Do you want guns with that?

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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The concealed-carry law is now in effect in Illinois. The new law allows private citizens to carry guns in public. There are estimates that as many as 400,000 people statewide will apply for permits.

While the law prohibits the carrying of guns in certain places — including government buildings, schools, parks and bars — many locations will be open to people who are carrying hidden firearms. As soon as the concealed-carry permits are issued, you may well find that your local favorite restaurant is serving you a side order of guns without your knowledge. Our local bookstores might contain a new edition, which is not on the shelves. Our hardware stores might have an additional piece of hardware on the premises  — a literal "piece" — a concealed weapon on the customer standing next to you.

There is a solution. Any owner can prohibit the carrying of hidden guns on their premises by displaying a sign at the entrance to his/her property. The 4 x 6-inch sign would make it illegal to carry a gun into that area.

According to the law, people have a right to carry concealed guns. But like all rights, it is not an unrestricted right. I have a right to say that I do not want you to carry a gun on my property. I also have a right to not frequent premises whose owners allow the carrying of concealed firearms. I want to know if a particular owner allows guns on their premises. 

I fear however that many of the people who have a business in Oak Park are not fully aware that they are required to display the sign if they wish their business to remain gun free. Doing nothing, in this particular case, means that guns will be allowed in their store.

So I think that we all need to ask, "Do you allow guns in here?" when we enter a place of business in Oak Park. If we do not, we may well be served a side order of guns that we did not request.

John Barrett

Oak Park

Reader Comments

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Posted: October 3rd, 2014 4:54 PM

@John Barrett- The answer to your question is "Yes". Most local residents are reasonably well-educated enough to understand the statistics on gun ownership and will have no irrational fear of invisible objects carried by those whose respect for life may even include the protection of insecure neighbors.

Dennis from Greentown  

Posted: October 3rd, 2014 2:18 PM

A 4+6 sign does not keep me from carrying my weapon into a store nor will it prevent someone who wants to cause harm. It may not be leagle for me but the store will never know unless I have to use it and at that point I won't care. I will still be alive.

Leroy from West Austin  

Posted: August 16th, 2014 1:09 PM

Ed you are a racist troll, I don't know why WJ don't pulls your racists posts and ban your IP. You acting the fool cuz you know my position is to not carry a gun in OP, just give up the phone and live. You wants to die over a phone? You playing the fool!

Ed Zackley  

Posted: August 15th, 2014 11:29 AM

After all the verbosity, Leroy's point is: Oak Parkers should surrender their valuables whenever a thug shows up with a gun. Do I have that right Leroy? I think Leroy just likes to hear himself speak in his fake accent.

Leroy from West Austin  

Posted: August 15th, 2014 9:25 AM

@Ed... Don't you have anything on topics to say instead of your continues racist comments?

Ed Zackley  

Posted: August 14th, 2014 11:40 PM

So Leroy, now you are dropping your apostrophes and putting the "s" on your nouns. In the prior comment, it was "s" on verbs and correctly placed apostrophes. Are you having some kind of identity crisis?

Leroy from West Austin  

Posted: August 14th, 2014 10:59 PM

@Ed...Ed, your face look zackley like my dogs behinds side.

Ed Zackley  

Posted: August 14th, 2014 5:06 PM

Leroy, why do you add an "s" to all of your verbs?

Leroy from West Austin  

Posted: August 14th, 2014 3:13 PM

@Hmm. I thinks is you who needs the smack down and that's what I'd give you if you points the gun at me in OP. You don't need guns in OP. Why would you wants a woman in that situation when she could just give her phone and wallet, and avoids that? You ain't a cop, you just some Internet warrior, LOL. Too much Call of Duty for you.


Posted: August 13th, 2014 3:58 PM

That comment by Leroy needs a smack-down. Think this through: "If somebody tries to hurt or rob you, just give them your money or phone. They will go away when you give them what they wants." So in a rape situation the woman should just spread her legs let the guy pound away and everything will just be happy-go-lucky after that? Thanks for the advice. I think we CCW holders can figure it out without your help.


Posted: August 13th, 2014 3:39 PM

The paranoia of getting served "a side order of guns" described in this article totally irrational. Counseling should help. Maybe you should stop paying your taxes with all those government employees carrying guns on to public property all the time. That should get guns safely away enough for you.


Posted: July 9th, 2014 8:41 AM


Leo Twan  

Posted: April 3rd, 2014 1:23 AM

"Yo" Bill. No one hear I'm pretty sure are your "hicks" you cry about, just regular normal Americans that don't like ugly communists like yourself trampling their rights. So what am I a Asian redneck that lives in the city? Nice try your pathetic comebacks are amusing. Try looking at what the MAJORITY of the US thinks about your rampant authoritarian views these days. Even here on the paper for leftist Oak Park you are outnumbered. Go cry in another country and leave ours commie!

Leo Twan  

Posted: April 3rd, 2014 1:16 AM

Typical Oak Park Leftist upset that the supreme court over-ruled his government worshiping town. Too bad for you Mr. Barrett but the people have won again. Good thought making places "gun free zones". This was already tried in Chicago and the education systems and look how that turned out. You don't actually care about safety, just your own agenda. If I own a business one day I will gladly WELCOME CCW as it will in fact make the place safer from criminals

Bill Doogan  

Posted: February 20th, 2014 7:50 PM

Yo Dom- after I pay Brandon Phelps rent for his trailer in Harrisburg & buy cigs, I send money to Chris Cox & Chuck Cunningham at NRA/ILA. It's hard to find a lobbyist like Todd Vandermyde who has done so much for NRA members in the carry bill: Unlimited privacy waiver, criminal penalties for all violations & Duty to Inform. Can you use your keen skills of observation to look into Vandermyde's associations at his former union? FBI & US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald looked into it.


