In an amazing and perhaps a bit surprising win for freedom, the legislators in the deeply purple state of Maine have just passed a bill that would abolish the need for concealed carry permits and allow residents (over the age of 21) to carry firearms freely.
The 83-62 vote increases the likelihood that Maine will become only the seventh state that allows a person to carry a concealed handgun without a permit. The legislation has the backing of Republicans and Democrats, including 15 Democrats in the House. The bill also has 96 co-sponsors, more than half the members of the Legislature, and the blessing of some members of the Republican and Democratic leadership.
In the Senate, the bill passed Friday on a 23-12 vote. More votes are required in the Senate before the bill moves forward, for procedural reasons and because the House adopted two amendments to the bill. One would require anyone under age 21 to get a permit to carry a concealed weapon. The other would require a person carrying a concealed gun to tell a police officer if they’re in possession of a weapon during a traffic stop.
Gov. Paul LePage is expected to sign the bill if the Legislature passes it.
Of course, the new law has its detractors among the doom and gloom gun grabber society. Tom Franklin, who is the President of Maine Citizens Against Handgun Violence, is predicting mayhem and anarchy in the streets of Maine.
“Maine is becoming a state in which we are increasingly becoming subject to more risks in favor of protecting personal liberties. In my view, it has gone too far.”
And Representative Janice Cooper (D) believes that this new law will make all Mainers begin to live in fear of the coming Apocalypse.
“This will lead to a darkening of our society that we should not encourage in any way. It might not lead to a wave of violence, I’m not predicting that … but there will be a wave of paranoia.”
I believe that the only paranoia that Cooper needs to worry about is the paranoia living in her own fear-ridden mind.
The state will still require background checks for all gun owners, meaning that the only people who will legally be able to purchase firearms will be upstanding members of the Maine community. Lifting restrictions on carrying will not make it easier for criminals, nor will it raise the rate of violence in their communities.
This new law changes nothing other than allowing the people of Maine the freedom to exercise a right that was already theirs.
I say, ‘Well Done’ to the legislators in Maine.