Pistol permit sales increase in Shelby County
By BETH CHAPMAN / Community Columnist
The Shelby County Sherriff’s Office has seen a substantial increase in requests for pistol permits since the recent Aurora, Colo., theatre shooting, which left 12 people dead and many others wounded.
Sheriff Chris Curry’s staff sees the increase in part as an awareness and reaction to news of the Colorado shooting.
Sherriff Curry says pistol permits have increased from 1,332 in July of last year to 1,483 in July of this year when the Colorado shooting occurred. The two-week period since the shooting this year compared to the same two-week period last year has seen an increase in 221 permits. The overall increase of sales this year has been approximately 25 percent.
“Law-abiding citizens are beginning to realize there may be situations they find themselves in where they need to protect themselves,” Curry said.
“Awareness of their circumstances, paying attention to what is around them and being mentally and physically prepared, is important,” said Curry. “Being educated, knowing how and when to use a handgun is vital. So is understanding its application according to the law,” Curry concluded.
A poll released on Monday, July 30, shows no changes in public perception of gun control laws and views of Second Amendment rights since the Colorado shooting according to the PEW Research Center.
Forty—seven percent of those surveyed said it is important to maintain gun ownership while 46 percent said it is more important to protect the Second Amendment rights of Americans who own guns. The survey conducted this month surveyed 1,110 U.S. adults and showed that few of them consider the shooting in Colorado “as part of a broader social problem.” Sixty-seven percent reported that high-profile shootings were likely “isolated acts perpetrated by troubled individuals.”
Sheriff Curry reiterated the importance of knowing how and when to use a gun and suggested that anyone having a pistol permit educate themselves first and know the law regarding carrying a weapon. Pistol permits are $20 and more information about how to obtain them can be found at Shelbyso.com.
Beth Chapman, Alabama’s secretary of state, is a Shelby County resident and writes a weekly column for the Shelby County Reporter. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.