There are some popular arguments that fail to rate the Angry Czeck’s mighty effort. Because the conclusion seems dreadfully obvious. One of these arguments is defending the separation between church and state.
The other argument is the one defending the separation of church and guns.
But what the hell.
On February 11th, the Arkansas House of Representatives approved a bill that would allow people with concealed-weapon permits to bring their firearms to church. State Representative Beverly Pile introduced the measure to state lawmakers, and she even got more than a dozen representatives to sponsor it.
“It is time we changed our concealed-handgun law to allow law-abiding citizens of the state of Arkansas the right to defend themselves and others should a situation happen in one of our churches,” Pyle said, according to the Associated Press.
Hee. Haw. Thanks, Arkansas State Legislature , for cementing our status as shoeless hillbillies.
Arkansas is a state enamored with both guns and church, and that the two should collide on this soil generates very little surprise with me. Personally, I don’t know anyone who needs a concealed weapon’s permit – bounty hunters, bail bondsmen, and Magnum P.I. have cruelly excluded me from their circles. But I was curious to know what requirements one must meet to be allowed to legally pack heat.
Arkansas State Requirements for
Carrying a Concealed Weapon
- Be 21 years old to apply for a CCW (Carry and Conceal Weapon) permit.
- Complete an application packet for a Concealed Handgun Permit from the Arkansas State Police. They can be reached at: Concealed Handgun Permit Administrator, Arkansas State Police, 1 State Police Plaza Drive, Little Rock, AR 72209, or you can download the application and instructions from the Arkansas State Police website at http://www.asp.state.ar.us.
- Submit the completed application, payment for the license fee, payment for the fingerprint fee, a full set of fingerprints and a waiver to allow the police to access your medical records. The permit is good for four years and a renewal fee will be charged at that time.
- Provide a letter of reference from the circuit judge, county sheriff or prosecuting attorney of your county stating that you are free of any recent felony convictions if the background check shows any felony convictions more than 10 years old.
- Read Opinion No. 2003-244 at http://www.state.ar.us that allows city and county parks to prohibit firearms. Arkansas state law also generally prohibits concealed handguns in police stations, jails, courthouses, polling places, government buildings, sporting events, bars, schools, airports and churches. A premises owner also may post a sign readable from 10 feet stating that handguns are prohibited.
In conclusion, if you’re 21 and haven’t committed a felony in ten years, you can legally stuff a pistol in your waistband before trucking to Kroger. Just fill out the paperwork and cough up the fee. (And read Opinion No. 2003-244)
Much like ACT 1, which prohibits anyone in Arkansas but married couples from adopting children, Rep. Pyle’s redneck bill is a smokescreen for a much broader initiative – in this case, opening the door for even fewer firearm restrictions.
If you haven’t heard the Gun Nut Rationale, it goes something like this: if everybody was armed, then bad people would be too scared to commit crimes. Why, you wouldn’t mug an old lady if there was a chance she’d pull a pistol, would you?
Gun Nuts fortify this rational by pointing to, of all things, the days of the Wild West, when citizens policed their own. In the Gun Nut’s flawed mind, the crime rates were much lower in 1850 than today.
Hey, Genius. You know what was missing in 1850? Modern police. Reliable forensics. Automobiles, the Internet, telephones, and everything else that spread communications. Let’s face it; bodies were easier to bury 150 years ago. When a person vanished, one might credibly cite Western expansion or pioneering spirit as the culprit. People could be missing for months before an alarm was raised. Nobody filed a missing persons report. Rarely was an investigation launched. Why even bother reporting a homicide?
But you know what is just as popular today as it was in the pioneer days? Booze. (Coincidently, you need to be 21 to drink, too.) Imagine what might happen in a bar or at a college football tailgate when everyone has a cup of beer in one hand and a 9mm strapped to their ankles. I just did, and the movie adaptation stars Clint Eastwood.
But hey. We’re just talking about good, honest folk bringing their side arms to church. By God, if somebody should swipe the collection plate, the entire congregation could participate in the execution of justice. The pastor, always conscious of the Scripture, might be encouraged to aim for the knees. Dip your bullets in holy water, and you’ll be prepared for vampires, too.
I wonder if Jesus is a Colt or a Remington man?