Recently, during my migration from the backwoods of the Kentucky foothills to my home-state of North Carolina, a state in which I have not resided in over 10 years, I was curious to see how their open carry firearms laws compare to Kentucky’s. A few minutes after a google search I discovered that North Carolina at the surface seemed like a progressive state who respected the Constitution and the rights of its American citizens. North Carolina had no restrictions on assault weapons, and it even seemed to read that people with “purchase permits” issued by their respective county sheriff’s department, could purchase a handgun at the age of 18, 3 years sooner than Kentucky.
I called the Forsyth County Sheriff’s department, to find out if I could “open carry”, a practice that I had taken up in Lexington, Kentucky due to all the drug and gang violence, around my reclaimed home-town of Winston-Salem. I was forwarded to the pistol permit division in which a man on the other end told me that I did not have to have a North Carolina driver’s license to open carry, or display the weapon outside of concealment, such as a holster on the hip. Furthermore he described it as “an old west” kind of feel in the state, in which allowed me to “walk down main street with it if I wanted to.”
It sounded good enough, however I was curious to see what laws there were about possession of a firearm in different stores, buildings, and in my vehicle. Upon a brief google search, I discovered various laws in which the willpower of the police state has snatched up our inherent rights to keep and bear arms to fight off oppressive governments, or even groups of thugs. Furthermore I discovered a law in which the local government and police departments, could profit from an otherwise free (at least in Kentucky), background check from the ATF, in order to purchase a pistol. This is the one I will touch on first, because not only does it tax us on our constitutional rights to bear arms, but also provides the ever-growing police state with capital based of a draconian, and racist law known as the “Jim Crow Laws”
“§ 14-402. Sale of certain weapons without permit forbidden.
(a) It is unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation in this State to sell, give away, or transfer, or to purchase or receive, at any place within this State from any other place within or without the State any pistol unless: (i) a license or permit is first obtained under this Article by the purchaser or receiver from the sheriff of the county in which the purchaser or receiver resides; or (ii) a valid North Carolina concealed handgun permit is held under Article 54B of this Chapter by the purchaser or receiver who must be a resident of the State at the time of the purchase.
It is unlawful for any person or persons to receive from any postmaster, postal clerk, employee in the parcel post department, rural mail carrier, express agent or employee, railroad agent or employee within the State of North Carolina any pistol without having in his or their possession and without exhibiting at the time of the delivery of the same and to the person delivering the same the permit from the sheriff as provided in G.S. 14-403. Any person violating the provisions of this section is guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.”
So, not only is commercial sale of firearms restricted to a third party sheriff’s office’s discretion, this affects the average American citizen from private sales to another individual, unless of course the purchaser first pays his “taxes” to the local “boys in blue.”
This statute in otherwise progressive North Carolina laws, stems from what are known as the “Jim Crow Laws”. Jim Crow Laws are laws which were enacted after the Reconstruction period of the southern United States. Based upon racial segregation, the law remained in effect until 1965, when the former Confederate state allowed African-Americans “separate but equal” status. The Jim Crow laws mandated the segregation of pretty much everything. From schools, to transportation. Eateries and even the United States Military were also once segregated.
The Jim Crow laws followed the 1800-1866 law dubbed the “Black Codes”, which stripped the civil rights and liberties of African American citizens. After 1954 when Brown v. Board of Education declared school segregation unconstitutional, a change swept the nation which later introduced the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The draconian “pistol permit” process which was designed to restrict the access of handguns to African-Americans, stayed in effect throughout the civil rights movement.
The name Jim Crow is thought to have originated from the caricature of blacks performed by white actor Thomas Rice, who would dress up in “blackface” around the mid 1800’s. A satire, as it was referred to, criticized President Andrew Jackson’s populist policies. As a result of the fame of Rice, “Jim Crow” became slang for “Negro” in southern legislature and in the south all together.
Let’s touch base on how this ties in with gun control. The “Black Codes”, enacted in the 1800’s restricted firearm possession by the “freedmen” or freed slaves of legal standing. The laws made it easier for the first gun control advocates of the United States of America, the Ku Klux Klan, to confiscate the weapons of the freedmen, which in turn made it easier to terrorize and even lynch the African-American citizens.
President Grant would later serve as president of the National Rifle Association, prosecuting Klansmen, and declaring martial law when necessary to quell the violence they caused.
The 14th amendment to the constitution, ratified on July 9, 1868, forbids any state to deny the “equal protection” of laws, which simply put overturns gun control statutes written on racist tones.
What was the South’s response? Enacting “class warfare” by imposing ludicrous laws aiming at disarming the freedmen. Such laws included banning inexpensive firearms, reserving them only for the wealthy, while others imposed what we have today in North Carolina, licensing systems and carry restrictions.
Now you may suggest that I am “reaching” or grasping at straws, but a Supreme Court justice from Florida later denounced the laws stating “these laws were never intended to be applied to the white population” (Watson v. Stone, 1941).
Not only does North Carolina restrict the purchasing of firearms with for-profit permit systems piggy-backed off of racist archaic laws, they also restrict the right to bear arms, as provided to us by the 2nd amendment to the United States Constitution. The “progressive” state bans carrying a firearm at constitutionally protected assemblies, and protests. They also ban carrying at parades, funeral processions, or any other legal demonstration. The laws listed below also prevent people protecting themselves in times of distress, such as the recently highlighted Baltimore Riots, and what would even be carrying on your own property such as a party with a noise violation (disturbance involving three or more people.)
You may not carry a weapon at a parade, funeral procession, picket line, or other demonstration, except for guns carried on a rack in a pickup truck. (N.C. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 14-277.2.)
You may not carry a weapon during civil disorder, riot, or other disturbance involving three or more people. (N.C. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 14-288.20.)
These laws completely molest, disregard, and pretty much destroy the civil liberties given to us by our founding fathers. They strip us of our rights to protect ourselves based on the greed and agendas of our racist government and its predecessors, to disarm the poor, to disarm the free thinkers, and to disarm the different. We cannot sit idly by any longer, content with our rights being stripped for “security purposes”.
We The People demand you overturn these unjust laws, and for-profit schemes, and respect the constitution you were sworn to uphold.
“He who sacrifices freedom for security deserves neither.” –Benjamin Franklin