The elitist fear of concealed carry
The news program 60 Minutes turned its gaze toward the concealed carry reciprocity bill moving its way through Congress. As one might expect, it was not exactly journalism, so much as it was sensationalism. It also managed to give a national forum to the New York City pols who have a vested interest in keeping their draconian gun control laws in place. From the transcript, we're treated to this:
Cyrus Vance: I think it would be a disaster for New York City. And I think for major cities around the country.
James O'Neill: I think it's insanity.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance and New York City Police Commissioner James O'Neill say their city has the most to lose. Every year, New York takes in nearly 50 million visitors from all over the country into a congested, sometimes chaotic city. Even if a tiny fraction were legally carrying concealed weapons, it would mean hundreds of thousands of additional guns for what is right now the safest big city in America.
Cyrus Vance: You bring that kind of volume of firepower even with well-intentioned people-- it's gonna be extremely dangerous.
Steve Kroft: More guns, more violence. That's what you're saying.
James O'Neill: Absolutely.
They're not just worried about more crime, but an increase in suicides, gun accidents and heated arguments turning into lethal altercations. And with no national database for concealed carry permits, the NYPD says it would not be able to immediately determine whether someone was legally carrying or not.
James O'Neill: Right now we-- we have a good idea of-- of who's carrying guns. If this law passes, the-- all bets are off. Anybody can come into New York City from any state and-- and carry a weapon.
Cyrus Vance: I wouldn't presume to tell the residents of West Virginia what their gun laws should be. They've figured out what they want there. But I don't think they, or Congress, should be having West Virginia's laws put on New York City.
And so on. It's interesting to note the condescending worry gun control advocates have about firearms in their midst. More guns from visitors might result in more suicides -- which assumes, rather grimly, visitors would head to the Big Apple for the sole purpose of ending it all. And as visitors are obviously trigger-happy hotheads, they may wreck havoc on the helpless, unarmed locals.
This is nonsense.
But it's also not unexpected. New York City has long tried to extend the reach of its gun control laws, seeking to wage legal warfare against states that have more sane gun laws because: reasons.
While we still have our reservations about what the concealed carry proposal does to the concept of federalism, it's hardly the bloody bogeyman haunting Cyrus Vance's dreams. The bill, if it passes, will not lead to mayhem in Times Square. But it will prevent law abiding citizens with concealed carry permits from becoming criminals once they cross the New York state line.