Robert can wax prophetically about the virtues of pistol-packing, but traveling interstate with your pistola ranks right up there with syphilis. It will make you yearn for Alexander Hamilton to reincarnate and deem all of the power of licensing to the federal government. But alas, we have to put up with restrictive state covenants that make it darn near impossible to keep up with all the local laws and licensing bureaus. Luckily, the state of Utah has reciprocity with an ever-changing 33 states. This makes it the most sought-after CCW license to obtain . . .
Simple math tells us that it’s easier to list the states that don’t recognize Utah’s permit than those who do. No surprises here.
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
The supposed “scam” part of the program: most of the states that recognize Utah’s concealed carry permit have more stringent qualification procedures than the Beehive State. For example, Utah doesn’t require any actual firing of firearms training or shooting qualification tests. A four-hour course and you’re good to stow.
I recently took the Utah concealed carry course in New York. In terms of handling of firearms and the legal issues surrounding armed self-defense, it’s all boilerplate stuff. This is a semi, this is a revolver, the bullets go here, your muzzle doesn’t go there. Don’t shoot until Donny Osmond gives you the all clear—I mean, don’t shoot unless you and/or an innocent third party are in imminent danger of death or dismemberment.
I picked up a few useful tidbits. For example, Utah law says it is OK to fire when mayhem ensues. The 45th state defines “mayhem” as when sword-wielding pirates attack a social hall with the purpose of willfully and unlawfully crippling or mutilating another human being. Cool shit.
Another interesting tidbit: in Utah, it’s OK to pull the trigger in a carjacking if the carjacker is forcefully trying to enter the vehicle. Gently rapping on the window? Not so much. In New York City, you have to carry the pistol and ammo in a locked briefcase in the trunk—unless you have a City-issued concealed carry permit. Which are harder to get than a bris in Daggett County (UT).
I asked the instructor how he came to be registered with the Utah Bureau of Criminal Identification. Teach’s real job is armed security guard training. The Utah concealed carry permit roadshow added something else to his repertoire (like cash). He had to fly into Salt Lake City and take the training in state, but now can do it on the road whenever there is an audience willing to pay his fee and the $62.50 to the State of Utah.
The next time one of these guys rolls into town (local gun clubs usually have the skinny), it’s not a bad way to spend four hours. You then get to carry a concealed weapon in a whole bunch of states. You won’t know much about drawing and firing said weapon, un less you already do. Common sense suggests you’ll get that training elsewhere. Right?