Dems Target The Most Law-Abiding Of Virginians With Restaurant Carry Ban

Virginia Capitol come and take it flag
Courtesy Jeff Hulbert

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The fact that most proposed gun bans target only the law-abiding while ignoring violent criminals isn’t lost on most gun-rights supporters. Interestingly, a proposed ban under consideration in the Virginia State Assembly actually targets the most law-abiding of law-abiding citizens.

Senate Bill 57, authored by Sen. Saddam Salim, makes it illegal for a concealed handgun permit holder to carry a concealed handgun onto the premises of any restaurant or club that sells alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption, whether the permit holder drinks any alcohol or not. What Sen. Salim might not realize—or perhaps he just doesn’t care about—is that Virginia’s 680,000 permit holders, as well as hundreds of thousands of non-resident permit holders visiting Virginia, have been peacefully carrying concealed handguns in restaurants and clubs that serve alcohol since 2010.

The slap in the face to lawful permit holders is amplified when you consider that recent figures from the Virginia State Police show that the revocation of carry permits for any reason is an miniscule one-tenth of 1%! That makes the people targeted by this law quite likely the most law-abiding subsection of Virginia citizenry!

And that doesn’t sit well with gun-rights advocates, including Philip Van Cleave, head of the Virginia Citizens Defense League.

“One-tenth of 1%: You can’t beat that for law-abiding,” Van Cleave said in an exclusive interview with TTAG. “And yet, they don’t want us to carry in restaurants.

“And they want to make it harder to get a permit. They want you to be fingerprinted. The question is why. You’ve got a system that works with one-tenth of 1% of their permits revoked. You’re not going to be able to improve on that with fingerprints.”Van Cleave says the carry permit bills, along with nearly 30 other anti-gun bills being considered in Virginia this session, is all about taking guns from law-abiding citizens.

“This is all about disarmament, this is not about crime,” Van Cleave said. “They just use crime as their excuse to disarm us. That’s why they want the police to be funded. They want release violent criminals from jail early, they want to get rid of bail. They’re doing all this to drive the crime rate up so they can use that as their excuse to take away guns.”

In the end, Van Cleave says Democrats are exploiting their one-vote majority by acting like the slim edge won in the last election was some kind of mandate from voters on more gun control.

“This is the Democrat party going back to its grassroots,” he said. “In the early days it formed to protect slavery. They were the party of Jim Crow and the Ku Klux Klan in the South, protecting slavery and trying to take away the  rights of citizens back then, especially minorities, to own guns. Fast forward 150 years and here we go again.”










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