Are Permits Being Delayed On Purpose?

Not everyone buys a gun with the intention of carrying it. Many do, of course, but many others buy a gun for keeping at home. They seem to think that’s the only time they’ll face danger or whatever.


However, regardless of why they do it, the bulk of most gun owners at least consider carrying a firearm.

With gun sales surging this year, one would think carry permits would surge as well. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be happening, and some are thinking that’s because of shenanigans.

Reports from around the country reveal that a number of state and local agencies are not approving concealed-carry permit applications in a timely fashion. In some cases, the delays are well past the time frames written into the application laws. The states and agencies that work with providing these services have generally blamed the same thing for the slowdowns: COVID-19 and associated problems with staffing.

As John Lott has documented at the Crime Prevention Research Center, the number of concealed-carry permits increased every year over the last decade through 2019. With the boom in gun sales this year, especially among first-time firearms owners, one would assume a surge in new carry permits, too. Instead, the number of new carry permits for 2020 has declined compared to past years.

“There is a simple reason that concealed handgun permits have not increased as much as gun sales: many states stopped issuing new permits for many months because of the [COVID-19] virus,” Lott reported.

In Michigan, for example, FOX2 Detroit found that concealed-carry applicants in Wayne County have experienced approval wait times up to nine months in length.

To give a specific example in Michigan, Kristal Hunt, who says she needs some protection, took the state’s required Concealed Pistol License class and filled out the necessary paperwork. But for the application to be finalized, Hunt and others must have a face-to-face appointment with a county official. Hunt recently received her appointment date—for July 2021!

“It seems like that’s the common thing in Wayne County; it’s barriers when you’re trying to go about things in the right way,” said Hunt.


Honestly, this makes no sense.

To be fair, I’m not sure I agree with delays being intentional, meaning I don’t think the delays are the goal. However, it does seem to me that their failure to expedite things is certainly intentional. They’ve got such a tremendous backlog yet they’ve taken zero steps to address it. The delays are more of a byproduct than the end goal.


I can’t rule out an intention, you see. It may well be a desire to delay people that’s behind the refusal to take any steps to clear the backlog. Their thinking might be that if you make people wait, they’ll rethink their desire to have a permit. Some people really do think buying a gun and getting a permit is an impulsive act rather than one born of actual rational thinking. Perhaps someone figured that if they can hold people off, they’ll come to their senses or something.

That wouldn’t be surprising, really.

Regardless, I don’t know that there’s much that can be done about it without evidence of this being a conscious decision to intentionally try and prevent people from getting permits. If that comes up, though, it’s time to lower the boom on these folks however you can.


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