Editorial Takes Aim At Repeal Of NC's Gun Permit Requirement

(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

North Carolina has required a permit to purchase a pistol for decades. The law dates back to a time when the legislature trusted local sheriffs to keep guns out of the hands of black men and women.

Over time, that’s become an issue for people of all ethnicities, of course, as some local powers would just as soon not issue any permits at all.

That’s why the legislature stepped in to repeal the requirement. Plenty of states exist just fine without one, after all, so now North Carolina lawmakers figure their state should be one.

Not everyone agrees with this, though.

Is it too much to expect that the North Carolina General Assembly look to enact laws based on reality and fact and not on gossip and a hunch?

Judging on the latest venture into abolishing much of the state law on county sheriffs’ issuing pistol permits, the answer is yes. It is, to be generous, misguided and unnecessary legislation to appeal to radical gun-rights fanatics with no regard to the lives jeopardized by the impact of this bill.

Gov. Roy Cooper should veto it and that veto needs to be sustained.

State Sen. Chuck Edwards, a Henderson County Republican, says it has been “brought to my attention” some sheriffs were slowing the issuance of the permits “simply because they do not want to allow citizens their Second Amendment rights.” Edwards says the “National Instant Criminal Background Check System” is adequate.

That is idle chatter and hearsay — not reality or facts.

It might be.

However, some sheriffs were slow in issuing the permits, which presents a problem. Speculating as to why may or may not be truthful, but the fact remains that they were slow, which delayed people being able to exercise their constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. You know what they say, though. “A right delayed is a right denied.”

So while the speculation may or may not be valid–I tend to think it is, but that’s neither here nor there–the results of their actions are still the same.

Moving on…

The federal system only involves gun purchases from a “Federal Firearms Licensee.” There are NO checks for guns purchased from individuals or at gun shows. The system also only tracks and accounts criminal convictions – NOT recent arrests, pending charges that might have been dropped or if someone’s in the midst of a legal proceeding concerning a domestic abuse or violence restraint order.  Current law requires sheriffs to both check the national system as well as criminal history from the state Administrative Office of the Courts.

First, remember that charges are just charges. They’re not sentences. We don’t deny people their rights based on allegations, which is all a charge actually is.

Further, let’s also remember that the people you most have to worry about aren’t getting these permits anyway. They’re heading to the house of a buddy who stole a dozen guns or so lately. They’re dropping a bit of cash and walking out with a gun in their hands. There’s no background check or permit requirement that will stop that from happening, either.

It’s well past time these journalists who like to talk about reality start to wake the hell up and face reality themselves. Gun control doesn’t stop criminals.

Nov 26, 2021 10:30 AM ET