Toby Hoover recognizes benefits of concealed security

In recent letter to the Lorain Morning Journal, gun ban extremist Toby Hoover, who fronts what often appears to be a one-woman show at the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence, told the newspaper that Ohioans For Concealed Carry and others are ''promoting the false danger that to have your business weapon-free invites criminal activity.''

''The reality is criminals have no way of knowing what kind of security an employer has on the premises just because he has a public prohibition of weapons,'' she said.

Let all business-owners note: Hoover is admitting that the criminal element is afraid and could be deterred by the unknown "security" behind-the-scenes. This is a familiar argument, since we've long been saying that concealed carry laws are effective because criminals fear the unknown. With a concealed carry law in effect, potential attackers are forced to ask themselves, 'Who is or isn't armed?'

On suggesting that posting discriminatory "no-guns" signs does not invite criminal attack, however, Hoover
is missing the point.

To be sure, the signs don't say "this is the only place in the world where you won't meet resistance". There certainly still is a slight risk to criminals that the store will have made some attempt to provide security, such as a Dayton Kroger whose security guard was hospitalized after being assaulted by an armed robber as he was leaving the store (that Kroger has since removed their signs).

Nevertheless, the fear-factor that Hoover recognizes may deter criminals is reduced considerably in a posted "victim zone." Upon seeing a "no-guns" sign, the criminal can be relatively confident that the persons inside are much less likely to shoot back in self-defense. They get no such confidence in a store without a sign. Clearly, these signs *ARE* telling criminals which locations are safer places to rob.

At first glance, Hoover seems to be grasping the concept of concealed security and crime deterrence, but as is usual with gun ban extremists, her conclusions eventually lead right back to the same place gun control always leads - disarmed victims, and well-armed criminals.

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