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View Full Version : Sheriff Candidate Craig Hunter letter in support of AB357


RomanDad
01-09-2010, 9:40 AM
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The Honorable Tom Ammiano
Chairman: California Assembly Committee on Public Safety
State Capitol
P.O. Box 942849
Sacramento, CA 94249-0013


As a citizen of California and a 30-year law enforcement officer, I am writing to express my support for AB357 (Knight), now before the California State Assembly Committee On Public Safety.

Under current California law, Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police are tasked with administering the application and issuance of licenses to Carry Concealed Weapons (CCW). Applicants for such licenses must prove that they are of good moral character, have completed a certified course of training on the laws of self defense and the proper use of a firearm, and that they can show “good cause exists for the issuance” of the license.

AB357 amends California Penal Code Section 12050 to remove the requirement that applicants for a CCW demonstrate “good cause” for the license.

At first blush, the notion that people show “good cause” to carry a concealed firearm in public is quite reassuring. It portrays the notion that we don’t want criminals roaming about with hidden firearms or untrained people shooting each other over minor disputes. But beneath the surface of the words lies a policy that cannot be supported.

The origins of Section 12050, like many laws regulating the carrying of concealed weapons, can be traced to the 1920's, a particularly embarrassing time in the country’s history. Although codified discrimination was often the standard of the day, it doesn’t stand up to modern ideals of equal rights and equal treatment for all under the law. Because you are a strong supporter of civil rights, I hope you will recognize the importance of supporting our United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights as it relates to this bill.

Even today, the evidence of discrimination is evident to anybody who looks at the statistics. “Good Cause” has created a system where wealthy business people and those who can afford to be big political donors get CCWs. The poor and working class, who are far more likely to be victims of violent crime, don’t. For example, there are virtually no CCW’s issued in the most crime ridden and socially depressed cities in Los Angeles County. On the contrary, in the more affluent cities, many licensees have been issued. All of these licenses, and the lack thereof, were controlled by the same Sheriff of Los Angeles County. The Sheriff has chosen to restrictively pick and choose who is granted this right to self defense. This scenario is played out in a few other California counties. In Orange County, my home for fifty years, we recently suffered a restrictive change in the CCW process. Coincidentally, the appointed sheriff served under the Los Angeles Sheriff for many years and has chosen to adopt the same restrictive and discriminatory standard in Orange County. As a 30-year law enforcement veteran and senior police leader in one of California’s largest cities, I am truly concerned with this misuse of discretion that is symptomatic of a poorly written and law.

There has long been a fear amongst law enforcement and public policy makers that more CCWs would result in more crime; more encounters by officers with armed strangers and more minor disputes turning into gunfights. Perhaps there was a time when such fears seemed rational, but after 20 years of Shall Issue laws in 37 U.S. States, we now know that people who apply for and are issued CCWs in liberal issuance states are by far more law abiding than the average citizen.

We also know that criminals don’t seek out CCW licenses. They illegally carry their guns and use them on the helpless. And they don’t make appointments with their future victims, which can then be listed as “good cause” on a CCW application. The current state law only serves to discriminate against the law abiding, and embolden the criminals who would prey upon them.

It appears that The Supreme Court, by their recent published decisions, are moving towards incorporation of the Second Amendment. However, that is no reason to wait and allow the law to be changed by Judicial Fiat. It is best that our duly elected representatives recognize the correct path and act accordingly. In 2010, it seems archaic that an elected sheriff or appointed Chief of Police can subjectively decide that some of his constituents have “good cause” to defend their lives, and some do not.


Thank you for your support and consideration,

Craig Hunter

5440 Calle Vista Linda
Yorba Linda, CA 92887


Cc:
Honorable Steve Knight 36th Assembly

Dan M.
01-09-2010, 10:33 AM
Great letter! It brings more clarity of Hunter's position on CCWs for the election minded here, plus it adds some good credibility to the LEO voices speaking out in favor of this bill to the Safety Committee. Right on!

WokMaster1
01-09-2010, 11:14 AM
Tom Ammiano is not our friend.

RomanDad
01-09-2010, 12:25 PM
Tom Ammiano is not our friend.

Friend or not, he is the Chairman of the Committee set to hear AB357 Tuesday morning.... We will never get ANYWHERE on gun rights if we only reach out to people who already agree with us.

D-Man
01-09-2010, 1:03 PM
Great letter by Craig Hunter! Good to see him speaking out.

Roadrunner
01-09-2010, 1:29 PM
This is a good letter. But I think it would even better if we could get 58 actual sheriffs to sign on to this.

Sgt Raven
01-09-2010, 1:39 PM
Friend or not, he is the Chairman of the Committee set to hear AB357 Tuesday morning.... We will never get ANYWHERE on gun rights if we only reach out to people who already agree with us.


We need it to be known that Tom Ammiano is a racist if he apposes AB357. It's time we start playing the race card on liberals/ progressives.

WokMaster1
01-09-2010, 2:27 PM
Friend or not, he is the Chairman of the Committee set to hear AB357 Tuesday morning.... We will never get ANYWHERE on gun rights if we only reach out to people who already agree with us.

It's one thing if the person is reasonable & willing to listen & be fair. Tom is neither. It's his way or the highway. I have dealt with him & his croonies when he was a Supe in SF. He has done a lot to hurt my business. So I have a personal "love" or lack of for him:-)

Sorry but I'm off topic. I'm glad Mr Hunter will be elected to replace the current Sheriff in O.C.

U2BassAce
01-09-2010, 2:43 PM
Great letter. We need more Craig Hunters out there.

Thanks for posting.:cool:

Roadrunner
01-09-2010, 3:02 PM
Great letter. We need more Craig Hunters out there.

Thanks for posting.:cool:

Actually we need more sheriffs like Margaret Mims. She actually is putting her words into action.

http://www.fresnosheriff.org/images/SheriffPortrait_small.jpg

Mad Geek
01-09-2010, 3:07 PM
Sheriff Mims has done for Fresno County what Craig Hunter will do for Orange County, once elected.

CCWFacts
01-09-2010, 6:51 PM
Wow, that is a great letter, very well written.

I sent a letter to everyone on the committee. I included a print-out of this page discussing the racist history (http://old.californiaccw.org/files/sf-chronicle-article.htm) of the law, which Mr. Hunter alludes to. I want everyone on the committee to know what they are supporting if they vote "no" on AB 357.

I don't know if there is a ghost of a chance of this thing passing through the committee.

One bit of good news is that California (http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1952768,00.html?xid=rss-topstories) is facing a colossal budget disaster (http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/wire/sns-ap-us-schwarzenegger-2010,0,1847907.story) in 2010, which is having trickle-down impacts on Los Angeles (http://www.dailynews.com/news/ci_14090447) and other cities. That means that they won't be able to defend against lawsuits.

It also means there will be reductions in police staffing, and substantial early release of prisoners, both of which might make Californians start thinking that "dial 911" isn't going to be adequate.

JDay
01-09-2010, 7:21 PM
He really needs to have someone proof read his letters. Quite a few minor mistakes in there.

Roadrunner
01-09-2010, 8:24 PM
Sheriff Mims has done for Fresno County what Craig Hunter will do for Orange County, once elected.

Talk is cheap, I'll wait for results. About the only thing I can say at this time is he can't be any worse than what Orange county has now.