Posted: February 20th, 2014 1:44 PM

@C0unt Zer0 from DuPage It does not follow that a concern for gun regulation produces apathy regarding kidnapping. You have employed a logical fallacy.

C0unt Zer0 from DuPage   

Posted: February 20th, 2014 1:16 PM

A criminal tried to abduct a girl in Oak Park yesterday but people like John Barrett and Don Harmon are worried about some stupid signage? Worry about the real dangers. Worry about real crime - not imaginary BS. Worry about things that have actually hurt the people of Oak Park and do something about the things that threaten to hurt the people of Oak Park and their children and stop wasting your time and the public's time with this fear-mongering BS to push your statist agenda. Unbelievable !

Nervous Nelly from Oak Park  

Posted: February 20th, 2014 9:51 AM

Oh I'm just so scared!

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: February 20th, 2014 8:38 AM

Jim Coughlin - I should have keen powers of observation - I was trained in the police academy to observe individuals for indications that they may be carrying a firearm or contraband. But like anybody else without special training or skills I can utilize the statistics of CCW licensees in other states and say with a certainty that there is a good probability that when visiting another state one has been in close proximity to a CCW holder. Despite your inference, those people are law-abiding citizens, with no criminal intent (actually, nearly 6 times less likely to commit a crime than a non-CCW holder). As for considering tragedies, what about the tragedy of people who are unable to defend themselves because they were denied that option under legislative fiat, as has been the case in Illinois? Let's consider numbers, not feelings: an average of 2,000,000 lawful defensive gun uses each year, compared to 960 accidental deaths, 8,960 gang related deaths and 1,500 Lawfully Justified homicides of criminals by law enforcement and law abiding citizens.

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: February 20th, 2014 8:21 AM

So "Bill" - what 2A organizations do you belong to?

Bill Doogan  

Posted: February 11th, 2014 10:31 PM

Q- The NRA hicks you tried to interact with here don't know what NSA stands for. They can't figure out that NRA lobbyist Todd Vandermyde & carry bill sponsor Brandon Phelps sold them out with Duty to Inform, criminal penalties for ALL carry violations & an UNLIMITED privacy waiver: "a waiver of the applicant's privacy and confidentiality rights and privileges under all federal and state laws,..." The trailer dwellers are eager to sign their life away to pack heat & be junior policemen.

Bill Doogan  

Posted: February 5th, 2014 10:16 PM

Chris- William E. Dugan was president of the Intl. Union of Operating Engineers local 150 in Countryside. NRA lobbyist Todd Vandermyde worked for 150. Vandermyde was paid $120K Where else could a crude & low-class sellout match that salary? Chris Cox & Chuck Cunningham at NRA gave Vandermyde a job. His achievements in IL: Duty to Inform w/criminal penalties, & an UNLIMITED privacy waiver. Chicago FBI press release 10-14-10:

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: February 4th, 2014 6:40 PM

Bill Doogan, check out what the NSA, and FBI have been up to.

Bill Doogan  

Posted: February 4th, 2014 5:09 PM

Kevin- Phelps HB183 is a may issue bill due to the unelected Star Chamber review board. They will hear anonymous accusations from police, meet in secret, "judge" you when you are not present, and snoop into the UNLIMITED privacy waiver which NRA lobbyist Todd Vandermyde wrote for Phelps. It is not a shall issue bill. If you're an NRA member, you got lied to. NRA had a federal court order, no need to compromise. Losers lose, winners play to win. NRA members got conned by Vandermyde again.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: February 4th, 2014 8:05 AM

Do you want guns with that? Or a la Mode? The residency for fire and police officers in the VOP showed at one time that the residents did want to stand in line at a store or church next to a person w/a firearm.No one minded. I went to St. Edmunds for mass armed. Everyone was glad to see me especially in the parking lot after mass.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 10:32 PM

@ Jim - The example I cited was an extreme perception by low information individuals who seem to believe they have all of the answers. If I entered a house like I described I would get out quick. Irresponsible gun owners are a menace and we all know it. Having shot in a pistol league I saw many non-league shooters at public ranges who would find it easy to be dangerous with a cap gun.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 9:21 PM

Ray, I've read a report that estimates 1/2 of the accidental shootings in the home are the result of young children using a gun that was not properly secured. There was a recent Dateline feature story on the subject concerning a youngster who found and fired his parent's gun killing a visiting playmate. The parent is on trial and facing a 50 year prison sentence. Tragic for both families. I am not attempting to paint any group with a broad brush but admit to being surprised by your position regarding the safe storage of weapons in the home. If you are visiting a gun owner's home and find a situation as describe in your earlier posting where there is "a hand gun on every table, an assault rifle in every corner and 30 round magazines in every drawer", you, as a self-described responsible gun owner, will advise the owner of those weapons to the need to safely store their guns and ammo.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 4:31 PM

@ Jim I am trying to remember any child gun injury case where the gun was legal and the owner was a responsible adult. It is easy to tar us all with that same brush but we are as a responsible group fully aware of the dangers of this activity and take great pains not to hurt anyone.

