Constitutional Carry

Alabama, Ohio Governors Sign Bill; Anti-Gunners Cringe
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Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey recently signed permitless carry legislation

Before and especially after Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey signed into law a bill removing the permit requirement to carry a firearm, one would have thought the world was coming to an end.

Days later, when Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine inked similar legislation in the Buckeye State, anti-gunners really didn’t like it.

Published reports say county sheriffs opposed it in both states. And there were Democratic lawmakers in Alabama who made the absurd argument the bill was about “defunding police” because law enforcement agencies would lose revenue (an estimated $5 million) from permits.

But to her credit, Gov. Ivey issued a statement putting at least some critics in their place.

“Unlike states who are doing everything in their power to make it harder for law abiding citizens, Alabama is reaffirming our commitment to defending our Second Amendment rights,” Ivey explained. “I have always stood up for the rights of law abiding gun owners, and I am proud to do that again today.”

No mystery where Ivey stands on the gun rights issue. According to WSFA News, the legislation “was championed by gun rights advocates who argue people should not have to get a permit to carry a concealed handgun.”

DeWine has not been entirely dependable on guns during his career, but he signed the bill, and Ohio’s armed citizens smiled.

Generically, such laws—at this writing, now on the books in 22 states—are called “constitutional carry” statutes. This is because when the Second Amendment was written, enshrining the right to keep and bear arms into the Bill of Rights—nobody needed a permit or license to carry.

Contrary to what Joe Biden has stated, and been repeatedly scolded by fact-checkers for doing so, the Second Amendment doesn’t prohibit anyone from having a gun, and it certainly didn’t prevent anyone from owning a cannon.

Maybe what really yanks the chains of gun prohibitionists is the fact that both governors acted with pretty solid justification. After all, the Alabama Reporter recalled the Alabama House adopted a conference committee substitute bill 70-29, and the Senate subsequently approved the legislation 24-6.

In Ohio, Senate Bill 215 was passed 24-9 in the Senate and 58-36 in the House.

Long story short, in both states, the votes were essentially veto-proof.

There is a reasonable argument that no citizen should be required to secure a license or permit to exercise a constitutionally enumerated fundamental right.

On the other hand, anyone who starts carrying under this new legislation should practice some discretion. That is, it would not be prudent to slap on the biggest handgun you own and start packing it around just to get a reaction. Always trust what one old guy once observed: “If you want to make a statement, rent a billboard.”

Where do you stand? We’d like to hear from people on both sides of this debate.

Ukraine and the 2A

If permitless carry doesn’t get your juices flowing, perhaps this will: Gun rights activists and at least one grassroots organization contend what has happened in Ukraine affirms why the Second Amendment is so critical to the U.S.

The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms has been out front on this, explaining twice why it is important for private citizens across Europe to be armed. When Russian troops invaded Ukraine, there were news reports about the Ukrainian government handing out guns to citizens so they could fight back.

Anti-gunners ridiculed the notion that the situation in Ukraine might substantiate a zealous defense of the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms here at home.

CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb had this to say: “The right to keep and bear arms has never been about shooting ducks, but about protecting our right as citizens of the greatest nation on earth to defend our homes and families immediately against the kind of international outrage now unfolding in Eastern Europe.”

He subsequently issued a second statement, encouraging all European nations to promote, rather than restrict, private gun ownership. He also advocates training those armed citizens. Such logic irritates people who disdain the Second Amendment and who cling to the discredited argument that it applies only to a state’s right to organize a militia.

Writing in the Washington Examiner, former Green Beret and CEO of the Black Rifle Coffee company Evan Hafer observed, “Armed civilians act as both a deterrent and a last desperate resort for resisting an occupier.” He was discussing the Second Amendment.

A couple of paragraphs later, Hafer added, “At the time of its drafting in 1789, the term ‘well regulated’ had nothing to do with government control or ‘regulation.’ The Founders meant well-supplied and trained. They meant for every American to own military-capable firearms, to keep a supply of ammunition at home, and to practice shooting just in case they were ever needed. It was an attitude born out of their experience of places such as Lexington and Concord.”

And he added this: “Instead of trying to restrict firearms ownership, the U.S. government should be encouraging it.”

Zombies in the Heartland

There may or may not be any slots left for this year’s “Zombies in the Heartland” 3-gun match in Grand Island, Neb., but you might start planning for 2023. This year’s event will be held June 2-5 at the Heartland Public Shooting Park.

According to a news release from Hornady, “Shooters will find new and reactive targets developed specifically for this match with most targets breaking, falling over, or moving. Participants will be required to compete with a pistol, rifle, and shotgun, or they can compete with pistol-caliber carbine and shotgun in the PCC Division.”

Broken shelf inside Dave’s gun safe required a quick fix,
and he grabbed a broken yardstick for the task.

Mister Fix-it

I’ve got a gun safe and inside it are two shelves, one solid for holding handguns and the other, which is slotted, is designed for holding rifles and shotguns.

For reasons unbeknownst, the slotted section recently broke. It was made from some sort of pressed material inside a fabric cover, and without it properly placed, my long guns would wind up banging into one another as gravity took its course. Not wanting that to happen with my rifles and shotguns, it was a no-brainer to conclude this needed a quick fix.

Dave used two sections of an old, broken yardstick to set the break after applying some carpenter’s glue, and then bolting it all together.

Fortunately, I didn’t sleep through shop class in junior high school so I brought home an old, broken yardstick from the office and went to work. I cut two 9-inch sections from this artifact—I’m reasonably certain its origin was way back in the previous century because of its thickness—and carefully placed the two yardstick pieces above and below the broken shelf piece.

Repairs completed, Dave put everything back together and how his long guns and a cased handgun are back where they belong.

Before bolting everything together, I applied a generous bit of carpenter’s glue to the actual break. With the two pieces of wood tightened down with bolts and nuts, I had a reinforced gun rack which not only supports more than a half dozen long guns, but also holds a couple of handguns in soft cases, one of which personally built from sheepskin to fit a 4-inch N-frame Smith & Wesson.

At some future date, I’ll cut a section of plywood and replace the broken rack shelf, being careful to cover it with some soft material. The end result will be a personalized gun safe complete with my own handiwork.

Don’t be like this guy

If you’re going to pack in a big box store, make sure you’re not carrying illegal drugs, and there’s not a warrant out for your arrest.

The Monroe County Advocate & Democrat recently reported about a gent who “felt the need to carry a large gun into the Madisonville Walmart.” For his troubles, he was arrested on gun and drug charges.

A police officer confronted the suspect after learning there was a warrant out for this guy’s arrest for failure to appear in court on a previous charge. Oh, yeah, Officer Cameron Foister knew this fellow from previous encounters.

The suspect was packing a .45 on his hip, and there was a .22-caliber handgun in his left jacket pocket. And there was more. Also recovered in a search was a “blue glass pipe,” a pair of hypodermic needles and a small baggie “that contained a substance thought to be meth.”

Our hero now faces charges of meth and drug paraphernalia possession, and two counts of possession of a handgun “while under the influence” and public intoxication.

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