Friday, June 24, 2011

Wisconsin Adopts Concealed Carry Law

The Wisconsin legislature has a sent a concealed carry permit law to the governor for signature, and he has indicated that he is going to sign it.  Is it perfect?  No, but a lot of states started out with less than permit concealed carry laws before amending them in the right direction, such as Texas.

Those who are upset that Wisconsin did not adopt "constitutional carry" should remember that Alaska and Arizona went through a permit system before dropping the license requirement.  One slice at a time, and if you only get half a loaf, that's better than demanding the whole loaf, and going hungry.

Now Illinois alone completely prohibits concealed carry, although New Jersey and Hawaii are so restrictive that the difference is a bit hard to tell.


  1. On topic:

    Clayton... regarding state-to-state concealed carry reciprocity, Idaho will honor any other state's concealed-carry permit. Yet there are quite a few states, most of which designate on a state-by-state basis, that do not honor Idaho's. I've heard conjecture that it's because Idaho is more lenient about giving guns back to convicted felons that most states. Can you shed any light?

  2. Somewhat off-topic (but gun-related):

    If the BATFE were interested in providing a meaningful public service, they could make available a "stolen gun registry" that could be accessed by us common folk.

    To illustrate:

    A number of years ago, I was in the market for a Glock handgun, and saw one advertised in the newspaper that was just what I was looking for. I called and made an appointment to look and hold it.

    Turns out it was being sold by (and it's not fair to stereotype) a guy who looked like an old biker, living in a Garden City trailer house. I made a mental note of the serial number (mercifully short on a Glock) and told him I was interested but had to cogitate about it.

    I called the local BATF office and asked if they could check a gun s/n to see if it was stolen or otherwise illegitimate. Nope. So I called the sheriff's office with the same question. Nope. They can check, but don't offer any such service to the general public. It's "buyer beware" in such situations. What the?!! I called my senator's office, to see if they knew of some way to verify. Nope... sorry. I called the sheriff back and pleaded with a sympathetic deputy; he told me he appreciated the predicament, and checked... the gun was OK.

    How could it possibly hurt anybody - except illegal arms dealers - to give would-be buyers a place where they could check to see if a gun is stolen? (If it had turned out the guy was trying to sell me an illegal gun, I could've done my civic duty and assisted the sheriff to get it off the street.)

    A web application would be fine; you anonymously put in make, model, and serial number... the application checks the database and tells you if it's hot or not.

    (I've always appreciated your enlightened commentary on guns. Perhaps you could address this topic.)

  3. I remember some years ago looking into this, and my recollection was that because Idaho does not consider a number of alcohol and drug related misdemeanors to be disqualifiers (even for a period of a few years), this makes your laws more lax than other states.

    As an example, the guy who shot the son of a Idaho state senator some years ago--and which the state senator brought up when voting against passage of repeal of the ban on guns on campus--had a DUI conviction at the time that he applied for and received an Idaho concealed carry permit.

    While this is not a problem of the statute, Idaho does not do a good job of revoking permits of people that are prohibited. The guy who was recently convicted of second degree murder for a shooting outside a bar in Boise had a concealed carry permit--in spite of an ongoing assault charge against him. Ada County was the issuing agency, and also who was pursuing criminal charges against him--but they had not revoked or suspended his carry permit.

    Would it have made a difference in whether this guy was armed or not? Probably not. Still, I can see why other states might be reluctant to honor our permits.

  4. I agree: there should be a way for the general public to enter a serial number and find out if a gun is listed as stolen or not--and then a way to inform the police that you know where that stolen gun is.

  5. It took Alaska 10 years to go from no issue to shall to Alaska Carry.

    Our law started with action and caliber restrictions on the permit, no restaurant carry, no parking lot, signage allowed.

    It needs to be acknowledged by the "all or nothing" crowd that it was incrementalism in the early adopter states that got us to the point where the default standard for a concealed carry law includes things like restaurant and parking lot carry out of the gate.

    They need to acknowledge the work that went on that makes even considering Con Carry out of the gate not insane.

  6. Although I was giddy at the prospect that Wisconsin was considering Constitutional Carry, I'm still happy for them that they got standard permit-based Concealed Carry.

    I'm far more disappointed in Utah: two legislative sessions in a row, Constitutional Carry was introduced. Both times, the legislative session ended before voting on it. Darn it, Utah! Get on the ball!

    (Since we already have permit-based carry, Constitutional Carry is the natural next step.)