Juan N. was sitting on a lakeside bench in Oklahoma when he heard gunshots coming from a restaurant nearby.
Juan ran to his vehicle and grabbed his gun.
Nearby, Bryan W. was driving with his wife when he heard the commotion outside the restaurant.
He jumped out of his car and learned there was an active shooter and people were hiding inside the restaurant.
So, Bryan also grabbed his gun from inside his vehicle.
The two men began moving towards the shooter with their guns drawn.
It was later learned that the shooter had randomly picked the lakeside restaurant and it was full of dinner guests.
Police said the suspect stood in the doorway of the restaurant and started shooting.
About 100 restaurant patrons hit the floor when the shots rang out.
But sadly, three victims were shot, including two children.
The suspect was wearing earmuffs and safety glasses – fully prepared to carry out his crime.
Now, as Juan and Brian approached the restaurant, they yelled at the shooter to drop his weapon.
There was an exchange of gunfire and the gunman inside the restaurant was hit several times.
The gunman slumped to the ground and died.
When police arrived, they were unsure of who the bad guy was, so they put all three men in handcuffs.
Juan said, “I was just doing what I was supposed to do.”
According to police, because the Good Samaritans were not carrying their weapons on them, concealed carry laws wouldn’t apply.
Police did not disclose any information about whether or not they had such licenses.
Since both men retrieved their firearms from their cars, they were not considered to be concealed.
But this brings up a debate some states are facing when it comes to concealed carry.
Lawmakers in several states, including Utah, want to change gun laws.
They want to allow people to carry concealed firearms without needing a permit.
Fifteen states already allow concealed carry without a permit, and lawmakers in nine other states have proposed similar laws.
With gun sales reaching historic levels, more gun owners want to be able to carry their weapons.
A 2018 study by the Journal of the American College of Surgeons found loosening concealed carry permit laws didn’t lead to more homicides or violent crime, which every person who supports the Second Amendment already knows.
And with more states considering these types of law changes here are a few of the arguments related to these laws.
Open carry already exists:
In some states (such as Utah where I live), it is legal to open carry without training or a permit.
But, if you want to carry concealed, you need to attend training and get a permit.
Because of these laws, many people open carry firearms without any training.
But some argue that a basic firearms course should be a requirement when purchasing a gun.
This would bring up a whole other list of issues, such as how often, and who is required, to take the course.
And this could lead to more people buying a gun for a loved one who doesn’t want to take a training course.
There is a background check when you buy a gun:
If you buy a gun, and apply for a concealed carry permit, you are going through two background checks.
One when you buy the gun, and another when you apply for a permit with your state.
This is redundant and a waste of time.
But, getting rid of background checks doesn’t address the people who buy guns in private party sales…
Or those who are gifted a gun from a family member.
So, people can get guns without going through any sort of background check at all and I am personally a fan of private party sales because the government stays out of my business.
Fee or Tax?:
In general, concealed carry classes range in price – I’ve seen many offered for around $55 per person.
In addition, the fee for a concealed carry permit is usually around $90 new and $75 for renewal (these prices vary from state to state).
Some argue this is like being taxed to carry concealed, as this is a way for states to generate money.
I’m not an accountant, but the fees probably don’t even cover the time and paperwork.
The resources and time of the employees who process the paperwork might be better used doing something else.
In some states, the people doing the background checks work for the state law enforcement agency.
Their time could be better spent fighting crime, instead of processing paperwork.
Gun sales continue to soar with more people carrying weapons.
And with some places banning the open carry of firearms, concealed carry makes more sense for a lot of reasons.
Obviously, I hope more states create laws where you don’t need to jump through hoops to get a permit and the Second Amendment is a right that states, “shall not be infringed.”