Chris from OP  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 4:23 PM

Mr Doogan: Are you, or are you not Bill Dugan, former head of Local 150?

Bill Doogan  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 11:43 AM

Dom- NRA lobbyist Todd Vandermyde has been selling you out for years. Phelps original HB148 carry bill had immediate notification like Ohio back in 2011: "If a law enforcement officer initiates an investigative stop, including but not limited to a traffic stop, of a licensee who is carrying a concealed firearm, the licensee shall IMMEDIATELY disclose to the officer that he or she is in possession of a concealed firearm pursuant to this Act." Get it yet? Show us what a smart boy you are.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 10:51 AM

Ray, It is irresponsible for any gun owner to not make sure that all weapons in the home are safely stored. Seems like a common sense approach to avoid a potential tragedy. I don't know the stats for Oak Park (or the other communities you mentioned) but am aware of those sad cases when a child has been injured or killed because a weapon was not properly secured. Any accidental shooting should be enough to alert parents to the dangers.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 7:45 AM

@ J C - please report to us how many children are injured in Oak Park each year from improperly secured handguns. Lets exclude teens as they should know better and guns that are not owned legally. I believe that Oak Park is a community that is more responsible than most. Unlike Austin and Maywood, very few teens are armed and dangerous and almost all of them see no need for lethal force. You seem to believe that entering a gun owners home, you will find a hand gun on every end table, an assault rifle in every corner, 30 round magazines in every drawer and soldier of fortune magazines in the bathroom. I know a lot of Oak Park shooters and have yet to see any of this - and I know what I am looking for. You seem to imply that naturally you are responsible and I am not

Chris from op  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 7:38 AM

Mr Doogan couldn't be related to the disgraced Bill Dugan former head of the Local 150 he keeps talking about?

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 3rd, 2014 12:41 AM

Gee, Dominick. You have keen powers of observation. I wouldn't describe it "fantasyland" for me failing to notice all those you see people packing heat. Not sure it's plus to hang in such circles. As far as my assuming responsibility for the defense of you and family. I'll do what I can. Please consider the potential for tragedy when guns are not properly and safely stored in the home.

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 10:45 PM

Now I get it....the poster commenting as "Bill Doogan" is really noted OP gadfly/borderline loon "Les Golden". It's the only way to explain the rambling, one-thought nonsense about some alleged NRA lobbyist. Please go away, "Bill", Les, or whoever you are. You add nothing....

Bill Doogan  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 8:21 PM

Joe- you can count but you can't form conclusions from facts. The pain between your ears is called cognitive dissonance. The fact that NRA lobbyist Todd Vandermyde betrayed you in Phelps HB183 causes you pain because of your misplaced trust in authority. It's common in baby boomer men of your generation. The fact that the NRA lobbyist has criminal associations at the Intl. Union of Operating Engineers local 150 also hurts your feelings. Men of your age have difficulty expressing this pain.

Kevin from South Holland  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 5:59 PM

I think Bill Doogan would have preferred the Chicago-approved no-carry bill that would have been rammed through had we not reached the compromise we did

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 5:51 PM

@ Bill Doogan: You can comment all you like about "the low IQ NRA types" yet you are not even contributing to the discussion we're having here and now. Such behavior may not be a sign of a low intellect but it certainly appears to indicate some sort of functional deficit. And again, while I'm no great fan of the FCCA as passed, you confuse duty to inform with duty to disclose. If you are doing it intentionally (which I assume to be the case as it's been addressed in several of your rambling posts before) one might think you're being disingenuous in your attacks.

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 5:45 PM

Jim Coughlin: Have any of those people ever ventured outside the fantasyland that is Illinois? If so, they likely survived being right next to someone "strolling around with a loaded gun". That ought to make for great tales of bravery in the face of (non-existent) danger at a cocktail party. As for "keeping (my) sidearm safely locked away at home" who's going to assume responsibility for the defense of myself and my family? The government hasn't since 1856... will you?

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 5:16 PM

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park, I don't know the town, but Ken mentioned it in one of his columns. Don't know if Ken would refuse help from his son now that he is carrying a mohaska.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 4:33 PM

@Q: that is precious and made my Super Bowl Sunday. Ken Trainors son is a police officer. Please tell me where.

Bill Doogan  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 2:24 PM

Ray- per Reps. I've spoken with, unethical lobbyists hug the edges of hallways similar to rats when seeking access to legislators. Leghold traps in the Executive bldg. can work, but he suggested baiting the traps w/ pesticide, as lobbyists are also parasites who feed off the body politic, and can be difficult to remove. In tough cases, the Capitol may have to be fumigated for the good of the people of IL. If the lobbyist influence is especially evil, exorcism by the Church may be in order.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 1:53 PM

@ Q - I think Ken believes that both his attacker and his defender are evil if firearms are involved

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 1:45 PM

Brian Slowiak, difficult to understand why Ken Trainor would not want you to help him. He son is now a Police Officer. I hope his way of thinking is just the opposite of Ken's.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 12:30 PM

Do you want guns with that? Or just have them delivered ?In our discussion group about gun rights and responsibility. I asked this question. "I am a retired police officer who carries a fire arm for my protection. Do I have an moral, ethical or legal obligation to respond to a citizen in need?"Ken Trainor stated that he would not ask me to respond to his need for assistance. John Barrett stated I had an obligation to respond if I saw he needed help. I would help both, the action is correct.

joe from south oak park  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 12:21 PM

Over a 3 month period this Doogan guy has made 36 comments about the same topic no matter if the comment has any bearing on the conversation. This guy is starting to sound more and more like someone suffering from OCD.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 12:18 PM

I attended the fun fair w/my kids at Mann School as an off duty police officer in plan clothes w/ my firearm and no one was worried. Some were glad.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 8:45 AM

@ Doogan - you have repeated this script over and over again. What is your point and what do you suggest?

