As most of us expected, Gov. Roy “Jim Crow” Cooper (D-NC) vetoed HB 398 which would have repealed the 1919 pistol permit purchase law. That law was enacted by an all white, all Democrat, white supremacist General Assembly within months of a riot involving African-American WW I vets demanding their rights. The co-sponsor of the bill, Sen. Earle A. Humphreys (D-Goldsboro), was the brother-in-law of US Sen. Furnifold Simmons who was the architect of the Democrat’s white supremacy campaign begun in 1898.
It was men like these veterans who terrified the white supremacists. They had been to war, they had defeated the Kaiser, and they had seen Paris so to speak.
In his veto message to the General Assembly, Cooper said:
“Gun permit laws reduce gun homicides and suicides and reduce the availability of guns for criminal activity. At a time of rising gun violence, we cannot afford to repeal a system that works to save lives. The legislature should focus on combating gun violence instead of making it easier for guns to end up in the wrong hands.”
Bear in mind that the repeal of the law was endorsed by the North Carolina Sheriffs Association and that all sales of handguns from dealer go through a NICS check by the FBI. Indeed, once in possession of a pistol purchase permit which is good for five years, there is nothing to stop either a felon or someone convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor from purchasing a handgun from a dealer or a private individual. The pistol purchase permit substitutes for a NICS check and would cover up the lie told by the convicted individual.
The law still requires the sheriff of the county to attest to the “good moral character” of the applicant. In counties with hundreds of thousands of residents or even a million plus, can Cooper and those opposed to the repeal of this law honestly say the sheriff really knows the residents enough to attest to “good moral character”? I think not.
As research on the application of the law in North Carolina’s most populous county – Wake – shows, blacks are still much more likely to be denied a permit than whites. Thus, while laws that are supported by both black and whites regarding voter ID are called discriminatory and “Jim Crow”, an actual Jim Crow law designed by its sponsors to discriminate against blacks and which it still does is vetoed.
A friend elsewhere commented that the pistol purchase permit is nothing but a poll tax on an enumerated right. He was right. The 24th Amendment to the US Constitution eliminated the poll tax for voting but Cooper’s action today keeps it in place with regard to the Second Amendment.
UPDATE: Paul Valone, President of Grass Roots North Carolina, released this statement on Cooper’s veto of HB 398:
“By vetoing House Bill 398 to repeal our Jim Crow-era pistol purchase system, Governor Roy Cooper has made it clear he places political posturing above actually taking action to eradicate racism. He has also shown that he doesn’t care about the thousands of North Carolinians who, amid civil unrest and “defund police” measures, have decided to buy guns to defend their families but are being obstructed by urban sheriffs who violate the law by delaying permits.
“Most ironic is Cooper’s claim that he vetoed the bill due to increasing ‘gun violence’ when, in truth, violent crime had been declining for decades until his own party caused urban homicide rates to skyrocket. Grass Roots North Carolina will be doing its dead level best to over-ride Cooper’s veto while showing the people of North Carolina exactly who their governor really is.”