Yesterday’s historic Seattle Seahawks victory parade was attended by an estimated 700,000 people – a number greater than the entire population of the city – so with roughly 11 percent of the state’s 3.88 million registered voters licensed to carry, it’s a safe bet that crowd included a few thousand legally-armed citizens.
According to Seattle Police, there were no arrests. Det. Jeff Kappel told this column that it was an amazing event, a “family event” that found everyone simply having a good time in frigid conditions. The team earned it and the fans loved it.
The most recent population data shows just over 6.97 million people living in the Evergreen State. As this column revealed Monday, there are more than 450,000 active concealed pistol licenses in circulation. The odds are good that more than a few of the fans lining Fourth Avenue along the 2 ½-mile stretch from the Space Needle to CenturyLink Field were armed, and nobody was any the wiser.
The aftermath of such an event provides an opportunity to differentiate between law-abiding armed citizens people who misuse firearms. They are not one and the same, nor should the good guys be treated like bad guys, say gun rights advocates.
According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel and Christian Science Monitor earlier this week, it is estimated that there are between 8 million and 11 million legally-licensed citizens in the United States today, and that number is growing. But with all of those armed citizens on the landscape, there has not been a national bloodbath. Indeed, the number of firearms homicides is declining and has been since 2008, according to the FBI Uniform Crime Report.
There are, it appears, a lot of good people with guns. Some of them were in Seattle yesterday cheering for the champs.