Bill Doogan  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 12:59 AM

It's fun to watch the low IQ NRA types try to form a sentence & spell with Dr. Barrett. Check out the crude & low class personal attacks. NRA lobbyist Todd Vandermyde had a federal court order & writes a bill w/Duty to Inform, criminal penalties for all carry violations & an unlimited privacy waiver, and the hicks can't figure out they got used. Vandermyde was paid over $100K/yr. at the Intl. Union of Operating Engineers local 150 in Countryside, B4 his boss was convicted by the US Attorney.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 2nd, 2014 12:53 AM

@JC The point is that Dr Barrett was worried about the guy next to him at the hardware store with a concealed carry permit and a gun. His real worry should be the guy with the gun and no license to carry it concealed or not. The actual problem is not the gun - it is the intent of the person carrying it. The sight of a gun isn't as traumatic as the left wants everyone to believe.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 1st, 2014 11:32 PM

Ray, people are used to seeing law enforcement carrying a weapon. Do you think most parents and children attending the school carnival would still feel at ease if they observed you or any private citizen strolling around with a loaded gun. Are there any circumstances when you will keep your sidearm safely locked away at home or do you expect to be fully armed whenever you attend any local public function?

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 1st, 2014 6:23 PM

I attended the Lincoln School carnival today and our beat officer was there. He had a handgun, in a holster - in plain view. Not one young lady experienced hysteria, not one young child expressed any panic. No one tried to get the officer to put his gun in a secure place. We all felt good knowing that the good guys were there- and alert.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: February 1st, 2014 8:31 AM

Q, they can stop your reply,but not your thought.

Bill D  

Posted: January 31st, 2014 8:46 PM

They removed it after I flagged it, you vulgar goof. Grow up.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 31st, 2014 8:41 PM

Brian Slowiak, I had a reply to your mohaska, but the Wednesday Journal removed it.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: January 31st, 2014 8:31 PM

@ Dominic Aherns: we will know things will be getting better when the little girl ask "mommy, why does she have that"

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: January 31st, 2014 5:06 PM

Ray - The reason we can't have open carry in incorporated areas of Illinois is because just seeing an evil gun will cause nuns to start blaspheming, otherwise honest individuals will suddenly adopt a life of criminal abandon, we'll have dogs and cats, laying together, all because Susie Soccer Mom's darling angel saw a person with a holstered pistol on their hip and asked "mommy, why does he have that?. Real end times type stuff... we couldn't have that.

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: January 31st, 2014 5:02 PM

Leroy - There have been numerous cases where people "gave them what they wanted" and were killed anyway, including the Brown's Chicken massacre in Palatine.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 9:51 PM

Q, you missed my favorite, mohaska.

Q from Oak Park   

Posted: January 30th, 2014 6:29 PM

Galton, John Galton, lets talk about some ideas wear people can carry heaters when wearing a suit. Some may prefer a shoulder holster for faster access.

Galton, John Galton from Schaumburg  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 6:23 PM

OK Q, I'll concede the quote game. I know, let's have a spelling contest.

Galton, John Galton from Schaumburg   

Posted: January 30th, 2014 6:20 PM

OK Q, I'm willing to concede the battle of quotes. I've got an idea, let's have a spelling contest. ;)

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 6:14 PM

Galton, John Galton, when you are looking at the end of a 44 magnum, the worlds most powerful hand gun that will blow your head clean off, the person holding it can call it a mouth piece because it does all the talking that you need to know.

Galton, John Galton from Schaumburg  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 5:45 PM

@Q, technically I think a mouthpiece is a lawyer. I think you must be a skirt...or maybe you're a fugitive from the laughing house (Mike Hammer from Kiss Me Deadly)

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 5:34 PM

John Galton, you can also call them shooters, blasters, mouth pieces, irons, guns, pistols, revolvers, semi-auto's, semi-automatics, or you can call them what they are, weapons.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 5:29 PM

BShawn, People really never understood what the Obama care plan is about. It is all about making everyone buy insurance so the insurance industry can continue to remain the biggest industry in the World. That is also why you pay a lot of money for a pack of cigarettes, because it helps reduce the cost to the insurance industry. The reason the cost of alcohol doesn't go up like cigarettes, is because the law is more active with DUI's.

Galton, John Galton from Schaumburg   

Posted: January 30th, 2014 5:27 PM

Jeez, Q, heaters, rods? Did you learn everything you know about guns from Micky Spillane novels. Say, are you a dame?

