One common argument that the gun control crowd often puts forth is that if banning guns saves just one life then the gain would be worth the sacrifice. This, of course, is a deeply flawed argument designed only to trigger an emotional reaction. It’s also an argument that gun control proponents aren’t willing to stick to when it doesn’t work in their favor.
After an Illinois citizen with a concealed carry permit saved the life of a suburban Chicago police officer by exiting his vehicle and shooting a suspect who was shooting at the officer, the Chicago Sun-Times felt that it was necessary to lecture their readers about the supposed drawbacks of concealed carry in Illinois. Essentially, their argument was that one incident where lives were saved by a concealed carry permit holder does not justify right-to-carry laws.
We have to agree – major policies should not be determined by isolated incidents. The story of a concealed carry permit holder using his firearm to save the life of a police officer, though, is not an isolated incident. Even the Chicago Sun-Times goes on to admit in the same article that there are numerous other examples in Illinois alone where an armed citizen saved either their own life or the lives of others.
The bigger issue with the Chicago Sun-Times article, however, is the fact that they are attempting to play the reverse role a common gun control argument and failing in the process. If saving lives does not justify allowing concealed carry – something that many would argue is a Constitutional right – how does saving one life justify overturning a Constitutional amendment?
The Chicago Sun-Times attempts to point out instances in Illinois where concealed carry permit holders acted outside the law, but the best examples that they could come up with were a man waving his gun around while driving and a man discharging his weapon in a restaurant without cause.
While instances such as these are no doubt crimes that should be punished, they pale in comparison to the many instances where concealed carry permit holders saved lives. If the Chicago Sun-Times really wants to draw a comparison between a man waving a gun around in his vehicle and a police officer that might not be alive today were it not for right-to-carry laws then their journalists need to learn more about the pitfalls of false equivalencies.
The Chicago Sun-Times says that no one really knows how well concealed carry is working out in Illinois, yet that admission alone tells you everything you need to know about how well it has worked thus far. There are 265,000 people in Illinois that have been granted concealed carry permits. If these 265,000 citizens were causing problems and committing crimes, the Chicago Sun-Times would know all about it and would have much more to report on in their hit piece against concealed carry.
The reality is, though, that the vast majority of these 265,000 people are responsible, law-abiding citizens who would only use their firearms in the most extreme circumstances to save their own life and the lives of others. In other words, if the Chicago Sun-Times isn’t able to point out any significant changes that have come about from having over a quarter of a million people carry firearms with them save for a few stories where lives were saved then it’s safe to say that the policy is working out pretty well in Illinois. In fact, it’s working out exactly as intended.
Stories of concealed carry permit holders saving lives with their firearm are understandably rare since the vast majority of people will never find themselves in a situation that necessitates the use of lethal force. However, stories of concealed carry permit holders committing crimes with their firearms are rare to the point of being almost nonexistent. This is exactly what those who support concealed carry argue – that it saves lives on rare occasions without increasing crime at all.
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, though, saving lives isn’t worth having the right-to-carry in Illinois. In spite of the fact that they are unable to point out a single drawback, they still maintain that concealed carry is not good for Illinois no matter how many lives it saves. Fortunately, there is a Cierco police officer alive today thanks to right-to-carry laws who would no-doubt disagree.
~ American Gun News