05 May 2007

Governor Rick Perry Says Guns are Good. Go Rick!

I've avoided weighing in on this topic, mostly because I've been so entertained by the pro/con arguments that have been batted about the airwaves and InterWebs. Let's see if I can break down the pro and con stances:

Pro (link to newspaper editorial here):
CHL holders must pass more stringent criminal background checks than law enforcement officers in Texas. They are fingerprinted. They are held to a higher standard with respect to accountability in the use of deadly force, and the class they must take and pass points that out and reinforces it over and again. They must pass a rudimentary shooting test. CHL holders often know CHL law better than most LEOs [sorry - I mean NO disrespect, but that's true story, based on a REAL argument with a REAL LEO. I won.]. In other words, CHL holders are the GOOD guys, the ones you want around when a bad guy wades in with mayhem on his mind. They are NOT going to have gunfights in the street, they are NOT going to be irresponsible in the use of their firearms, and why? Because they KNOW the consequences of their actions. CHL holders are NOT the problem.
Con (Another link to newspaper editorial here):
OH MY GOD, NO!!! This is a horrible idea! Children are allowed to carry guns in school? That's crazy! Guns in churches and hospitals? Nuts! Guns in a strip club? Well, that's just nutty! Rick Perry is an idiot for bringing this up! No wonder 2/3 of all Texans voted against him last election!!! This is madness! Think of the children!
Almost to the letter, I have read these exact same arguments in the various forums for airing one's opinion. Pro = rational arguments, and Con = emotional reactions.

Let's break it down a little, and try to be rational, okay (I know, liberal friends, this is a stretch, but let's give it shot - oh, sorry)? Children and criminals (felons) cannot possess firearms, much less get a CHL. That knocks out most arguments right there. It's the 21 and over citizen that is eligible for a CHL. You have to pay money, take a course, pass a firearms test, and wait about 60 days to get your license. You learn the laws, because YOUR penalty is stiffer than those without a CHL for some transgressions (or it seems that way - they can take your license away, and remove your carry privilege). In other words, not just any Tom, Dick, or Jane can legally carry a gun in the Great State of Texas.

As for churches and hospitals, guess what? It's already legal for a CHL holder to carry in these places, UNLESS they are given proper notification (vis-a-vis PC 30.06) to the contrary. Surprised? So are most who are ignorant of Texas law.

Here's the bottom line: if you don't have a problem with a LEO carrying in public places, you needn't worry about a CHL holder doing likewise. Think about it this way - if you're in harm's way, what's better? A 911 call, or a firearm in hand? The 911 call will only tell the police where to find your body.
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