After having spent several years in Ohio (a place a did like very much) collecting guns and having a concealed carry permit recognized by the two states I visit most, I took an opportunity to make a quick buck in Virginia. After moving to VA, I found myself looking at a job opportunity in Maryland which has turned out to be a good job. However, I had originally intended to avoid living in Maryland due to the state's gun laws (mostly in regards to their May Issue concealed carry policy). I moved in because the job location made it impractical to live out of state; it's at least an hours' drive in any direction and that's with good traffic.
At first the laws weren't all that bad, but after having been here almost two years the folks in Annapolis decided to make life even harder for the gun owner. It should be noted for me, guns are not for hunting, they are for defense. I've never hunted (and would actually like to go once) but for the most part, I'm not into killing animals; I like meat and yes I know where it comes from.
Severe legislation such as training and licensing qualifications on handgun ownership (just to own), excessive training requirements on CCW applicants (still May Issue), 10 round magazine limit (it was 20 rounds) and a ban on the majority of semi automatic rifles (including the M1a...) have made the gun control complex very happy but it severely restricts access to the most effective tools for self-defense.
I am happy to say that the turn out to fight against SB281, or what is now known as the Firearm Safety Act of 2013, by pro-gun people, was amazing. At least 1000 people were around to voice their opinions against the legislation. Unfortunately the gun owner didn't win; but that was to be expected since Maryland is one of the super-left leaning, high crime states.
I think the "assault rifle" ban is here to stay along with the magazine limit and licensing but I very much hope that the May Issue concealed carry laws get changed. That may be the only victory for the freedom loving people here in Maryland.
I may come across as disappointed (which I am) but I take solace in knowing that states like Maryland, California, Hawaii and New York are the minority and that out of 50 states, ~40 are Shall Issue conceal carry or Constitutional Carry.
I am working on completing the Handgun Qualification License application which just needs the fingerprint cards (understand that Maryland treats gun owners a criminals) but I am very apprehensive about the prospect of licensing and registration of handguns in a state that can't be bothered to respect people. I intend to buy a new 1911 once I have received the card but after seeing how gun owners are bring treated by police officers and the current administration (Martin O'Malley) and the potential new governor Gansler, I feel Maryland is and will very quickly become one of the most dangerous and hostile places for a gun owner to live.
Stay Away from Maryland. If you already live here, well good luck and join Maryland Shall Issue.
Maryland Shall Issue