Chicago: 83 Applications for Handgun Licenses vs. 100,000+ Illegal Guns

According to chicagotribune.com, “As of Monday, police said they had accepted 83 applications for gun permits since the process started two weeks ago.” That’s in stark contrast to the enormous population of illegal guns in the hands of otherwise legal citizens in the City of Chicago. There are a number of possible explanations for the non-rush to satisfy the City’s new requirements for handgun ownership . . .

1. Timing – Applicants for Chicago’s handgun license must have an Illinois Firearms Owner Identification (FOID) card. [Click here for the form.] To get a FOID card, a Chicago resident must complete four hours of approved firearms classroom training, and another hour on an approved gun range. The McDonald decision striking down the City’s handgun ban arrived on June 2. After an applicant satisfies the training and documentation requirements, it takes at least one month to obtain the card. So it’s reasonable to assume that the majority of those 83 applicants already had an FOID card. And that there will be more applicants in the days to come. Although . . .

2. Hassle – There are no gun ranges in Chicago. Nor will there be. Mayor Daley’s post-McDonald gun regulations ban firearms stores within city limits. [Click here to download Chicago's current gun control ordinances.] What are the odds that the City Council would approve planning permission for a gun range? Bottom line: Chicago residents must spend the time and money to travel outside the city to get the training they need for an FOID card and the signed affidavit required by the chicago police for a handgun license. A working stiff would be stuffed. Which leads us to . . .

3. Culture – “Have you ever been adjudicated a delinquent minor for the commission of an offense that if committed by an adult would be a felony?” Say what? That’s question nine on the Illinois FOID application. While an applicant can ask someone for a translation, the form’s language highlights the gap between the average Chicago citizen and the government bureaucracy that controls firearms licensing. Truth be told, most people can’t stand red tape. They avoid it like the plague.

4. Mistrust – How do you think the average Chicago resident feels about contacting the police about guns? Do you think they trust Mayor Daley’s mob not to take punitive actions against them? BTW: the 90-day deadline to register an unregistered gun or face increased penalties ($5,000 fine and 90 days in jail) is in effect. It’s only a matter of time before the Chicago Police launch a major initiative against unregistered firearms that will further poison the well. Not that anyone knows about the new law . . .

5. Promotion - Click here to consider the efforts Illinois Department of Human Services puts into getting Chicago residents to sign-up for food stamps. And then there are the myriad of publicly funded charitable organizations who help guide people through the process. How much money do you think Chicago’s spending to tell residents that they now have a right to bear arms for self-defense, and then provide the assistance they need to successfully exercise that right? Well exactly.

6. – Utility - Your average Chicago resident may be concerned about home invasions, but they’re not stupid. They know that the majority of violent assaults occur on the street. They can lock their doors. Once they step outside their home, they’re at the mercy of gangs and drug abusers. That’s where they feel the fear. And that’s where they can’t take their gun. In fact, ONE STEP outside their home with a legally registered gun and they’re looking at gun confiscation and a criminal record. Why bother?

As we predicted, nothing much has happened since the Supremes told Daley to THINK! It will take years for the NRA and others to clear the way for Chicago residents to embrace their Second Amendment rights.

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

7 Responses to Chicago: 83 Applications for Handgun Licenses vs. 100,000+ Illegal Guns

  1. avatarrob says:

    Another reason for the delay is that it is very difficult to get the appropriate application. Initially police stations throughout the city had the application form. Only problem was that the city then modified the form and the older one wasn't accepted so anyone who tried to submit the older form was turned away. The new ones are still not available at the police stations, only at the Chicago Police Dept. headquarters which for many means a long trip. It was also said that the form could be printed online from the CPD web site. Only problem was that the form on the site was on a yellow background. If your printer printed it on white paper again you were out of luck. If this keeps up I think most people will treat the permit requirement the same way they treated the ban. They will ignore it.

    • avatarChewbacca Defense says:

      On a related note, for the NJ DMV they can’t seem to put any of the paperwork for any task online. You have to go in there, get it from them, and then fill it out there…probably to find out you forgot something at home you need.

  2. avatarNeil says:

    Paperwork, fingerprints, photographs, fees, and background checks to allow people to carry a side-arm? What kind of nonsense is this?

    The right of self-defense is a corollary to the right to life; to deny one is to deny the other. The purpose of government is to insure our rights, not to infringe on them.

    The fact is that governments should not be involved in permitting the carriage of weapons, either openly or concealed, by anyone.

