Black women on Chicago’s South Side are getting their concealed carry permits and arming up in light of the city’s continual violence.
Breitbart News reported that nearly 4,400 were shot in Chicago in 2016 and there were almost 800 homicides. This year, Fourth of July weekend and the weekend of August 18-20 witnessed a revival of 2016-type violence. The Chicago Sun-Times reported that over 100 people were shot on Fourth of July weekend and another 63 were shot over the weekend of August 18-20.
A total of 22 people were killed over those two weekends alone, and an increasing number of black women on Chicago’s South Side are not sitting around and waiting to be next.
According to the Chicago Tribune, 51-year-old Vernetta Robinzine got her carry permit in the spring and talks of her gun by saying, “It’s like a part of me now.” She lives in Chicago’s South Austin neighborhood and says her home has been robbed and that she responded by putting so many locks on her doors that “she felt like a prisoner in her own house.”
Her daughter then left for college, leaving Robinzine alone, at which time she decided she needed a gun. She said, “I just didn’t want to feel like a victim or vulnerable.”
Robinzine is part of a larger wave of black women in Chicago who are taking their well-being into their own hands. The Tribune reports that “black women in Cook County had the sharpest growth — 67 percent from 2014 to 2016 — of any demographic group receiving concealed carry permits in [the county], based on applicants who disclosed both their race and gender.” For example, 800 carry permits were issued to black women in Cook County in 2008 while 1,368 were issued to black women between January 1, 2017, and August 27, 2017, alone.
National African American Gun Association founder Philip Smith is not surprised by the surge in concealed carry permit issuance to black women. In fact, he indicated that for a single woman who is a mother, having “a gun replaces a male presence in a home.” University of Illinois at Chicago professor Alexandria Filindra had a different opinion. She said, “More people with handguns in their purses means more likelihood of accidental gunshots and not necessarily a lot more actual protection.”
For those paying attention, accidental gunshots are not Chicago’s problem, but ruthless violence wherein an armed criminal preys on an unsuspecting citizen is regularly in the news.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of Bullets with AWR Hawkins, a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.