Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Courthouse Militia: Northampton & Lehigh County

Yesterday, I described some of the civilians who darken courthouse halls day after day. I can spot 'em a mile away. But there's one group I'm unable to make - those who come in for permits to carry concealed weapons. This "well-trained militia" could be anybody. Well-dressed businessmen, soccer moms and Councilman Ron Angle, who is usually carried into the courthouse by his servants, could all be packing heat. It's not just some wacky group of survivalists with three teeth, coming down from the local trailer park.

Think about that for a minute. People from all walks of life really, really want to carry guns in their pockets or underwear or something. Lots of people.

Here, in the People's Republic of Northampton County, they're usually angry people. You see, Sheriff Jeff Hawbecker, the only appointed Sheriff in the Commonwealth, insists on following the law. Before issuing a permit, he requires proof of identification, which must be a driver's licence or PENNDOT photo ID. He also requires proof of residency, which could be a per capita tax bill, earned income tax form, or voter's registration card. Most of these aspiring minutemen, when they seek their license, don't have any of those things. So they run to the voter's registration office, thinking they can just pick up a card there.

But it's not so easy. Here's what happens. Most have never registered and have no intention of ever actually voting. They just want to be able to pack heat. So they go, register to vote and then learn they have to wait to get their card in the mail. The voter registration office is not about to hand out cards to people who may not actually live where they say they live, and insists on mailing them.

"Some of these people get very angry" is what one voter registration office worker tells me.

"Hey, look on the bright side. At least, you know they can't shoot you."

In Lehigh County, where the Sheriff is elected, things are much easier. You just need to produce ID and two references.

I wonder if applicants list Mr. Smith and Mr. Wesson.


Anonymous said...

Say hello to my leetle fren'

Anonymous said...

Are you trying to say that it is easier to get a gun permit in Lehigh Co because the Sheriff is elected and does not want to piss off the electorate?

ironpigpen said...

"I am not familiar with that"


When asked a critical question about a provision included in HR BILL 3200 Section 102 (HEALTH CARE REFORM) by a reporter, "Is that true?"



Do not read it, just sign it on the order of the dictator OBAMA