December 5, 2002

The Cincinnati Enquirer

Dear Editor:

It is encouraging to see Ohio’s concealed-carry bill moving forward (“FOP backing concealed-carry bill,” Dec. 4, 2002). Many supporters are concerned about the bill being too restrictive or personally intrusive such as requiring fingerprints. My concern is with the number of locations that will be classified as “gun-free zones.” The list includes churches, universities, day-care centers and others.

The purpose for concealed-carry is personal protection. It allows the good guys to have a fighting chance against the bad guys. Is personal protection somehow unnecessary in any of the listed places? I would agree that secured locations such as airport terminals, court houses, and the Federal building should remain “gun-free zones.” Metal detectors ensure that everyone is unarmed. Any other location on the list would guarantee that only the bad guys will be armed therefore making those places more, rather than less dangerous as the bill intends.

Should this bill become law, the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police believes that they will have to assume that every motorist has a loaded gun in the car. Do they not assume that now? I’m not a cop, but I would have thought that they would assume that anyone could be armed, as health care workers must assume that anyone could have AIDS. FBI crime statistics in the 44 states with concealed-carry prove that crime decreases and society becomes safer as more good guys become armed.

Ohio would be a much safer state if Governor Taft would agree to sign a concealed-carry bill with few restrictions.


John E. Becker