BELLEVUE, WA â€“ American gun owners, especially those licensed to carry concealed handguns, are urged to comment on a proposed Interior Department rules change that would allow concealed carry in national parks and national wildlife refuges.
The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms supports this rule change.
â€œCitizens do not leave their right of self-defense at the gates of a national park or the boundary of a wildlife refuge,â€ said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb, co-author of America Fights Back: Armed Self-Defense in a Violent Age. â€œMillions of Americans legally carry concealed for personal protection, and contrary to the rhetoric of anti-gunners, parks and refuges are not immune to crime.
â€œAccording to National Park Service data,â€ he continued, â€œbetween 2002 and 2007, there were 63 homicides in national parks, 240 rapes or attempted rapes, 309 robberies, 37 kidnappings and 1,277 aggravated assaults. Opponents of this rule change dismiss those numbers as insignificant, but those crimes are very significant to the victims!â€
To comment on-line, simply visit www.regulations.gov and follow the instructions for making public comment.
You can mail comments to: Public Comments Processing, Attn: 1024-AD70; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 222; Arlington, VA 22203.
â€œOpponents of this sensible rule change are already spreading hysteria with claims that it will lead to poaching and reckless target shooting, and make parks dangerous,â€ Gottlieb said, â€œand that is simply a lie. It is the same extremist nonsense that anti-gunners preach when they oppose state right-to-carry laws, and none of their wild predictions have ever come true. Studies indicate that concealed carry actually reduces violent crime.
â€œChanging the rules to recognize the progressive changes in state laws over the past 25 years is both reasonable and responsible,â€ he concluded. â€œLegally armed citizens have just as much right to enjoy national parks as anyone.â€