Category Archives: Concealed carry laws

The challenge ahead

Background reading:

“Gun Owners ‘Can Breathe Again’: Trump’s Win Emboldens Advocates,” New York Times, 11/22/16

“The Threat to Public Safety if ‘Concealed Carry’ Goes National,” editorial, New York Times, 12/1/16

“Gun-rights backers vow to ‘go on offense’ during Trump years,” philly.com, updated 12/4/16

and on the more positive side:

“Gun Control Advocates Find a Deep-Pocketed Ally in Big Law,” New York Times, 12/7/16

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Making a Killing: The business and politics of selling guns

by Evan Osnos, The New Yorker, 6/27/16

Bars in the Old City neighborhood of Philadelphia let out at 2 A.M. On the morning of January 17, 2010, two groups emerged, looking for taxis. At the corner of Market and Third Street, they started yelling at each other. On one side was Edward DiDonato, who had recently begun work at an insurance company, having graduated from Villanova University, where he was a captain of the lacrosse team. On the other was Gerald Ung, a third-year law student at Temple, who wrote poetry in his spare time and had worked as a technology consultant for Freddie Mac. Both men had grown up in prosperous suburbs: DiDonato in Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, outside Philadelphia; Ung in Reston, Virginia, near Washington, D.C.

Everyone had been drinking, and neither side could subsequently remember how the disagreement started; one of DiDonato’s friends may have kicked in the direction of one of Ung’s friends, and Ung may have mocked someone’s hair. “To this day, I have no idea why this happened,” Joy Keh, a photographer who was one of Ung’s friends at the scene, said later.

The argument moved down the block, and one of DiDonato’s friends, a bartender named Thomas V. Kelly IV, lunged at the other group. He was pushed away before he could throw a punch. He rushed at the group again; this time, Ung pulled from his pocket a .380-calibre semiautomatic pistol, the Kel-Tec P-3AT. Only five inches long and weighing barely half a pound, it was a “carry gun,” a small, lethal pistol designed for “concealed carry,” the growing practice of toting a hidden gun in daily life. Two decades ago, leaving the house with a concealed weapon was strictly controlled or illegal in twenty-two states, and fewer than five million Americans had a permit to do so. Since then, it has become legal in every state, and the number of concealed-carry permit holders has climbed to an estimated 12.8 million….

read more at The New Yorker

Making a Killing: The business and politics of selling guns.

By Evan Osnos, The New Yorker, 6/27/16

Bars in the Old City neighborhood of Philadelphia let out at 2 A.M. On the morning of January 17, 2010, two groups emerged, looking for taxis. At the corner of Market and Third Street, they started yelling at each other. On one side was Edward DiDonato, who had recently begun work at an insurance company, having graduated from Villanova University, where he was a captain of the lacrosse team. On the other was Gerald Ung, a third-year law student at Temple, who wrote poetry in his spare time and had worked as a technology consultant for Freddie Mac. Both men had grown up in prosperous suburbs: DiDonato in Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, outside Philadelphia; Ung in Reston, Virginia, near Washington, D.C.

Everyone had been drinking, and neither side could subsequently remember how the disagreement started; one of DiDonato’s friends may have kicked in the direction of one of Ung’s friends, and Ung may have mocked someone’s hair. “To this day, I have no idea why this happened,” Joy Keh, a photographer who was one of Ung’s friends at the scene, said later.

The argument moved down the block, and one of DiDonato’s friends, a bartender named Thomas V. Kelly IV, lunged at the other group. He was pushed away before he could throw a punch. He rushed at the group again; this time, Ung pulled from his pocket a .380-calibre semiautomatic pistol, the Kel-Tec P-3AT. Only five inches long and weighing barely half a pound, it was a “carry gun,” a small, lethal pistol designed for “concealed carry,” the growing practice of toting a hidden gun in daily life. Two decades ago, leaving the house with a concealed weapon was strictly controlled or illegal in twenty-two states, and fewer than five million Americans had a permit to do so. …

read more at The New Yorker. The photo caption sums it up: “Last year, mass shootings accounted for just two per cent of American gun deaths. Most gun violence is impulsive and up close.”

2nd Amendment Does Not Guarantee Right to Carry Concealed Guns, Court Rules

By ADAM NAGOURNEY and ERIK ECKHOLM, New York Times, JUNE 9, 2016

LOS ANGELES — A federal appeals court in San Francisco ruled Thursday that the Second Amendment of the Constitution does not guarantee the right of gun owners to carry concealed weapons in public places, upholding a California law that imposes stringent conditions on who may be granted a concealed-carry permit.

The 7-to-4 ruling by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in San Francisco, overturned a decision by a three-judge panel of the same court and was a setback for gun advocates. The California law requires applicants to demonstrate “good cause” for carrying a weapon, like working in a job with a security threat — a restriction sharply attacked by gun advocates as violating the Second Amendment right to bear arms.

“Based on the overwhelming consensus of historical sources, we conclude that the protection of the Second Amendment — whatever the scope of that protection may be — simply does not extend to the carrying of concealed firearms in public by members of the general public,” the court said in a ruling written by Judge William A. Fletcher….

read more at New York Times

Thousands Petition To Allow Guns At Republican Convention For ‘Safety’

by Andy Campbell, Huffington Post, 3/26/16

Tens of thousands of people have signed a petition calling for Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland to allow guns at the Republican National Convention — all in the name of safety.

The Change.org petition, which had more than 26,000 supporters as of Saturday evening, claims that the arena’s weapon ban makes those who attend the RNC in July “sitting ducks, utterly helpless against evil-doers and criminals.”

It’s addressed to Republican candidates like Donald Trump, who’s quoted as promising to eliminate gun-free zones in schools should he be elected.

“Cleveland, Ohio is consistently ranked as one of the top ten most dangerous cities in America,” the petition states. “By forcing attendees to leave their firearms at home, the RNC and Quicken Loans Arena are putting tens of thousands of people at risk both inside and outside of the convention site.”

The argument that gun-free zones are dangerous is thrown around loosely in political circles. It’s often legitimized by misguided anecdotes….

read more and see news video at Huffington Post

Guns RNC petition
Above is the beginning of the petition at change.org. Read the text there.

Open Carry / Concealed Carry: Both Make Us Less Safe

By Tom Buglio

Open Carry makes society more dangerous

A man in Colorado Springs was openly carrying a rifle, looking distraught.  A neighbor called 911, and was informed that Colorado is an ‘open carry state,’ so no police were dispatched.  A few minutes later, he shot and killed a boy on a bicycle, with the same caller calling 911 again.  The shooter killed 3 people before being shot by the police.  Without universal background checks, and no requirement for gun safety training, open carry is a dangerous law.

 Concealed Carry also makes us less safe

The more that sensational gun violence afflicts the nation, the more the myth of the vigilant citizen packing a legally permitted concealed weapon, fully prepared to stop the next mass shooter in his tracks, is promoted.  This foolhardy notion of quick-draw resistance, however, is dramatically contradicted by a research project showing that, since 2007, at least 763 people have been killed in 579 shootings that did not involve self-defense.

Tellingly, the vast majority of these concealed-carry, licensed shooters killed themselves or others rather than taking down a perpetrator. The death toll includes 29 mass killings of three or more people by concealed carry shooters who took 139 lives; 17 police officers shot to death, and – in the ultimate contradiction of concealed carry as a personal safety factor – 223 suicides. Compared with the 579 non-self-defense, concealed-carry shootings, there were only 21 cases in which self-defense was determined to be a factor.

Statistics compiled by the Violence Policy Center