Interesting case about a fellow named David Scott Blackwell. Served a five-year sentence for selling unlicensed, unregulated, unbranded pharmaceuticals (drug dealing). After completing said sentence, he was fully pardoned in Georgia, which generally triggers a full restoration of one's rights.
Blackwell moved to Tennessee, and tried to get a concealed carry permit. He was denied despite the pardon. Right now the case it at the Tennessee Court of Appeals.
I'm quite the purist on the Second Amendment. I don't recall it making exceptions for any particular class of people, including those who have committed crimes.
If you've done the crime and paid the price - you should get your firearm back. (Except in the case of an execution. No sense in burying a perfectly good gun in a potter's field).
Continued denial of rights after serving one's sentence is a punishment in and of itself, and violates (in my opinion) the "cruel and unusual" provision, as well as any sense of rightness and proportionality.
In addition, with an array of ever-increasing laws, rules and regulations of which we're all supposed to be aware of ("ignorance of the law is no excuse!!!") it gets easier and easier to be dragged into the hungry maw of our "justice" system."
Prompt and full restoration of rights after completion of a sentence is only a small part of ameliorating this increasingly out of control situation, where in the quest for "law and order" we crush all notions of fairness and proportion.