You may not know it, but the woman walking her dog next to you in the park, or the business-suited man you pass in the skyway downtown may be carrying pistols. And members of the Twin Cities Gun Owners and Carry Forum want to reassure the larger, non-pistol-carrying public that these people and the
more than 125,000 nearly 160,000 current carry permit holders across the state do not pose a safety risk.
Kevin Vick, owner of Crucible Arms gun store in Lakeville, filmed, directed and edited a video featuring testimonials from permit holders talking about why they carry firearms in public. “We are amongst you. We … come from all walks of life,” said Vick. “And we are carrying only, completely in a defensive nature.”
Vick says the video is a response to a push by some gun control advocates to lump lawful gun owners in with those who use guns illegally. “We just make it very, very clear that there’s a significant delineation between the criminal element that’s involved in gun crime and peaceable citizens who lawfully carry everyday and hurt no one.”
Vick says carry permit holders are a lot less likely than the general public to commit crimes. Data from the BCA show 296 firearms carry permit holders committed crimes in 2012. More than half of those crimes were DWI or other driving related offenses. Only 13 crimes committed by permit holders involved the use of a gun.
Vick, who has his own YouTube channel, says the video hasn’t been shown on any television stations yet. But he says feedback from the public so far has been positive.