BELLEVUE, WA â€“ Following reports that police chiefs in Wisconsin are campaigning already against legislation that would allow concealed carry by citizens of that state, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) is challenging those lawmen to explain why Wisconsin residents are less trustworthy with licensed, concealed handguns than residents in 46 other states.
According to WBAY-TV in Green Bay, “police chiefs across Wisconsin say they need to keep all the guns they can in officers hands only.”
“This is astonishing,” observed CCRKBA Executive Director Joe Waldron. “Law-abiding private citizens in nearly every other state have been carrying guns legally for years, and they pose a far lesser danger to police officers than traffic accidents. It’s the criminal with a gun, carrying it illegally with complete disregard for existing law, who poses the real danger to both police and the public. There is strong evidence that armed citizens are actually a deterrent to crime.
“Wisconsin residents,” Waldron said, “certainly deserve to be on equal footing with armed criminals, because police can’t be everywhere. Glibly arguing that only police should have guns ignores the fact that criminals prefer victims who can’t fight back. It should be the outlaw who is at a disadvantage, not law-abiding Wisconsin citizens.
“We think,” he added, “that police chiefs need to explain what it is about Wisconsin residents that makes them less trustworthy with the exercise of their right to self-defense than citizens of other states. We’re constantly reminded by police administrators that citizens need to trust the police. Trust is a two-way street. Gun owners will tell you that a place where only police have guns is a police state. Wisconsin is still part of the United States.
“What we’re hearing now,” Waldron concluded, “is the same tired rhetoric that has been used to poison the concealed carry debate for years. Hysterical predictions about gunfights in taverns and at traffic stops have been debunked repeatedly, and so has the paranoia about the mythical increased threat armed citizens pose to law enforcement. The truth is that legally armed citizens have shown themselves, in many cases, to be the best friends police have. Rather than alienate these people, it would seem more sensible for police administrators to encourage more citizens to exercise their self-defense rights.”