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 5:23 PM

Cont... The insurance industry is the biggest industry in the World. They change laws to increase their profits. If the insurance industry thought it was profitable to insure people packing heaters, they would make it mandatory to pay for insurance if you want to pack a heater. They aren't doing it. People can't pay enough to cover their liability.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 5:16 PM

BShawn, I appreciate you letting me know more about the gun laws in other States. Before Illinois passed the carry a concealed heater, there were law abiding citizens carrying heaters. Now with the law, they can be carrying rods legally. I don't mine people carrying weapons for self protection, but their bigger concern is who they may hit when firing their rod. Cont....

C0unt Zer0 from DuPage  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 4:52 PM

The real dangers to Oak Park citizens are the one's that have already happened, and continue to happen - muggings, robberies, sexual assaults and home invasions. These are the dangers that John Barret conveniently leaves out of his article. Oak Park residents are many more times likely to be mugged, robbed and or assaulted by criminals than they are ever likely to be harmed by a law-abiding conceal carry licensee.

C0unt Zer0 from DuPage  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 4:36 PM

A person's odds of dying from a firearm is 514,147 to 1. Odds of dying due to falling down stairs is 157,300 to 1 Barret is all in a tizzy about firearms but he's not going to Oak Park business to check how safe their stairs are. The odds that a law abiding gun owner is going to injure another law abiding person accidentally are very very low. This isn't about safety at all - what John Barret is doing is fear mongering to promote his anti-gun agenda. He leaves out the very real dangers.

C0unt Zer0 from DuPage  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 4:33 PM

This is not about safety this is about Barret's belief that no individual should start trying to protect themselves - how dare they step out of line! That's society's job !!! This is really about John Barret's resentment toward people who don't share his faith in government and doing things collectively. He and his like minded gun-control advocates lost this ideological battle at the Seventh Circuit Court in the case of Moore v Madigan,

C0unt Zer0 from DuPage  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 4:32 PM

Now he continues to try to dissuade individuals from choosing to protect themselves by scurrying from store to store admonishing owners to put up "no Guns" signs. And writing too clever-by-half articles like this to spread fear when there is no basis for it.

BShawn from Chicago  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 12:33 PM

potential target was armed or not. The person could have a permit, whether they're politically connected, or they're part of the low percentage that actually got one. Now IL is on par with the rest, and by rest I mean MAJORITY of the US of A. However, there ARE nine (9) places that are now behind the other 41 jurisdictions (now including IL). Furthermore, my point, is that if you hear of how high the crime is in any of these 9 jurisdictions, there's your reason (here's your sign)...

BShawn from Chicago  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 12:30 PM

@Q: You've again missed the point. Yes there are some jurisdictions where getting a permit for an average "Joe Schmoe" may be all but impossible. Problem was, in IL you literally had a 0.000 % chance. I'll tell you what I'd rather even have a 0.100 % chance over a 0.000 % chance! IL was the farthest behind since criminals KNEW there was a 0.000% chance a law abiding person would be armed. Even in those other states that are too heavily restricted, you'd still never know (as a criminal) if your

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 12:17 PM

Ray Simpson you mention 49 other States have found good news for people packing rods. How can that be because Bshawn, a fellow gun person says in 9 other States, the standard citizen really can't get a permit. That is the problem with people who want guns in Illinois. They think they are not getting the same rights as the other 49 States, and are misinformed by the NRA, and gun rights websites.

R. Thornhill from DuPage County  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 10:06 AM

Pt 3-Throughout most of history, this point (Pt 2) was well understood. If Tribe A attacked Tribe B, Tribe B got violent and fought back to stop the attack, or minimize its effect. This continued up until recently. But lately, you get liberals with utopian ideals who think having the means to commit violence against your fellow man is bad. Hunter-gatherers from 10,000 years ago understood how human nature worked; modern-day Oak Park residents of a certain political persuasion, not so much.

R. Thornhill from DuPage County  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 10:02 AM

Pt 2-I know this is hard for many to accept, particularly those on the left, but there are psychotic and violent people out there (both mass murderers and just violent criminals). The only way you stop one of these when they are in progress is through violence. Since police can't be everywhere at once, it will end up falling on the people there to use violence to stop an attack. While hard to stomach for many, this is far superior to just passively waiting for the attack to end.

R. Thornhill from DuPage County  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 9:58 AM

Part 1 -- Pieces of paper don't stop madmen. If a criminal wants to either commit armed robbery at a Starbuck's, or else go on a shooting spree there, a 4 by 6 paper saying "no guns" isn't going to stop them. It will only stop the law-abiding citizens from carrying in there (those that have gone thru 16 hrs of training, an extensive background check, and paid an expensive fee to exercise their right). You have very little to worry about from the legal CCW holder.

R. Thornhill from DuPage County  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 9:52 AM

Tom Payne - I don't think Indiana or Michigan are perfect; they have their problems just as Chicago does. But my point was this: does Mr. Barrett ever travel outside of Illinois? I'm sure he's visited Wisconsin, Indiana, or Michigan and has somehow lived through the experience. All of those states have concealed carry and it doesn't seem to be the end of the world there. They have problems in Detroit and Hammond, but it isn't CCW holders that are causing them.

