Three New Hampshire Democratic legislators have decided that it's too dangerous for law abiding citizens to be able to carry concealed firearms. They want to make it a lot more difficult to get a concealed carry permit from the local police departments. My question to these idiots is “Too dangerous for whom?” The answer is, of course, violent criminals.
To quote an e-mail from a good friend:
“Senate Bill 44, sponsored by Senator Peter Burling (D-District 5), and Representatives Lee Hammond (D-Grafton District 11) and John Tholl (R-Coos District 2), seeks to change the concealed carry licensing statute to make it easier for the issuing authority to deny a license. Further, the bill raises the standard by which attorney fees may be awarded in a lawsuit against an issuing authority for a violation of the licensing law to "gross negligence or malice," and removes the personal liability of the issuing officer.”
Sounds like a good idea right? But it's a smokescreen.
First of all, New Hampshire has a high percentage of citizens that own firearms. A goodly portion of them carry their firearms with them at all times. New Hampshire also has one of the lowest violent crime rates in the nation. The only states with lower crime rates also have rather liberal gun laws, allowing citizens to defend themselves against these criminal scumbags. Leaving the decision as whether or not to issue a permit to carry entirely to the discretion of police chief (usually the issuing authority) means that he or she would not have to justify denying a permit to a law abiding citizen. It could become all too arbitrary, as has happened in other states without “shall issue” protections built into law. This legislation would, in effect, remove those protections.
The proposed legislation is, quite frankly, a solution looking for a problem. It is very rare that one will find someone in New Hampshire committing a criminal act with a firearm that actually has a permit to carry a concealed weapon. Criminals don't bother with such niceties. They carry firearms regardless of what the law says, so the legislation will have absolutely no effect on them. It will only harm those that will no longer be able to legally defend themselves. This is something that I find the anti-gun forces have a difficult time understanding, so let me explain it in terms even they can (hopefully) understand:
Taking away the means to defend oneself from the predations of the criminal underclass does two things – it leaves people that were able to protect themselves defenseless, and it lets the criminal underclass know that their potential victims are now defenseless and easily preyed upon.
The law enforcement authorities cannot protect us because they can't be everywhere all the time. In most cases they will be there after the fact to collect evidence, interview witnesses (assuming anyone will be willing to speak up because they know the criminals will likely come after them if the do), take crime scene photos, and in many cases, help the coroner put your body into a body bag for its trip to the morgue.
All one needs to do is look at the UK as an example of why restricting gun ownership doesn't work. Private ownership of handguns is illegal, as is the use of deadly force to protect one's life or property. Violent crime has risen dramatically, including the number of what are called “push-in” burglaries, meaning the burglars break in even if they know the occupants of a residence are home.
That doesn't happen here very often because all too often the result is a dead burglar. Were sanity to return to the UK and its citizens allowed to own and/or carry guns, and be allowed to use deadly force, the violent crime rate would drop rapidly. It is the criminal that will have to worry about ending up in a morgue, not his intended victim.