Prohibitionists and Police Melting Down Over Tennessee ‘Enhanced Permit’ Proposal

Self Defense
The usual suspects are back with their old, debunked “Wild West” and “Police are the Only Ones qualified” lies.

U.S.A. – -( “Legislation introduced in the Tennessee state legislature this month is raising alarms from the state’s police union and gun control advocates who say it could turn the streets into the ‘old West,’” ABC News reports. “Two bills in the state assembly and state senate, HB 254 and SB 2523, would amend Tennessee law and designate ‘a person who has been issued an enhanced handgun carry permit’ as a member of law enforcement.”

The hit piece on the right to bear arms, and that’s what this is, is accompanied by a faux “authoritative” ABC News EXAMINED video that itself is a rehash of old talking points that lends itself to being picked apart lie by self-serving lie, but all of those have already been refuted and debunked ad nauseam. So for this article, let’s focus on the proposed Tennessee legislation.

The text of the House and Senate bills is identical and brief:

“AN ACT to amend Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 39, relative to firearms. BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF TENNESSEE: SECTION 1. Tennessee Code Annotated, Section 39-17-1350(d), is amended by adding the following as a new subdivision: (5) For purposes of this section, ‘law enforcement officer’ also means a person who has been issued an enhanced handgun carry permit pursuant to § 39-17-1351; provided, that the enhanced handgun carry permit is not suspended, revoked, or expired. SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon becoming a law, the public welfare requiring it.”

Unfortunately, the way this is being presented notwithstanding, this is not an incremental evolutionary step toward that “well regulated militia” the Founders deemed “necessary to the security of a free State.” That’s a discussion our “gun rights” organizations could and should be leading, but again, since it doesn’t apply here, let’s get back to reaction to the bill itself, which we’re told, “doesn’t yet have any hearings scheduled and the assembly version has only one co-sponsor.”

Let’s look at what the bill is intended to do and at what it won’t do, especially since the implication (deliberately!) suggests gun permit holders will be assuming police powers for themselves, with all the attendant “authoritah” that implies.

That’s not what it does at all:

“State Sen. Joey Hensley, who introduced the state Senate version of the bill, told ABC News that the goal of the bill was to allow enhanced gun permit carriers to carry their weapons into locations where off-duty law enforcement enter, such as a store or restaurant that prohibits guns inside their business. Hensley said the bill would not allow enhanced permit holders to bring their weapons into courts or schools.”

So, it doesn’t get rid of “gun-free zones” mandated by government violence monopolists, it still requires citizens to get permission to have the means of defense, and for now, prospects for passage seem remote. But that hasn’t stopped the usual suspects from melting down and dusting off the same load of  baseless hysteria they pulled back when concealed carry permits were becoming a thing:


“I don’t understand our regression to the old West, because this is what it feels like,” Michigan firearms instructor and Giffords Gun Owners for Safety member Jonathan Gold shrieked. “I’ve studied the old West, and I don’t think anyone wants to go back to the murder rate of Tombstone.”

Going to rates instead of numbers is an old trick, the same one the grabbers use in their perennial “weaker gun laws = higher gun deaths” swindle. Howstuffworks helps put things in perspective:

“Historian Robert R. Dykstra has explored the problem of analyzing frontier statistics, finding that the small populations of many circa 1880 Wild West towns skew the murder rates. Dykstra claims that if the 1880 murder rate of Dodge City, Kansas, were compared to a large city 100 years later, Dodge City would appear to have been more violent — even if the large city had far more murders. For example, in 1880 Dodge City, one person out of 996 was killed. However, 100 years later in Miami, 515 people out of 1.5 million were killed. Although more people were murdered in Miami, statistically speaking the city has a lower homicide rate — just 32.7, compared to the 100.4 of Dodge City in the 1880s.”

A more pertinent question might be “What the hell is a damn firearms instructor doing carrying Giffords’ water for them?” but as we’ve seen numerous times over the years if owning a firearm was all it took to be considered “pro-gun,” we’d have no better pals than David Chipman and Lon Horiuchi.

