Your March 23 front-page story, "A Home for the Range," is told almost entirely from the point of view of operators of gun stores and shooting ranges. The writer apparently made no attempt to check the "facts" fed to him by the gun industry. The claim that "between 600,000 and 800,000 people" will seek concealed carry permits is ludicrous. As of Feb. 28, about 46,000 applications had been received by the Illinois State Police, and most of those were not from the Chicago area.
One of the gun merchants claimed that shooting "is more acceptable" and that "more people are doing it." To the contrary, gun ownership and usage have declined steadily from decade to decade as more people grow up in cities and suburbs, where guns are a liability. Fewer than 10 percent of people in Cook, Lake and DuPage counties have FOID cards, as the Daily Herald's recently series showed. Most of them own guns for hunting or protection in their homes and have no desire to carry concealed weapons in public.
The federal judges who forced "concealed carry" on Illinois ignored the rights of the 90 percent of us who don't own guns and the even larger percentage who don't want to have to worry about whether the next angry person they encounter is carrying a concealed handgun. We need to speak up to counter the gun industry's lies.