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Concealed Carry

Concealed Carry in Wisconsin Wisconsin's Shall Issue CCW
Practical Aspects of Concealed Carry Concealed carry links, and organizations**

    To carry or not to carry, that is the question. This is one of the few issues in which I agree with the conclusions of those on the left. There is little practical point in owning a pistol, unless one is planning to carry. Where I disagree with the left, is in my belief that it should be a normal, non threatening, and positive thing to have regular decent people arming themselves. We are, after all, a republic, in which the people are presumed to be responsible, as well as being the true source of the government, and the owners of the nation.
    I should first mention that concealed carry is now legal in my home state of Wisconsin, and about time. Open carry is legal, without a permit. I have carried openly in the countryside, as I am legally permitted to do, and have carried concealed on a few occasions, when I thought it necessary because of some temporary circumstances in my life. Among the fifty states, 49 have provisions for a concealed carry permit, while 36 of these issue on demand permits; five do not require any permit at all. What is meant by on demand, is that permits are issued without question, requirement to show need, or discretion in issuance. In these states, a concealed carry permit is issued on demand, in the same way as a driver's license.
    There are also eight discretionary states. In these states, there is a provision for the licensing of individuals to carry, but there is no requirement for the licensing authorities to do so. In theory, this means that you have to justify your need to carry, In practice, this generally means that you have to be wealthy, part of the system, connected, be owed a favor, or have something to hold over an official with authority to grant a permit. In some cases, it may depend upon where in the state you live, with issuing authorities (usually the Sheriff) of some counties being more friendly than those of others. At best, this is as unequal way of granting permits for what is supposed to be an uninfringable right; at worst, this is an institutionalized system of favor granting for governmental officials. At it's very worst, as in the early days of it's existence in New York and Chicago, this is a system for granting members of criminal organizations the advantage of carrying arms, while disarming their potential victims.
    Concealed carry is illegal in most places, unless a permit is granted. The only exceptions to this, are the states of Vermont, Arizona, Wyoming, Montana, and Alaska where all citizens are allowed to carry, with no permit required. Interestingly, despite the rantings of the anti gun left, Vermont has an extraordinarily low crime rate, as does Alaska. In states where concealed carry has been legalized, two things have been completely predictable. The first is that the anti gun left will rally and rant against the impending violence, and crime wave which the new legislation will bring. The second is, that the first never comes to pass, and that crime inevitably goes down, while individual security goes up. This will be the extent of my comments on the social and legal aspect of concealed carry. I go into a bit more detail, and justification, in my essays on the right to keep and bear arms. Instead, this essay is meant to address the practical, and technical side of personal carry.
    Concealed carry is not practiced by hunters, sportsmen, target shooters, the military, or in most cases, the police. This is what makes the whole issue so important to those who do not care for the idea of private gun ownership, and who are particularly appalled at the idea of someone actually using a gun in self defense. In the places where gun ownership is permitted, but carry is not, the situation resembles that of being allowed to own a car, but being forbidden to take it out on the road. This would limit the appeal of car ownership to racers, tinkerers, and collectors. Most people would see no reason, and have little desire to own a car, since prevailing laws would make them unable to use one in any practical way. Indeed, this was the situation, regarding firearms, everywhere, except for the state of Vermont, and  few of the western states, up until a few years ago.
    Passing legislation to remove concealed carry restrictions on citizens takes firearms out of the specialized world of the hunter, sportsman, and "gun nut", and sets them comfortably within the main stream. It makes the ownership of a pistol, something for everyone to consider. The decision to carry is much easier to make these days, with so many states issuing permits, many of which are shall issue states. It is now possible for the average citizen, with concerns about personal safety, to provide for his own security without being thought of as a nut, and without risking arrest.
    Anyone who regards the citizens of this nation as being in agreement with anti gunners, need only look at firearms statistics. Over half the households in the nation own some sort of firearm; the average firearm owner possesses four guns. Those that assume the average citizen depends on the police for protection should note that, after the September 11th attacks, pistol purchases went up over 500%. There is also the famous court case, in which a woman who sued the DC police for taking over two hours to respond to her call of an intruder entering her house, was told that the police had no responsibility for the safety of individual citizens. She was beaten and raped; the police arrived just in time to do nothing. Similar incidents have occurred in nearly every major city, though Chicago had a couple of particularly notorious cases. Who or what the police are responsible for, I can not say, but it is certainly not us. While it is true that all of the pistols in the world would not have been able to protect the people in the World Trade Center from the oncoming aircraft, had several, or even one, of the passengers on board been armed, the whole story would very likely have been different.
     With Wisconsin now having shall issue concealed carry, only illinois has an unconstitutional ban still in place. In addition, Wisconsin retains its right to open carry, and its preemption statute. Suddenly Wisconsin is one of the better states in regards to supporting the gun rights of its citizens. This is just one more thing for Wisconsin people to look down on illinois people about. There is a possibility that shall issue will be passed in Massachusetts (presently, non residents can get a permit, but residents can not), New York State (but not nyc), and California. It may happen by default in Rhode Island, and the  the pistol bans in DC, and Chicago have finally been declared unconstitutional. There seems to be no hope for the degenerate states of new jersey, illinois, and maryland. Still, only time will tell.

