I never paid much attention to gun laws.  Now that I’ve finished my NRA basic handgun course, I’ll start on what will be a very, very long process to get a hand gun permit.

The laws are byzantine.  In New York State, where I live about half the year, I need a permit even to possess a handgun at home.  I cannot even shoot at a range using someone else’s gun (unless as part of training under the supervision of an NRA certified trainer).  The home possession permit process will take at least six months, maybe longer.  As to a concealed carry permit, I’ve been told to forget about it in Tompkins County (Ithaca).

But of course, that leaves the other six months.  The Florida non-resident concealed carry permit, which is good in 32 states, is not good in NY or Rhode Island.  In Rhode Island (as far as I can tell with a quick check), I don’t need a permit to keep a gun at home or to transport it to a shooting range, but any other use, including transporting it in the car more generally, would require a permit for which I would need to show good cause and need.

Getting from NY to RI requires that I also figure out Massachusetts law on the subject.

Being the law-abiding citizen that I am, I’ll spend the time and money to figure out all the local and state laws, and comply with them all.  It will not be easy, and I can see how someone with good intentions still could run afoul of the law.  So maybe a year or so from now I’ll have all the permits in place. 

Gun control advocates, of which I am one up to a point, can sleep soundly knowing that they have kept a gun out of my law-abiding hands.

The criminals have it much easier. They just buy guns on the street and shoot ‘em up:

An Elmira man was wounded in a shooting early Saturday in Ithaca, police said.

Russell Blackman was shot at least three times with a small-caliber firearm, Ithaca police said.

Police said they responded to a report of gun shots around 1:40 a.m. at the 500 block of West Green Street, and found blood on the street and sidewalk. Police did not find Blackman, but they learned he had been taken in a private vehicle to Cayuga Medical Center.

The guy who was shot himself is a fugitive from justice, and apparently he’s not talking about the shooter.  And I doubt he’s real worried about the gun laws.

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