Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely baby daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.
The Franklin-based Grandsons of Liberty supports a Constitutional Carry form of conceal carry legislation and not Permitted Carry. The local Tea Party group writes:
“The NRA is promoting the Permitted Carry bill as opposed to the Constitutional Carry bill. This could be because Constitutional Carry means they won’t be getting any new members to follow their news for updates when the government mandates training they currently claim not to support. The NRA and others have a vested interest in Permitted Carry and do not want you to exercise the full extent of your Constitutional Rights without paying additional taxes and fees into a massive governmental bureaucracy.”
I’m not buying that suddenly the NRA has transformed into a liberal organization that embraces big government. Grandsons of Liberty also writes:
“If you want unabridged freedom to exercise your 2nd Amendment Rights, then you need to call your legislator to show support for Constitutional Carry.
Right now, if you are age 18, you can earn a license to drive a vehicle, buy a vehicle and do both without any special training.
Right now, if you are age 21 and can pass a background check, you can own a gun with no special training.
Right now, if you can own a gun, you can Open Carry without a permit or any special training.
Right now, criminals and thugs illegally carry concealed weapons without a permit or any special training.”
Permitted Carry is similar to Senate Bill 214 that came extremely close to passage during the 2003 legislative session. Here are excerpts from the Legislative Reference Bureau’s analysis of that bill:
“This bill permits a person to go armed with a concealed and dangerous weapon in his or her own home or place of business or on land that he or she owns, leases, or legally occupies…
This bill also creates a procedure by which a person may apply to a county sheriff for a license to carry a concealed weapon more generally. The license authorizes a person to carry (defined in the bill to mean to go armed with) a concealed weapon (defined in the bill as a handgun, a stungun, a tear gas gun, a knife other than a switchblade, or a billy club) anywhere in this state except in particular places specified in the bill.
Included among the requirements that a person must satisfy are the following: he or she must be at least 21 years old; he or she must have successfully completed one of several specified firearms training or safety classes; he or she must not have been subject to a finding of incompetency, found not guilty of a crime by reason of mental disease or mental defect, or involuntarily committed for treatment of mental illness during the preceding five years; he or she must not have been convicted of one of a set of specified misdemeanors involving violence or serving a sentence for committing such a misdemeanor within the preceding three years; and he or she must be a Wisconsin resident.
In addition, the bill requires a sheriff to conduct a background check of a person who applies for a license to carry a concealed weapon to help determine the person’s eligibility for a license.”
After the state Senate (Five Democrats voting yes) and Assembly (Seven Democrats voting yes) approved Senate Bill 214, the bill was vetoed by Governor Jim Doyle. The state Senate voted to override the veto, but then the state Assembly failed to override by just one vote.
The training and background checks requirements made terrific common sense back then and they make terrific common sense today.
Village of Mukwonago Police Chief Kevin Schmidt told the Mukwonago Chief that if his officers must receive firearm training twice a year in order to carry a weapon, so should citizens.
Town of Mukwonago Police Chief Tom Czarnecki makes another solid argument. The Mukwonago Chief reports, “Czarnecki said that having a permit or some type of tracking system would alert police that a person has (a) concealed weapon before making contact with the person, such as during a traffic stop.”
A Milwaukee police officer over the weekend told me protecting oneself isn’t as simple as pointing a weapon and firing. A conceal-carry supporter, the officer said if you shoot a handgun and are off just a bit, even at close range, you just missed and are now in real trouble. To be honest, he suggests a shotgun for the ultimate protection, but you can’t conceal one of those very easily.
I’m all for law-abiding citizens carrying. But I want them schooled and I want them checked out.