December 7, 2005

The concealed carry law in Wisconsin.

Last night, the Wisconsin Senate passed a bill to legalize the concealed carrying of weapons. This has been a hot button issue around here for years.
“Concealed weapons in Wisconsin have been illegal for over 100 years, and we have one of the safest states in the whole country,” Sen. Judith Robson, D-Beloit, said....

“I can’t imagine Halloween on State Street. … What a disaster that would be for Madison,” Robson said. “I can’t imagine going to the mall knowing the person next to me may have a concealed [weapon].”...

“This is an important issue for people who want to protect themselves [and to have] control of their own destiny,” Sen. David Zien, R-Eau Claire, said.
Choose your fantasy.

52 comments:

David said...

If I felt the need to carry a weapon, I would not let the law stop me.

However, having lived and worked in Wis all my life, including some of the nastier areas of Milwaukee, I have never felt the need.

This law seems to me to be a solution in search of a problem. A problem that does not exist

John Thacker said...

“Concealed weapons in Wisconsin have been illegal for over 100 years, and we have one of the safest states in the whole country."

A very conservative argument, but OTOH it's hard to argue just based on correlation. Vermont allows anyone to carry a concealed weapon without even a permit (and has for years), and it's also one of the safest states in the whole country. (I believe safer than Wisconsin, but I'd have to double-check).

John(classic) said...

This is one of those issues on which there seems marginal factual basis one way or the other. There is some evidence that concealed carry reduces crime rates. There is even less evidence, but some rationale, that they might increase accidents or "in the heat of anger" armed confrontations.

This lack of good substantive evidence, of course, makes the issue perfect for a pure application of ideology.

Those who believe that they should control the actions of others strongly oppose concealed carry. Those who believe that individuals should control their own destinies strongly support it.

Much lightning on the horizon; litttle change in the weather.

Debate is not likely to clarify things. I have rarely seen such studied ignorance and error as that the MSM displays when it comes to firearms. It is as if we discussed fire prevention starting with a belief that fires need heat,air, and a fuel such as milk or sand.

In Wisconsin, isn't the legislature in a presumably limited period of grace to pass a law before the courts take action in furtherance of the constitutional amendment?

Jonathan said...

"Choose your fantasy" implies a parallel that is IMO false. The benign experience of the numerous states that have recently liberalized their carry laws refutes the fantasy that blood will run in the streets etc. As for self-protection "fantasies," there are indisputably many people who have saved themselves from great harm by having firearms handy. The percentage of such individuals in the general population may be small, but if you happen to be one of them the benefits are substantial.

It is likely, based again on the experience of other states, that if this law is enacted only a percent or two of eligible citizens will go to the trouble of obtaining carry permits, and an even smaller percentage will actually carry weapons. At most you could reasonably say that you do or do not share carry-law proponents' perceptions of the cost/benefit tradeoffs. If that's fantasy on their part then so is the opinion of anyone who buys more automobile liability insurance coverage than you do. I think the term "right to choose" has some utility here.

Henry said...

“I can’t imagine Halloween on State Street. … What a disaster that would be for Madison,” Robson said. “I can’t imagine going to the mall knowing the person next to me may have [hairy palms].”...

Simon said...

"“I can’t imagine Halloween on State Street. … What a disaster that would be for Madison,” Robson said. “I can’t imagine going to the mall knowing the person next to me may have a concealed [weapon].”..."

Ah, yes, but while you may feel some discomfit at the possibility that the guy next to you may be carrying a firearm, imagine the comfort I, as the mugger / rapist / whatever, feel approaching you, knowing that you aren't carrying firearms. Having a concealed weapons scheme dramatically changes the calculus when deciding whether or not to attack them: unless they're wearing a "fuck Bush" t-shirt, or they have a Kerry bumper sticker, you have to assume they're carrying, and thus, you could get shot.

Chris said...

I think the history of state after state enacting CCW legislation shows that the first fantasy couldn't be further from the truth.

I dunno if the last quote is a fantasy though, seems like a pretty clear cut fact to me. It IS an important issue for people who want to protect themselves.

I don't think many of the pro CCW people think that CCW will solve everything and make the world a crime free utopia. But it will be able to help some people, and the history of such laws clearly shows there have been no real negative effects.

No Love for Frank said...

Perhaps it is my own paranoia, though travelling through such paragons of safety as Camden and Newark tends to breed such a mindset, but I had a really good laugh at Mrs. Robson's comment. 'Brain to mouth disconnect', as my friends would call it. Though it does spark a question or two...

If she's only now worried that someone next to her at the mall might be carrying a gun on their person...where does she think the criminals keep them? And what does that say about her opinion of the law abiding citizens she represents, as opposed to the criminals?

peter hoh said...

Opponents of a similar law in Minnesota predicted dire consequences. It hasn't played out that way. I think advocates lose credibility when reality fails to line up with their rhetoric.

Bruce Hayden said...

