North Carolina Looking To Drop Jim Crow Gun Control Law

(AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

The roots of gun control rest in the Jim Crow era of American history. The original idea was to restrict black people from having guns while knowing full well that white people could have all the firearms they wanted. Oh, the laws weren’t phrased that way, but that was always the intent.


Some of those Jim Crow-era gun control laws still exist.

Now, North Carolina is looking to remove one of those laws.

North Carolina would end the long practice of sheriffs issuing permits to county residents before they can purchase handguns in a measure recommended on Tuesday by a House judiciary committee.

During the pistol purchase permit process, which dates back to 1919, a sheriff decides whether an applicant is of good moral character, plans to use the weapon for a lawful purpose and conducts a criminal background check. People convicted of felonies and other crimes can’t be issued permits.

But repeal supporters said the practice is outdated and carried out unevenly, depending on the county and the sheriff.

“It’s been a very flawed system for a very long time,” said Rep. Jay Adams, a Catawba County Republican and a bill sponsor.

The phrase “good moral character” was code back in the day for “white folks.” It was a nebulous term that could be used to keep anyone from buying a gun because the definition of such a thing is subjective by nature.


Honestly, it’s well past time to repeal something like that.

Of course, lawmakers in the state are pointing out how the required NICS checks do the same job that the licensing used to do, but I think it would be beneficial for them to remember the original roots of those laws. After all, if the left is going to pull down statues and purge society of anything related to racism, I’d say gun control laws would be a fine place to start.

Alas, that’s not likely to happen, which is probably why they’re focused on redundancy.

However, it should also be noted that we don’t actually require a permit to exercise almost any other constitutional right, with the right to assemble being a notable exception. Even then, it’s not about permission to protest. It’s about making sure the logistics are in place for the protest. You can’t be turned down simply because the government doesn’t like what you have to say.

Yet licensing doesn’t meet those same standards. It’s the government giving permission to exercise a right, plain and simple, and it needs to go away forever.


That’s even without the racist roots of such requirement.

Couple the two together and you find a perfect storm of just why it needs to be repealed.

Of course, anti-gunners won’t see it that way. They’ll make all the usual arguments, completely ignoring the fact that most of the surrounding states don’t require a license to purchase a permit without any issue.

Further, it’s not like North Carolinian criminals aren’t finding ways to get guns anyway, so clearly it’s not keeping them disarmed, so why not scrap it and stop interfering with the law-abiding citizens of the state?

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