The Concealed-Carry Reality

Is anyone at this point unaware that The New York Times believes that the Bill of Rights stops with the clause about a free press?  Some rights apparently are apparently more worth defending than others.  Last week, Twitter was aflame with tweets about an article, written anonymously by the Editorial Board, titled, “The Concealed-Carry Fantasy.”  The article is a compilation of opinion pieces that have appeared in the Times and a copy and paste of the Violence Policy Center’s “Firearm Justifiable Homicides and Non-Fatal Self-Defense Gun Use” and from the same group’s “Concealed Carry Killers.”

The VPC is well known to supporters of gun rights as an organization that never met a gun control measure that was sufficiently onerous for the group’s tastes.  We’re told by the VPC in “Concealed Carry Killers” that in the period Concealed Carry Lifestyle Ray H Duncan Best Price: $16.54 Buy New $12.05 (as of 02:30 EST - Details) between May 2007 and the present, 763 carry license holders have killed someone in a non-self-defense shooting, using their “concealed, loaded handguns.”  The implication we’re supposed to grasp is that people who carry a “concealed, loaded handgun” in public are a menace to society.

But delve into the numbers.  As admitted by the VPC, seventy-three of their examples are cases pending trial—in other words, still not proved guilty.  In the 579 incidents in which the total of 763 persons were killed, 223 involved the suicide of the carry license holder.  This fact alone should alert even gun control activists to a problem in the thinking.  If someone has decided to commit suicide—whether alone or with the intention to kill others in the Crippled America: How ... Donald J. Trump Best Price: $1.48 Buy New $8.97 (as of 03:40 EST - Details) process—a carry license is beside the point.  Are we being asked to believe that people take classes, apply for a license, and submit to the background checks so as to be able to carry a concealed handgun legally to the place they choose to die?  Even if we could find someone whose thinking is that bizarre, carrying with intent to endanger public safety is already against the rules.

Besides, as gun-free zones keep demonstrating, people with evil in their hearts will carry without seeking permission first.

The numbers aren’t so simple as we’re led to believe by the headline, but for the moment, let’s allow the VPC to hang on to its number.  How does that compare to the total number of people with carry licenses?  According to the Crime Prevention Research Center, as of last year, 11,113, 013 of us in the United States are licensed to carry a handgun.  Now yes, this is John Lott’s organization, but the data cited are from state records.  Perhaps gun control advocates will acknowledge that he and his people can use calculators.  This 11.1 million Americans does not include people who choose to carry in states such as Vermont in which no license is required.

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