nd.

    Thanks for your time.

  • BluesStringer1955 .

    I have been anxiously awaiting this year’s ratings because my state (Alabama) implemented a new set of gun laws that did three very significant things for gun owners; converted from “May Issue” to “Shall Issue,” clarified restrictions on law enforcement that makes open carry much easier and less risky for those who engage in the practice (there are no specific “exceptions” as our state’s rating picture indicates), and we now accept EVERY other states’ permit. There were also other changes, but those are the most significant.

    It appears to me that the rating for Alabama was simply copied from last year’s ratings, with only a “7″ for “CCW/Open Carry” and a “47″ overall. We should be tied for 1st with a “49″ it would seem to me. In fact, with Constitutional Carry now the law in AZ, we should be tied for 2nd with only one point deducted for our permission slip requirement for concealed carry. Our SYG and CD laws are as strong as any in the nation. We have NO duty to inform unless asked by a LEO in an official contact. Our protections regarding OC are:

    §13A-11-7(c) says “(c) It shall be a rebuttable presumption that the mere carrying of a visible pistol, holstered or secured, in a public place, in and of itself, is not a violation of this section.” You may still be questioned by a law enforcement officer who is “fishing” to find out if you are a prohibited person. According to §15-5-30 LEO must have “Reasonable Articulable Suspicion” of a crime or Probable Cause in order to question you. §15-5-31 will allow a LEO to disarm you during a stop – but only if §15-5-30 has first been met to make the stop lawful. A CC license/permit is needed to “Conceal on or about the person” or to transport in a vehicle loaded/accessible.

    Maybe next legislative session we can get to #1 by instituting Constitutional Carry, but for now, we should be tied for 1st unless at least one state gets a clean “50″ for having 10s in all categories except “CCW/Open Carry” when they should not have had one point deducted in that category. If that happened, then we should be tied for 2nd.

    Thanks for your time.

  • Doug

    Alabama should be moved up the list because we are now a shall issue state so that should add more points in the category that we didn’t score a 10 in but 7 overall is alright by me because I know that as a gun owner I don’t have anything to worry about here.

  • Yuuzhan

    Makes no sense. Maine is a stand your ground and castle doctrine state. Why it ranks 29th im not sure.

  • Colinsdad

    I’m not surprised that my home State of MA was rated so low, especially considering only 12% of our populace is a registered gun owner. After 15 years, I’m STILL trying to find that “Golden Ticket” (read: a job) that will allow me to FINALLY move to VT!!

    • Colinsdad

      Since I cant edit my post, what I meant by a job, was a job within the State of Vermont. The VT Gov. website for employment isn’t exactly replete with employment opportunities.

  • yikesarama

    Minnesota grants carry permits liberally and permits open carry. So why’d they get a score of “6″ on CCW/Open Carry? Should be a 10.

    • BigUgly666

      No, MN should not get a “10″ … due to “open carry” being prohibited without a “permit”.

  • Big Game Hunter

    Nevada no longer requires you to qualify on every handgun, semi-auto or revolver, that you intend or intend to carry. The law was changed in 2013 to allow CCW applicants, including renewals, to qualify on one revolver and one semi-automatic pistol. The CCW card issued shows you are qualified for any revolver or semi-auto pistol.

  • Bill Starks

    your website does not work on the Chrome browser. Your info on Washington state is flawed.


    The CCW is a marvelous asset. When you wish to purchase a weapon, using your CCW permit as part of your ID accelerates the process immensely. Don’t look down on a CCW permit until you check the details and benefits in addition to the speed of access of new weapons purchases.

  • Bobwojo48

    Would like to see this in a table format….Easier to compare where to move to…
    Oh here it is

  • 4TruthandJustice

    Such rankings ARE informative and helpful. But from what I know about state-to-state variations, the gun laws are a real mishmash even among the top 34 states. I live in Michigan which went to Shall Issue, the Castle Doctrine and Stand Your Ground in 2002. But Michigan still have gun free zones for both public schools & private businesses. Gun free zones are a joke because they’re unenforceable with Shall Issue Concealed Carry being legal (as it should be). The police simply ignore gun free zones unless someone’s actually committing a crime with a gun in one of those zones. Also impossible to comply with because many times, you don’t see any signs or recognize a place as “gun free” until you’ve arrived there (or passed through “illegally”). Someone ought to get the top 34 states together to make those states more consistent both internally and across state boundaries.