Here in CO, there has been no increase in shooting deaths, and only a relatively small number of people avail themselves of the law.

But when I was in AZ, there were a lot more, and I had to have a sign posted at the plant where I worked stating that guns were not allowed (for corporate liability reasons). Needless to say, there was an armory in the cars in the parking lot.

And in UT, I remember a story about when the VP came into town. The Republican convention and the Secret Service had a go-around over guns. Finally, apparently, they provided gun lockers for all the guns there so that the VP could speak.

Oh, and the law firm I worked for in SLC paid for the CCW class. I think at least half the attys. there had permits.

I think that the culture of a state has a lot to do with how many avail themselves of the CCW laws. I am just surprised that CO is that different from UT and AZ.

Bruce Hayden said...

Here in CO, there has been no increase in shooting deaths, and only a relatively small number of people avail themselves of the law.

But when I was in AZ, there were a lot more, and I had to have a sign posted at the plant where I worked stating that guns were not allowed (for corporate liability reasons). Needless to say, there was an armory in the cars in the parking lot.

And in UT, I remember a story about when the VP came into town. The Republican convention and the Secret Service had a go-around over guns. Finally, apparently, they provided gun lockers for all the guns there so that the VP could speak.

Oh, and the law firm I worked for in SLC paid for the CCW class. I think at least half the attys. there had permits.

I think that the culture of a state has a lot to do with how many avail themselves of the CCW laws. I am just surprised that CO is that different from UT and AZ.

Bruce Hayden said...

Sorry about the double post. Blogger problems.

I had just told myself that one of the advantages of the word verification Ann uses is that it eliminates double posting. I stand corrected. It USUALLY eliminates double posting.

Charlie Eklund said...

Ann, I am sad to see that you consider the notion of armed citizen protecting themselves against criminals to be a "fantasy". Is it a fantasy to believe that people with spare tires in their trunks are better prepared to deal with a flat tire?

Simon Kenton said...

I have a CCW permit, and carry my .45 in an over-shoulder computer case. Passed my federal and state background checks, which would not necessarily be true for some of my interlocutors. When asked about my 'murse,' I tell them I am getting in touch with my yang side, which seems to convince here in Boulder.

I would like to concur in Jonathan's remarks. As I have before mentioned, I teach personal protection to women. About a third of the women have been the victims of violent rape, and are very focused students indeed. They have no wish to undergo it again. My job is to help them get to the point where they can avoid it, at all costs. Violence may be instigated impersonally, but it is always received individually. My thought is, if it saves just one life - espeically if that one life is saved at the expense of excising one violent dirtbag - I'll be proud of having done my work.

It is sometimes said that the need for a firearm is rare, this sort of thing never really happens, if it did you'd know someone who has used a firearm, etc. It happens. I've broken up an armed assault - without firing. I have 2 friends who have broken up, respectively, a burglary, and an assault which left a kid in a coma and would otherwise have left him dead - with firing. It happens. And when it does, it's better to be armed and competent in advance.

Assuming you can pass the background tests, are mentally calm and stable, and are willing to put in plenty of practice time, I think you have a social obligation to get your CCW permit. It helps us all be safer.

AMB said...

Last year, my home state of Ohio passed a ccw law. There were dire predictions of blood running the the streets, mass chaos on the highways, etc.

More than a year of experience has shown...well...not much of anything. There have not been instances of those having permits shooting up movie theaters, destroying Halloween, etc.

There have been a series of incidents involving permit holders (of which I am not one), using their weapon to protect themselves.

I cannot stand emotional arguments, and neither should Ms. Althouse. There have been ccw laws in many states (oh, those 50 laboratories) and there is no correlation between more liberal ccw laws and an increase in gun violence.

Please, gun control types, calm down, look at what has happened in the real world, and make actual rational arguments against a ccw law.

Here is my challenge...find incidents of permit holders shooting police officers at a traffic stop (another oft used emotional argument). Go try...and guess what? You'll find that law abiding citizens who go through classes, a background check, and a permit process are...law abiding citizens who do not shoot people. Why, what a concept.

Imagine that.

peter hoh said...

Why do people assume that Ann has voiced her opinion on the issue? She's certainly taken aim at the hyperbole on both sides, but other than that, I can't determine a position for or against.

Kirk Parker said...

Peter Hoh,

Maybe you don't think that her closing remark posed a moral equivalence between fantasy on both sides, but pretty much everyone else here does think so.

Also, along with what Jonathan and many others have pointed out regarding those states who have liberalized their concealed carry laws, I'd like to further amplify what John Thacker said. Vermont has allowed unlicensed carry for quite a while, and Washington State has had nondiscretionary, state-preempted concealed carry for longer than most places (several decades, iirc) with no training requirements whatsoever. Guess what? Our rate of accidental shootings and of criminal acts by CCW holders is as low as anybody elses.

Perhaps the conclusion is that the average citizen who is able to pass a background check really can be trusted. Who knew???

peter hoh said...

