I am a firm supporter of our 2nd Amendment, which should be a constant reminder to all of us of the times when only the elite, the aristocracy in power, were allowed to bear arms. The elite aristocracy completely understood the dangers of letting the common folk be armed. The subjugators could hardly allow armed subjects; there might be trouble. Our founding fathers understood that. The British would have preferred unarmed colonists. Were you the king, would you not, also?
I underwent a background check for nearly every firearm I have, except for those that were gifts to me by family or friends. Nearly every rural Southern boy remembers the excitement of his first shotgun wrapped up under the Christmas tree. I sure do.
I have a permit to carry a concealed firearm in Mississippi which also allows me to carry a concealed firearm in all the other states that reciprocate with Mississippi, which is most of them. I am thankful for that. My firearm permit is shown.
In Mississippi, no permit is required to openly wear a properly holstered firearm, or carry one in your automobile, or to carry one in your briefcase, a satchel, or your purse, though the number of places you may do so is limited. Even with a standard permit, the number of places you can carry a firearm is limited. Schools, churches, private property properly signed “No Firearms”, bars, places of nuisance (strip clubs), courthouses, political meetings, are all off limits, among a few others.
My firearms permit is what is known as an enhanced carry permit and allows me to carry a firearm anywhere I want excepting only police stations, detention centers, the secure area of an airport, or a courtroom when court is in session. If I enter a “No Firearms” private property with a concealed firearm with the permit I have and am caught, I can only be charged with trespassing; I have not committed a firearms violation. But how would they ever know? And if I should have to draw my firearm to defend myself, or my family, or perhaps even you in the process, why would I possibly care if they knew?
I also have to abide by federal law when on federal property, as state laws cannot supersede them. And I do abide by the law. Nearly all of us citizens do. We have a deep respect for the law and those who serve us in its enforcement.
Shown on the back of my firearms permit is the IC endorsement placed there by the State of Mississippi after I presented them with proper evidence of having completed a firearms safety and proficiency course. The IC stands for Instructor Certified. This is what makes my permit an enhanced carry.
I underwent an extensive background check to receive this permit, including being fingerprinted at the Mississippi State Trooper headquarters in Meridian, and having my complete profile run through the FBI criminal database.
Though there are times and places I do not think it proper to carry a firearm, they are few…very few.
I nearly always carry my Glock G29SF.
It is a 10mm semi-automatic. It holds ten rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber. I usually have an extra magazine in my left rear pocket. 10mm is a powerful threat stopper. Any firearms carrier only wants to neutralize a threat in the event a deadly threat presents itself. Sometimes this results is serious injury or death. It is unfortunate. Having a firearm is also no guarantee that the threat will be neutralized. It is a perilous world we live in. There are no guarantees. None. Sometimes, even dialing 911 is no help. It is certainly no immediate help when immediate danger is in one’s face.
In the summer, I mostly use a custom inside the waistband holster that I made myself.
In the winter, I usually wear an external holster since winter clothes conceal it easily. Occasionally, but rarely, I wear it open. I suspect others pay as much attention to a firearm on my belt as I do of a firearm on theirs. A properly holstered firearm is no threat at all.
I have another firearm I carry from time to time….a Springfield XDs45 (45ACP). It is smaller than the Glock and even more easily concealable, but still packs a hefty punch.
At home, I usually wear a single action revolver in 45 Colt. I like my cowboy guns. I have killed coyotes and feral hogs with my revolvers, and decimated the local armadillo population. For this, I have no remorse. Of course, I need no permit at home, nor will I have to fetch a firearm in the event of a home invasion. They do happen. They have happened. They should never happen, but I can’t control that. I can, though, and will defend my home.
I am always mindful that I have a firearm when I am wearing one. I never act in belligerence simply because I am wearing a firearm. Only a fool seeks trouble, or walks with extra swagger because they have a firearm on their belt. It does not make me taller. It does not make me invincible. It does not give me license to be a bully or an ass. I do not flash it around, nor wave it about when a bad waiter makes me angry, or someone cuts me off in traffic, or butts in line. Nor do I boast about having one. Nearly all of us just want to quietly go about our business, hoping never to have to draw our weapon, or fire it at another human being. I would also never tell someone to watch out because I have a gun; that’s a fool’s game. If I ever felt threatened enough to draw it, I would use it. If at all possible, I would withdraw myself from danger at the first sign of trouble. Sometimes deadly troublemakers will not allow one that option, and should I find myself in that terribly unfortunate danger, their first realization that I am armed will likely be when the bullet(s) I fire strike(s) them. The deadly threat, once clearly identified, must be neutralized.
I am no criminal. But criminals have firearms. It is already illegal for felons to possess firearms, but that does not seem to worry them at all.
I recently read that tens of thousands of firearms purchases are prevented every year because of the routine background checks required at licensed firearms dealers. Even at gun shows, firearms dealers must complete the paperwork and call in on the NCIC instant background check system. The gun show loophole is not such a large loophole, though individuals can and do swap, trade, and sell firearms at gun shows. I am all for background checks.
Since the forms that must be filled out have questions that one must be able to answer truthfully and correctly, every attempted purchase declined by the NCIC instant background check system means that the attempted purchaser has perjured himself. These people are hardly ever arrested or fined for illegally trying to obtain a firearm. All of them should be, every single one.
Just remember….heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine are all illegal, but easily obtained. Child pornography is illegal. So is robbery, murder, burglary, income tax evasion, arson, rape, kidnapping, auto theft, carjacking, fraud, and aggravated assault. So are hate crimes. In fact, hate crimes are doubly illegal. Hate crimes committed by felons with firearms are quadruply illegal. All these things occur despite laws prohibiting them.
Criminals seem determined to break the law, to break any laws, to break all the laws. We’d all prefer them not to, but they have no respect for the law, nor any respect for your property, your person, or perhaps even your life or the lives of your loved ones, presenting you with mortal danger.
“It must be a terrible thing to be so afraid that you have guns,” someone once said to me.
I just smiled and shook my head in bewilderment at this illogical logic that was incomprehensible to me.
I am not afraid at all. I can hardly remember a time when I did not have a gun, though I can certainly remember times when I had fewer.
Now, since a political terrorist has shot up a baseball field in Washington, trying to kill members of congress, we will get angry cries for more gun control while many of those calling for more gun control will also demand armed guards for members of congress, and many others will do so from behind their own armed security teams, from their secured, gated communities with armed guards, from behind secured walls designed to keep criminals out. An elite class will demand and expect the protection of firearms even if they do not wield them themselves.
Perhaps some will even want to outlaw trucks, and knives, and hatchets.
In the meantime, I will maintain that the 2nd amendment is the single best guarantor of the 1st and the 4th amendments. If you could ask the aristocratic elites of a hundred different empires and kingdoms of the last four millenia, I wonder what they might say. I’d also wonder why one might think times are different now.
Firearms are part of my culture. You can like or dislike this as you please. I will not be moved.
I do not enter the Twitterverse, but I read that someone had tweeted that everyone who does not support more gun control has blood on their hands. You will excuse me now as I go and wash mine.
Keep your powder dry.
©2017 Mississippi Chris Sharp