A transport industry and trade organization is urgently asking for new rules that let truck drivers discreetly defend themselves against growing civil unrest.
The Small Business in Transportation Coalition (SBTC) is making an emergency request for the Trump administration to support the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Bill which, if passed, would make it lawful for truck drivers to carry a concealed firearm to protect themselves.
Extreme, “anarchist” protesters have blocked, stopped, and sometimes attacked multiple freight trucks since Minnesotan George Floyd died in police custody. Local police allegedly handcuffed and kneed Floyd’s throat before he became unresponsive on May 25.
The bill permits qualified Americans to carry a concealed handgun into another state that already allows individuals to carry concealed firearms.
“A qualified individual must (1) be eligible to possess, transport, or receive a firearm under federal law; (2) carry a valid photo identification document; and (3) carry a valid concealed carry permit issued by any state or be eligible to carry a concealed firearm in his or her state of residence,” a summary of the bill said.
The proposed legislation exempts the qualified person, who carries a concealed handgun interstate, from being subject to any federal ban on carrying a firearm in a school zone. It also permits qualified individuals to carry a handgun on federally owned land that is open to the public.
The SBTC revealed its members do not wish to keep risking their lives to earn a living without any real means of defending themselves.
“Life-threatening dangers on the road now call for immediate federal preemption of state/local gun restrictions on truckers as they constitute unreasonable interference with interstate commerce,” SBTC Executive Director James Lamb said in an open letter addressed to Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao.
Lamb believes the civil unrest is worsening “by the hour” and state legislatures have started ordering residents to stay at home.
“Stay-at-home orders [are] affecting 20 percent of Americans, causing metropolitan areas to now be desolate,” he said. “With cities like New York and Los Angeles releasing criminals from jails, now more than ever are there significant life threatening dangers to the men and women who drive trucks as America’s supply chain first responders.”
He described the situation as extremely critical and urged the Trump administration to swiftly allow truckers to carry concealed firearms, so they can defend themselves.
“Therefore, in accordance with the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, we hereby request the U.S. Department of Transportation please issue a preemption order nullifying any and all state and local laws that restrict truck drivers from carrying firearms across state lines throughout America in order to enable them to protect themselves and their cargo as they engage in interstate commerce,” he said. “As this is now a matter of life and death please issue same forthwith.”