  • ARMY1971

    Life long NYer here, need I say more. State is loaded with liberal progressive Dumbocrats and go along Republciks. NY city has one the strictest hand weapon laws on the books since around 1909 I believe. And it works so well that the only way you can buy or carry one is to go into the hood and purchase one from one of the homeboys. They for some reason just don’t obey that law. But our cities are so safe if you don’t believe me just trying waling in anyone of them after dark. And I don’t mean in NY city the 20 square blocks in time Square they fixed up for you tourist, I mean the real NY, Crooklyn(as spikless lee calls it) the Bronx, up town Manhatten. Good luck with your walk.

  • Richie N.

    I’m from New Jersey and I believe that gun ownership in this state is higher than the 12% reported……we’re just not admitting it, would you? :)

  • Dzrtman

    AZ also has The Big Sandy shootout! Check youtube if you don’t know what it is…

  • HaveYourCake

    I would like to know how Montana came in at number 11.

  • Cody
    • hooyut

      It seems you have some knowledge on how to navigate that site! Do you happen to have any tips to help me find all the current laws for Arizona?

  • steve

    does vote for Cuomo if he is on the ticket as V.P or President. He sucks as a governor.

  • steve

    Don’t vote for Cuomo if he is on the ticket as VP or as President. He sucks as a governor.

  • Haardcase

    There’s a significant error in Idaho’s ranking. Idaho law recognizes both the castle doctrine (through legislation) and stand your ground (through case law). In fact, Idaho’s stand your ground law is both clearer and more expansive than virtually any other state, except, maybe, Florida.

    In Idaho, the castle doctrine law is like any other state’s law: you are allowed to use deadly force to defend against someone breaking into your home and/or endangering you there.

    The stand your ground law, as codified in the state’s criminal jury instructions state that you have no duty to retreat. Also, you are justified in using force, including deadly force if you believe yourself in danger. You are allowed, even, to pursue your attacker, if it’s necessary to eliminate the danger.

    This is nothing new – it’s been upheld as part of Idaho’s case law since 1909. Idaho doesn’t need a stand your ground law in the state code because it already exists and, far from being vague, it is very specific. And the excerpt from the castle doctrine law leaves out a substantial amount of the protection that the law affords.

    Idaho’s score should be more along the lines of 46 or 47.

  • Frederick Herring

    I feel that South Carolina is rated way too high in comparison to my home state of Minnesota. I have a carry permit for Minnesota as well as a CONCEALED carry permit for SC and will offer some comparisons: SC is concealed only, no open carry except such things as for hunting, etc. SC has many more restrictions where CC is disallowed, such as medical facilities, churches, and, most annoying, any establishment where alcoholic beverages might be served. SC recognizes very few permits from other states, however Minnesota is not good either. Getting a SC permit is limited to residents only unless the person happens to own real estate in SC. Finally, in SC the penalties for violation of carrying in restricted areas, meaning those posted by the proprietor forbidding handguns, are onerous. In Minnesota, there are no penalties unless the person, after being asked to leave, refuses to do so, in which case that person is in violation of TRESPASSING, which is a misdemeanor. Kudos, however, to SC in that renewal of the permit requires nothing more than sending in a check whereas Minnesota requires repeating the whole course. We were lucky in Minnesota, that the carry laws were passed when we had a liberal minded Republican governor and legislature.

    • jeremyjanson

      I think this article has “red state blue state” disease. Too man people stupidly think America is a democracy instead of a republic – just because the population is more conservative does not mean that the structure of government will not impede conservative ends, as it does in Georgia, where the nearly unlimited local autonomy of counties and cities with regards to criminal law allows antigun counties and cities to have some of the strictest gun laws in the US, and you are always bound to the stricter of state, county or city law. By comparison, in WA, counties and cities have no authority to write gun laws of any sort, as has been made clear by countless state supreme court cases (but apparently is not clear to the editors of Guns and Ammo, who don’t realize that WA police departments make a habit of lying to people):

  • knightscrusader

    I am surprised in G&A’s survey that New Mexico requires registration of modern sporting rifles and has a weak castle doctrine.