While I have no problem with concealed carry, I think it is hyperpole to suggest that anything will allow people to control their own destiny.

John(classic) said...

I am 57. I grew up owning guns and worked my way through law school as a gunsmith. I have shot competitively with both rifle and handgun, though not in many years.

Nonetheless, I have mixed feelings about concealed carry. The problem is that concealed carry means a handgun, and just as my experience tells me that firearms are sometimes necessary, it also tells me that handguns are far too prone to accidents, especially in the hands of a an occasional user. Unless it is ingrained in one by training over time, it is far too easy to point a handgun carelessly, and far too hard to hit what you mean to, particularly when scared and keyed up. This is particularly true of the compact handguns most likely to be chosen to carry.

A long gun, by preference a shotgun, is a much more effective and safe home protection weapon.

Because concealed carry means handguns, I worry that even with the mandatory training courses, there will be some accidents.

Nonethless I do support concealed carry because I appreciate that people can be in circumstances where the need is there, and denying them the ability to defend themselves is deeply wrong.

Still, I hope that concealed carry does not encourage widespread carrying, and I hope that it does not by a "penumbra" effect (heh) make a handgun the preferred firearm to keep at home.

Sigivald said...

It seems odd that Sen. Robson doesn't realise that there are probably people in that crowd carrying illegally, without any background check or training, in the absence of a concealed carry law.

It's not so much "knowing that the person nexto me may have a concealed weapon" as "having to admit that they might, after having the possibility legalised and codified", it seems.

Ann Althouse said...

Peter: It seems to me that people are responding to my imperative: Choose your fantasy. Clearly, fantasy #2 is more popular around here.

Jonathan said...

Ann: Is buying a fire extinguisher also evidence of fantasizing -- IOW, do you view some decisions about physical risks differently than you do others, and if so why?

Chris said...

John, last time I heard any stats, CCW license holders have a lower accidental shooting rate than police officers.

There is nothing in particular that makes handguns more accident prone than long guns. Might show up that way in stats(or not, don't really know), because people can carry a handgun all the time pretty much.

Maybe being a shorter gun, it would be easier to accidentally point the barrel towards yourself, but thats the only thing I could see about a handgun that would cause more accidents.

I would say long guns are more dangerous for defense purposes than handguns really, more penetration power which means you need a better back ground.

Handguns aren't any harder to aim than long guns, and if you can't aim you can't aim, regardless of the weapon of choice.

But all this is moot, because you can't carry a long gun with you most places, and most state CCW programs require safety training.

If you are too lazy to train and practice at least once every few month, I'd probably say you are best skipping the CCW and just keeping a shotgun at home. But I doubt there are very many people who go through the trouble of getting a CCW and carrying every day who don't shoot regularly.

Most of the people that get CCWs are enthusiast types, the people that shoot a lot, probably more than most police do.

Home defense is a totally different issue of course though, and I'd agree that a shotgun would be best for most people in that situation. I don't think a handgun would be all that bad of an option though.

I'd say no rifles though, rifles are hard to manage indoors and LOUD with a bright muzzle flash when fired indoors in most cases. With no time to get ear protection you can disorient yourself and cause hearing damage. Of course some larger handguns and higher powered shotgun loads can have those two problems as well.

Also of course, anyone who buys something should learn how to use it. A personal pet peeve of mine is people who buy stuff and don't learn how to use it. From people with computers loaded down with garbage and spyware who call me cause their computer is going slow to people with 12:00 still blinking on their VCR to buying guns and not learning how to shoot to people who buy cars and can't drive.

Maybe I'm just jealous cause most of these people IME have nicer stuff than me. :P

Kirk Parker said...

John(classic), if your fears were well grounded, wouldn't we have seen an increase in accidental shootings in the last few years, with the spread of CCW and a great upsurge in firearms ownership in the same time period? Instead, accidental shootings are at an all-time low.

Kirk Parker said...

Ann,

I see you're reacting to only the "control your destiny" part of statement #2, but I don't see where the Senator's statement says anything about flawless or perfect control, so I'm quite willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he's talking about legal control--as opposed to those jurisdictions where citizens are disarmed by law.

Any doubt as to whether firearms ownership is frequently useful for helping along one's destiny can be dispelled by occasional browsing of the Civilian Gun Self-Defense Blog.

Cherry River said...

I saw a news item go by a week or two ago, I think from the Journal-Sentinel, saying that the City of Milwaukee has had 119 homicides so far in 2005. Unfortunately, I do not have the means to check this story back.
If it is true, and it seems a very high number, this is a rate in excess of even Chicago (in the Chief Cline era).
In any event, having been a residential tradesman for 34 years, and having been involved in three home invasion/burglaries during that time (one with a weapon displayed), plus two more tool-theft attempts, I, like most tradesmen I know, will immediately begin carrying a handgun loaded as soon as it becomes legal to do so.
While not an absolute answer, we all look to improve our chances.
I wear a seatbelt every single minute I am in a motor vehicle, even though, after almost forty years and a million and a half miles, have never "used" one.
It still seems prudent.

