Since Wisconsin past a concealed carry law this year, and with the recent events. I know a lot of people who have either recently received a carry permit, are in the process of getting one, or are planning on getting one in the near future. As I mentioned in this blog before, that makes me a bit uneasy.
I really have no problems with someone carrying a concealed firearm, as long as they know what they are doing, have the proper setup (the right firearm and holster configuration), have received some training and practice with their firearm regularly.
The way Wisconsin currently issues it's CCW permits adds greatly to the uneasiness I feel. In my opinion, it's currently too easy to get one. A few weeks after the law took effect, a ran into one of my best friends. He was all smiles when he said "Guess what I got" and quickly pulled his brand spanking new Wisconsin concealed carry permit ID card out of his wallet. I said "cool, that didn't take you long. Are they offering classes already or do they except the Minnesota training requirements?" He replied "no classes, I just went to the courthouse, showed them my Hunter's Safety card and filled out some paperwork."
I don't like that one bit. While there is a good deal of firearm safety training required to pass Wisconsin's Hunter Safety program (required before you can purchase a hunting license of any kind) but this is no where near the amount of, or type of training one should have for concealed carry. It's a good foundation, but it's not enough. Plus most people (at least in my neck of the woods) take that when they are 10 or 11. I know some people now in there late twenties to early forties who are interested in concealed carry who may have took Hunter's Safety when they were about 11 and haven't touched a firearm in the last 10 to 15 years. I don't like the idea of someone carrying with that little experience.
Minnesota, the state that's about two miles away from where I type this, has a much better process. Concealed carry applicants must take a class and pass a shooting test. At this time I don't know all the details, but I will be learning soon. I feel strongly that not only one needs to pass written and shooting tests, they should be evaluated and renewed often, like our police and military personal have to do. It only makes sense.
I know it is a Constitutional right to be able to bear arms. I in no way would want to limit that. I'm just saying if you want to put a firearm that you legally own into your pocket, purse or waistband and go out in public; you have the right to, but without proper equipment, training and practice you are more likely to shoot yourself in the leg than anything else.
This is why I keep telling people to take a concealed carry training course. I tell that to people who are thinking of getting a Wisconsin permit whether they are an experience firearms owner or not. I've been recommending it to friends who don't own a firearm and have no intentions of ever carrying. I've even suggested taking the class to friend of mine who is against the idea of anyone carrying a firearm. There is a ton of information that can be learned from such a class, I would strongly encourage anyone to take it.
Far as my friend who was so happy to show me his permit, he doesn't worry me. I've been at the gun range with him many times. He is an excellent shot, knows the ins and outs of his firearms and how to properly handle one. But more importantly, he doesn't carry. He simply got the permit just to have it. And that's more or less what I am now in the process of doing.
I'll tell you all about that later. Some people have told me they'd like to see more posts about this topic, since I'm knowledgeable on the subject of firearms. I promise I will not turn this into another gun nut blog, there's enough of those to go around.
I will close and try to keep this post short by saying; if you are going to carry, do it right by getting training, buy a proper concealed carry holster and shoot your firearm often (and I mean 100's of rounds per month often) at the range. You need to have a proper setup and know the ins and outs of your firearm before you even consider carrying. If you are not going to spend about $80 to $100 on a safe, comfortable conceal carry holster, blast though a $100 worth of ammunition each month at the range, and properly clean and maintain your equipment because you "don't have that kind of time" or to spend that much money on bullets, THEN DON'T CARRY!