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ID – SELF-PROTECTION – Last year’s outlandish idea is today’s new gun law

It’s easy to forget, but Idaho wasn’t always so free and easy with concealed firearms. Only a generation ago, you needed a compelling reason to walk around with a hidden gun. Maybe you carried a large amount of cash as part of your job. Or likewise you worked with expensive jewelry. Maybe you were a private investigator. In any event, you had to submit to fingerprinting and a criminal background check. Then you had to make your case to the local sheriff, who had every right to be skeptical. Unlike cops, civilians do not undergo periodic training to help them overcome the fight or flight instinct that kicks in during a crisis. And in a crime scene situation, the cops can’t tell whether an armed person is a threat or not. All that changed in the mid-1990s. Idaho lawmakers, like many of their counterparts across the country, changed the equation. Sheriffs were required to issue a concealed carry permit with limited exceptions, such as the applicant was a convicted felon. Law enforcement extracted some concessions. Applicants had to undergo a criminal background check. Some training, much of it involving legal obligations, was required. Proof of residency in the state and the county in which the permit was issued was required. There also were limitations where you could carry a concealed weapon. But over time, gun rights advocates pushed for more liberal laws — and legislators obliged.  [full article]

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