Ann Althouse said...

Let me just say that I'm an agnostic on this one. I think both sides are overemphasizing the good of their own side and ignoring the bad. Whichever side wins, some good and some bad will come of it. The folks who were taking the microphone in the legislature were not conceding this simple truth.

Personally, I'd like to be able to have the choice to carry a gun. There are things I'd like to do that I don't do because I'm afraid someone might attack me. But if I had that gun and I knew how to use it and someone came at me, well then, what would happen?

John(classic) said...

Kirk Parker,

Yes you are accurate--declining firearms accidents would suggest that my supposition is likely all wet.

Do you have a source for firearms accidents over time?

All I could find in a quick google was accidental deaths with kids which seem to be relatively rare, if tragic events.

Simon said...

"Personally, I'd like to be able to have the choice to carry a gun. There are things I'd like to do that I don't do because I'm afraid someone might attack me. But if I had that gun and I knew how to use it and someone came at me, well then, what would happen?"

Do you mean that you're not sure you'd be able to shoot in self-defense, or that you're worried about the moral and/or legal ramifications of doing so?

OddD said...

I think the fantastic element of #2 is the notion that, yea, lo, previous generations of Wisconsinites were not in control of their destiny, for they were not allowed to carry weapons.

Self-defense is important, but not the only part of one's destiny. And being able to carry a concealed weapon represents only a small fraction of self-defense.

It is what passes for rhetoric these days: There is no other issue of importance than the one being discussed. No factor mitigates the all-important-ness of my argument, nor the evil-ity of my opponents'.

Kirk Parker said...

John(classic),

Regarding overall assault rates, all I can remember from the John Lott (More Guns, Less Crime) controversy is a number of different folks going over crimes stats and saying, basically, Too hard to tell.

Whether one thinks that means that we should therefore allow wider gun rights (because clearly "we the people" en masse haven't been abusing it, and isn't it moral to allow the individual a freer hand in his own self-defense?) or that we shouldn't (becase "we" haven't been able to definitively prove that crime really has gone down in the aggregate)--well, to me it seems it all boils down to whose political philosophy one admires more: Thomas Jefferson's or Napolean Bonaparte's.

As far as accidental shootings go, the CDC is the definitive source for those kinds of stats on a national basis, but you're not likely to find the detail you need in their summaries. The details are fascinating: you learn that accidental drownings outstrip accidental shootings, by a fair margin, but (iirc) the automobile remains the king of accidental child fatalities, year after year.

Kirk Parker said...

Ann, for "both sides" to be "ignoring the bad", wouldn't there have to be a downside on both sides? When you consider that non-discretionary ("shall-issue") CCW has spread from only 8 states in 1986 to 37 today (with Nebraska and Wisconsin poised to make it 39!) and aggregate crime statistics not showing any uptrend, just what "bad" do you think I am ignoring?

Simon Kenton said...

Ann questioned;

"But if I had that gun and I knew how to use it and someone came at me, well then, what would happen?"

They wilt, 95 times in 100. We sometimes role-play this in class, with plastic guns, of course. The women can see very clearly the difference between 1) cringing back, weeping, and saying, "O God. Please! Please don't make me do it. I don't want to have to shoot you." 2) Taking a cover position, locking the sights just left of the perp's sternum, flicking the safety off, and saying, "Hands up, asshole. On your knees. Cross your ankles. Fall forward on your face. Arms to the side, palms up." If you know how to use it, if it's clear you would really like to use it, it shows in voice and body language. They'll nearly always decline to throw the black dice under those circumstances.

Besides competence, one of the things you have going for you as a confident armed woman is that bullies have been bullied, often by their mothers. The big authoritative bitch-voice reverts them, and they become bullied again.

There've been interviews with jailed felons who were shot by citizens. They all have the same emotional response: indignation. The citizen cheated, didn't play the game correctly. The dirtbags were anticipating all the pleasures of the 'shroom being rational and convincing, crying, collapsing and begging for their life, and instead they were simply shot, many right after saying, "Now, now, put the gun down. You know you don't really mean to use it," and walking forward.

Ann, you want real fun, take one of John Ross's classes, or better still, go to Gunsite.

michael a litscher said...

Ann Althouse: I think both sides are overemphasizing the good of their own side and ignoring the bad.

Not if you actually take a CCW class, which I have. What's emphasized in the class is how narrow the exceptions are for a claim of self defense, along with the high cost of litigation you face - on average - for displaying your gun, or worse, using it.

Ann Althouse: But if I had that gun and I knew how to use it and someone came at me, well then, what would happen?

Given that scenario (you pulling out your gun), from the CCW class materials:

91% - the attacker runs away.
8% - the attacker fights.
1% - results in fatality.

