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Surprise: Tom Brokaw Doesn't Know What He's Talking About on Guns


Tom Brokaw said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on January 13:

“Gun control is too simple a phrase to define all the complications and nuances of it, frankly. In Arizona they have a wide open system. I would be nervous about going into a bar or restaurant in Arizona on a Saturday night where people can carry concealed without permits.”

Well, if he is really concerned about guns in bars, poor Mr. Brokaw is not going to be able to frequent bars in very many states. Arizona does allow guns in bars, though, despite his claims to the contrary, actually require a concealed handgun permit to go into an establishment that serves alcohol. The following figure is from (more details are available at their website).

On a more serious note, despite the fact that permit holders are allowed to go into bars in Arizona and other states, there is no evidence that they pose a risk to anyone. As of December 1, 2007 in Arizona, there were 99,370 active permits. During 2007, 33 permits were revoked for any reason — a 0.03% rate — cases that did not involve using the gun to harm others.

And this is true in state after state. Between October 1, 1987 and December 31, 2010, Florida issued permits to 1.9 million people. 168 permit holders had their permits revoked for any firearms related violation, a rate of 0.009%.

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