Madison County State's Attorney Tom Gibbons became an overnight folk hero to many people last week when he approved concealed carry in the county, effective immediately.
We appreciate his frustration with the state, which is taking its sweet time to comply with a federal court order allowing concealed carry. Still, we think Gibbons' action complicates things more than it helps.
The rules he proposed are more lax than the bill awaiting the signature of Gov. Pat Quinn. How is that going to work when the state law eventually does go into effect?
And if a State Police trooper stops a motorist on Illinois 159 who is carrying a gun, the state said he will be arrested. The officer is not going to accept the explanation, "Gibbons said it was OK."
Telling people they can carry a gun in Madison County is like telling a kid he can ride his bike in the cul-de-sac. It sounds great at first, but it's extremely limiting.
The thing that needs to happen immediately is for Gov. Pat Quinn to sign the concealed carry bill. The state just got a 30-day extension to comply with the federal court's order. But the longer this drags on, the more people are going to act on their own.