Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Main site homepage

Gun Violence and Libraries: What's the Law?

Resources for libraries on addressing policies, education, and training on gun violence.

Federal Laws

State Gun Laws


Right to Carry - Laws which allow individuals to carry concealed handguns if they meet other state-legislated criteria.

Concealed Carry - The practice of carrying weapon, typically a handgun, in public in a concealed manner

Open Carry - The practice of allowing the permitted gun owner to carry a firearm on one's person in public

Stand Your Ground - Also called "no duty to retreat". Such laws remove the duty to retreat before using force in self-defense or to protect others from threats.

Castle Doctrine - A person attacked in his home can use reasonable force--including deadly force--to protect himself or another. Each state has different legal provisions.  Appears to have come from the English common law allowing protection of one's home -- or castle.

Strawman Purchase - A loophole in licensing. A felon, or someone unable to purchase legally, arranges with someone who can to acquire a weapon.