Opinion: Civilian applications for concealed weapon permits needed in Truckee
Truckee Police Chief Adam McGill recently provided thoughtful commentary on mass shootings in his Dec. 3 My Turn column, “With mass shootings, prevention will save lives.”
If I may interpret and summarize: Mass shootings may be the new normal — “… the vast majority of the carnage will have already occurred before (police) arrive” — and all of us are responsible to help with prevention.
Chief McGill seconds the reactive advice to “run, hide, fight,” and requests that if we “see something, say something.”
This is my “say something”: With what do we fight an active shooter?
I respectfully suggest that Chief McGill, and all law enforcement agencies, proactively invite and sponsor civilian applications for permits to Carry Concealed Weapons (CCWs).
Whom to invite: Retired and former law enforcement officers, retired and prior service military, currently unarmed security officers, and (presumably younger) employees of public agencies and larger workforce sites. Be broad based: Consider the demographics of the San Bernardino victims.
What is “sponsor?” Actively invite previously trained and screened individuals to apply for a CCW permit. Provide and pay for group training for required CCW qualification. Fast track the applications. Maintain and require a sustainment training course for this volunteer emergency service force.
Of course, these volunteers would not be sworn peace officers. There must be no pretense to have or exercise any authority or responsibility for any law enforcement activity.
They must not circumvent the intent of the CCW permit process. I would even suggest that the CCW specifically eliminate the term “for protection of property.”
This should be a specific set of trained, responsible and vetted individuals who are prepared to protect life in extreme circumstance.
We all now live in a different world. In the extreme, I would prefer to hear, “I’m glad she or he was there for us,” instead of “I wish she or he had said something.”
Jim Ritchie is a Truckee resident.