These are the rules in NC, you don't have any choice but to follow the law in the state you are in.I'm in the process of relocating to NC. I have legal and current CCWs for the states of Florida and Virginia, both of which have full carry reciprocity with NC. I want to be able to OC as well.
However, unlike in VA and FL, neither of these are considered valid for the purpose of buying a handgun in NC, regardless of whether you're OCing, CCing or just home defense.
Only legal option to buy a handgun is to either:
a) participate in the Jim Crow era law forcing one to get the arbitrary approval ("may issue") from the sheriff of the county in which you reside in the form of a "purchase permit", or
b) get a statewide CCW permit, which takes 90 days and around $100, plus the cost of the mandatory 1-2 day "pistol familiarization" course (another $150, and if the classes in your area are full then you're not getting a permit that month, sorry).
For the CCW application, DD-214s---even for combat infantry, armorers and MPs---are not considered proof enough by the state of NC that you have the requisite experience with a handgun, and need to be taught such valuable pointers as which end the bullet comes out of, why it's better to buy a holster rather than stick the thing in your waistband, and why you should avoid brandishing your handgun to menace your common law wife, even if you really think it'll help punctuate your point about who bosses who.
There's a giant infantry base in Fayetteville full of people who have 10 times more respect and skill with a firearm than your average joe, yet they have to go sit in the plastic chairs for 2 days and pay a bunch of money to get the state of North Carolina's approval that they're not too ignorant to be trusted to carry a firearm around other people. Really, NC? Really?
Frankly, both of these options suck, but the purchase permit requirement sucks more. My research have shown a number of counties (Alamance, Orange and Durham, plus others) are functionally "May Issue" states in the middle of a Shall Issue state at this point. Some of these restrictions can only be viewed as a deliberate effort to restrict and minimize the number of handguns owned by residents of the county. For example: Orange and Alamance county both limit the number of purchase permits you can apply for (1 a month) and also force you to list 5 non-family references from the county who've known you for more than 4 years. Basically, if you haven't lived there for four years, you're banned from buying a handgun.
I was forced to sell all my handguns to move to my current state, and I deeply resented it. I'm not going to give my tax dollars to any NC county that feels a similar need to screw with my rights.
Can any NC pistol owners help me out with this decision?
Since I have no choice but to accept it, I want to pick a county where the purchase permit requirements are cursory and standardized: in a number of counties, it seems to be a $5, no fingerprint, 3 day process. While still prejudicial, this would at least allow me to quickly buy a new CCW piece and carry safely on my existing licenses (I verified FL at least is fine with this) while waiting the probably 3-4 month period it will take me to finish the state CCW process, which removes the need for the purchase permit at all. I'm not willing to be disarmed for 3-4 months in an unfamiliar locale. Which counties should I be looking at? Any suggestions?