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      Do you think having a gun makes you safer?

      Update: March 10th 11:06 a.m.

      The information on the increase in CCW permits has sparked conversation both here on the story, and on the NBC25 Facebook page. One of the popular topics discussed, was the importance of knowing how to properly handle a gun. On facebook, Hana Cheatom states that owning a gun is, "not necessarily safer, because a lot of people have one but have never learned how to properly use it. I think it can allow you to be able to better protect yourself, if you've taken the time to learn how to use a gun safely and appropriately."

      So, NBC25 wanted to provide information on the laws surrounding gun use in the state of Michigan. You can find out more information on how to properly handle a weapon and other critical information on the Michigan State Police Firearm website.

      There's a monumental movement in Michigan, concealed pistol licenses.

      Those applying are up 226% in just two years.

      NBC25 went to a local gun shop to find out why.

      Williams Gun Sight in Genesee County's Davison Township offers monthly concealed weapons classes.

      On average, 20 to 35 people attend per class.

      The number of people applying for and receiving concealed pistol licenses has sky-rocketed.

      Michigan Concealed License Applications







      Michigan Concealed Licenses Granted







      In the last two years, the amount of people applying for a concealed weapons permit is up 226%

      Meanwhile, from 2008 to 2009 those who received permits were up more than 100%. From 2009 to 2010, the number was up 24%.

      Gun dealer say one of the biggest reasons why is because people are taking more responsibility for their own safety.

      Kevin Wigton, who teaches concealed weapons classes at Williams Gun Sight in Davison Township says, "Because of economics and the downfall, we have more crime. We have less police officers to answer a call."

      Wigton says those who come to the concealed weapons classes are from various backgrounds.

      "They're older people. They're women. There's a lot of people that are just avid hunters that want to conceal their weapons while they're hunting and so they have to have that permit."

      Wigton also says some in the classes have been through a traumatic event and feel more comfortable with protection.

      Williams Gun Sight charges $150 for the class, which includes a year-long pass to the gun range.