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WRITE TEAM: Time for concealed carry
09/21/2011, 8:43 pm </SPAN>
Jerry Long, Write Team I could talk about the Second Amendment and our legal right to own and possess a firearm, but according to the Supreme Court, that is a moot point.
To be able to "carry" is a different story. The Second Amendment states: "to keep and bear arms." The word "bear" means: to produce, to carry; convey, to show visibly. All of which doesn't mean to leave in your house.
According to statistics, even though Chicago has implemented new crime fighting techniques received from Los Angeles and New York, Chicago still is ranked in the top five worst cities in violent crimes. Chicago installed cameras on street corners in the highest-crime areas in the city. These cameras hear the sound of a gunshot, then focus on the area, then zoom in.
Because most criminal activity is directly connected to drug dealers and gangs, this prompted Chicago to also focus on a certain population segment within the city — low-income households. With the low-income residents being the large majority of drug purchasers, the city felt the need to eliminate the attraction for the drug dealers by dispersing or encouraging such residents to relocate to different areas of the state.
In 2009, Illinois had a total population of just less than 13 million with 773 murders, 510 in Chicago, with a population just less than 3 million. Texas has a population of just less than 25 million — 12 percent of the total population in the U.S. — and in 2009 had 1,328 murders. Texas also borders Mexico. If Chicago was the size of Texas, per capita, that would be 4,080 murders. While Washington, D.C., is ranked the worst city in every category, Chicago is not far behind.
While crime is and should be fought on many different levels, I believe concealed carry should be included in the fight against crime. Statistics already have proven that after a state implements concealed carry, crime rates do drop. I wonder how many crimes have not been reported for fear of retribution because the victim is without a firearm?
Isn't it ironic that the retired mayor of Chicago — Richard M. Daley, one of the biggest opponents of concealed carry — now wants the taxpayers to pay for the use of police protection around the clock because he had death threats? I wonder how many victims have had death threats against them for reporting a crime?
If you place a handgun on your kitchen table, unless it is picked up by someone, that handgun will be there 3,000 years from now, or until Mother Nature takes it away. Guns don't kill people, people kill people.
Let me leave you with something to chew on. There are 875 million firearms in the world today; the U.S. posses 270 million, equaling 90 guns for every 100 people in America. There is a reason why a country like China will not attempt to invade the U.S. via conventional warfare — it would be insane to attack a 250 million-man army.
Guns are our first line of defense for a free society. Without guns or the ability to carry, can anyone say "breach of national security?"
- JERRY LONG of Streator is a union truck diver of 25 years. He can be reached through The Times by e-mailing email@example.com.