In Charleston, West Virginia a new Bill was brought to the State Senate panel that would allow the concealed carry of a handgun without a permit. Currently, open carry of a handgun is legal within the State; however this new Bill would allow concealed carry without the need for a permit formal training requirements.
Although most find this Bill as a positive step toward pro-gun acts in support of Second Amendment rights, others feel the change in the law isn’t such a good idea and could be outright dangerous. Cabell County Sheriff Tom McComas, the president of the sheriff’s association supports law-abiding citizens obtaining permits to carry concealed; however he doesn’t believe allowing someone to carry a firearm without showing proficiency or formal training is beneficial in any way.
The Sheriff feels the Bill would compromise public and law enforcement safety by allowing certain citizens to bypass beneficial safety training and make it easier for anyone to carry a firearm concealed within the State, regardless of background or State of Residency. McComas believes altering the law in such a way could possibly make it more enticing for criminals and drug dealers alike to do business within the State.
As stated before, McComas is certainly not against gun ownership. He says he’s provided training for more than 5,000 people during his time in law enforcement. He supports lawful gun ownership and concealed carry. He simply feels the Bill will do more harm than good.
Another voice of opinion came from Daniel Carey of the NRA. He mentions it should be left up to the individual to seek out the proper training voluntarily. He believes any responsible and law-abiding individual will seek out the training so they can properly utilize their firearm, like any other tool.
The proposed Bill has many pros and cons. The question of whether or not allowing anyone who owns or purchases a firearm to carry concealed without a permit shouldn’t be taken lightly. There are many aspects to be considered. Should the Bill pass, and the carry of concealed firearms is allowed without the issue of a permit within the State of West Virginia; it could mean the crime rate may pleasantly decline. As always, it’s up to the law-abiding citizen to seek the proper training, maintain proficiency and remain vigilant.