Senate panel votes on carrying concealed weapons

Phoenix, AZ – Arizonans have been able to carry a weapon out in the open since
territorial days. But it has only been for the last two decades
that carrying concealed has been an option. That requires a state
permit, including a background check and classes on everything
from handling the weapon to knowing when you can use deadly
force. The measure approved Monday would let anyone have a
concealed gun. That alarmed the Arizona Association of Chiefs of
Police which sent lobbyist John Thomas to the capitol to try to
kill it

(SB 1102, if enacted into law, will take Arizona back to Wild
West carry, with no consideration for officer safety.)

But Sen. Russell Pearce who is sponsoring the legislation said
not everyone who wants self protection wants to get a state
permit -- or wants to have to strap a weapon onto a belt where
it's visible. He said the problem with laws that restrict who can
carry concealed is the only ones who will really be affected are
those who obey the laws in the first place.

(I've never been afraid of a good citizen being armed. In fact,
our Founding Fathers expected it, demanded it. It's a citizens'
militia. We're in defense of this nation, our neighborhoods. And
could be called upon any time to do so.)

The measure now goes to the full Senate. For Arizona Public Radio
this is Howard Fischer.