James W. Currin, of Wilmington, North Carolina is a staunch supporter of both the NRA and the Second Amendment. Just ask him. Or you can read his recent letter to the editor, Gun bills go too far in Friday’s Wilmington Star News. Currin is philosophically opposed to constitutional carry.
Two bills being considered in the N.C. House … would eliminate the requirement to obtain a permit in order to carry a concealed weapon. Both bills are completely irresponsible.
Then he provides his bona fides:
I strongly support both the Second Amendment and the NRA, but…
Yes, Currin is what David Codrea refers to as a “big but” supporter of the Second Amendment; “Of course I support the Second Amendment, BUT …”
The nice thing about Currin and his ilk is that they’re relatively easy to identify; just watch them any time someone proposes treating the Second Amendment as if it protects a natural, fundamental, and inalienable, human, individual, civil and Constitutional right to own and carry the weapon(s) of your choice. That’s when you’ll see these “big but” supporters start sweating, their eyes twitch and you can almost hear their knickers knot up.
“Oh well we don’t want to be extremists” they’ll whimper. “We’re not opposed to common sense safety measures” they’ll whine. And you’ll find that they keep opposing “irresponsible” legislation that tries to remove some of the 20,000 unconstitutional restrictions and infringements on a civil right that’s supposed to be absolute.
Anyway, to continue with Jim’s reasoned objections,
I strongly support both the Second Amendment and the NRA, but to eliminate the requirement that individuals have at least the basic skills to safely use a firearm is irrational.
I don’t know about Jim, but before I got my permit to carry (hereinafter PTC), heck, before I even got my first pistol, I made sure I knew the rules of gun safety, learned Minnesota’s applicable laws, and thought about the implications of owning a weapon. How would I store it, would it be safe in my home, what would happen if someone broke in and threatened me; in short I thoroughly examined the implications of having a gun.
When I bought my first pistol (and second, and third and …), as soon as I got home I read the owner’s manual to learn the specifics of that weapon. I even taught my housemate the Four Rules, and took him to the range to familiarize him with pistols and gun safety. Indeed, I know a bunch of permit holders and gun owners (shocking, I know) and, except for those who grew up in shooting families, just about every single one of them went through a similar process before getting their first weapon and/or permit.
In fact, I only know of one person who didn’t do any prep work before she got her gun and permit, a Brady Campaign board member, anti-gun protestor and author named Heidi Yewman. She wanted to make the point that you can be a completely irrational, irresponsible idiot and carry a gun, and oh boy, did she.
Also, the conceal permit approval process provides a background check that excludes many criminals and individuals with a history of mental health issues from having legal access to a concealed firearm.
First, as a non-big-but supporter of the Second Amendment, it’s my belief that the sole reason someone should not be “allowed” to exercise their natural, fundamental, and inalienable human, individual, civil and Constitutional right to own and carry the weapon of their choice is if they are locked up, either in prison or in a mental health/chemical dependency treatment program. As Codrea so eloquently puts it, anyone who can’t be trusted with a firearm can’t be trusted without a custodian.
Second, those criminals and mentally ill are prohibited by law “from having legal access to” any firearm, concealed or not. Now, who here thinks that not having a PTC will deter any of those folks from carrying a gun?
Third, I would argue with the claim that these checks exclude “many” unauthorized folks from getting a permit. I don’t know how it works in North Carolina, but in Minnesota the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension keeps track of PTC statistics and issues an annual report.
According to a 2016 report, there were 73,880 applications and 585 denials. Of those denials, 171 were because the sheriff decided the applicant was a “danger to self or others” (see above for “then why are they walking the streets?”) and 20 were for failure to take an approved PTC class. So as many as 394 permits could have been denied for criminal histories. In other words, slightly more than ½ of 1 percent of applicants which certainly does not meet my personal definition of “many”.
Currin finishes with gem:
Approval of these bills would significantly increase the danger to law enforcement officers and communities in general.
Is someone who would be willing to shoot a cop going to be discouraged by not having a PTC? Or will people who no longer pay $80 and submit their fingerprints somehow become horrific dangers to the community?
I don’t think that the legislators are the ones who are being irrational here Mr. Currin.