Oh my Goddd.  That conservative Supreme Court is going to flip the 2nd Amendment on its head and turn America into an armed camp. And now gun violence will go through the roof because everyone’s going to be walking around with a gun!

              I’m getting what Grandpa would call this kind of geshry (read: yell) from every gun-control group along with a desperate demand for funds. This is because the Supreme Court has decided to take up the New York law which basically gives cops a free hand to decide who should and should not be able to walk around with a gun.

              This practice is referred to as ‘may issue,’ whereby the cops or some other designated agency can determine whether someone can walk around with a concealed weapon based on a documented concern of being attacked or otherwise being the victim of a violent crime. There are now only seven ‘may issue’ states, including California and New York.

              The other 43 states are either ‘shall issue’ states where anyone can receive a carry permit (CCW) without having a specific cause, or ‘Constitutional carry’ where no special license to walk around armed is required at all.

              Until the mid-80’s, states which allowed residents to walk around with a concealed weapon were few and far between. In fact, as late as 1886, there were 41 states which either didn’t grant any kind of concealed-carry license or only approved such licenses on a very strict and arbitrary basis, which usually meant you were good friends with the local chief.

              One of the ways that America is a unique country is the propensity of Americans to pick up a loaded gun, point it at someone else and go – blam! The United States happens to lead the entire advanced world in this type of behavior both in the number of people who get shot, as well as the rate of this type of violence which occurs every year. According to our friend David Hemenway, the odds of someone getting killed by being attacked by someone else with a gun is 7 to 20 times higher here than in any other high-income (OECD) nation-state.

              I have no issue with David’s calculations which places American gun violence rates at the top of the OECD list. I do have an issue, however, with the argument which attempts to explain this level of violence or at least connect this violence to all the people walking around with guns, or at least people walking around with legally-owned guns, which is what the whole noise being made about the Supreme Court taking a gun case is all about.

              Let me break it to my Gun-control Nation friends as gently as I can. When there were only 8 states which granted any kind of concealed-carry licenses for any reason whatsoever, the gun-homicide rate was 5.05.  In 2019, when the residents of 40 states could walk around with a gun in their pocket, the national gun-homicide rate was 4.39.  In other words, if we use gun-homicide numbers to figure out how violent we really are, the numbers clearly indicate that more concealed-carry licensing leads to more peace.

              This raises an interesting question, namely, what will be the impact on gun-violence rates if the Supremes throw out the New York gun law and the other ‘may issue’ states like California and New Jersey get into line?  Given the fact that the ‘may issue’ states together contain 25% of the national population, couldn’t universal ‘shall issue’ CCW law result in gun violence going down even more?

              Which is exactly what Gun-nut Nation has been saying for years. Except there’s only one problem with this argument as well. Let’s not forget that the Supremes are going to be looking at laws which regulate who can and cannot carry guns. And since when did the people who commit 15,000 homicides and at least another 75,000 non-fatal gun assaults each year give one rat’s damn about laws?

              Our good friend Philip Cook once interviewed 99 prison inmates and found that few of them got their guns through legal means. Gee, what a surprise. The point is that whether law-abiding gun owners can walk around the neighborhood with a gun just because they want to walk around with a gun, may or may not have any connection to the number of guys who use a gun to commit a crime, in particular the crime we refer to as homicide, which is what gun violence is really all about.

              I think the issue of gun laws versus gun violence is beside the point. To me, the real issue is whether anyone, whether a good guy or a bad guy, should have access to guns which can only be used to commit gun violence because in case you didn’t know it, the definition of violence according to the World Health Organization is any conscious attempt to injure yourself or someone else.

              If I believe you are coming towards me to commit an assault, and I pull out my Glock and drill you right through the head so that your assault against me doesn’t take place, aren’t I consciously trying to injure you? Damn right I am, which is why I carry a Glock, and not some 22-caliber target gun.

              On the other hand, like most Americans who are issued a concealed-carry license, I happen to live in a town where the only people who walk towards me at night are actually on their way to the Starbucks across the street.

              As far as I’m concerned, the whole concealed-carry issue is nothing more than a society-wide case of arrested mental development, and if this is the only thing that the Supreme Court has to worry about, as Grandpa would say, ‘a be gezunt’ (read: who cares?)