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Utah concealed carry permits (courtesy

We recently reported on a New Jersey resident who spent three years fighting for his concealed carry permit — a prima facie unconstitutional barrier to his gun rights. Meanwhile, Bee Hive State residents are applying for their equally unconstitutional carry permits in droves, despite issues with Utah’s fingerprinting system.


A crackdown on illegible fingerprints has failed to slow sustained increases in the number of concealed-carry firearm permits being granted in Utah.

The state counted 662,720 valid concealed-carry permits as of June 30, the end of the most recent fiscal year, data from the Bureau of Criminal Identification shows. That’s an increase of 8.3 percent over the previous year, and 74.3 percent over five years ago . . .

Chapman said the biggest change in concealed-carry permitting over time has been the number of applicants per year. “Back in 2008 and 2009, we had about 44,000 applications,” he said. “Now we get double, sometimes triple that.”

Needless to say any mainstream media outlet worth its civilian disarmament salt (i.e. all of them) has to throw some cold water on what is, without doubt, good news for American gun rights.

Robert Wadman, of Eden, an emeritus professor of criminal justice at Weber State University, said it’s easy to explain the popularity of concealed-carry permits.

“There is a high amount of fear,” he said. “In this environment right now, with multiple shootings and terrorism and increased media attention, it increases the level of fear in the hearts of a lot of people, and so it helps the gun companies sell more guns.”

Each year in Utah, thousands of concealed-carry permit applications are denied, or existing permits are suspended or revoked when background checks are made.

Yes, well, reports that, “Nationally the number of concealed carry permits has increased from 240,000 issued a year between 1999 and 2007 to 1.7 million this year.”

Once again, I’d like to point out that there are two Americas: small government states and statist states. How that resolves itself — if it ever does — remains the important question for liberty-loving Americans. Watch this space and keep your powder dry.

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  1. It could easily be a statement of the political volatility in these times as well. Getting a CCW permit makes a statement on where you stand with the issue.

      • Maybe non-resident permit applications are driving the increase.
        Utah permit is recognized in States that may not recognize a person’s home State Permit.

        • ^^This^^

          I’m going go out on a limb and say Arizona’s CCW permits are rather high over the past several years for the same reason.

  2. Are these in state or out of state numbers or combined? Because there is a UTAH Permit sign on just about every gun shop I visit.

    • I’d bet it includes both in and out of state permits. I know a lot of people (gunnies) in my state that have Utah permits as well since the Utah permit gives you reciprocity with a lot of states. A lot of folks have the Florida permit for similar reasons.

      Where I live, a lot of people have 3 CCW permits. They have one for our state, then a Utah one for reciprocity with a lot of other states, and then an Oregon one since they don’t accept anybody else’s permit.

  3. Utah has a population of about 3 million people and 600k+ CCW permits or 20% of its population.
    New Jersey has a population of 9 million people and less than 2,000 CCW permits or .0002% of the population.

    New Jersey uses its “justifiable need” regulation to deny its population their second amendment rights and openly violates the US Constitution.

    As in the recent lawsuit against the state as soon as the case gets far enough and a person is forced to spend tens of thousands in legal fees the state gives out 1 CCW permit then claims the plantif has no standing because they now have a CCW permit and the case gets thrown out after a 3 year court battle.

    New Jersey is the model that all states will follow that want to take away your rights, what happens in New Jersey does not stay in New Jersey fight with us.

  4. I have a nonresident permit from Utah but only because I spend a lot of time in the state. I took the carry class while in Utah to learn the local laws. You can carry in bars, schools and other places that are prohibited in other states. “No guns” signs posted by businesses have no legal weight (not that I’ve seen any).

  5. Utah has reciprocity with a lot of states so the non resident permit is pretty popular. Here in oregon lots of places offer a utah specific permit class. Ive considered it because with an oregon and utah permit i can carry in like 38 or so states. Fun fact: washington state doesnt accept oregons permit but they do accept utahs.