    Our constitution states that the right of the people to keep (possess) and bear (carry) arms shall not be infringed. Marbury v. Madison (1803) decided that the Constitution is the supreme law of the land, and that any law that contradicts the Constitution is null and void. "The general rule is that an unconstitutional statute, though having the form and the name of law, is in reality no law, but is wholly void and ineffective for any purpose since unconstitutionality dates from the time of its enactment and not merely from the date of the decision so branding it; an unconstitutional law, in legal contemplation, is as inoperative as if it had never been passed … An unconstitutional law is void." (16 American Jurisprudence 2d, Sec. 178)

    In Murdock v. Pennsylvania (1943) the Supreme Court stated that a constitutionally-protected right may not be licensed, nor a fee charged. The Right to Keep and Bear Arms is one of those protected natural rights.

    In Shuttlesworth v. Birmingham, Alabama (1962) the Supreme Court decided that “If the state does convert a liberty into a privilege, the citizen can engage in the right with impunity.” (That means they can't punish you, folks!)

    To paraphrase an oft-quoted movie line, "Permits? We don' need no steenking permits!"

  3. avatarExNuke says:

    I'm still hoping that someone will file a class action suite against Daley, the city council and the city of Chicago to compensate ALL the people that have been wrongly arrested, fined and jailed under the color of Chicago's previous unconstitutional "laws". Every gun that was ever stolen under those laws should be paid for or replaced (hint for Daley: You can probably get a discount for the thousands of guns you need to buy). When they finish with the first suite they can bring charges against Daley and his co-conspirators for civil rights violations.

  4. avatarJoe Snuffy says:

    You don't need any training to get the FOID card. You can apply for that directly; it's issued by the State and has nothing to do with the extra Chicago requirements. To get the Chicago Firearms Permit, you need to take the 5 hour class.

  5. avatarVictor says:

    I know I’m a little late to this argument but I just wanted to say that I just applied for my Chicago Firearms Permit. Here are the steps…

    1 – Apply for your FOID card. This, you get from the State, not the City. Go to the Illinois State Police web site and download the application form. You need to provide your drivers license number and other information. Before mailing it in, go to Walgreens (or wherever) and take two passport size pictures. In fact, ask for TWO sets (you’ll use the second set later). Mail in the application with two pictures and a check for $10 to the ISP in Springfield.

    2 – In about three weeks, you should get your FOID card. Once its in your possession, download the forms for the Chicago permit from the Chicago Police website. All the permits are available and they don’t need to be printed in color. When I handed my forms in, the police officer said nothing. Now, make an appointment with a trainer and take the four hour training class. Be sure to take a day off from work or enroll for a Saturday class. The classroom stuff can be boring but, as a beginner, I found it to be quite interesting. You’ll be surprised that the material isn’t all about how guns are evil. Pay attention in class since there’s a written test at the end. After the class, you’ll drive to the suburbs for range time where you’ll fire off 50 rounds. You’ll be loading the mags yourself, by the way.

    3 – Take the paperwork your instructor gives you and fill out all the CFP forms. Make copies of all forms. Now, you might need to take yet another day off (or at least get into the office late) because you’ll take all the forms, the two remaining photos and a check for $100 to 4775 S Kedzie. It’s a block or two north of the Kedzie stop on the Orange Line. The office is in a mall (you’ll recognize it by the “city of Chicago” sign). You must get there by 4:30p and they’re only open Monday thru Friday. Once you get there, go all the way to the back and you’ll see a desk marked “gun registration”. Hand over all the paperwork, then you’ll be asked to go all the way back to the very front and stand in line for payment. Once that’s dos, you’ll go back to the original desk and they’ll take your fingerprints. Once that’s done, you’ll go back to the “gun registration” desk where they’ll file your paperwork and you should be getting your CFP in about three weeks.

    Once you get the CFP, you can go gun shopping but I suggest that you go to your favorite gun store and make friends with the people behind the counter. Try out a few firearms ( am leaning towards the Glock 17 9mm myself). His way, you’ll be ready to get a handgun as soon as your permit arrives.

    VERY IMPORTANT! ONCE YOU GET YOUR FIREARM, FILL OUT THE REGISTRATION CARD AND EITHER MAIL IT TO THE S. MICHIGAN CPD HQ OR TAKE IT TO THE S. KEDZIE LOCATION IN PERSON WITHIN FIVE DAYS.

    The City is majorly pissed that the handgun ban is overturned and will do anything in its power to make your life miserable and that includes denying registration if you are over the time limit.

  6. avatarRalph says:

    Will a Chicago permit be a public record?

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