Commentary, COVID-19

Gun rights proponents need to calm down about Wake sheriff’s action

The coronavirus pandemic is requiring big individual sacrifices from just about all North Carolinians. Across our state, people are giving up their jobs, freedom of travel, and, in many instances (e.g. health care providers, first responders and even store clerks), putting their lives and health on the line every day to keep society functioning.

At such a time, the last thing we need is for the always-dissatisfied extremists in the NRA and their allies to start railing about modest delays in access to new firearm permits.

Amazingly, though, that’s what’s been happening in Wake County. When Sheriff Gerald Baker put a temporary, common sense hold on issuing new handgun permits to help curb the fast-growing crowds that had been gathering at his office to apply (and thereby threatening their own health and that of his deputies), several gun advocates went ballistic, calling it a massive assault on the 2nd Amendment.

Opportunistic politicians like State Sen. Warren Daniel blasted Baker’s action as being part of some monstrous plot to undermine the Constitution.

These critics need to chill out and stop fomenting paranoia.

Just yesterday, Baker’s office announced that 11 deputies are having to self-isolate because they’re experiencing flu-like symptoms.

Even Republican House Speaker Tim Moore pointed out this week that “we don’t people lined up at the DMV right now.” The same is obviously true with respect to sheriffs’ offices.

As Raleigh’s News & Observer reported:

The suspension will help the Sheriff’s Office and the Wake County Clerk of Courts clear the backlog of 755 pending applications.

The rush to apply for permits in Wake County led to lines out the door, which also made it difficult to maintain the social distancing that is needed to help prevent the spread of corronavirus, Curry said.

“We have to limit folks coming in contact with each other,” he said. “It was also a health concern for our staff.”

Similar action has been taken in other jurisdictions around the country.

The bottom line: Eligible applicants will get their permits in due time. But, for now, would-be gun purchasers need to understand that they – like everyone else in this extraordinary moment – may need to make some modest personal sacrifices for the common good.

10 Comments


  1. Ken

    March 26, 2020 at 9:38 pm

    The purchase permit and the concealed carry permit application are both an online process. The majority of the counties went to the online process several years ago oh, there are a few counties that are still not online. To be sure Wake County as large as it is has the online application. If that is true then there should not be any crowds gathering in the lobby of the sheriff’s office for a purchase permit. The majority of us understand why processing for the concealed carry permit has been stop for a while because that requires fingerprinting and close contact.

    he is a liberal Sheriff new releases criminals back on the street instead of holding them for immigration authorities. I realized there probably is a backlog of purchase permit applications but, the 14-day requirement is easily waived due to the increase in demand. There was absolutely no credible reason for him ceasing to accept purchase permit applications

    I realize my comments fall upon deaf ears because the so-called North Carolina policy watch is nothing but an invisible arm of the liberal Democrat Party SMH

  2. David

    March 26, 2020 at 10:04 pm

    I know a lot of gun owners have been worried about what will happen to them if they become involved in a disaster or emergency and some people have been spreading rumors that FEMA and other alphabet agencies are waiting for an emergency declaration to go door to door and start confiscations. Little attention was given by the media or news regarding The Disaster Recovery Personal Protection Act of 2006 that amended existing law to prevent just that thing from happening after questions and concerns arose from tyrannical government actions during hurricanes Harvey and Katrina:

    THIS LAW AMENDED 42 U.S.C 5207 DISASTER RELIEF AND EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE ACT TO ADD THE FOLLOWING PROVISION:

    SEC. 706. FIREARMS POLICIES.

    (a) PROHIBITION ON CONFISCATION OF FIREARMS- No officer or employee of the United States (including any member of the uniformed services), or person operating pursuant to or under color of Federal law, or receiving Federal funds, or under control of any Federal official, or providing services to such an officer, employee, or other person, while acting in support of relief from a major disaster or emergency, may–

    (1) temporarily or permanently seize, or authorize seizure of, any firearm the possession of which is not prohibited under Federal, State, or local law, other than for forfeiture in compliance with Federal law or as evidence in a criminal investigation;

    (2) require registration of any firearm for which registration is not required by Federal, State, or local law;

    (3) prohibit possession of any firearm, or promulgate any rule, regulation, or order prohibiting possession of any firearm, in any place or by any person where such possession is not otherwise prohibited by Federal, State, or local law; or

    (4) prohibit the carrying of firearms by any person otherwise authorized to carry firearms under Federal, State, or local law, solely because such person is operating under the direction, control, or supervision of a Federal agency in support of relief from the major disaster or emergency.

