State Capitol News
Thu June 18, 2009
Senate to consider relaxing concealed weapon law
By Howard Fischer
Phoenix, AZ – State senators are preparing to debate a measure that would let
virtually anyone carry a concealed weapon.
Arizonans have always been able to carry a gun on their belts.
But the idea of concealed weapons permits is a more recent
legislative creation, dating only to 1994. Only those who undergo
background checks, training and proficiency tests can get the
permits. The proposal by Sylvia Allen would extend that right to
anyone who is 18 and not a convicted criminal. El Mirage Police
Chief Mike Frazier said that will make the job of officers more
difficult. But Allen said that ignores a basic fact: Criminals
don't obey the laws we have now.
(Criminals could care less about any of the gun laws we pass. Gun
laws are to restrict me, the law abiding citizen. It's not to
restrict the criminal.)
Frazier conceded the point.
(I realize that criminals are going to carry guns. That's why
they're criminals. But we're talking about now having to be
overly concerned about who may, in thinking they're doing the
right thing, pull a weapon in trying to assist us and, in fact,
just makes things worse.)
Allen's bill does not do away with concealed weapons permits. In
fact, those who do decide to get those permits would be able to
take their weapons into places now off limits to guns --
including the Senate itself.