I agree that the Second Amendment is clear that our rights shall not be infringed, but I believe that Senator Tarte is doing his best to honor the Second Amendment and our forefathers through his proposed Senate Bill 708 “Homeland Security Unrestricted Concealed Handgun Permit”. Why do I believe this? Because his proposed enhanced carry bill, if passed, would remove current restrictions of ‘gun free’ zones. That for me is reason enough that the Senator is on our side.
Yes, the proposed bill would require additional training and certification. I for one am a huge proponent for additional firearms training and education. Any opportunity I get to improve my knowledge and skills is a huge benefit to me, my family, and friends. Training increases the likelihood that you will respond appropriately if you find yourself in a situation that requires you to draw your firearm for reasons of protection. That’s why you are required to take at least a basic course prior to applying for your concealed carry permit.
The additional training, psychological assessment, and fingerprinting will cost approximately $1,000.00. This will deter many from getting the additional enhanced carry permit. This leads me back to my initial point, carrying on school campuses. I believe that the vast majority of people who own firearms are dedicated to safety, and willing to protect their loved ones as necessary. I firmly believe that $1,000.00 worth of training far outweighs $50.00 of training. Yes, I am putting a dollar sign on training. Why? Because what I learned in the course to apply for my concealed carry permit does not hold light to the additional firearms training I have pursued. No, you don’t always have to ‘pay’ for training, but let’s put it like this: if you shoot a 9mm it’s on average $14.00 for 50 rounds. If I wanted to spend $50.00 I could get 179 rounds of ammunition to train with or if I spent $1,000.00 I could get 3,582 rounds to train with. Do you trust me more after 179 rounds down range or thousands? Yes, it might be overkill when you compare rounds fired to training. However, when we are talking about being able to carry uninhibited by ‘gun free zones’ and on school campuses this investment towards training creates a safer environment versus the person who has the minimal instruction carrying in such areas.
While not everyone will take advantage of this enhanced permit, the firearm owners who do obtain it will be well qualified, trained and vetted. Overall, this bill is a step in the right direction towards constitutional carry. While Senate Bill 708 “Homeland Security Unrestricted Concealed Handgun Permit” does not fix all of the issues at hand, it has laid the foundation for other states and other bills to follow suit and bring us closer to constitutional carry while promoting firearm owners to be safer and obtain additional education.