Tom Payne from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 8:52 AM

Readers Thornhill and Smith tell us that Michigan and Indiana are great places to visit because they are safe due to Concealed Carry laws. Last time I checked, Detroit Michigan was bankrupt and abandoned to gangs, and Gary, Indiana was one of the Murder Capitals in America, on a per capita basis. Another reader says no pedophiles have committed shootings...well, have licensed carriers of firearms been doing the school and mall shootings? Some logic on both sides is called for.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 7:53 AM

Texas did a study of gun violence and gun ownership. The bottom line was that a legal gun owner was 1/4 as likely to commit a crime of violence and interestingly concealed carry permit holders were 1/17 as likely. Concealed Carry is not the gangster based group portrayed here. It is expensive, hard and strict for those who feel the need. Your fear should be of the cool stud who goes to commercial ranges to show off his ability to make noise and never hit anything. After the CCP issue quiets down Illinois will find that at worse the statistics will be neutral and at best there will be an improvement in the numbers. 49 other states have found that to be the case.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 10:22 PM

BShawn from Chicago, the news that reports the major shootings do it because people like yourself read it, and think it can happen to you, and make you think you need to pack a rod. It is the same media that doesn't say the good stories about guns that is making you think you need a gun. Don't pay attention to the news.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 10:18 PM

BShawn from Chicago, you are saying that other States really don't laws that allow people to pack heaters. Since they really can't have them, then the people here in Illinois who want to pack rods were misled into thinking Illinois was missing out

Kevin from South Holland  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 9:01 PM

@Leroy and what about rape? Should a woman just have to "give up the goods" so no one gets hurt?

Basil from Oak Park  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 8:35 PM

Ken Trainor, is that you disguising yourself as Bill Doogan? Anybody do a background check on these felons? Just saying.

Leroy from West Austin  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 8:26 PM

The Beninville dude didn't just hand over his bags. You can see him trying to fight to keep his stuff. He should have just given the dudes everything and nobody gets hurt.

Bill Doogan  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 8:21 PM

Dr. Barrett has nothing to worry about. NRA lobbyist Todd Vandermyde supplied criminal charges of Class B misdemeanor (6 months jail) for ALL violations of Phelps garbage carry bill. Call the police and have concealed carriers arrested on posted property, thanks to Phelps & Vandermyde. The gun retards are too stupid to figure out that NRA benefits from lawsuits, they made millions off Otis McDonald, then sold out the blacks with Duty to Inform. The hicks think the cops are "on their side."

BShawn from Chicago  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 8:20 PM

@Leroy from West Austin: Really, just give them what they want then they go away? How did that work for that poor man in Bensenville? The recent fatal shooting in Bensenville on a Sunday night, believed to be a robbery gone wrong. Oh wait, that's right the VICTIM is now DECEASED, and the criminal actually took off without "any goods", so the Bensenville police are actually classifying it as a HOMICIDE since nothing even ended up being taken! Sorry, you couldn't possibly be MORE naive Leroy!

Leroy from West Austin  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 6:18 PM

Guns are stupid. If somebody tries to hurt or rob you, just give them your money or phone. They will go away when you give them what they wants.

Mike Brown  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 6:05 PM

Being that the medical profession is a 24 hour a day revolving process,. Surly the good Dr is aware the odd hours Nurses and other staff have to travel and navigate dark late night parking lots. This CCW initiative is about their right to a form of protection also should they choose to get permits as well. Theres another side to the page Dr should you choose to open your eyes to it.

Bernie from River Forest  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 6:05 PM

How are those "No War" signs working out for you?

Leroy from West Austin  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 5:59 PM

You don't need guns in Oak Park. I like that they have no guns. I don't want some womens to shoot me outside the store. Just because I'm window shopping. I ain't done nuffins.

Bill D  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 5:25 PM

Breeeeaatheee, BShawn.

BShawn from Chicago  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 5:16 PM

Lastly, if you're talking about any "mass shootings", or any crime, in any of the following places: District of Columbia, California, Delaware, Hawaii, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, or New York - you may as well save your breath, because those are the "DON'T ISSUE" states where the standard citizen really can't get a permit anyway (so they may as well not have the law there). So that's also why those places are safe havens FOR CRIMINALS!

BShawn from Chicago  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 5:07 PM

Furthermore the MEDIA only plays the stories on the "bad" ones -- "Today 100 people killed in X, in CA". Seldom if EVER will you hear of the instances with better outcomes (in terms of least numbers of fatalities). The worse they are, the MORE airtime they get! "Naa" I'm just crazy, oh yea, well then why has the last CO school shooting, where only one girl lost her life, gotten so little air time!!??

BShawn from Chicago  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 4:58 PM

@ Bill D (and "Q"). Why do you think the Aurora CO shooter chose the specific theater that he did? It's already been proven that there are other theaters that were CLOSER to him, yet he SPECIFICALLY went OUT of his way to go to the one that he did. Why? BECAUSE THAT ONE HAD A NO FIREARMS SIGN POSTED!!! Wake up and smell the coffee you two. Criminals and "whacko's" WILL exclusively pick out defenseless 'zones'. If they don't they usually DO get "put down" rather quick - by a CCL holder!

Jim from South Oak Park  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 3:47 PM

Barrett's "solution" is a hollow, feel-good move with no impact on the problem at all. Consider Oak Park's Nuclear-Free Zone; did it lead to the Soviet Union's demise and lower nuclear threat? So, can you see a "No Guns" sign halting an armed robber, or some unbalanced person bent on killing? More likely, I can imagine the blast as a round rips through the sign, showing the gunman's disdain for this and other firearms laws. I don't have an answer to reducing gun violence, but this isn't it.