  • Scott

    I think your ranking system is a bit flawed…PA ranked 20th with open carry and Texas ranked 15 with no open carry, both ranked 7 for CCW/Open carry, really?? PA also has the Castle Doctrine/Stand your ground, for home, car and on the street with immunity from lawsuits.

    • jeremyjanson

      WA has that, plus the right to use a firearm to prevent any felony against you (even if there is no danger of personal harm – e.g. felony theft), plus the right to protect anyone in your presence with a firearm, and these idiots ranked them 40. Of course, everything they said about cities banning ammunition or whatever isn’t really true, because here’s the thing: they passed those laws, but then the State Supreme Court threw them out as unconstitutional. You see, our constitution makes it clear that cities and counties CANNOT have their own criminal laws, the city councils (filled primarily with ignorant housewives in desperate need of sexual relief) just didn’t know that and so the courts gave them a little reminder:

  • Mark Lefebre

    i call BS on south dakota being 27th. we have a castle doctrine in codified law, have the nations highest per capita issuer of CCW permits, house the 2nd largest firearms industry of any state (total revenue dollars generated), have a larger number of firearms related manufacturing buisnesses than any other state and our CCW permit process is shall issue.

    suspiciously, the top states also house G&As top paying advertisers. Coincidence? i think not. How about a UNBIASED listing of states? SD would rank about 3 or 4.

    • jeremyjanson

      Castle Doctrine applies in every single state plus the District of Columbia. It’s part of the Common Law inherited from Britain, and thus the only state that would actually need a castle statute is Louisiana, and they have one. What you really should pay attention to is your states JH law, which governs your authority to use your firearm when you aren’t on your land.

  • Joseph

    I live in the state of Texas but if we had open carry law we would probably been on the top 10 but 15 is not too bad either

  • Brian Imperatore

    God I hate New Jersey just Banned magazines over 10 rounds. I hope Gov Christie vetos it

  • chefshooter4

    Im in Florida and I love the freedoms I have here compared to what I had in New York. These poor ranking states are doing their citizens a disservice

  • jay

    Oregon is vary accepting about guns and most anti gun laws are shot down the only thing is we do not accept other states ccw

  • jay

    And Oregon passed a law making it to where if you for a ccw a sheriff can’t deny you

  • jay

    Qualify *

  • Alex Pelton

    This is bullcrap. My state comes in around 31st and thats just a load.

  • XGovAnlst

    @Guns&Ammo; Why did AZ score 9 CCW/Open Carry when Vermont scored 10? I can see no material difference in their respective laws in this area.

  • jeremyjanson

    I’m sorry, but the info for my state (WA) is complete crap:…/2011061469_parksgun13m.html
    Yes, the city councils PASSED those laws, but the State Supreme Court
    threw every single one of those ammo, gun or any other prohibitions out.
    Cities do not even have the authority to write their own rules ON THEIR
    OWN PROPERTY. Checks and balances ARE REAL, and yes, our police departments do lie to you about our gun laws because THEY ARE LIBERAL CUNTS. You should have called an attorneys office instead.

    The state constitution here very powerfully protects the right to open carry, no permit required, and our Justifiable Homicide Laws allow a considerable latitude of authority in the use of the gun you are carrying, including even many uses that many pro-gun states would consider beyond the pale (e.g. shooting someone running away with stolen goods, no threat to your safety – in WA, it is legal if the theft is felony-level. If you’re carrying a laptop worth more than $750, and someone runs away with it, you are permitted to shoot him to recover it.) Further, it is excruciatingly difficult to amend WA’s constitution, so it will probably never be changed. I really do not appreciate people continuing to enable the totalitarian crowd here by spreading these lies.

  • jeremyjanson

    Also, in practice, California is worse than Massachussets, because you are not considering the exceptionally evil things that CA counties do to prevent CCW’s from being issued. California should really be dead last, especially because, unlike DC and Chicago, the US Supreme Court has yet to effectively challenge their tyrannical gun laws.

  • FiremanGraham

    Update Michigan’s score, SBRs are legal at this time.

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