Thursday, November 20, 2008

Federal Ban on Conceal Carry

One of the few so-called ‘reasonable’ Civil Rights restrictions President Elect Obama endorsed while actually campaigning for the presidency was a Federal level ban on legal Concealed Carry of Firearms.

While I don’t think Obama will come out and ask Congress to pass such a law as part of his agenda, he doesn’t have to. I think Congress knows his preference and if they can pass it without too much trouble, from constituents, the opposition, or the States, Reid and Pelosi will. Obama would certainly sign such a bill into law if it landed on his desk and he doesn’t have to take a position publicly other than that.

Let’s examine the ramifications if it does happen.

40 some states have Shall Issue conceal carry laws. 48 have some sort of conceal carry provision. All those states would be stepped on. But let’s put aside that federal republic falderal for now.

The purpose of banning conceal carry to protect people from being shot by someone. Someone with a concealed weapon could assault or murder an innocent with that weapon. It’s purpose is also to cut down on accidents, but the rate of accidental shootings approaches zero, statistically. The main purpose is to cut down on gun crime.

Current CCW holders are some of the most vetted and law abiding people in the country. Many are better trained than any standard police officer. And many ARE police officers. The Secret Service would much prefer to have the President in a room full of CCW holders than a room full of armed criminals. And the President would be, in fact, much safer in a room of CCW holders, all armed, than in a room of criminals, all armed.

CCW holders don’t commit crime. The crime statistics from legal conceal carry permit holders is even smaller than accidental shootings from negligent discharges from the same group. Police officers commit felonies at a higher rate than CCW holders.

Those people, the CCW holders, are most likely to comply with a ban on conceal carry. They are not scofflaws. They wouldn’t like it, and a small subset wouldn’t comply, but for the most part they would render themselves defenseless.

Criminals already don’t comply with Conceal Carry laws, and there is no indication that they would if conceal carry was made MORE illegal. They are criminals, they break laws by definition. If they are willing to rape, rob, and kill they are certainly willing to violate a law with less punishment like concealed weapon prohibitions.

Conclusion: A federal ban on Conceal Carry would do next to nothing to fulfill it’s stated purpose of reducing crime and accidents. Many more people will be victimized by being rendered defenseless than would be saved by the law’s passing. The ban isn’t targeted at crime, but against law abiding innocents.

Further, rational actors know this.

So, passing of a federal ban must have a purpose beyond the stated. Unless it’s proponents are acting irrationally. I believe most are. They support such a law because they are politicians and believe their constituency wants it. Political action is certainly not rational all the time. Politicians may have political principles that necessitate an action that complies with their world view, and that is impervious to rational argument, as well. They comply with their erroneous political philosophy on how they WISHED the world worked, not how it actually does. Finally there are those, motivated by a thirst for power over others, that want to subjugate the people and control them, and they can more easily do this if the subjects can’t resist agents of the government. Paranoids believe this last type of supporter is the most numerous. They may be right. Just because they are paranoid doesn’t mean they are wrong. Optimistic little old me believes this third group are a much smaller subset than assumed by the most strident 2nd Amendment enthusiast. Most politicians enjoy their power, but not to that great an extent. Most politicians are not monsters.

So three types of politicians support the federal ban, those acting purely on politics and damn the truth, those that adhere to an erroneous irrational political philosophy, and tyrants. None of these motivations is truly defensible except perhaps the first. And that purely political calculation goes away when the voting public is informed about the issue.

And hence the purpose of this post…


kaveman said...

Call me paranoid, but I believe the true purpose of such a ban is to increase crime. This will then be used as a call for more gun control.

If such a law does pass, I will abide by it and simply open carry everywhere it is legal for me to do so.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

"Officer! There is a man with a gun named Kaveman walking around WITH A GUN! Oh Noes! Come arrest him!"

And what do you do if the Feds ban open carry, too, Kaveman?

B said...

Very well thought out and very interesting. I have a permit myself and although I rarely carry, I like to know that I could if the need arose.

The Duck said...

Well it has really never been about guns, it's always been about control

The Armed Canadian said...

Bolt, I hope they try. I then hope that places like Vermont, Alaska, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Florida, Texas and other states stand up and dictate back to the Federal government where their authority ends.

Because if they don't and 40 odd states decide that the stripping of their citizen's rights that they supported is just peachy, bring on Concord and Lexington Part II because it's over. We're subjects and no longer free.

Such an attempt to me goes beyond mere compliance with a new infringement. It is a fundamental rejection of individual liberty in an area that the Federal government as no right to intervene. CCW is a States powers issue and any reciprocity that exists is between individual states. The Fed interfering in that is making an announcement loud and clear that the 50 states are merely geography. End their authority and this great experiment called the United States is at an end.

If so, bring the pain and bring it quick so we can fight for its restoration.

Anonymous said...

+1 to The Duck

Old NFO said...

+1 on the Duck also... I carry every day that I legally can, I too will go to open carry.

kaveman said...

"And what do you do if the Feds ban open carry, too, Kaveman?"

I'll open carry an empty holster while wearing a shirt just long enough to cover the top. Let the cops waste their time responding to a piece of fine hand crafted leather.

I'll also be obsessive about rubbing it while walking down the street and bobbing my head like a parakeet.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Now THAT'S a plan!

Frozen said...

Such a law would be unconstitutional from several angles, not the least of which is (2a aside) there is no foundation in the constitution for them to pass such a law. Most gun laws they weasel in via regulation of interstate commerce, but that wouldn't apply here.

I think I might need to move to Montana

geekWithA.45 said...

>>But let’s put aside that federal republic falderal for now.

Actually, let's not.

Aside from the fact that it deals in the subject of arms and 2A, the breathtakingly audacious federal power grab that this would represent is a matter of constitutional usurpation from the States & People. It is of Deal Breaker magnitude, in and of itself.

B Smith said...

"So, passing of a federal ban must have a purpose beyond the stated. Unless it’s proponents are acting irrationally. I believe most are."

Sorry---I disagree. None of these people (gun-banners) are stupid. The evidence is right there for any who care to look...gun ownership banned, crime rises (Britain, New Zealand). Gun ownership increases, crime drops (shall-issue states). Professor John Lott even wrote a book detailing this, all with facts and figures, and impeccable research. Number me with the paranoid camp if you will, but at this point, I'm afraid anyone who still wants to ban guns is either evil or willfully ignorant...which may amount to the same thing, in government.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Oooo, all good comments!

Diane said...

They get it on interstate commerce, being the gun has *parts* that come from different states. or the steel comes from a different state than the gun was manufactured in. I'm not kidding.

Chuck said...

Amendment X: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people."

Since 40 some States have enacted CCW laws, it seems that 40 some States have decided that CCW is a power reserved to them by the Constitution, and not a power delegated to the federal government.

THe Deer Tree said...

The bad thing is, that with me being from the peoples republic of Illinois I wouldn't even notice this. Chicago makes me a sad panda.