The New York Times just published a comprehensive report on the impacts of Texas’ new dangerous permitless carry law where law enforcement have said it is leading to more spontaneous shootings and making it more difficult to hold shooters accountable.
According to the report, Sheriff Tom Schmerber of Maverick County said “Now that everybody can carry a weapon, we have people who drink and start shooting each other..People get emotional..and instead of reaching for a fist, they reach for a weapon. We’ve had several shootings like that.”
The report highlights the recent shooting in Houston in which a man was acquitted of all charges after opening fire, hoping to strike a man who had just robbed him and his wife at an A.T.M., but instead shot and killed Arlene Alvarez, a 9-year-old girl seated in a passing pickup. According to the Times, “the shooting was part of what many sheriffs, police leaders and district attorneys say has been an increase in people carrying weapons and in spur-of-the-moment gunfire in the year since the state began allowing most adults 21 or over to carry a handgun without a license.”
The report shows a look into the violent world created by gun lobby policies that allow anyone to carry a gun no questions asked without training or a background check – and similar outcomes are beginning to appear in other states that passed permitless carry this year, including Georgia and Ohio. These violent outcomes should be a glaring warning sign for lawmakers considering passing similar policies in states like Florida, Louisiana, and South Carolina.
Permitless carry legislation has been staunchly opposed by law enforcement across the country, including in Alabama, Tennessee, Texas, Louisiana, South Carolina, Indiana, Nebraska, and Ohio because it removes the background check requirement and in many cases the training requirement, for carrying a concealed gun in public.