A Favor to Keep Friendly Relationships

NRA is throwing its support behind an effort to improve the Law Enforcement Officer Safety Act, which allows retired and off-duty police officers to carry their firearms nationwide. I know this is not hugely popular among some of the grass roots, and even I have some reservations about whether it’s constitutional, but it’s important to keep law enforcement rank and file on our side. Remember the last time we lost support of the Fraternal Order of Police? It was the early 90s, and I don’t think too many of us need a refresher on what happened then. Consider this a favor in order to keep friendly relationships. I’ll support law enforcement in this, as long as the FOP keeps supporting us, especially on the Tiahrt issue, which MAIG and Brady are directly opposed to, and which the FOP favors.

10 thoughts on “A Favor to Keep Friendly Relationships”

  1. So what’s the politics of that? We expect the police organizations (and by this I mean rank and file orgs, like FOP, the chiefs and political hacks are always going to be against us) to get behind us when the time comes when we basically said “fuck you” when their bill was up? Yeah, that’ll work. I’d be nice to fix both problems at once, but that’s not the bill that’s up right now.

  2. Yes. “Fuck you and you’re ‘better than me’ class bullshit.” is an absolutely appropriate position.

    You want me on board with the bill? I’ll jump on when it applies to ALL OF US.

    Maybe the NRA and FOP should be looking at it from a different perspective, rather than asking me to change mine. Maybe they should be saying “We need to keep our friendly relationships when we need additional funding, more man power, and better community involvement for law enforcement. This bill (dealing with an enshrined right for ALL PEOPLE) should apply to the whole US population – or none of it.

  3. Yes. “Fuck you and you’re ‘better than me’ class bullshit.” is an absolutely appropriate position.

    I wouldn’t say it’s inappropriate. The question is whether you can advance your cause politically without having other interests in coalition with you, or, at the very least not opposed to you (and when it comes to gun issues, FOP, for right or wrong, carries a lot of weight with politicians.).

    If you have the numbers on your own to do it, then you can dictate terms like that. But I’m not aware of any special interest that can drive those kinds of numbers. If we had 20 million single issue voters, every step of the way, we could tell the FOP “Fuck off, we’ll fix this without you, and if you oppose us we’ll destroy the politicians who listen to you.” But we have 4 million, if even that. Probably closer to a few million. With those numbers, you need friends. That might not be how we’d ideally like things to work, but that’s how it is.

  4. I think it’d go down better if police weren’t already looking like first class citizens in some jurisdictions. Shielded license plate numbers make them practically immune to speeding and red light tickets in California, there’s a trend toward full retirement at fifty in some jurisdictions even while taxes on the private sector rise to balance state budgets, and there’s enough of a double standard under criminal law and liability that the “only ones” meme linked by Skullz above is fully justified. If it were only about increasing competent carry I’d feel better, but it comes across as just another kind of special privilege.

    The question is whether you can advance your cause politically without having other interests in coalition with you, or, at the very least not opposed to you…

    This gives a hint to a question I had on first reading the main post. Is there any chance of positive support in return for backing only ones’ privileges, or is this just a payoff to keep LEOs neutral, to keep them from spiking citizen gun rights as you say they did in the 90s? What, if anything, has the FOP kicked back since the original act in 2004?

  5. FOP is on board with keeping Tiahrt. That gives us a tremendous rhetorical instrument to use in helping us keep it, and is probably a big part of why we kept it in this Democratic Congress, though we had to live with a slightly weaker version of it.

    But keeping them from spiking pro-gun bills is also important. We’ve had good relationships with the FOP lately, and I think it’s been a strong benefit. I don’t have a problem with supporting LEO retired/off-duty carry for what I perceive we’re getting.

  6. This seems like a good bill. I’m hard pressed to think of any reason cops or ex-cops who’ve had more training and experience in carrying a gun then anyone but soldiers in wartime shouldn’t be able to do their part for public safety by carrying–hopefully a lot will hang out in NYC, Chicago & other places until honest citizens are also legally allowed to carry.

    That said, I think a national concealed carry permit available to all non-felons is an idea that’s time has come & hope we see it soon.

  7. The way to handle this is to go ahead and get the nationwide CC for cops as simplified as possible. Then add every other LE type job (guards, dispatchers, probation officers, DAs, etc). Next step add other “protective service” types (firemen, paramedics, EMT’s, S&R team members, etc). Add another layer — all who passed firearms training in the armed services. Finish up with anyone who has taken a firearms training course for a “certified” firearms instructor.

    Take the half loaf and then work to get the rest — slice by slice.

  8. That’s a good way to go about it, Hank.

    Start it with cops, and move towards “anyone who can pass the police qualifier”. And go from there…

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