Also, I don't have the statistics handy, but your chance of survival go up significantly if you attempt to fight off your attacker. I know, runs counter to conventional wizdom, but there it is.

BTW, I have two CCW permits: Minnesota and Florida. Neither of which do me a bit of good living in Milwaukee.

You're a woman of necessary means, with a law degree to boot. Have some fun and take the class.

Ann Althouse said...

I'm not so sure I want to be around other people learning to use guns. They can't all be good guys. But they all have guns.

Simon Kenton said...

"I'm not so sure I want to be around other people learning to use guns. They can't all be good guys. But they all have guns."

-- If I didn't know better, there are moments when I'd take you for an urbanite surrounded by lefty law professors. Generally speaking they are all good guys, and good gals. After all, they are expecting after the class to put themselves under the scrutiny of the FBI and the Colorado (or Wisconsin) Bureau of Investigation. And we are very rigorous dealing with complete newbies: one instructor per shooter, the gun is not allowed to deviate from a safe direction, etc.

Ms Althouse, one of the things this blog is bringing you is adventure and new experience in ways you never envisioned when you started it. I think this an example. Call them at Gunsite (http://www.gunsite.com, 928 626 4565) and tell them you're a newbie. This can be one of the year's best adventures.

Bob_Minn said...

We heard the same hysterics in Minnesota prior to passage of the "shall issue" law in 2003. The results so far? One alleged crime linked to a person with a concealed carry permit. No known "accidents" or shootings related to persons with concealed carry permits. And believe me, we would have heard about such episodes from the rabidly anti-gun Star Tribune newspaper.

Meanwhile, contrary to police organization claims that hundreds of thousands of permits would be issued, the actual number was in the 20,000s as of early this year (the last time the newspapers reported on it).

Much ado about nothing? Perhaps. Minneapolis' crime rate is soaring since last year. I'm waiting for a Strib story on cause and effect: The "shall issue" law caused crime to increase in poor neighborhoods. Yeah, that'll do it.

Simon said...

The stats above:

91% - the attacker runs away.
8% - the attacker fights.
1% - results in fatality.

Question: what happens in the 7% of situations where the attacker fights but the situation does not result in fatality, and what fraction of the 1% of incidents resulting in fatality is the fatality a person other than the attacker?

I do, however, agree with people take classes to learn how to shoot. Carrying is all well and good, but if your hand shakes so much you look like you couldn't hit a barn door, the effect is diminished.

Ann Althouse said...

Simon: "If I didn't know better, there are moments when I'd take you for an urbanite surrounded by lefty law professors. Generally speaking they are all good guys, and good gals."

Well, they are unarmed. They believe themselves to be good, not that I trust people with that belief. But that's not why I'm not physically afraid of them. There are a lot of people in this world who believe they are good that I would be physically afraid of -- even if I were armed.

Anyway, I was talking about the concealed carry law in the faculty lounge yesterday and said I might consider carrying a gun so I could be free to walk places that I'm currently afraid of. After they laughed at me, they started right in talking about how they'd used machine guns and flame throwers and various other impressive weapons. I thought that was funny.

michael a litscher said...

Simon: Question: what happens in the 7% of situations where the attacker fights but the situation does not result in fatality, and what fraction of the 1% of incidents resulting in fatality is the fatality a person other than the attacker?

The numbers were not broken down any further than that, so I can't tell you.

On a micro scale (you vs the attacker) the statistics are meaningless anyway.

On a macro scale (the sociological impact on crime when ccw is introduced) has been experimented with and studied extensively. Every state that passes ccw is it's own laboratory. Of the many states which have passed ccw, none, to date, has seen fit to reverse course.

Furthermore, if innocent bystanders were being shot by CCW license holders, or if socker moms were being shot over parking spaces by CCW licnense holders, or if cops were being shot by CCW license holders during traffic stops, you'd hear about it on the nightly news, and you'd read about it on the front page of your newspaper.

Much was made recently over the CCW status being added to the TIME system so cops would be informed if you were licensed for CCW by running your plates. I've not found a single case (and I've looked) where a cop was shot and killed by someone with a CCW permit. If such a case did exist, the names of the fallen officers, and the pictures of the officers surviving family would be in the talking points of everyone opposed to CCW license legislation. The very fact that they are reduced to never-before-but-what-if arguments speaks volumes about the weakness of their arguments.

Kirk Parker said...

"I'm not so sure I want to be around other people learning to use guns. They can't all be good guys. But they all have guns."

This is why somebody earlier was complaining about arguments based on emotion. No one is saying you have to live your life like Spock, but just think for a moment: what changes if you take the above statement and replace 'guns' with 'cars'? The answer is: a much higher number of your fellow-citizens accidentally kill each other each year with cars than they do with guns. Yet you're not afraid to drive, not even on those winding country roads around Madison where the fatality rates are higher than on urban roads or freeways. Why is that?

Cherry River said...

