The state House now has approved one of the most nonsensical and dangerous bills ever passed during the majority-Republican era. The state Senate, unfortunately usually more right-wing than the House, must stop it to ensure the safety of North Carolinians.
Pushed by some of the lower chamber’s most radical conservatives, the bill represents a bowing-down to the gun-rights lobby, which wins a lot in state legislatures thanks to high-powered, high-paid lobbying backed up by intimidation of those who dare to differ: Defy us, and we’ll run someone against you.
So weak were House Republican leaders that what passed will eliminate the need for concealed-carry permits for those who are 18 and older. Assistant district attorneys would be allowed to carry concealed weapons into court, and legislators and their staffs would be allowed to carry concealed weapons without permits while they are in the Legislative Building.
One Republican, Rep. John Faircloth, joined seven other Republicans in voting against the bill, citing the fact that law enforcement needs concealed-weapons laws to fight gangs. He knows. He was the longtime police chief in High Point.
This is a dangerous bill. It is foolish. It is nothing but a kneeling-down to a special-interest lobbying group, and it is despicable. Passage in the House was a shameful day in that chamber.