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Day Two Shelter in Place in IL: Be careful. Carry… even at home. Stay safe.

March 22, 2020

Welcome to day two of Illinois’ “Shelter in Place” order.  Here’s a quick run-down of things you need to know, and some things that might cheer you up in these times.  So let’s get to it!

First and foremost, when Governor Pritzker made his order telling “non-essential” workers and people in general to say home, he specifically included gun dealers as “essential.”

That’s not a typo.

Unlike some other states (New York, California, Pennsylvania) that have shuttered gun shops and gun manufacturers, Governor Pritzker specifically exempted gun shops from his closure order. 

Given the crush of business at gun and ammo retailers, it’s clear that Illinoisans are voting with their feet and wallets when it comes to beefing up their defense capabilities. 

And this is a fine time to practice home carry.  Even before truck drivers get sick and store shelves begin to stay closer to bare than filled.

And for other good reasons, too.  Nationally, soft-on-crime political leaders are acting to empty out prisons and county jails of some bad people.  That includes Cook County.  What are these jailbirds going to do when they get out?  Probably not behave themselves.

Meanwhile, I’ve had a lot of people reaching out to me telling me what they see in their local communities.  Not all of it is pretty.

In Cook County, Sheriff’s police are providing overwatch as supply trucks unload at Dollar General stores and other bigger retailers in working class neighborhoods.

Why?  Because “criminal justice involved” “entrepreneurs” and panicked people were helping “unload” those trucks of very highly sought-after items.

Downstate, Walmart in Champaign hired extra security to drive up and down the parking lot with yellow lights flashing to discourage robbers from robbing shoppers on their way out of the store with very valuable food and toilet paper.

Meanwhile, police are maintaining a hands-off attitude for all but the worst offenders as they aren’t wanting to interface with any more folks than they have to…  and because the jails are not wanting to intake low-level criminals to help keep coronavirus out of their facilities.

The Illinois State Police, for instance, have stepped back from issuing routine traffic citations.  If you’re driving 127mph in a 70mph, they’re going to chase you down.  If you zip past a marked unit in the median going 80 or 85?  Probably not so much.

And truckers?  ISP won’t interface with them “unless their truck is on fire.”  An ISP quote, not mine.

By the way, did you hear Harvey Weinstein tested positive for the Chinese flu?  Yeah, it’s a sad day.  It’d be a shame if someone gave him aspirin instead of the antimalarial drug that’s showing promise treating the Wuhan flu!

As for the Champaign City ordinance that granted Mayor “Little Debbie” Frank-Feinen (did you see the picture of her with Nancy Pelosi?) the power to suspend gun and ammo transfers and other Martial law-like powers?

Birds of a feather. Champaign’s Mayor “Little Debbie” Frank-Feinen and Nancy Pelosi.

Several law-enforcement people have contacted me.  One source, particularly well-placed, sent me this:

 

The Champaign ordinance mirrors the one passed near my hometown…  in part because most cities had never passed an “emergency declaration” ordinance as allowed by state law.  And, since most lawyers are lazy, they merely cut & pasted the model ordinance on the Illinois Municipal League website.
 
Lazy lawyers?  Especially lazy ones in a hurry?  NEVER!
 

 

When Canton passed their ordinance, a local media guy asked the Mayor (a retired police chief) if he intended to limit gun/ammo sales or transfers in his emergency declaration.  The mayor replied, “Hell no, I threw my AR-14 in my truck before I drove to the meeting tonight, we’ll never enact that clause as long as I’m mayor.
 
AR-14 in the truck?  I wonder if the reporter caught that reference.  He sounds like my kind of mayor!
 

 
This source also had high praise for the Illinois State Police Director Brendan Kelly.  Yes, we’ve been very critical of Kelly in his work shilling for the Governor’s agenda, but our guy says Kelly is a good guy and far better than some of our recent ISP Directors (anyone old enough to remember Terry Gainer?)
 

 

After Pritzger’s press conference announcing the shutdown, the ISP Director had a conference call for all LE and made it VERY clear that access to guns and ammo was considered an essential personal safety right for all citizens and stores selling the same were considered essential.  I know you have been pretty critical of Kelley, but I worked at ISP for more than 20 years and my job… put me in regular contact with the many ISP Directors over those years and this guy is a breath of fresh air compared to ALL of his predecessors. 
 
IF this is true, perhaps we owe Mr. Kelly an apology because we had a low opinion of him.  Especially after his shtick of excuses for FOID renewal delays was all BS after we found out that ISP didn’t spend half or more of the money it took in on staff and equipment to handle servicing the Land of Lincoln’s many firearm licensing schemes.  Yes, Brendan Kelly is Pritzker’s “yes” man, but there’s a lot more to the director’s duties than shilling for Jay Bob.
 
Our guy also had some insider info about the FOID section.
 

