Why Are Permit Applications Up In A Constitutional Carry State?

People in constitutional carry states generally still issue concealed carry permits. Just because you don’t need one in that state doesn’t mean you won’t need one in another, so they issue them for reciprocity’s sake. The only way you wouldn’t need one is if every state went permitless carry.

As such, there’s probably a steady flow of permit applications from people who travel out of state.

However, in Kansas, it doesn’t sound much like a steady flow.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt announced Thursday that his office received more than double the amount of concealed carry applications over last year. This comes as the minimum age to get the permit was recently reduced to 18 in Kansas.

Schmidt said between July 1, 2020, and June 30, 2021, his Concealed Carry Licensing Unit received 7,717 new applications. This was more than double the number of applications received in the previous fiscal year.

Range 54 co-owner and instructor Ken Grommet said the pandemic played a big role in the uptick of people wanting to get the license.

“Training, as far as carry concealed, is almost doubled for us as well. I mean, we went from two classes a month to six classes a month,” said Grommet. “There was a lot of fear. There was, you know, some rioting. There was, you know, talking about defunding police. So people were looking at, what do I do to protect myself?… You don’t have to, but if you don’t understand what the rules are, or what the game is, or how to play the game, you get one shot at it. And if you’re wrong, you spend the rest of your life in prison.”

I get all of that, but you can take training without having to apply for a permit.

Plus, with the pandemic last year and the associated lockdowns all over the nation, it seems odd that people would get permits when they don’t actually need them, especially with travel so heavily restricted for much of that period.

Again, you can take all the training in the world without having to apply for a carry permit afterward, so that explanation just doesn’t make a lot of sense to me.

Sure, a lot of people may have decided that since they got their training, they might as well, but would that account for more than doubling the total number of applications over the previous 12 month period? I don’t think so.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I don’t see this as a bad thing by any stretch. It’s just curious, is all.

However, when a lot of Kansans return to their travel habits, they’ll likely be carrying a firearm with them all over the country. That’s good. Not just for them, but for the people in many of the states they visit. More guns mean less crime. It doesn’t mean those more guns have to be locally owned, after all.

Still, it might be interesting to see how many other constitutional carry states are seeing a similar influx of permit applications over that same period. Is this unique to Kansas, or is this a national phenomenon?