UPDATE: I initially had concerns about Barnes (as you can see below) and initially supported Harrington because Harrington seemed more of a purist on 2A, but as I mentioned in several calguns.net posts back in the primary, I changed my mind. This was due in large part to a conversation I had with a trusted friend and very big supporter of Barnes, NRA Liason H. Paul Payne. I switched during the primary to supporting Barnes because of the excellent way he has run the CCW program — which now functions far better than it has ever functioned before, making CCW a practical possibility for almost anyone in OC. I also repeatedly made the point on social media, again back during the primary, that sheriffs even in pro-CCW jurisdictions like Florida at first hesitated in accepting shall-issue but became more comfortable with it over time. That appears to be the case with Barnes and even Hutchens, and especially considering how they’ve both together improved CCW issuance (truly amazing progress in so many ways — processing time, simplicity, clarity, etc) i had no problem throwing my total support to Barnes by the end of the primary. And in the general of course, the other guy doesn’t even merit a moment’s thought.
Looks like “Don Barnes for OC Sheriff” has gathered support from some of my local #2A friends so I am posting a few observations I made from a conversation I had with Barnes last month at a local cigar networking event on July 12, 2017.
- Barnes stated he was meeting soon with Sheriff Gore down in San Diego (I think the very next day). Don’t know why—may have been official biz, or could it indicate alignment with Gore on CCW?
- Then again, we already know Barnes is endorsed by Hutchens!
- Barnes stated he was glad Peruta was NOT granted cert, yet despite this…
- Barnes stated he believes concealed carry is constitutionally MORE protected than open carry (the opposite is true), yet despite THIS…
- Barnes stated he favors “reasonable issue” over shall-issue (despite the success of shall-issue, which has swept the country over the last three decades).
- Barnes stated he believes open carry causes the public to panic. (I’m assuming he meant open carry by private citizens, since peace officers do it all the time.) When I told him no one panicked when I open carried several times on my own street, back before the ban on unloaded open carry, he said that was simply because my neighbors knew me. (Some do, most don’t.)
- When I said I’d submitted an application more than six months ago to get on the list of training providers, Barnes stated that all instructors must be POST-certified — and “that’s the way it’s always been” in his words. Peace Officer Standards & Training (POST) courses are designed to train law enforcement and therefore are largely irrelevant for training private armed citizens, and at around $3000 are expensive and therefore highly restrictive. I did not recall seeing any particular requirement for POST-certification of instructors, so I called OCSD and verified Barnes is wrong—POST is NOT a requirement.
- Barnes stated Hutchens never held to a tenet of requiring a showing by CCW applicants that they face a greater risk than the general population, yet this was in fact a criterion used by Hutchens in evaluating applications; when pressed, Barnes stated that if she did have such a policy, it must have been years ago before his time. [My notes from a 1/23/2009 meeting of the South OC Chamber’s Governmental Affairs Committee (which I attended regularly as VP of the Ladera Ranch Chamber) show guest of honor Hutchens admitting such a policy, and also showing contempt for concealed carry by stating “Orange County is not Mumbai” — the Seal Beach massacre a short time later proved otherwise.]