State of concealed carry in the states
The following is as accurate as I was able to make it as of January, 2015.
69% of the US population lives in "Right To Carry" (Vermont, Alaska, & 36 "Shall Issue") states.
27% in "Right Restricted" (8 "May Issue") states. 
4.4% in "Right Denied" (1) states.
The map shows 50 states, which does not include the dc area. As of this writing H.R. 218 has given a defacto permit to carry to all active and retired police officers, through out the nation.
State Population
Open Carry Preemption Banned Arms License 
Rights recognized (5) 8267605 (2.8%)
Alaska 648818
Yes No None None
Vermont 619107
Yes Yes None None
Arizona 5580811 Yes Yes None None
Wyoming 501242 Yes Yes None None
Montana 917621 Yes Yes None None
Shall Issue States (36) 224241983 (67%)
Alabama 4500752
Yes (except rally) Yes None None
Arkansas  2725714
In certain areas Yes None Pistol caliber FA
Connecticut  3483372
No Yes New AR, New FA AR, FA
Colorado 4550688
In Certain Areas Yes None None
Florida  17019068
No Yes None None
Georgia 8684715
In vehicle, or hunting Yes None None
Idaho  1366332
Yes Yes None None
Iowa 2944062 In certain areas Yes FA None
Indiana  6195643
No Yes except pre94 sawed off SG None
In most cases
Kentucky  4117827
Yes Yes None None
Louisiana  4496334
Yes Yes FA, except war relics None
Maine  1305728
Yes Yes none None
Michigan 10079985
No No FA None
Minnesota 5059375
No Yes FA, some pistols, AR None
Mississippi  2881281
Yes Yes None None
Missouri 5704484
In Most Areas Yes FA None
Yes (most places)
Nevada  2241154
Yes  Yes except pre89 None None
New Hampshire  1287687
Yes No None None
New Mexico 1874614
Yes yes None None
North Carolina  8407248
Yes Yes None FA
North Dakota  633837
Yes (unloaded) Yes None None
Ohio 11435798
Yes (many places) No None None
Oklahoma  35115532
Yes (some exceptions) Yes None None
Oregon  3559596
Yes Yes (except carry) None None
Pennsylvania  12365455
Yes (some exceptions) Yes (except carry) None None
South Carolina  4147152
No (some exceptions) Yes FA None
South Dakota  764309
Yes (some exceptions) Yes None None
Tennessee  5841748
No (some exceptions) Yes None None
Texas  22118509
No Yes None None
Utah  2351467
Hunters only Yes None None
Virginia  7386330
Yes (some exceptions) Yes except pre87 Certain shotguns None
Washington  6131445
Yes (some exceptions) Yes FA None
West Virginia  1810354
Hunters only Yes Except pre99 None None
Wisconsin 5472299 Yes Yes None None
Discretionary States (8) 78406558 (27%)
california** 35484453
In certain areas Yes AR,FA, some handguns None
Delaware 817491
In most areas Yes, except pre85 FA None
hawaii** 1257608
No No FA All allowed Firearms
Maryland 5508909
No Yes some handguns None
Massachusetts 6433422
No Yes None All firearms
new jersey** 8638396
No No FA, AR All Allowed Firearms
new york** 19190115
No Yes, many exceptions FA All Allowed Firearms
Rhode Island 1076164
No Yes FA None
Fascist States (1 1/2) 13236928 (4.5%)
dc** 563384
No NA All firearms NA
illinois** 12653544
No No FA All Allowed Firearms
**These are the worst places in the nation, in regards to firearms law. Though some do issue discretionary permits, this is generally laughable, and can be considered as a perk or a favor for those who are connected or of the chosen class. They also have significant gun bans.

Present initiatives

State Currently Proposed Prospects
Illinois No Permits Available Shall Issue Poor to neutral
Maine Shall Issue No Permit Required Fair
South Carolina Shall Issue No Permit Required fair
New Hampshire Shall Issue No permit Required Good