My wife's changing relationship with guns may be illustrative.
She is a degreed professional, a gerontologist, coming from a big-city social worker background. On top of that, her father and grandfather were old-time Chicago police officers. Her attitude towards guns when we met was a bit more apprehensive than Ms. Althouse's.
Apart from an early trip to the indoor range, for years, she just avoided them. When there were noises in the night, the presence of my old Colt was well-thought of, but the rest of the time, it was not highly regarded at all.
There was a sea change in anti-gun attitudes on September 11th, 2001, and the tide also passed over my wife. Whether this national rethinking was accurate and justified, I am not sure.
What it did do was cause sort of a look towards the self-sufficiency of the pre-Boomer times and a re-examination of the protection afforded by reliance on the state.
A couple of years ago, she accompanied me to a pistol competition as a part of a weekend trip and saw first hand the sort of thing someone like Ms. Althouse might refer to as "gun people" in their own environment.
Her reactions were instructive.
A hundred people were armed, much to her initial consternation, but there was no danger at all.
She is not patient with cognitive dissonace- she decided to change her mind about the practicalities and menace of firearms.
Later, with further exposure, she agreed to take a women's firearms course at the local indoor range. Subsequently, she came to like the kind of target shooting called steel plate, enough to actually enter a match.
I would not call her a gun enthusiast. She likes shooting to some extent (one day she went off on her own and expended almost five hundred rounds at some steel), but only as an occasional pastime.
The significant thing is, with exposure to ordinary gun ownership and activity, she came to see it as non-threatening.
I can't picture her packing a concealed weapon, even when working late at night in her office (when she sometimes ought to), but I can picture her taking up a gun in self-defense at home under the most dire circumstances.
Most of all, she no longer sees a firearm as something that either "goes off", or as something that would somehow cause an otherwise responsible and normal person suddenly and inexplicably commit mayhem.
Real-life experience has shown her otherwise.
So do the experiences of gun-friendly states where firearm rights are still in place, or have been restored.
Permitted gun-bearers simply do not commit violent crimes, and do not have accidents with guns, not in any detectable numbers.
I agree that persons unfamiliar and uncomfortable with guns should not carry them, and that persons who do carry them must constantly examine the possibility of using theirs in the gravest way.
That is also not a comfortable thought, but it does not follow that not preparing for uninvited violence will prevent it, too.

BronsonFromWisconsin said...

I CAN'T Imagine Halloween on State street, are you saying some thing about the people of madison ?
I can't imagine my sister going to the mall, knowing the two guys behind her in the dark deserted parking lot intend to do her harm
while Gov, Doyle sit's in his safe secure office in MADISON smiling & smug at the fact that he was the one single person that could have saved her life in that dark parking lot by passing the personal protection act that would have allowed her to protecther self with a concealed weapon. Concealed weapons have been illegal in Wisconsin for over 130 years & in those 130 how many lives could have been saved with concealed weapons. You don't want to carry a concealed weapon for your own defense , fine, become a victim, we don't care.. but, don't tell others in elected positions that you don't want the responsible, voting, tax paying, law abiding , over the age of 21 population of wisconsin to have the ability to defed themselves & not become victims of criminals that intend to do them harm. Do you really think the police will be their to protect you when the bad people come ?? No, they won't be. So, the real question here is, do i want to be a victim or do I not wanted be a victim...

ghost said...

i think as long as a consumer has the gun registered and has balistics done ,their should be no reason why you shouldn't be able to carry a consealed weapon. if i would of had one a few years ago i know my car would not of been stolen. because i would of shot out my tires while he tried to drive off. then i would of called the cops while i held the perpatrator at the scene. if you have the chance to fight back, the better the chance you or anyone will have at saving your life or that person's, and yes their was nothing i could do at the time because i could not rightfully protect myself..........

Jim said...

What everyone has to realize is that criminals do not buy guns legally at gun stores, they buy them on the streets and do not follow the laws like the rest of us. They ARE GOING to carry concealed weapons if we like it or not. What we are trying to do is create a situation where the crimials are not the only ones that have the right to defend themselves. Law biding citizens should at the very least be able to defend their families and property and businesses with the same rights the crimial element takes. They will certainly think twice before commiting a crime(robbery, home invasion, carjackings, etc., this has been overwhelmingly statistically proven) when they beleive there to be a chance of being confronted with force. It is amazing to me that we are more worried about the rights of dirtbags than we are law biding honest hardworking citizens. As for myself I would like to get a concealed carry permit. I carry large amounts of cash from my business to be deposited at a local bank. And usually this takes place later at night. Many times I have been walking out thinking... boy it would be so easy if someone was casing me. Just walk up jam a gun in my face and there would be nothing I could do about it, because the law is protecting the crimial. Now, I am not saying we hand out concealed carry permits like candy. You would have to state your reason for needing it and of course have the corresponding background checks. Liberals have a funny way of jumping behind conservatives when the proverbial crap hits the fan. Lets face it there IS crime in Wisconsin, plenty of it, and we must never cower to that element but meet it head on with adamantine determination. At some point in you life you are going to have to defend yourself, what you have to decide is how you are going to react to that situation. Be a victim or make the dirtbag the victim. It's your call.

