Michael Bloomberg has directed his minions at Everytown for Gun Safety to make a large ad buy in an effort to derail House Bill 562.

National gun control group Everytown for Gun Safety has bought airtime for a TV ad urging lawmakers to oppose House Bill 562, an omnibus gun bill that would relax restrictions on owning and carrying weapons in the state.

The 30-second spot is scheduled to run statewide on broadcast television this week.

House Bill 562 would repeal North Carolina’s requirement that a prospective handgun buyer obtain a pistol permit from the county sheriff. That process includes a criminal background check.

Let’s talk about the history of that pistol permitting scheme, since WRAL reporter Laura Leslie want to skip over it’s deplorable history.

The pistol permit was introduced into North Carolina law in the Jim Crow-era South, when the NC Democrat Party and the Ku Klux Klan were one in the same.

The intent of the permitting process was brutal and simple: Klansmen didn’t want to get shot while cross-burning and lynching, and so they wanted to ensure that blacks in Jim Crow North Carolina didn’t have the legal right to own handguns. The permits had to be applied for in person so that local sheriffs could deny permits based on race.

That this same permitting scheme still applies in 2015 is a travesty of justice.

The claim that the scheme should be kept because “background checks are needed” is intentionally duplicitous, as the FBI’s NICS checks perform background checks whenever a firearm is purchased, and the permits themselves are used for nothing once acquired. Yes, that’s right… the Jim Crow-era “Klan protection permits” are simply thrown out after someone uses them to buy a gun, as there is no requirement to keep them, or otherwise do anything with them. This makes perfect sense, of course, when you realize that the permits are only a racist barrier to handgun ownership, and nothing more.

House Bill 562 would dump this racist scheme, and modernize many of North Carolina’s other antiquated gun laws.

In addition to dumping the Klan protection pistol permitting scheme (which I sincerely hope NC Democrats don’t think they still need),  it would allow district attorneys to carry firearms in court, would prevent doctors from compiling lists or databases of patients who own firearms (already presumably illegal under federal law), and provides legal protections for firing ranges, so that when urban sprawl overtakes a range, the Johnny-come-latelies cannot then harass the long-existing ranges with noise complaints.

HB 562 is a good bill, and a needed bit of legislation.

It’s too bad that Everytown opposes good law that would erase a racist practice.