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Culture & Politics

Florida Nears 1 Million Carry Permits

by Robert W. Hunnicutt   |  December 13th, 2012 5

Florida state officials announced they expect the number of active concealed carry permits to reach a million sometime next week. Florida has had “shall-issue” carry for 25 years, and has issued more than 2 million licenses in that time. State officials pointed out that over the quarter-century of concealed carry, only about .3% of licenses have been revoked.

Concealed carriers in Florida can thank one individual for driving the law through: famously hard-nosed former NRA President Marion Hammer. I worked at NRA in the 1980s, and I can tell you that enthusiasm for concealed carry inside 1600 Rhode Island Ave. was tepid at best. Hammer, who hid a drill sergeant’s personality under a pageboy hairdo, was the one who put the stiffness in the organization’s spine on the carry issue, which has been one of its biggest successes.

Hammer also rammed through the Eddie Eagle program, which has been another notable NRA achievement. I’ve always thought the name was lame, but the program works.

The beauty of the concealed carry campaign has been that gun owners, who were for years on the defensive, have been playing on the enemy’s end of the field for more than 20 years now. Now that it appears Illinois will have to adopt a carry law, the victory is nearly complete.

  • MKG

    A large step for the pro-gun movement. Good job Hammer. I wish she would move to California. We can not even open carry, and concealed carry permits are granted based upon employment needs i.e. off duty law enforcement, bodyguards, lawyers etc. Considering all practicality, CCWs are only useful in the event a firearm is employed. In Ca. if someone sees your "concealed" weapon you can be charged with brandishing a weapon (10 – 15 years). So technically, you could carry a concealed weapon all your life and if nobody knows or you do not have to use it, what would be the point of a CCW other than to give the carrier a legal edge? As a law abiding citizen, I look for the day when the law says, "No permits required." Despite conservative efforts, I think I will be waiting a long time.

    • michael cox

      you need to move to Maine. We dont take no crap here.

      • MKG

        Thanks for the advice Michael. But, my whole point is a call for decent folk not to move away. Moving away does not solve any of our problems in California, and too many have moved already. Point blank, this is my state. This is where I stand my ground. I challenge Californians to stay in California and stand their ground. Make your voice be heard and vote. Decent folks need to stay here and get these fruitcakes out of office.

  • Maine Hunter

    from Maine and we can carry as long as you kep it concealed.We got a few right wingnuts in the state but they are all talk. harmless.

  • fltdoc

    I always thought of Maine as a rather liberal state. It is refreshing to know that you have right to carry.

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