The bill sitting on Quinn's desk is a hard-fought compromise between conservative downstate lawmakers who opposed most gun restrictions and anti-gun lawmakers from Chicago and other urban areas. The legislation requires state police to issue a concealed-carry permit to any gun owner with a state-issued Firearm Owners Identification card, and who passes a background check, pays a $150 fee and undergoes 16 hours of training.
Chicago is fairly famous for their high crime and murder rate. During a recent weekend, a gang war in Chicago resulted in 48 participants being shot, with 7 of them being killed. Until this new law takes place, only police, gang members, and other criminals have been free to carry weapons. Remember, criminals don’t care about any of our laws.
Quinn, a Chicago Democrat, has been quiet on his intentions with the legislation, his office saying he's "reviewing the bill carefully." But what he decides may be moot, given that the Legislature passed it by wide enough margins to override any veto.
It's not as stringent as concealed carry laws in California, New York and a handful of others states, which give law enforcement authorities more power to deny permits. But it's more restrictive than earlier proposals by gun rights advocates, including one that would have superseded all local gun restrictions. For example, it won't wipe out Chicago and Cook County's ban on assault weapons.
For me, it will be extremely interesting to watch the crime statistics for Chicago after this law goes into effect. I can’t help but believe that a bad guy just might be a little more careful in selecting his victims if there is a possibility they might be armed.
I happen to have a Concealed Carry Permit in the State of Arizona, and I do carry on occasion. I also belong to a local gun club and practice defensive pistol tactics at least once or twice a month. You will notice I used the word defensive? Concealed Carry Permit holders are not vigilantes. Using a deadly weapon is the last possible resort, and only if you fear for your life, or the lives of those you love, and then only if there is no other possible way to escape the situation. It is not legal to use deadly force to defend property such as your car, your watch, your wallet, or even your home, unless your life is being threatened.
To obtain my Concealed Carry Permit, I had to pay for the permit, submit a finger print card, agree to a background investigation, attend a mandatory 8 hours of classroom instruction, and demonstrate weapon proficiency at a gun range. They don’t hand these permits out like candy.
In the classroom portion of the training, the main emphasis is on when not to use the weapon you may now legally carry concealed. The students are warned that if they ever do shoot a bad guy, they will probably be sued in Civil Court, even if Law Enforcement rules it a justified shooting. Even if they kill the bad guy to save their own life, they should expect to be sued for millions of dollars by his surviving family members. The minimum legal expense they should expect is approximately $50,000 to defend themselves in court. There are lawyers who stand in line to handle this type of trial. That person, who kicked down your door and was trying to take your head off with a machete, was just a poor misguided youth who should not have been shot by you. This civil liability threat alone keeps most every CCW Permit holder I know from running around waving his or her gun in the air like a drunken cowboy in the old Western movies.
The most confusing part of Concealed Carry Laws regards knowing which other States recognize the Arizona issued permit as valid in their State. There are published lists on the Internet that cover reciprocity between States. When traveling by car, it is easy to be perfectly legal carrying your weapon until you cross a state line into the next state. It is then possible that you are instantly a criminal carrying a concealed weapon illegally in that state. Don’t ever think about crossing the line into the States of California or New York with your weapon concealed, or you could regret that mistake for a long time to come. It would be great if all of the States had exactly the same laws making the Concealed Carry Permit valid in all States.
Let Law Enforcement handle the problems:
It would be great if we could always count on law enforcement to respond within minutes to take care of life threatening situations for us. I live in a very rural area of Arizona. Average response time for Law Enforcement to my area is 30 minutes to one hour, if they have anyone available to send at that time. I can’t even imagine what it would be like sitting there defenseless for an hour waiting for the cops while some crazy maniac is trying to kick in the front door to my house. And to be perfectly honest with you, I will never experience this type situation because I have the necessary tools and knowledge to deal with a threat such as this.
A video that covers this subject very well:
“What’s that you ask? You thought that Homeland Security had sealed this border tight a long time ago?” Nothing could be further from the truth. The border fence you were told is 100% completed is entirely missing in many locations, and nothing but 3 strands of barbed wire in other places. I’m not certain if they purposely lied to us, or were just badly misinformed.
Do Concealed Carry States have a lower crime rate?
I honestly don’t know. The only real way to test this now would be to make concealed carry illegal and wait to see if the crime rates go up. I personally think that would be a very bad plan.
I found a quote online that said, “The nation’s murder rate is near a 40 year low and the number of privately owned guns in the U.S. is at an all-time high and rising by about 4.5 million annually. Right-to-Carry states had lower violent crime rates on the average than the rest of the country. Total violent crime in Right-to-Carry States was 24% lower; murder 28% lower; robbery 50% lower and aggravated assault 11% lower. The cities with the highest murder rates were cities with severe gun control.”
The quotation cited the FBI Crime Report, 2007 as its source.
There are many other factors that play into crime statistics that make these numbers fluctuate. Just population growth or population reduction in any area can change the crime statistic numbers. Keep in mind; it is people who commit crimes, not guns. The more people there are, the higher the crime rate.
You can do a Google search and find websites announcing that crime actually went up in those states that approved Concealed Carry Permits for their citizens who could meet all of the qualification requirements. The greatest thing about Google searches is that if we look long enough, we can find something that will support what we are trying to prove, no matter how incorrect that may be.
I’m not here to convince you that a citizen being approved to carry concealed weapons is a good thing, or a bad thing. That’s not my job or my place to do so. Only you can make this decision. At least all permit holders have been fingerprinted, had a background check, and proved they can handle their weapon of choice. I made my choice and went for the permit and the training.
There are those who were born or raised with the anti-gun philosophy, and that is OK. If they don’t like guns and have not been properly trained to use a gun, it is probably better they don’t have a gun, and I pray they never need one.
It was not that many years ago in the Old West when almost every adult male carried a gun. Then Law Enforcement slowly took over and encouraged everyone to put their guns away with the promise they would take care of protecting the citizens. Over the years, our laws have tied the hands of Law Enforcement to the point that there is not much they can do until a crime has actually been committed. Even if someone directly threatens you, there is little Law Enforcement can do until that person actually commits a crime. In many ways, we have now made it necessary for we citizens to once again be able to protect ourselves.
The beautiful thing about living in the United States is that owning and/or carrying a gun is a personal choice we are still allowed to make. Let’s hope it stays that way.
Thanks for taking the time to read this article. Comments are always welcome and appreciated.