    • That is probably due to the fact that Oregon does not accept ANY OTHER STATE’S CONCEALED CARRY PERMIT!
      If Oregon accepted Washington’s permit, then Washington would accept Oregon’s.

      Oregon sucks in that it doesn’t accept anybody else’s permit. That means that all of us in neighboring states have to get an Oregon one as well if we want to carry when we go to Oregon.

      At least Oregon is a “shall issue” state, and will give everyone a permit who wants a permit, and completes the requirements for one (including out of state folks). In this sense, I think the Oregon state government is just being irritating and greedy, not hoplophobic like California is. Cali. doesn’t take anybody else’s permit, and won’t give one to anyone either.

      • True, Oregon is not like CA yet, but the current un-elected and soon to probably be re-elected governor has publicly stated that we need to follow CAs lead with regard to 2A issues with background checks to by ammunition, capacity limits on magazines and ridding the state of the evil black guns. Unfortunately, Portland and Eugene dictate the outcome of all statewide elections and spineless politicians of the democrat persuasion continue to vote along strict party lines regardless of their 2A views or those of the people they represent. Sadly, the people they represent keep voting for them too.

      • Worth noting: Oregon is only “Shall Issue” for Oregon residents. They are “may issue” for neighboring states only (certain Sheriffs have a reputation for, essentially, being shall issue), and “no issue” for all other states. I live in a neighboring state (WA) and have my OR CHL (in addition to my WA CPL). Looking at reciprocity maps, the best next conceal carry license to get, for me, in terms of sheer numbers of states I would be legal in, would be an Idaho Enhanced license; it would get me 8 more states. With just the OR and WA ones I am already legal for 27 states (which includes Idaho, which is good, since that is the other neighboring state); not terrible, but could use improvement.

    • Wes,
      I’m sorry if that last response sounded a bit harsh, like I was jumping on you. It isn’t your fault that Oregon doesn’t accept any out of state permits. Just remember that the problem is the Oregon law, not the law of the surrounding states.

  6. “A crackdown on illegible fingerprints” and yet will prosecute using the same prints …………

  7. “terrorism and increased media attention, it increases the level of fear in the hearts of a lot of people, and so it helps the gun companies sell more guns.”

    Satisfying a need where governments fail. Governments provide safe haven for illegals, which then prey on citizens. They import third world illiterates who have no understanding of a democratic culture, then commit crimes allowed by a religion or acceptable with their culture. 36% of federal prisons are illegals…Americans pay for their incarceration. Billions could go for teachers, instead we get guards, brick barb wire and fences for people who don’t belong here.

    It’s not about fear or the media, when government fails to protect, people protect themselves.

    • Not only that but the guy twists it to complain about gun companies being able to sell more guns as a result.
      What kind of guns are they selling more of? Low capacity personal defense weapons? Oh, the horror!

    • It’s very pretty, but it does a very poor job of giving perspective to the increase. The larger circle may have double the area of the smallest one, but it sure doesn’t look double to the eye. Done on purpose to minimize the impact of the numbers? I dunno. Coming from the Tribune, it wouldn’t be surprising.

  8. Bottom line. Utah is an awesome place to live if you’re a gun guy. Source: I live there.

  9. I live in Utah too – the Standard Examiner article does not say what percentage of the increase is out of state, but it does say: “BCI data shows that 424,325 non-residents held permits as of June 30, compared to 228,395 Utahns.” So call it 2/3s out of state. About 8% of Utah residents have a CCW on these numbers. I’ve yet to find any state that has a CCW laws that are as favorable to permit holders. Even Arizona falls far below Utah – there you can’t carry if there is a sign, can’t carry in bars (if you constitutional carry and if there is a sign, not at all), can’t carry on school grounds and can’t carry while having a drink. In Utah, you can carry in all of those places (including K-12 public schools).

  10. If you have an home state ccw the enhance idaho non residents permit is an good travler ccw too if you can the fire train and all other requiment outsite idaho do

    The home state requiment (only for enhance non resdident applies) is somethink for an remove notice in “future” same for the residents limit on constitunal carry

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