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The E-Sylum:  Volume 9, Number 9, February 26, 2006, Article 32

ON GUNS AND COIN SHOW TRAVEL SECURITY

Hal Dunn writes: "Alan Weinberg furnished some good tips for
traveling to and from coin shows.  Unfortunately, I must agree
with him that given the success of these lowlifes, they will
continue to be back in droves and many acting more dangerously.
Some of these people are probably high on meth, or other drugs,
trying to gain more funds to support their habit, and because
of this they are violent, unpredictable and extremely dangerous.

To Alan’s third tip, I would like to add two things.  First,
if you suspect you are being followed, simply drive around a
city block (but not in a place where you can be boxed in).
If you are still being tailed, you have just identified a
problem.  Second, if you can’t find a police or sheriff’s
station, your next best destination is a fire station.  Once
in front of the station sound your horn (that means lay on
it!!!)  (if necessary drive right up to the equipment door)."

[Alan also suggested carrying a handgun for self-defense when
traveling to and from numismatic events, but also wrote: "It is
a misdemeanor to be caught carrying a loaded gun in your vehicle
in many states...".   Not surprisingly, this topic generated a
number of additional comments. -Editor]

David Ganz writes: "Not in New York, where carrying a weapon
without a New York license is a felony. Careful!"

Joe Boling writes: "Carrying a handgun through several states,
particularly on the east coast, is a good way to get slapped
with a felony conviction and permanent loss of your right to be
armed. That's why we need the bill currently in Congress (H.R.
4547 - national right-to-carry reciprocity) that will mandate
reciprocity among states for concealed carry licenses. If you
have a license in your home state, other jurisdictions would
have to honor it (just like your driver's license). Contact your
legislators and demand that they support this badly-needed
equitability."

[Well, state's rights advocates would likely argue against
such a change, but it would make life easier for coin dealers
and others who may wish to travel with a weapon.  This has been
an interesting and useful topic, but we've strayed a long way
from numismatics.  Let's not continue down this path next week,
but here are some additional thoughts on the topic from Hal Dunn,
a former Chief of Police. -Editor]

Hal adds: "I would make this suggestion.  If you are going to
carry a handgun get a concealed firearm permit, sometimes called
a carry concealed weapon (CCW) permit.  The laws of all states
are too numerous to mention here.  However, states can be grouped
as those that getting a permit is very difficult (read next to
impossible), somewhat difficult, and relatively easy.  The
relatively easy states are those that have adopted “shall issue”
statutes (at last count just over 30 states).  Essentially that
means that a person never convicted of a felony, or misdemeanor
domestic violence, not addicted to drugs or adjudged a mental
incompetent, who has filed the appropriate application after
taking classroom instruction and qualifying on the range with
the handgun to be carried, must be issued a permit.  There is
no necessity to show a need for the permit, as is generally
required in the “difficult” jurisdictions.  This eliminates the
discretion of a law enforcement administrator that does not
believe in honest citizens having or carrying handguns.

Out-of-state residence permits are available in several states
– I believe in Florida, Idaho, Nevada and Utah, plus perhaps
others.  How does this work?  For example if a North Dakota
resident applies for an out-of-state Florida permit, assuming
that person has fulfilled all other requirements, the permit
will be issued.  Under a variety of agreements (or recognition)
the Florida permit will be recognized in Nevada and several
other states.  And, in Vermont there is no prohibition against
carrying a concealed weapon without a permit.

And here is where I respectfully disagree with Alan.  I was a
law enforcement officer for over 29 years, over half as an
administrator – first as the undersheriff and later sheriff of
a county, and as chief of police in two different cities in
different states.  If Alan is referencing “the old hands” in
law enforcement he is probably absolutely correct; I certainly
gave “a wink and a nod” on numerous occasions many years ago.
My fear with his advice on the discretion of a street officer
is that this guy or gal might be just starting out in the
profession and sees everything “according to the book,” it is
“black or white,” no exceptions.  And then there is the deputy
DA, about a year into practicing law, who is going to make this
case the showpiece of his/her career.

If as Alan and I are lucky enough to be qualified for the Law
Enforcement Safety Act of 2004 Card (the so-called HR 218 card),
any honorably retired law enforcement officer can get an
identification card good throughout the entire country.  This
card trumps all city, county and state firearms regulations."

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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