    (b) LIMITATION- Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit any person in subsection (a) from requiring the temporary surrender of a firearm as a condition for entry into any mode of transportation used for rescue or evacuation during a major disaster or emergency, provided that such temporarily surrendered firear m is returned at the completion of such rescue or evacuation.

  3. Ralph

    March 27, 2020 at 9:46 am

    New to the page here and had to reply. In reference to the statement “always-dissatisfied extremists in the NRA and their allies” you are actually incorrect in your assessment of the people looking for a permit.

    You see, all those NRA members(not me) and their Allies already have permits. Many of those EXTREMISTS you speak of such as members of the Military, Paramedics, Doctors, Law Enforcement Officials, and Fire Fighters have a permit to carry our LEGALLY owned weapons.

    I know that this is a progressive website with certain opinions and beliefs that I do not agree with. That’s ok. I enjoy getting other perspectives to possibly learn from. The problem is when you start calling people Extremists when they arent. So I have a question for you:

    When are you going to do a report on all of the new potential progressive and liberal gun owners that just tried to buy a gun and cant because their local sheriff denied them their 2A right to do so?

  4. Carlos Diaz

    March 28, 2020 at 6:15 pm

    It past time to move back to Constitutional carry. Meaning we no longer ask for permission to carry a firearm any way we see fit. It time to move away from policies the are designed to limit minorities from access to their rights. Requiring a permit to carry a concealed pistol is and has been used as probable cause to illegally search persons and vehicles. Ask your dirty cop friends.

  5. Bob

    March 28, 2020 at 8:31 pm

    Sheriff Baker is an awful extreme left wing Sheriff. His decisions don’t reflect the wishes of most of the people of Wake County. He needs to resign and go to work for Bernie Sanders!

  6. James Thurston

    March 29, 2020 at 9:49 pm

    People need to get over themselves. Now all of a sudden they need a pistol. Are they afraid someone is going to storm their house and steal their toilet paper? It’s not like they can go to the range and practice. With that said they probably are not proficient or familiar enough to have one. Which in turn feeds fuel to the fire for the anti-gun lobby when someone buys a gun and has no idea what they are doing and hurts themselves or someone else. I am all for armed citizens, but more importantly they need to be both proper trained and proficient. I recently moved down here and took the Concealed Carry Class. I think everyone who doesn’t have a background with firearms should take it or a similar class. I have been shooting all my life and served 20 years in the USMC but still appreciated what I learned.

  7. Brian Feimster

    March 29, 2020 at 10:05 pm

    From what I saw at Hyatt Gun and Coin Wednesday of last week, most of the people (EXTREMEST) as was stated; were in fact first time firearms buyers whom had no idea of the laws required to purchase a firearm. The conversations had were in fact with mostly democrats who thought anyone could just walk in and pay for a firearm and walk out with one. They had no idea there were checks and paperwork to fill out. The sensible gun control folks sure spread a lot of manure instead of facts.

  8. Bobby Baker

    March 29, 2020 at 10:06 pm

    Most county’s are online applications not only no need to go to sheriff’s office but even if you do you’ll be seated at a computer in the lobby. So his choice to end applications has nothing to do with crowd control just control.

  9. Balla

    March 31, 2020 at 9:24 am

    David I see that there are laws to protect us. I never saw those u stated before. But still in Denver Colorado they have red flag B’s. Golden just on the outside on Denver has many cases. Do those statue only precist to emergency times? Cuz there doing it on everyday norm there.

  10. James

    April 1, 2020 at 1:55 pm

    Well Well, this declaration of emergency really shows irrelevant the 2A is to the politicians and how unconstitutional laws and restrictions are superior to the Constitution. Amazing that you can purchase a firearm but must have a “sanctioned” permit to carry it.

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