by Max Brantley
Maybe I missed it. But in scanning a variety of media coverage of the man who seems to have successfully committed suicide by police at the Crawford County Courthouse Tuesday, I learned of his divorce, his job, his bankruptcy and even a detailed recitation of the record of his history of holding a state boiler operator permit.
Somehow, the various reports appear to have omitted that James Ray Palmer was one of the background-checked (and, we are constantly assured, always law-abiding) holders of a concealed carry permit from the state of Arkansas. He had a couple of concealed handguns with him, along with an assault rifle, when he shot up the courthouse in Van Buren.
His concealed weapons were not permitted by law INSIDE the courthouse, of course. A gun nut suggested here yesterday that problems such as these could be solved by making possession of concealed weapons legal inside courthouses, too. Well. The occasional eruption of a permit holder in acts such as these — don't forget the bomb-plot doctor was a concealed carry permittee, too — are worth remembering (and noting in news articles) because of just such legislative propositions.
SPEAKING OF GUN NUTTERY: A judge has blocked a Florida law that abridges free speech rights of doctors by preventing them from asking patients about guns. What's next? Bloggers who write about carry permits?