C0unt Zer0 from DuPage  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 3:41 PM

" it makes me question why other States don't whip out their rods and protect others. There were enough people in the Maryland Mall that someone should have been packing his or her heaters." 1) Maryland is one of the most restrictive state in the country when it comes to the right to carry 2) The mall was designated a gun-free-zone, (just like the misguided Dr. is trying to create in Oak Park) so law abiding gun owners either wouldn't be carrying their firearms or they wouldn't be there at all.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 3:38 PM

if concealed carry is so repugnant why not push for open carry? That way everyone would know for sure.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 3:23 PM

Uncommon Sense, you seem to have a sense that is not uncommon among fellow gun owners. You have the idea that if a gun fight breaks out, you will draw quick, and bring an end to it. Since Illinois is new to allowing people to pack their own heaters for self protection and the protection towards others, it makes me question why other States don't whip out their rods and protect others. There were enough people in the Maryland Mall that someone should have been packing his or her heaters.

R. Thornhill from DuPage County  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 2:40 PM

Ray Simpson -- why should I cut Mr. Barrett any slack? He wants to make sure that a woman coming home from her nursing job at West Suburban Medical Center doesn't have the tools needed to protect herself. Is that how he betters society? By making it tougher for law-abiding citizens to have the tools needed to defend themselves, but then completely ignoring the elephant in the room (gang violence being the cause of most of Oak Park and Austin's violence problems).

R. Thornhill from DuPage County  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 2:34 PM

Does Mr. Barrett ever travel to other states? Like, I don't know, Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Florida, Nevada, etc. All of these places allow concealed carry and seem to be doing fine. In fact, I would venture to say that most would feel safer in a place like Lake Geneva, WI,w here concealed carry is legal, versus a pre-2010 Oak Park, which had some of the strictest gun laws in the country but somehow still has a lot of crime.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 2:17 PM

All a business, church, school, etc is doing by putting up a sign saying no guns is advertising to the world that the patrons of said establishment are unarmed and sitting ducks. You invite criminals and nut jobs to take advantage of the situation while keeping out the law abiding citizen who just might save your azz one day.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 2:13 PM

The lack of logic, basic common sense, and general denial of facts from the left on gun control is almost comical if it weren't so serious. Vast majority of gun crime committed by gangs/thugs with already illegal guns, yet a sticker saying CCW holders are not allowed is going to some how make patrons of said business safer? I mean a nut job like Adam Lanza is just going to turn around at the door.

Frank from Chicago  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 1:47 PM

Interesting commentary by the poster. LOL. He sounds like a criminal that's scared he'll be interrupted while committing a robbery, or even an assault or rape. I doubt seriously he can pass all the tests and requirements that prove carriers are honest people that can be trusted. I will stay out of the businesses that are posted knowing I'm less safe in those and criminals will have free reign.

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 1:16 PM

Also, I would think someone as learned as a medical doctor would research an issue before offering an opinion like he would research an unusual medical case. Going to www(dot)vatican(dot)va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p3s2c2a5.htm reveals the following from the Catechism of the Catholic Church (the numbers are sections): Legitimate defense-2263 The legitimate defense of persons and societies is not an exception to the prohibition against the murder of the innocent that constitutes intentional killing. "The act of self-defense can have a double effect: the preservation of one's own life; and the killing of the aggressor. . . . The one is intended, the other is not." 2264 Love toward oneself remains a fundamental principle of morality. Therefore it is legitimate to insist on respect for one's own right to life. Someone who defends his life is not guilty of murder even if he is forced to deal his aggressor a lethal blow: If a man in self-defense uses more than necessary violence, it will be unlawful: whereas if he repels force with moderation, his defense will be lawful. . . . Nor is it necessary for salvation that a man omit the act of moderate self-defense to avoid killing the other man, since one is bound to take more care of one's own life than of another's. 2265 Legitimate defense can be not only a right but a grave duty for one who is responsible for the lives of others. The defense of the common good requires that an unjust aggressor be rendered unable to cause harm. For this reason, those who legitimately hold authority also have the right to use arms to repel aggressors against the civil community entrusted to their responsibility. I wish the gang bangers would stop shooting innocents as well, but I also realize that if the situation arises the odds are that the cops will be unable to protect me, and I refuse to surrender my means of defending myself and family to appease a sense of nobility.

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 1:09 PM

While I appreciate Dr. Barrett's time as a trauma surgeon, I also appreciate the fact that the lawful defensive uses of guns outweigh not only the criminal uses that result in a fatality but those that do not by a significant number. I would also ask if, with his education, the good Doctor can understand the difference between those people who have been illegally carrying and using guns - also called "criminals" - and the law abiding citizens who have paid one of the highest "poll taxes" in the country,. gone through the longest training time and have undergone a background check only slightly less complete than that required to obtain a security clearance? Does he understand that since the 1856 court case South v Maryland the government bears no affirmative duty to protect the individual, and that the duty for such protection lies with us? If not, perhaps his bias is clouding his judgement. Using the same logic, one might as well call for a ban on elective surgeries basing the argument on the number of deaths due to medical malpractice deaths - a number nine times higher than the deaths due to guns each year.

