My Issue with “May Issue” Permits
California Sheriffs are given the discretion to issue concealed carry permits. Evidently my Sheriff distrusts everyone. You might get a permit from him if you can demonstrate both a record of past threats that resulted in police reports and the likelihood of further risk to your personal safety. Few of us meet that standard.
Then I thought about my friends who can’t get a permit.
- A retired airline pilot held the lives of hundreds of people in his hands every day for years and years. He not only had to operate an aircraft, he had to have the strength of character to not fly when equipment or crew members were not up to standards. Many times he had to say, “I’m too tired or too sick to fly so I won’t get paid today.” This pilot can’t get a permit to carry a weapon in public because our sheriff says the risks of the pilot’s irresponsible behavior don’t match the possible benefits.
- My friend is a nuclear electrician. He is also part of the armed security detail on his nuclear submarine. We shoot together because he finds civilian firearms training more demanding than his navy qualification. He can’t get a permit to carry a weapon on shore.
- I know a firearms instructor who worked as personal security around the world. He does not have a need, so couldn’t get a permit to carry in my county.
- Two ministers need armed escorts at their churches. Another has had bomb threats to his staff. How do you prove that you’ll get more bomb threats? According to my sheriff, these ministers might not have the necessary maturity to be armed in public.
- An acquaintance manages one of the largest military pharmacies on the west coast. He handles tens of millions of dollars in drugs and narcotics. How does he prove his need for self-defense?
- A friend and professional firearms trainer worked as diplomatic security and on overseas personnel recovery. He does not have a demonstrated need, so can’t get a permit in California.
- My friend is one of the few people who loaded nuclear weapons. I trust him, but my sheriff doesn’t.
- A pharmacy assistant has been repeatedly threatened by drug addicts, yet she can’t get a permit because the threats do not rise to the level of an actionable police report. She can’t bring charges, so there are no police reports. No reports, so no permit to carry. I heard about her when she sought private training to protect herself and her family.
- A Navy Seal has to prove he needs a firearm because he is not considered as safe and disciplined as our local law enforcement personnel. Please explain that decision to me if you can.
- My friend was a Captain of a military police unit. He ran qualification training for their SWAT teams. He also sat as a judge for Summary Courts Martial. According to my sheriff, the Captain doesn’t have the experience, temperament and judgment to handle a firearm in public. The risk is just too high.
- Some great people have taught me to shoot. A former member of an Army Pistol Team, also a distinguished graduate of handgun firearms training, doesn’t have a demonstrated need for self-defense. I guess he might be a wild man with a weapon if he wore a gun in public.
- My friends the EMT, the general practice doctor and the emergency room physician’s assistant can’t get a permit to carry. After all, they might not be able to handle the stress of life and death decisions when they are tired.
- One of my shooting buddies is a school principal. If there were ever a problem in school, he would be on the scene while law enforcement is many minutes away. Of course, he is not trusted with weapons in public.
- A civilian and military firearms instructor trains military security teams with fully automatic weapons. He trains them in both weapons handling and house/vessel clearance procedures. He trains on the range and also sets the training curriculum for these teams. Nobody knows use-of-deadly-force better than he does. He doesn’t know enough to satisfy my sheriff.
- A civilian firearms instructor can’t carry a weapon on the street. I guess the instructor might be a threat to the general public, the same public she trains every day. Our sheriff says the risks don’t match the possible benefits. The benefits to whom, I wonder?
- Then I remember that a retired politician can get a permit even if you can’t. I guess that provides all the benefits our sheriff needs.
Do you see why I have issues with “may issue”? 24 California Counties issue permits for self-defense. Mine won’t. I don’t blame my sheriff. He is no more corrupt than many. I blame the politicians who set up a system designed for political bribery.
My friends may be unusual, but I don’t think I’m unusual to have friends of unusually strong character. These friends are gifts I did not earn and am lucky to have met. They inspire me. May you be as lucky.
Please share your additions to the list.