Geo said...

If I was a criminal and knew that the public or person to be my prey was "unarmed", due to our wonderful justice system, hmm, what does this add up to be, advantage for the good guy who did the "right" thing by giving up his right to bear arms, or the advantage the bad guy who advantage because they now have all the weapons? The law cannot possibly stop all criminal attemtps on you or your family's attempts at protecting itself. Unfortunately, we must use the very thing the criminals are using to protect ourselves, which is what the government would have us do without! Do they actually think they are able to protect every citizen out there by themselves? That's what they are trying to setup, isn't it? no one believes this crap that if there are less guns in peoples homes, there will be less crime. balogna. Even if the governent could disarm all of the honest tax paying citizens of the USA, they cannot stop all the illegal guns that are out there. And dont slap that crap on me that if we didnt have guns in our homes, the crooks couldnt get any guns. This is a true story I've heard regarding how these thugs get their firepower. Now you'll have a public that's unable to protect itself and family. If anybody forced me to give up my weapons, and I lost a confrontation (by death or other tragic results) due to the fact that I could not protect myself because of some law a polition supported, I would not want to be that politician. I hope that doesn't happen to him/her. but its going to happen and keep happening if they continue to disarm the honest american. The Thug to Cop ratio is far to extreme to expect law inforcement to protect us. I don't understand how they wouldn't invite our enthusiasm to help them help us. That, I believe, would be a much better way of dealing with this gun issue than just disarming everyone. Tell me, just how many of the dishonest gun holders would you see give up their guns as opposed to the honest citizen? I could go on and on here, but I think I've made my point. Thank you for your time and have a wonderful day.

Geo said...

If I was a criminal and knew that the public or person to be my prey was "unarmed", due to our wonderful justice system, hmm, what does this add up to be, advantage for the good guy who did the "right" thing by giving up his right to bear arms, or the advantage the bad guy now has because they now have all the weapons? The law cannot possibly stop all criminal attemtps on you or your family's attempts at protecting itself. Unfortunately, we must use the very thing the criminals are using to protect ourselves, which is what the government would have us do without! Do they actually think they are able to protect every citizen out there by themselves? That's what they are trying to setup, isn't it? no one believes this crap that if there are less guns in peoples homes, there will be less crime. balogna. Even if the governent could disarm all of the honest tax paying citizens of the USA, they cannot stop all the illegal guns that are out there. And dont slap that crap on me that if we didnt have guns in our homes, the crooks couldnt get any guns. This is a true story I've heard regarding how these thugs get their firepower. Now you'll have a public that's unable to protect itself and family. If anybody forced me to give up my weapons, and I lost a confrontation (by death or other tragic results) due to the fact that I could not protect myself because of some law a polition supported, I would not want to be that politician. I hope that doesn't happen to him/her. but its going to happen and keep happening if they continue to disarm the honest american. The Thug to Cop ratio is far to extreme to expect law inforcement to protect us. I don't understand how they wouldn't invite our enthusiasm to help them help us. That, I believe, would be a much better way of dealing with this gun issue than just disarming everyone. Tell me, just how many of the dishonest gun holders would you see give up their guns as opposed to the honest citizen? I could go on and on here, but I think I've made my point. Thank you for your time and have a wonderful day.

Geo said...

If I was a criminal and knew that the public or person to be my prey was "unarmed", due to our wonderful justice system, hmm, what does this add up to be, advantage for the good guy who did the "right" thing by giving up his right to bear arms, or the advantage the bad guy now has because they now have all the weapons? The law cannot possibly stop all criminal attemtps on you or your family's attempts at protecting itself. Unfortunately, we must use the very thing the criminals are using to protect ourselves, which is what the government would have us do without! Do they actually think they are able to protect every citizen out there by themselves? That's what they are trying to setup, isn't it? no one believes this crap that if there are less guns in peoples homes, there will be less crime. balogna. Even if the governent could disarm all of the honest tax paying citizens of the USA, they cannot stop all the illegal guns that are out there. And dont slap that crap on me that if we didnt have guns in our homes, the crooks couldnt get any guns. This is a true story I've heard regarding how these thugs get their firepower. Now you'll have a public that's unable to protect itself and family. If anybody forced me to give up my weapons, and I lost a confrontation (by death or other tragic results) due to the fact that I could not protect myself because of some law a polition supported, I would not want to be that politician. I hope that doesn't happen to him/her. but its going to happen and keep happening if they continue to disarm the honest american. The Thug to Cop ratio is far to extreme to expect law inforcement to protect us. I don't understand how they wouldn't invite our enthusiasm to help them help us. That, I believe, would be a much better way of dealing with this gun issue than just disarming everyone. Tell me, just how many of the dishonest gun holders would you see give up their guns as opposed to the honest citizen? I could go on and on here, but I think I've made my point. Thank you for your time and have a wonderful day.

