The permit (or license if you will; I steer clear of that particular semantic trap) to carry a concealed weapon has been the subject of much debate over the last few decades. It wasn’t so long ago that there were seven states where the piece of paper that authorized you to carry a loaded, concealed handgun in public simply wasn’t available. Now there are two: Illinois and Wisconsin. The latter state came achingly close, only to be vetoed repeatedly by a governor who won’t be in office to do that the next time around. Look for Illinois to be the only holdout soon.
Having spent most of my life in New Hampshire, which issued carry permits regularly since long before this old man was born and reportedly was the lowest-crime state in the union last year – and now owning a home in Florida, which caused all manner of angst amongst the lightweights when it made carry permits readily available in the late ‘80s – I can testify that when good people carry guns, the streets don’t run red with blood. Quite the reverse, in fact.
As documented regularly here and elsewhere, Chicago’s Mayor Daley thinks otherwise. Surrounded by heavily armed bodyguards himself, he now flouts the United States Supreme Court itself after the recent McDonald decision. He ramrodded new rules in the windy city which will restrict law-abiding citizens to one functioning handgun in the household, subject to heavy licensing fees, massive liability insurance requirements, and among other ludicrous restrictions will not allow the owner to take it out of the house. How, then, will the owner be able to take it to a shooting range and learn to be safe and competent with it? How will he or she take a broken handgun to a gunsmith, to keep it in safe working order?
Look, on the other hand, to practical Utah. THIS link shows how popular their carry permit, the most widely recognized by other states in the land, has become.
Most of the rest of the country recognizes that those who pass the criminal record checks, etc. required for concealed carry permits are the kind of Good Guys and Gals the rest of society doesn’t have to worry about. It certainly seems to be the case in some quarters in Texas, as we see HERE.
Illinois’ sheriffs seem to be leaning toward concealed carry licensing. It will be offered in the Legislature in the next session in Springfield. Good luck to our logical, law-abiding brothers and sisters in Illinois. Perhaps they’ll one day be treated like free people…even if they have to get a non-resident permit from Utah or elsewhere, and leave home, to know what that feels like as of now.
More From Massad Ayoob Can Be Found Here