C0unt Zer0 from DuPage  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 10:40 AM

Well that's fine. But does John Barret ask Oak Park store owners "Do you allow felons out on parole from weapons and gang-related charges in here?" "Are you making sure that none of your patrons have knives ?" His focus is definitely off and he's asking the wrong questions.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 10:21 AM

Lets cut John some slack. Dr John Barrett is recently retired from a career of digging bullets out of the bodies of fellow human beings and fixing the horrific damage when possible . He also was often required to tell friends and families that they would be taking their loved ones home in a box. If that life experience doesn't make you want to wish for a better society I don't know what would. John and I both agree to the end goal, however, we see different paths to that goal. John would like to believe that "sanctuary" means just that and he is not shy in expressing his beliefs.

C0unt Zer0 from DuPage  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 9:57 AM

When was the last time an Oak Park resident was served a side order of guns that they did not request? I know it wasn't from a law abiding gun owner. When was the last time an Oak Park resident was served a side order of mugging, armed robbery, or threatened with a knife? John Barrett doesn't seem to be concerned about the very real crimes that are perpetrated against Oak Park residents. But he is obsessed with the hypothetical that a law abiding citizen might have a gun...

CC doesn't mean the wild west  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 9:44 AM


CC doesn't mean the wild west  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 9:43 AM

I wonder how many locations you visited outside of the state of Illinois that had individuals next to you with a concealed firearm and you had no idea? In a matter of time, this Oak Park out cry will pass. What shouldn't is careful regulation and the necessity to keep guns locked up and out of the hands of those who should own them

Bill D  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 9:19 AM

What scared and simple little minds people like Brian, Steve and Zero live in. If we don't allow guns EVERYWHERE the criminals will "flock" to where they are banned and victimize people. What tripe. And Oak Park has the crime rate it has because it's adjacent to the largest open air drug markets in America, not because of its gun laws. As for pedophiles, I think they're scum, but please, tell me the last and first time a pedophile ever walked into a mall and killed multiple people in seconds.


Posted: January 29th, 2014 8:43 AM

I am just so relieved that I don't live in this gentleman's district. The extent to which people like Mr. Barrett have stuck their heads in the sand and refused to use simple reason is extraordinary. For someone like me, the solution is simple - avoid Oak Park like the plague, so that I am not in danger of getting attacked by the criminals who will surely flock to all of the no-gun-signs - no better target for a madman.

Brian from Plainfield  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 8:30 AM

While your hard hitting article on is sure to reach the hearts of a wide audience and bring home the Pulitzer, I have to ask.... Do you require the businesses you frequent to post "No convicted pedophiles allowed on premises" signs? Does the fact that those businesses allow convicted pedophiles make your second guess your choice to do business with those establishments? No? So what you're saying is that you'd rather shop next to a pedophile than an armed law abiding citizen.

Count Zero from DuPage  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 7:19 AM

The decades of failed social programs have meant crime plagues Oak Park. It has the 25th largest population of communities in Illinois, Oak Park's police department is the third largest in the state. Oak Park's per capita crime rate is consistently among the highest ten in IL. The fact criminal predators coming into Oak Park are unlawfully armed doesn't bother Barret, but the prospect that a law abiding citizen might take personal responsibility for their safety is intolerable to him.

Larry Dantonio from Berwyn, Illinois  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 6:33 AM

I fear however that many of the people who have a business in Oak Park are not fully aware that they are required to display the sign if they wish their business to remain gun free. Doing nothing, in this particular case, means that guns will be allowed in their store. Since Oak Park sent out notices with their business licenses this year stating that they would provide the signs if you wanted them I am sure business owners know what the need to do if they want to not allow guns in their business, I for 1 will not spend any money at a store that posts signs like that. And will not have a sign like that posted at my store.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 29th, 2014 12:17 AM

I've seen the sign posted at local supermarket and it is rather startling to see it affixed to the entrance door next to the decals for credit cards accepted and hours of operation. Will stores and businesses that permit weapons on their premises be displaying any public notice or should we just assume that it is permitted? Any truth to the report that guns are not allowed to be carried in to the NRA's national headquarters in Virginia?

Dominick Ahrens  

Posted: January 28th, 2014 11:13 PM

Hey look - could this be the same john Barrett that, as a "parishoner" wants St. Edmund posted, and stated that carrying a gun would "imply that we (parishioners) have decided that violence is a solution that is supported by our faith beliefs" in direct opposition to Catholic Catechism? I don't know how much I'd trust someone who speaks as a representative of his faith but doesn't even know its own tenets.

BShawn from Chicago  

Posted: January 28th, 2014 11:10 PM

I have to agree, while posting such a sign will make me turn around, as I'm a law abiding citizen, one of these signs is basically a "welcome" sign to a criminal, who will not turn around because they're illegally carrying in the first place. Now you also have NOBODY in your store that could even possibly come to your aid either, since they'll have all turned around too. Posting such a sign IS your right, but may also leave you and or your employees at the mercy of a criminal one day.

Kevin Smith from South Holland, IL  

Posted: January 28th, 2014 11:05 PM

Have you ever been to a store in another state? Maybe in Indiana? Indiana has the most people per-capita who hold permits to carry concealed firearms. If you have ever been to Indiana you have probably encountered someone carrying a gun. Did anything bad happen then? If not, why would you think anything bad will happen now?

Paul Glock from Chicago  

Posted: January 28th, 2014 10:46 PM

Yes. The signs will stop the law abiding people. What about all the gang members and criminals that are already carrying one illegal? Ill be impressed if they will stop at the door and turn around I refuse to go in any places that won't allow me to defend myself and my family. I'm a law abiding person waiting for my licence. I'll take my money where I am not treated as a criminal.

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