Sangamon County Rifle Association
Right Reason on Second Amendment Rights
The squeaky wheel: The 69-day FOID
card for a 13-year old
SCRA Meeting 5/1/06
June 2006 GunNews
I usually don't tout Hollywood movies very much, they have a huge leftist agenda and a lot of it is deliberately objectionable to the people in the Western states, the Midwest and the South. They appeal to people on both coasts. However, I would encourage you to go see United 93. I saw it over the weekend and its huge. I don't believe most people realize that these were just plain everyday Joes who got on this plane, going about their every day life when all of a sudden the Islamic militancy bit them but good.
In fact I wrote a column called "One guy with a Glock" about the armed pilot situation and what would have happened if one of those pilots had been in possession of a Glock pistol. All of the people on United 93 and everything they went through and of course all of their ultimate deaths could have been avoided with one armed pilot. I won't give away the movie although you already know the ending, its tragic. These guys did the best they could with no tools to defend themselves. The audience left stunned. Hollywood has hurt us a lot with a lot of their depictions of gunowners but it can help us if they raise the awareness of what we are up against with these militants over in the middle east. I don't think that it is over, unfortunately, but United 93 is a movie worth going to.
Korean War Veteran's Museum
Then if you saw the newspaper's front page story about the National Korean's Veterans Museum coming to Springfield, you'll notice that word for word it paralleled our column from over a month and a half ago. So I guess their writer, I don't know if he reads us, but he sure writes like us. The writer didn't give us any credit, but I suppose they recognize talent when they see it.
The squeaky wheel:
The 69-day FOID card for a 13-year old
My 13-year old son had to renew his FOID card in February. We filled out the application, sent in his photo and sent in his five bucks and waited the legislatively mandated 30-days for the FOID card. After 48 days I called the state police. I was a concerned dad and wanted to keep it in first gear. The lady answered and I said, "What's going on with my son's FOID card?" She said, "Well, you know Tom, we got tornadoed." to which I said, "I totally understand." They had recently moved out of their old office and it got buried. I understood.
At 58 days, I called again. She had said "I promise you we'll put it on the top of the pile and it will be there in 10 days. When that bright little face looks in the mail every day and all he wants to see is his FOID card that he should have gotten in thirty days. Then he started a daily count. "Dad, its been 58 days, Dad its been 59 days."
Ok, now I'm in second gear. So I called the state police firearms ID section and said, "OK, now I want to talk to the big guy." So the Deputy Director, I can't remember his last name, got on the phone, "Whadda ya want?" I said, "I want my kid's FOID card now." He said, "I'll check on it." So I gave him all the details, my sons name, his age, my name, my age and how many lawsuits I was going to file. It got ugly. We didn't part as friends. I think "Do your job." was my last line. To let you know how the conversation degraded, I told him "I'm getting sick and tired of looking at my son's disappointed face after he looks in the mail and his FOID card isn't in there."
Sure enough, an hour later he called me back. "Mr. Shafer." I said, "yes that's me, 68 days." He said, "First of all I would like to thank you for calling and spotlighting a problem we didn't know we had." My son is a juvenile and apparently their new form requires the background be checked and the drivers license number be included in that check. My son is 13 years old and has never had a drivers license. So their new computer program, which by the way, the new card also has a hologram and is sent out of state to be manufactured which also increases the waiting time, that was the first excuse the woman gave me after the tornado excuse. She said the cards go out of state for a new card with a hologram so they can't be counterfeited even though you can't use them anywhere else. None of the other state agencies accept your FOID card as any kind of ID.
But I left that out because that would have gotten me to third gear. So he says, "I want to tell you want happened Mr. Shafer."
I said, "Lay it on me."
He said "Your son never had a drivers license".
I said "That's right he's thirteen, hasn't had one yet."
"Our computer program had a flaw in it and when it came time to check these juveniles applications and it said no drivers license number, it kicked them out into a big pile. I went over to that big pile and there were 110 other little kids waiting for their FOID cards." Some had been waiting more than 68 days but their dads didn't happen to call and say "Where's my kid's FOID card?" So he went through that whole pile of little kids applications waiting for their FOID cards and he found my son's application and he said "I'm going to drive it out to you today."
I started looking around and said "Who is this guy talking to?" I said "I can't thank you enough."
He said, "You've spotlighted a problem in our computer program and we are now going to get with our computer guys and they're going to fix it so that when a juvenile application is shown with no driver's license, the computer program is going to check the age and if it is a juvenile, they're not going to kick it out into a pile where they have to do it by hand and you have to wait forever. Its going to keep going through the process. So a hundred or more little kids and all the little kids who apply afterwards, the juvenile applications for FOID cards, will not be kicked out. They will be processed."
So at the end of the conversation he said "I want to thank you Mr. Shafer for calling us." [He left out and screaming at me like an idiot which is kind of what I did.] But it did solve the problem. It got a major guy who is in charge of the FOID card system and oversees the whole division at a huge salary, off his behind and looking at what the problem was, and doggone right, he found the the problem and he fixed it.
So my son has his FOID card. Sixty-nine days! Delivered to my home personally by a deputy director of the Illinois State Police.
All I ever wanted was my kids FOID card. I didn't know it was going to turn into a real mini-drama. So that's a little story that I wanted to share with you. I have some mini-dramas every now and then. The most fun five dollars I've ever spent in my life.
State slow on the FOID draw; Decatur man
has to clear unnecessary hurdles to get permit
Illinois Firearm / Foid Information
According to the ISP website, most applications are processed within 30 days from the date your payment is processed at your financial institution. If you have not received a card or letter by the end of the 30 day processing period, you may contact a customer service representative at 217-782-7980, Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm.
Tom Shafer's Commentaries
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