NC op-ed tries to distort reality on gun permits

NC op-ed tries to distort reality on gun permits
(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

North Carolina is the only state in the South with gun permits. By that, I mean permit-to-purchase requirements for handguns. You simply cannot lawfully buy a handgun in the state without one, even for a private purchase.

And that’s a big problem.

After all, this is a constitutionally-protected right we’re talking about here. Further, this is a Jim Crow-era law that deserves to be removed.

But some people like to distort reality to try and defend such laws.

Who are we to believe?

North Carolina Republican legislators, who have a legacy of enacting laws that courts have declared racially biased and now say they’re looking to rid the state of a vestige of the racist Jim Crow era by repealing the state’s statutes requiring county sheriffs to issue pistol permits after background checks from applicants.

Or …

Organizations like the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) – North Carolinians who know and lived Jim Crow first-hand – or the Duke University Center for Firearms Law, who say “statements that North Carolina’s permit law was purely racist or solely intended to disarm Black citizens don’t hold up to close historical scrutiny and often do a disservice to the quality of debate and discussion surrounding modern legislative proposals like the current push to repeal the law.”

First, how many current members active with the NAACP actually lived during the Civil rights Era? I’m genuinely curious how many of the leaders denying the Jim Crow roots of gun permits in the state actually remember what it was like during that time in North Carolina’s history.

Further, the Duke University Center for Firearms Law is a glorified gun control think-tank. They’re not historians, and the center has repeatedly found fault with decisions overturning various gun control laws on Second Amendment grounds.

So I’m sorry, their claims aren’t definitive by any stretch of the imagination.

Take a look at the requirements for just a second and you’ll see the “good moral character” requirement. That’s the very clause used to keep numerous black people from owning guns for years. They couldn’t lawfully say to exclude black men and women, but they used it for that purpose just the same.

Further, all it takes is one racist sheriff to do it all over again. In a world where people such as many NAACP members claim systemic racism, do you really want to trust that?

Of course, some will invariably claim that such laws keep North Carolinians safe, and that gun permit requirements make it harder for bad people to get guns.

Yet North Carolina’s violent crime rate is above the median average with a permitting requirement. If that’s the benefit of gun permits, then just what the hell is wrong with North Carolinians? After all, their violent crime rate appears to be higher than in my native Georgia that has no gun permit requirement for purchasing firearms.

So if the gun permits keep people safe, what are these folks trying to say about North Carolina in the first place? I ask because it sure looks like it’s not working.