BELLEVUE, WA – While Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca advocates handing out driver’s licenses to illegal aliens, it would be nice if he applied the same liberal principle to the issuance of concealed carry permits, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms said today.

The Los Angeles Times reported Thursday that Baca and Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck both believe illegal aliens should be given driver’s licenses “to reduce hit-and-run accidents.”

“This is simply appalling,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “Baca is less interested in the personal safety of California citizens than he is in the personal convenience of illegal aliens who shouldn’t even be in this country. No wonder that Baca and his department have been sued over the concealed carry permit issue.”

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s own policy on the issuance of licenses enabling private citizens to carry concealed weapons is blunt: “The Department’s overriding policy is that no concealed weapons license should be granted merely for the personal convenience of the applicant.”

“On the one hand,” Gottlieb observed, “Sheriff Baca wants to make life easier for people in this country illegally, but on the other hand, he makes life more difficult, and perhaps even dangerous, for citizens who were born here, or have become naturalized through legal channels. What does this policy say to law-abiding legal immigrants who have jumped through all the hoops, become good members of the community, and who may operate small businesses and worry about being robbed?

“What does this say to native Californians, or citizens who moved to the Golden State from some other part of the country,” he continued. “What Baca’s policy says is that your rights as citizens take a back seat to the comfort and convenience of people in this country illegally. That’s worse than being treated like second-class citizens. For Baca, your citizenship and your civil rights apparently don’t matter at all.”

“Baca’s first responsibility should be to the citizens who pay his salary,” Gottlieb said, “and that includes citizens who wish to exercise their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms for personal protection. If Sheriff Baca can’t tell the difference, then perhaps he should leave public service and find another career.”