Your editorial about Maryland's concealed carry gun law supports the state's policy of requiring "good and substantial reason" for issuing a permit ("Guns and safety," Aug. 5). While I agree that our civil rights may not be absolute (e.g. yelling "fire" in a crowded theater), no one should have to have a "good and substantial reason" for exercising them. I suspect that even your editorialist would object to needing a "good and substantial reason" in order to exercise his right to express an opinion.
When law-abiding citizens who meet the requirements for purchasing firearms are allowed to carry them concealed, crime goes down. Criminals are less likely to commit crimes when they are aware that legal firearms are available to thwart their intentions. Author John Lott documented this effect in his book, "More Guns, Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun Control Laws."