Six States Boast More than 1 Million Carry Licenses Each

Six Second Amendment friendly states now boast more than one million active concealed carry licenses/permits each, including Florida with more than 2.5 million licenses in circulation, one of several revelations in the updated annual report on Concealed Carry in the United States from the Crime Prevention Research Center.

The other states are Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Pennsylvania and Texas.

It is the kind of news that sets off alarms in the gun prohibition lobby. Anti-gunners and their allies on Capitol Hill are determined to reduce the number of armed citizens. But the new CPRC report says the exact opposite has happened over the past few years, especially over the last 12 months. Since October 2020, the nation has seen two million additional permits/licenses approved, bringing the number of legally-packing adult Americans to 21.52 million, and that’s not all. Read the report’s abstract here.

Twenty-one states now have so-called “constitutional carry” where no permit is required to carry a firearm. According to the CPRC report, “While permits are soaring in the non-Constitutional Carry states, they fell in the Constitutional Carry ones even though more people are clearly carrying in those states.”

Texas is the newest permitless carry state, yet more than a million Lone Star gun owners still have permits, allowing them to be recognized under reciprocity laws in other states.

In all, the report from CPRC’s founder and President John Lott—the researcher and author—and researcher Rujun Wang lists 15 states in which more than 10 percent of the adult population is licensed to carry. In addition to the states mentioned earlier, the roundup includes are Colorado, Iowa, Kentucky, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia.

Tennessee, incidentally, is where Smith & Wesson is moving a large part of its current Massachusetts operation, taking hundreds of jobs out of the Bay State and the accompanying revenue to friendlier surroundings.

The 69-page CPRC report offers several other revelations, among them being that “8.3% of American adults have permits. Outside of the restrictive states of California and New York, about 10.0% of adults have a permit.”

The Supreme Court on Nov. 3 will hear oral arguments in a case challenging New York’s “proper cause” requirement to get a carry permit, which officials routinely use to deny permit applications. Only the privileged seem able to show “proper cause” while average citizens cannot. The case is known as New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen.

Another CPRC revelation: “In 2021, women made up 28.3% of permit holders in the 14 states that provide data by gender, an increase from the 26.4% last year. Seven states had data from 2012 to 2020/2021, and permit numbers grew 108.7% faster for women than for men.”

Increasing numbers of women are arming up, a pattern that has been building in recent years. With reductions in police manpower as a result of the “defund the police” movement that started in 2020 following the death of George Floyd while being restrained by Minneapolis police.

The CPRC report also notes that in three states where race and gender data is collected, there were “remarkably larger increases in permits for minorities compared to whites.” The report also reveals that four states keeping track of race between 2015-2021, “the number of Asian people with permits increased 93.2% faster than the number of whites with permits. Blacks appear to be the group that has experienced the largest increase in permitted concealed carry, growing 135.7% faster than whites.”