And no propaganda piece designed to throw cold water on citizens claiming their right to keep and bear arms would be complete without a discouraging word from the “Only Ones,” in this case, “courtesy” of Scottie Delashmit, president of the Tennessee State Lodge for the Fraternal Order of Police.

As an aside, you gotta wonder what it is about cops who are perfectly happy to claim nationwide LEOSA carry for themselves and accept “Back the Blue” accolades from self-styled law and order über alles “conservatives,” but somehow always forget what they swore to uphold and who they’re supposed to work for when it comes to rights enforcement (which is why some of us like to remind them).

Back to Scottie:

“[P]olice officers in the state ‘spend countless hours’ on the gun range honing their marksmanship skills and must qualify annually with the same weapons,” we are told. “These vigorous standards are in place to ensure officers are familiar with their weapons. The enhanced handgun carry permit training is far less demanding than anything required from a cadet attending a basic law enforcement academy.”


A minimum score of seventy-five percent (75%) is required to complete each listed component successfully.

  1. Firearms – forty-eight (48) hours of instruction to include the following:

(i) Weapons safety, nomenclature, and maintenance;

(ii) For handguns, stances and firing positions, including kneeling, standing, prone, off-hand, barricade, one-hand grip, and two-hand grip;

(iii) Double or single action (depending upon department-approved weapon);

(iv) Firing of fifty (50) rounds;

(v) Shall not be fired beyond twenty-five (25) yards;

(vi) Student shall demonstrate a proficiency of at least seventy-five percent (75%) both during day and darkness on all weapons issued or authorized by the student’s department; and

(vii) Demonstrate a proficiency of at least seventy-five percent (75%) on a stress exertion course which has a laterally moving target.

So, basically, fire 50 rounds and get a “C”? What do they do after noon? And how many chances do they get to pass?

Then let’s not forget police are on average less “law-abiding” and more prone to suicide than us amateur gun carriers, who, per Texas data, “ are 15 times less likely to commit a homicide than the general public.” And all that is disregarding the fact that there are no prior restraints on “shall not be infringed” in that Constitution Scottie swore an oath to uphold.

This bill, while far from perfect, is an incremental improvement over the way things are now in terms of expanding areas where citizens can carry without having to make the intolerable decision to do so and risk having their lives ruined by state disarmament enforcers. If enough Tennessee gun owners learn of it and demand its enactment, and if rights advocates in other “red” states use it as a template to emulate there, we’ll be able to compile even more data to show the antis for the hysterical prevaricators that they are.

Not that that will stop them from pulling out the same tired lies on “permitless” carry and the elimination of unconstitutional “gun-free” zones that disarm everyone but those not inclined to obey gun laws — let alone heed stupid signs. And for the record, I include not just violent criminals among those, but also forward-thinking freedom lovers in the “I will not comply” camp.

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.

David Codrea

4 4 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Speaking from firsthand experience in Tn law enforcement I can state unequivocally that most cops are definitely NOT gun people. Tn POST requires only one firearms training event PER YEAR and many cops hate that day. Yearly “training” is called “IN SERVICE” is not really training but mostly crossing “T’s” and dotting “I’s”. It is required by the Police Officers Standards and Training board of Tennessee. Most cops see this time as a semi-vacation with pay as many times the classes are in another jurisdiction sometimes a hundred miles from the officer’s own. Officers usually use a marked or dept.… Read more »

Xaun Loc

Maybe I’m looking at this with a touch of “WTF?” in my mind but I’ve got decades of experience with the federal government reading, interpreting, and writing various regulations and policies… The first thing about this bill that immediately caught my attention was the phrase “For purposes of this section” which is absolutely critical and almost invariably ignored when either the media or the general public look at any bill. People will try to treat whatever such a bill says as if it stood alone rather than recognizing that it is much more narrowly applied. In this case, any impact… Read more »


I have similar experience in Mississippi. The wording of bills is atrocious. My last conversation with a bill sponsor was that he gave it to the lawyers to write. So, even when I describe the flaw in a section of the bill, the sponsor doesn’t just re-read it to determine the truth. He would have to pass it by the lawyers that wrote it for him to figure that out. But that never happens because it is a two or more step process to do that and the legislative mill is rolling at top speed.