 

I can also tell you that the entire command structure at the firearms bureau (FOID) has been reassigned, including Jessica Trame the section supervisor, and she was previously COMPLETELY bulletproof since she is a [Bill] Cellini niece.
 
Cellini was a political kingmaker in Springfield (and Illinois) politics for a long, long time.  Of course, he’ll tell you he has no ties to organized crime, bribery or any other criminal activities if you ask him.
 
Jessica Trame’s exit is good news as I’ve personally experienced her arrogant condescension.  She was one of those state bureaucrats who doesn’t appreciate it when common people have the audacity to hold her feet to the fire.  We should know our place and all that.
 
Our aforementioned law enforcement source also predicts bad things for Chicagoland before this two-week “shelter in place” is over.  He’s also worried about some of Chicagoland’s more entrepreneurial bad guys making road trips outside of Cook and the collar counties to “forage.”
 
He’s not kidding.  Even before Tennessee went into “SIP” this weekend, bad guys waltzed through nice neighborhoods sporting AR-15s (not Biden’s AR-14s) while breaking into cars.
 
That thought makes me want to up my home carry from a Glock to something a little more…  substantial.
 
Oh, you think I’m kidding?
 
 
And the NRA has a wonderful new video out defending our right to keep and bear arms in these uncertain times.
 

What can you do?

Beside sheltering in place, check with your neighbors to see if you can help them.  The same goes for family.  If you can help, do so.  (Read this story…)
 
My lovely bride and I have helped several people, including a husband and wife both suffering from cancer.  He had just spent the last three weeks with his wife in the hospital before coming home to stripped grocery store shelves. 
 
I dropped off a care package for them and while there was no physical contact, there was plenty of emotional gratitude and appreciation shown. 
 
We’ve helped others, too.  As others have helped us in our times of need in the past.
 
Meanwhile, if you have surplus N95 (or N99) masks, gloves or other personal protective equipment, check with your local medical clinics.  Nationwide, many health facilities are reporting critical shortages of masks and other gear for healthcare providers. 
 
“From my cold, dead hands!” you say?
 
If these medical people get sick, they won’t be around to help treat you or your family members when (not if) they come down with the Chinese virus. 
 
If you don’t personally know any doctors or nurses on the front lines of emergency medicine, check with your local clinic.  Especially in smaller towns.
 
Obviously, smaller clinics will more appreciate unopened packages of masks and gear, but I suspect even larger hospitals will treat you well for donating some critical safety gear.
 
 

For those needing food!

Walmart, Aldi, Kroger, HyVee and other grocers are offering free curbside pickup or even delivery for a few bucks more.  Submit your order online through their website and pay for it with your credit or debit card.  Then go pick it up after store staff do your shopping (and navigate through the crowded store) while your exposure is simply to the groceries and the person loading your car. 
 
This dramatically reduces your exposure to other people.
 
TIP:  If you’re having time securing a time at Walmart (“no pickup times available”), you can login at 12:01 am, just after midnight, and you’ve have a wide-open selection of pickup times for the “next day.” 
 
Yes, you may not get everything you ordered, but select a morning slot one day, and then an early afternoon time slot a few days later and you’ll usually get most of what you want (unless you want hand sanitizer or toilet paper).
 
And lastly, a lighter note.
 
If mildly sexual language and a dirty word or two offends you (or you’re at work), skip this video.  If you’re up for a hearty laugh or three, turn up the volume and enjoy.
 
Again, for the TL;DR crew, below is NSFW.
 

 
 

 

7 Responses to Day Two Shelter in Place in IL: Be careful. Carry… even at home. Stay safe.

  1. KK on March 22, 2020 at 10:54 pm

    So the toilet paper I’ve been stockpiling for years will finally come in handy, so to speak.
    While others are busy browsing the latest crap on Fecebook and the like, some of us actually think ahead and prepare the best we can.
    I’m curious what the sewage plant workers are going to start seeing show up-towels, linens, washcloths?

  2. DM on March 23, 2020 at 8:37 am

    N95’s and TP aren’t the only things in short supply.

    Tried buying ammo lately?

    • jboch on March 23, 2020 at 9:12 am

      I wrote last summer how that time was the “Golden Age” for ammo, mag and gun availability at affordable prices.

      Yeah, that’s all gone now.

      John

      • DM on March 23, 2020 at 9:27 am

        I took your advice.

        Hope other readers of this webpage did the same.

  3. KK on March 23, 2020 at 9:14 am

    Didn’t bother. Stocked up on that years ago as well. Stockpile should last decades.
    Why do so many wait until they desperately need something before they think about getting it?

    • jboch on March 23, 2020 at 2:13 pm

      Normalcy bias.

  4. Mike on March 24, 2020 at 12:58 pm

    “That thought makes me want to up my home carry from a Glock to something a little more… substantial.”

    Oh John, let those other items out of the storage containers…they like to get out now and then, and even like to go for rides!