The LA Times had a piece on July 1, 2011 entitled Ohio Governor John Kasich Signs Bill that Allows Concealed Guns in Bars The article is a bit snarky, referring to having a concealed carry permit as a "luxury," and noting that the Ohio Senate has a habit of "kowtowing to the handgun lobby." The handgun lobby? Well, that's a new one.
The Buckeye Firearms Association should be congratulated. They have been working the issue for a number of years. While it is true that the existence of a permitting process for any form of carry is an infringement of that which shall not be infringed, until the day comes that our masters recognize this fact, the loosening of these restrictions is a great benefit to people who choose to exercise their rights through the legal process.
Here in North Carolina, the restaurant carry bill was thwarted, again. Legislators were scared by dubious polls showing people didn't want it, and numerous editorials claiming shootings over an overdone hamburger. Meanwhile, one year later, all the "blood in the street" hysterics raised when Virginia passed restaurant carry have not come true. There has not been a single instance at a Virginia restaurant. That should have been good enough for legislators in North Carolina, if those legislatures were true advocates of freedom, and not just giving it lip service.
One editorial I read, that summed up another argument asserted that alcohol and guns don't mix. While drinking alcohol, and handling guns at the same time indeed does not often end well, the simple argument that alcohol and guns don't mix implies physics defying magic. The implication is that in the presence of an unopened bottle of an alcoholic beverage, the gun with jump out of its holster, into the hand of the person carrying it, and proceed to pull its own trigger. Now, I can believe that a bunch of lawyers can imagine such things, but in the real world, that simply doesn't happen. Note that the law already makes it illegal to drink while carrying a gun. Note also that it is perfectly possible to go into a grocery store, buy a six pack of beer, and go out and drink that beer, while still carrying. The words written by legislators will not stop someone who has intent to disobey the law. For that matter, if someone decides to carry a gun without benefit of a permit, and chooses to carry it concealed into a restaurant that serves alcohol, unless he chooses to use it, will anyone know?
The fact that people are probably at this moment carrying concealed handguns into bars and restaurants, and other places where the State says not to points up the inanity of the law as currently written. Except in the case of court houses and police facilities, no one is likely to know anyway. The State is not burdening unlawful carriers with these restrictions, but lawful ones. And that tells us something about the State itself. Unable to prevent the issue of permits to those who applied, the gun grabbers in the legislature decided to put so many hurdles and burdens on lawful concealed carry, that few would choose to exercise the right, seeing as it was worthless. I suspect it has had that effect. So what does it say about a State that doesn't trust its own citizens to carry guns, but does trust these people, or these people? Frankly, they seem to be more afraid of you and me, than of the criminals and terrorists.