I’m going to speak to the content of this article as I’m sure plenty of others will. I’ll address something which I think knowledgable bloggers should see and object to. That is photographs accompanying articles which showcase bad firearm procedures. We need always to be aware of who might be reading or seeing what we offer on line. Many people will accept what they see or read as the truth without vetting any of it. So, for example, a new shooter, of which there are many, might look at this picture and think, Oh! that’s how its done when it… Read more »


“So, basically, fire 50 rounds and get a “C”? What do they do after noon? And how many chances do they get to pass?” Pat each other on the back for being “highly trained experts”? I’ve been to IPSC-style and multigun matches with twenty or more shooters, each of them firing more rounds before lunch than these “experts” fire in a year. And they do it every chance they get, as often as they can afford it, on their own money, not the taxpayers’. I’ve been to matches where three thousand rounds were fired in a day, and the worst… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Jeffersonian

“I’ve studied the old West, and I don’t think anyone wants to go back to the murder rate of Tombstone.” vs. “During a 15-year period in the late 1880s, there was an average of only three murders a year in Abilene, Caldwell, Dodge City, Ellsworth and Wichita — the five Kansas cities that served as significant railroad stops. This was far lower than murder rates in the eastern cities of New York, Baltimore or Boston at the time. (The city with the most murders of the five was Dodge City, which had 17 over nine years, less than two murders per… Read more »

Last edited 3 months ago by DDS

“As an aside, you gotta wonder what it is about cops who are perfectly happy to claim nationwide LEOSA carry for themselves and accept “Back the Blue” accolades from self-styled law and order über alles “conservatives,” but somehow always forget what they swore to uphold and who they’re supposed to work for when it comes to rights enforcement (which is why some of us like to remind them).”

Couldn’t have said it better myself! If only there were more here who were willing to remind them instead of lick the boot.


100% correct. there are many leo’s that support the legal carrying of firearms, but there are just as many leo’s that don’t and think we are a danger to us. i was once swept by a local officer with my own firearm after he “had” to disarm me for his safety after i showed him my concealed license. total BS. leo’s are a subset of the population and that said, there are many bad people in the general population. leo’s are suppossed to defend and protect OUR rights. officer safety is tyranny, public safety is their job. police reform: get… Read more »

Henry Bowman

“If only there were more here who were willing to remind them instead of lick the boot.”
ABSOLUTELY!! “The people of the United States are the masters of both Congress and the Courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution.” — Abraham Lincoln

We must actively and without pause exert control over ALL public servants in every branch of government at every level (local, state, federal) if we are to preserve our form of government. So far, we’re not doing that well.


Gee, I wonder if the murder rate in tombstone yesterday is the same as it is today in any city or state with tough gun laws like chicago, boston, louisville portland, seattle NY. So is he saying that the current laws and rules that have attempted to make our civilization in merica better has worked? I don’t think so. More is never enough and is not the answer. You had your chance and crime still exists and it always will and now there are groups of people trying to eliminate law enforcement, which is going backwards, not forwards. I believe… Read more »


Bills in Kansas legislature would prevent confiscation of property before getting a conviction , red flag laws , and there is discussion of eliminating tax on food . Law went into effect July 1 2021 ,recognizes all out of state CC
allows individuals 18 to 20 to apply for CC
authorizes AG to issue an alternative license to carry to qualified applicants during declared state of disaster emergency
creates restoration of rights process for individuals to reestablish the second amendment rights to possess a firearm upon expungement of certain convictions


Maybe Eddie Farris will issue a statement of support for the legislation:

I bet he tells his neighbors that he is pro 2nd Amendment.

Maybe he hunts deer.

Sheriffs in “red” states are on our side – they’re elected.