03 February 2011

Now, We Wait

The application has been made, the paperwork has been filled out, the fees have been paid and the fingerprints and photo have been taken. In six to eight weeks I should be in possession of a North Carolina permit to carry concealed.

I don't know if I will carry all that often, but I might. The main reason I am getting the concealed permit is because I'm a bit self-conscious about carrying openly and I figured this would get me used to carrying at all.

The biggest detriment to carrying openly here in North Carolina is this little tidbit stuck in the law, I have emphasized the pertinent sections:

"By common law in North Carolina, it is unlawful for a person to arm himself/herself with any unusual and dangerous weapon, for the purpose of terrifying others, and go about on public highways in a manner to cause terror to others. The N.C. Supreme Court states that any gun is an unusual and dangerous weapon for purposes of this offense."

Basically what that means is any gun-fearing wussie, when seeing you armed, can call the police and say they are scared, and that's all it takes for you to be in violation of the law. In other words, your Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms is subject to someone else's arbitrarily constructed "right" to be a big pansy. Of course this would be determined on a case-by-case basis, and the winner would be whoever has the better lawyer.

That's one of the reasons I have decided to get the concealed permit. Another reason is that if you possess a concealed carry permit you don't have to go begging to the Sheriff for permission to buy handguns. Either way it isn't right that you should have to get permits to exercise Constitutional rights, but until the laws can be changed that's the way it is.

And so that's why I have applied.


Anonymous said...

Open carry in and of itself does not fall under the "terror of the public" statute. In STATE v. ROBERT S. HUNTLEY, the NC Supreme court determined that "...it is to be remembered that the carrying of a gun, per se, constitutes no (p.423) offence. For any lawful purpose--either of business or amusement--the citizen is at perfect liberty to carry his gun. It is the wicked purpose, and the mischievous result, which essentially constitute the crime." See http://www.guncite.com/court/state/25nc418.html for the full cite - the part I quoted is in the last paragraph.

Larry said...

True, but (as they said in the CC class) why take a chance?
Thanks for dropping by!

Anonymous said...

It is ultimately your decision. I am in no way passing judgement on your choice. I was just offering case law to counter what seems to be the anti-open carry stance of your CC instructor - something that seems quite common with our instructors here in NC.

We all take chances of one kind or another every day. It is up to each individual to decide which hills we feel are worth dying on, and which we avoid as unacceptable risks. For me, especially with case law on my side, I'm willing to die on the OC hill. Others will feel otherwise.

Larry said...

It would all likely boil down to who has the better lawyer, but case law would certainly support the OC side.
In a perfect world this part of the statute would be scrubbed entirely since it is "common law" and not enshrined in any NC laws that I know of.
Another problem is our LEO's are pitifully ignorant of our own laws. My son was hassled for having an Airsoft rifle in the back seat of the car, openly displayed. He was told "You can't do that." The law only says that concealed weapons are illegal, but the LEO apparently did not know that.
I just choose not to deal with the potential hassle, so this is why I have applied for the concealed permit.

Anonymous said...

In a perfect world, there would be NO gun laws of any kind. Criminalize the behaviour, not the tool.

I must agree that stupid LEOs are an epidemic. Give certain personality types a little power and the ugliness begins, as your son and probably you also have experienced first hand.

Caution: Beating of a dead horse to follow:

I don't think that there is a DA in the state that would even file charges against someone under that statute for simple OC. The DAs do know the case law, even if the LEOs don't. A cop can arrest you for anything s/he wants, but I can't imagine a terror of the public charge for OC ever seeing the inside of a courtroom. I certainly hope to avoid being the one who proves that statement wrong, though.

Notice: Beating of a dead horse has ceased for the moment.

Larry said...

As to statements 1 and 2, complete agreement.

As to statement 3, two words: Mike Nifong. Yes, in the end he was totally discredited and the Duke boys got a public apology from the NC AG, but still they had to go through the turmoil and spend real money for lawyers and such.

Those who open carry are doing us all a big favor in that as the general public gets accustomed to seeing the open carry of handguns there will be less hysteria about it. So far it's working towards that effect in Virginia (although there has been some turmoil there as well, mostly in NOVA, or as a friend of mine calls it, occupied territory), so there's no reason it cannot work here. I'm not comfortable open carrying yet, but maybe in time I will be.

And since (for now) the dead horse has been thoroughly tenderized and cut up into steaks and shoe leather, thanks for dropping by!