U.S.A. – -(Ammoland.com)- “The former CEO of an executive security firm charged in an alleged scheme to trade political donations for concealed-gun permits from the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office abruptly pleaded guilty in the case Monday, in what prosecutors called a ‘significant development’ for a corruption probe that could threaten Sheriff Laurie Smith’s two-decade tenure,” The Mercury News reports. Others caught up in the investigation have been indicted for “brokering a deal for … AS Solution to receive up to a dozen concealed-carry weapon permits in exchange for $90,000 in campaign donations to committees supporting Smith’s 2018 re-election bid.”
It comes as no surprise that Smith and Undersheriff Rick Sung both pled the Fifth Amendment. Nor is it a surprise that an authoritarian hypocrite who denies a Constitutionally recognized fundamental right to “average citizens” would then turn to the Bill of Rights when there’s something in it for her. It’s also revealing — and almost humorous, were it not so offensively ludicrous and reeking — that “Supervisor Mike Wasserman repeatedly claimed that his bad memory prevented him from remembering whether he knew he was getting an illegal favor with a permit renewal.”
Such corruption is enabled and practically guaranteed by California’s “may issue” concealed carry permit laws, assigning the power to local sheriffs and police chiefs to approve or deny applications. That means Democrat-controlled urban areas are really “may not issue,” unless the applicant is “connected” and there is an incentive for the top LEO to either ingratiate him/herself or to return a “favor.”
Some of us have been calling attention to the injustice of unequal protection and denying rights based on “big club and you ain’t in it” discrimination for decades. One need only look at the way then-Los Angeles Sheriff Lee Baca handled permits for the rich and famous, while “ordinary people” were mandated to be defenseless. It’s no surprise that his corrupt ways ended up landing him in federal prison for obstruction and lying to prosecutors. Ironically, Baca will be a “prohibited person” when he gets out.
At this writing, Smith and her lawyers are no doubt waiting to see if/when the other shoe will drop and charges will be filed, and what effect her connections with, and knowledge about, Santa Clara luminaries will have. That brings to mind an observation that the corruption probe won’t be complete until discrimination in permit issuance is fully investigated and made public.
How do the earnings and race/sex demographic numbers and rates for permit recipients compare to the general population in Santa Clara County and in all counties throughout California? Are minority citizens afforded the same opportunities, or is “may issue” permitting controlled by police officials effectively racist?
The Democrat-dominated government in California makes great noise about how “inclusive” they are. How does that work in practice for which citizens are “permitted” by the “authorities” to exercise “the right of the people”?
About David Codrea:
David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” is a regularly featured contributor to Firearms News, and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.