Oooh boy. I gotta watch the state legislature closer. WRAL just dropped this gem of an article talking about a bill I hadn’t heard of in the NC House that passed out of committee today. It would allow handguns to be kept locked up in the car while on college campuses (better than what we have now) and legalize restaurant carry. The article gives the first quote to Paul Valone, President of GRNC, probably meant to make him seem like a wingnut: “With respect to the campus provisions on this bill, frankly, it’s more limited than we wanted.” All it makes me think is that GRNC is awesome.
Then the article, written by Mark Binker (the mastermind behind WRAL’s concealed carry permit database), quotes three other people on what a bad idea guns locked in car trunks on campus would be. The closest thing to a coherent argument comes right before probably the worst argument of the whole article:
Jack Moorman, chief of the North Carolina State University Police Department, also said allowing guns on campus was a bad idea. Thefts from cars are one of the most frequent crimes on campus, he said. As well, the campus has experience with concealed handgun permit holders who were either carrying on campus illegally or acting out in other ways.
“We had an individual who communicated threats to the President of the United States on our campus, and he actually had a CCW permit,” Moorman said. “So, some of these individuals who have CCW permits are not people we feel comfortable about carrying a firearm on our campus.”
I can see the point about thefts from cars, but the anecdotal evidence of one guy being taken to represent all CHP holders is ridiculous. I had my CHP while I was an NCSU student, but because I acted like a normal, unremarkable, law-abiding citizen he doesn’t talk about me. Classic sampling bias.
The article then moves on to fairly garden-variety discussion of restaurant carry (“I carry but don’t drink; why should I be disarmed at Applebee’s?”) that evolves in to a deliciously ironic opposition:
Rep. Deborah Ross, D-Wake, who represents the restaurant-rich downtown Raleigh and Glenwood South neighborhoods, said she had heard from many constituents who did not want patrons carrying guns into their bars and restaurants. This measure would require that they post a “no firearms” sign in order to prohibit guns on the premises.
“I have heard from a number of my constituents who own bars and restaurants who don’t want to have to be the ones putting up a sign,” Ross said. “They’re afraid of being targeted.”
Business owners who post such signs have sometimes become the subject of campaigns by gun rights groups, who urge boycotts.
In other words, “We know that people don’t like this policy, so instead of letting the market favor liberty we need the government to keep the blanket ban so we won’t lose money while we deny people their rights.” As a resident of Wake County who does not reside in Deborah Ross’ little Gerrymander of a district, it’s a shame I can’t vote against her in the next election.
Nonetheless, and glossing over the second, sensational anecdote to discredit CHP holders, we get to the best part of the article (emphasis in original):
Democratic amendments fail
Rep. Darren Jackson, D-Wake, tried to amend the bill four different times, failing each time on a party-line vote or a voice vote.
One of his amendments would have required concealed handgun permit holders to pass the same tests for accuracy and judgment that law enforcement officers do.
Current law requires that that permit holders pass only a test standing still. That’s far from a real-world situation, Jackson said.
Of course, the fact that even law enforcement are generally only required to qualify standing still doesn’t really matter, does it?
Then again, facts don’t seem to be this guy’s strong suit:
“The Second Amendment doesn’t cover my proficiency,” Shaffer responded.
That prompted Jackson to respond that the U.S. Supreme Court hasn’t granted a blanket ability to keep and bear arms.