The North Carolina State Fair in Raleigh, NC (image via Wikipedia)
It may be tough to remember after six years under a President that routinely ignores them, but laws are meant to be enforced, not arbitrarily discarded or ignoredor amended based upon the whims of politicians and bureaucrats.
North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory and State Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler aren’t fans of a 2013 revision to the state’s gun laws, which expanded rights to carry concealed weapons in many places, including the state fairgrounds.
Troxler intends to post signs banning concealed carry at the North Carolina State Fair because he chooses to believe that the law doesn’t mean what it says.
A gun rights group in the state, Grass Roots North Carolina (GRNC), is heading to court today (Monday) to challenge Troxler’s refusal to follow the law, and a legal expert says that that their case is sound:
Jeffrey B. Welty, an associate professor of Public Law and Government at UNC, noted in a legal analysis that state law bans concealed firearms in certain state buildings including the Capitol, but it doesn’t list the fairgrounds. State law allows private property owners to keep concealed weapons out, but it’s not clear if that aspect of the law strengthens the argument of those who run the fairgrounds, which are public property.
“I think that the somewhat stronger argument is that Commissioner Troxler doesn’t have the authority to ban concealed carry,” Welty said in an interview.
One of the primary sponsors of the gun law passed in 2013, Rep. George Cleveland, said he doesn’t recall any discussion for or against allowing guns at the State Fair while the bill was being crafted.
“To my knowledge, it was not discussed at all,” said the Jacksonville Republican.
“The intent of the bill was to open concealed carry in places where people gather,” he added. “The way I understand the bill, it allows concealed carry at the agricultural fair, at the State Fair. And if that’s what the bill allows, that’s what should happen.”
Just because a politician doesn’t like a law or the basic human right to self-defense doesn’t mean that they can ignore them and post rules that spite those laws and rights.
Steve Troxler may post his little signs to his hearts content, but neither I nor my fellow North Carolinians have a moral or legal obligation to heed the signs he posts that exceed his lawful authority.
Purely as a practical matter, it is a fact as North Carolina’s concealed carry laws have expanded and more North Carolinians carry concealed weapons, violent crime has plummeted. Even though gun control groups such as North Carolinians Against Gun Violence (NCGV) promised “blood in the streets” after every successive reinstatement of our basic human right to self defense, their cries have been proven to be lies, time and again.
North Carolina Carolina crime is now at its lowest levels in forty years as our concealed carry rights have expanded.
Does correlation equal causation? Not necessarily.
But there is an awful lot of similar correlation going on across the country, with those states and cities that have the most strict gun control laws routinely experiencing far more violent crime that areas with more freedom. Those areas which have expanded their gun laws, including the nation’s “murder capitol” of Chicago, have seen violent crime plummet with the expansion of concealed carry rights.
Wayne LaPierre may be controversial, but he’s right: the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.
Recent Crime Prevention Research Center research shows that 92% of mass shootings occurred in the kind of “gun free zones” that Pat McCrory and Steve Troxler want to create at the NC State Fair.
I love being a native North Carolinian. I love my children. I love having a good time with my family as much as anyone.
Because all of those things are true, I will be be carrying my lawfully concealed handgun if I choose to attend the NC State Fair this year.
You’re very welcome for the added security.
Update: The judge presiding in the case took a huge, steaming dump on liberty.