JACKSON, Miss., Dec. 20 (UPI) -- Mississippi now allows any resident to carry a gun in a public place after taking an eight-hour course for a concealed-carry permit, USA Today reports.
The new law is a part of a nationwide trend towards more lax concealed carry laws. Starting this year, Wyoming residents do not need to carry a permit for a concealed weapon. The same is true in states like Alaska, Arizona and Vermont. In Indiana, private businesses must legally allow employees to store weapons in their cars on company property. Legislative records show efforts to pass similar laws in Colorado and Utah, but to no avail.
"When you look across the states, they are definitely moving in the direction of allowing concealed weapons in more locations," University of Chicago professor Jens Ludwig tells USA Today.
The new Mississippi law allows residents to carry concealed firearms in bars, courthouses and college campuses. Although he believes citizens should have the right to own firearms, University of Mississippi Police Chief Calvin Sellers does not believe that the new law is wise. "I just don't like the idea of people having firearms in a classroom," he says.