N.C. concealed carry permits soar amid political, safety fears

John Boyle for WCNC reports:

Whatever the reason for getting a concealed carry — self-defense, political beliefs about the right to bear arms, worries about terrorism, crime or societal implosion — the numbers of concealed carry permit holders keep rising.

That mirrors a national trend in which the number of concealed carry permit holders rose by 136 percent from 1999 to 2014, when it passed 11.1 million….

The rise comes amid proposals in the [North Carolina] General Assembly to make the process for buying a handgun less burdensome. One would remove a requirement for a county Sheriff’s Office permit. Another bill that would create a special class of concealed carry permit holders that would have to undergo extensive training but would then be allowed to carry essentially wherever law enforcement can, with the exception of courtrooms….

“The biggest thing I see is it’s all ages now,” said Jeff Stucker, co-owner of On Target Shooting Range in South Asheville and a gun instructor for 20 years. “It used to be 40- , 50-year-old guys, maybe some in their 20s and 30s. Now, it’s almost as many women taking it as men. That’s the biggest thing — they want it for self-defense for their home or car.”

Read the rest of the report at WCNC.com.