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Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 2021 ‘State Right to Bear Arms in Kansas.’ Other Laws & Policies. San Francisco, CA: Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 18 September

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State Right to Bear Arms in Kansas

The Constitution of the State of Kansas provides that "[t]he people have the right to bear arms for their defense and security; but standing armies, in time of peace, are dangerous to liberty, and shall not be tolerated, and the military shall be in strict subordination to the civil power."

The Supreme Court of Kansas has held that Bill of Rights section 4 ("section 4″) does not confer an individual right to "bear arms." Rather, it only protects the rights of a member of the state militia or other military organization provided for by law. The court in Blaksley rejected a section 4 challenge to a state statute that prohibited the carrying of a handgun while under the influence of alcohol, stating that section 4 "refers to the people as a collective body." The court emphasized that section 4 "deals exclusively with the military; individual rights are not considered in this section." The court noted that the defendant in the case was not a member of an organized militia or other military organization, "and was therefore not within the provision of the bill of rights and was not protected by its terms."

In other cases, the supreme court, consistent with Blaksley, has rejected section 4 challenges to state statutes and local ordinances regulating firearms…

[Editor's note: The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence regularly updates its webpages with new data as US gun regulation evolves state by state. For the most up-to-date information on US gun laws, please refer to the Giffords URL below]

ID: Q8236

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