Geo said...

If I was a criminal and knew that the public or person to be my prey was "unarmed", due to our wonderful justice system, hmm, what does this add up to be, advantage for the good guy who did the "right" thing by giving up his right to bear arms, or the advantage the bad guy now has because they now have all the weapons? The law cannot possibly stop all criminal attemtps on you or your family's attempts at protecting itself. Unfortunately, we must use the very thing the criminals are using to protect ourselves, which is what the government would have us do without! Do they actually think they are able to protect every citizen out there by themselves? That's what they are trying to setup, isn't it? no one believes this crap that if there are less guns in peoples homes, there will be less crime. balogna. Even if the governent could disarm all of the honest tax paying citizens of the USA, they cannot stop all the illegal guns that are out there. And dont slap that crap on me that if we didnt have guns in our homes, the crooks couldnt get any guns. This is a true story I've heard regarding how these thugs get their firepower. Now you'll have a public that's unable to protect itself and family. If anybody forced me to give up my weapons, and I lost a confrontation (by death or other tragic results) due to the fact that I could not protect myself because of some law a polition supported, I would not want to be that politician. I hope that doesn't happen to him/her. but its going to happen and keep happening if they continue to disarm the honest american. The Thug to Cop ratio is far to extreme to expect law inforcement to protect us. I don't understand how they wouldn't invite our enthusiasm to help them help us. That, I believe, would be a much better way of dealing with this gun issue than just disarming everyone. Tell me, just how many of the dishonest gun holders would you see give up their guns as opposed to the honest citizen? I could go on and on here, but I think I've made my point. Thank you for your time and have a wonderful day.

Geo said...

If I was a criminal and knew that the public or person to be my prey was "unarmed", due to our wonderful justice system, hmm, what does this add up to be, advantage for the good guy who did the "right" thing by giving up his right to bear arms, or the advantage the bad guy now has because they now have all the weapons? The law cannot possibly stop all criminal attemtps on you or your family's attempts at protecting itself. Unfortunately, we must use the very thing the criminals are using to protect ourselves, which is what the government would have us do without! Do they actually think they are able to protect every citizen out there by themselves? That's what they are trying to setup, isn't it? no one believes this crap that if there are less guns in peoples homes, there will be less crime. balogna. Even if the governent could disarm all of the honest tax paying citizens of the USA, they cannot stop all the illegal guns that are out there. And dont slap that crap on me that if we didnt have guns in our homes, the crooks couldnt get any guns. This is a true story I've heard regarding how these thugs get their firepower. Now you'll have a public that's unable to protect itself and family. If anybody forced me to give up my weapons, and I lost a confrontation (by death or other tragic results) due to the fact that I could not protect myself because of some law a polition supported, I would not want to be that politician. I hope that doesn't happen to him/her. but its going to happen and keep happening if they continue to disarm the honest american. The Thug to Cop ratio is far to extreme to expect law inforcement to protect us. I don't understand how they wouldn't invite our enthusiasm to help them help us. That, I believe, would be a much better way of dealing with this gun issue than just disarming everyone. Tell me, just how many of the dishonest gun holders would you see give up their guns as opposed to the honest citizen? I could go on and on here, but I think I've made my point. Thank you for your time and have a wonderful day.

Geo said...

sorry about those repeated msg's, Not sure how that happened. If I knew how to delete those multiple entry's.... hmm.. anyone have any comments

thank you

Nic said...

Wisconsin and Illinois are the only two states in the U.S. right now that will not issue a carry permit. Milwaukee has a higher crime rate then most parts of chicago. Whether you think you have lived in the more troubled areas of this city, you more then likly have only had a small taste. People who would apply for a carry permit would be law obiding citizens who would use their weapons stricktly for protection. My evidence that can show this is all in a previous post. "If I felt the need to carry a weapon, I would not let the law stop me." Simply stated, those who want to carry a gun, for good or bad, ( more then likely bad ) will do so whether a law says they can or not. I would rather have the option at least to carry a gun with me for protection then feel helpless when I find myself in danger, or anyone else for that matter. Not saying this will turn everyone into a vigil anti of sorts, but crime would go down ( as studies have shown ) because people are less likely to rob a bank, or mug a person if there is even a slight chance that everyone in that building, or even that one individual, also has a gun. It is childish to think otherwise. This is how America works. It is a society where either everyone can have a gun, or no one can have a gun. And you can thank our founding fathers if you so wish, because as the constitution so kindly points out, We as americans, as shown in the second ammendment, have the right to bear arms. It should be listed as an act against the constitution to not be allowed to carry one with us. Set an age limit, or a long list of requiremnts before you are allowed to do so if you so wish. But to just toss it completly out of the option field is unamerican.