This is very sad for the gun owners of IL. John Birch is closing the doors of Concealed Carry Inc. He has been beaten down by the hard fought fight, to no avail.
I hope that his move to FL will give him the peace he so deserves. He will enjoy being able to finally strap that gun on everyday and walking around a free man!
You can read his final goodbyes here:
Concealed Carry, Inc. Closes Doors For Good
December 5th, 2006
Fellow subjects of the State of Illinois:
Greeting and salutations.
Pending the filing of a final tax return, and the turning in of our BATF records, Concealed Carry, Inc. is closed for business.
When Concealed Carry, Inc. started in November of 1997 I was truly a ball of fire, and convinced if one applied reason to the gun control debate, then concealed carry would logically follow in Illinois.
To drive home our point we had a lot of fun with transporting weapons in fanny packs to Taste of Chicago and our one hand gun a month give-a-way to Chicago residents was a hoot that made it all the way over to the BBC. Not bad for corporation with zero assets and that maintained a cash account of never more than $400.
Still the bottom line is we needed to make our case not in Illinois, as that has been pretty much accomplished, but rather in Cook County. We failed.
The Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence probably has more paid staff than members (in fact, if you go to their web site there is no way to join the ICHV,) yet they see the playing field clearly. Maintaining an office in both Chicago and Springfield they cozy up to the right people and like magic, they get their way. By contrast the Illinois State Rifle Association has perhaps 12,000 members or so, but is considered a "nutty uncle on loose" in Springfield and is headquartered in Chatsworth, IL (Never heard of it? Surprise.)
I suspect the reason for the legislative success of gun control in Illinois is that the ICHV is backed by big liberal money, like the Pritzker fortune, with fulltime hired guns, who know how to play hard ball with a state representative when they need "reminding." (Okay, my hat is off to ICHV Exec Director Thom Mannard. You outwitted, outlasted and outplayed.) Meanwhile ISRA members are content to just be allowed to plink at a range, or shoot a rabbit to skin and put in the pot for dinner.
My prognostication is that a major effort to ban the possession (not purchase) of all semi-auto’s is next. I will go further and tell you it might be best thing to happen to gun owners in Illinois. Let me give an example from history.
Hitler put Jews in concentration camps, a bad thing in itself, but ultimately forgivable and recompensable. Witness the Japanese incarceration in the USA for an example. Where Hitler made any hope of being forgiven by humanity unthinkable was in making the camps extermination facilities.
Well creating 1,500,000 instant felons in the State of Illinois with the stroke of Governor Blagojevich’s pen just might be the thing to finally galvanize Illinois gun owners. Not to mention there are an awful lot of closet gun owners in Cook County. They would admit to being gay to their wife before letting the cops know they have a gun, such is the fear of the police. Why not ramp the terror up a notch, eh?
In any case we know that playing defense in Springfield does not work. Stopping a gun control bill, and calling that a victory, is to recall the British repulsing the opening attacks in the movie Zulu, wherein the Red Coats were gleeful in victory. The end of the movie is a bit less jovial. As will be the end in Illinois.
We also know that sending money to gun rights organizations doesn’t work. But feel free to send that money anyway so you can feel like “you are doing something to protect your rights in Illinois.” I’ll have a bit of laugh as you do, but it will be a friendly laugh with a knowing wink and a nod.
For those of you who say the press is out to get us, I say NONSENSE. I have dealt with virtually every major news organization in the USA and certainly every credible media outlet in Illinois. I have always got a fair shake in the press. You just have to give the press a story. The anti-gunners are just plain better at doing that than gun owners. They bring heart rendering emotion to the debate, we bring facts and figures. One picture of a dead boy with a grieving mother beats a 1,000 John Lott’s.
As for me I am going to Pensacola on Thursday to finalize a land transfer and will be changing my state of residence in the near future. As good friend Ron Bond says: “I won’t go anywhere my gun isn’t welcome.”
Now, I have just broken my rule not to name names of the good subjects who have helped out over the years. You know if I do I’ll forget a half dozen of you, and only create bitterness. You know who you are. Your reward is the same as mine for you efforts: NOTHING.
PS: I’ll keep my email address going for a while longer. firstname.lastname@example.org
PSS: Check out http://icarry.org/