I know Al. is at the discretion of the county sheriff which I think is a bad idea, you could possibly have a county that will not issue any permits to anyone I suppose.
This CAN be a good thing. Like the time I know of when a guy showed up asking for a permit wearing cammie pants, black leather jacket, and a "Kill 'Em All" t-shirt. He was turned down. Well, actually, told he needed to come back when the Sheriff had time to sit down and have a talk with him. But he never came back. I think I would have turned this individual down also. Other than "known persons of interest", he is the only person I know of turned down. I also know of situations where one member of the household may not qualify, but the spouse does. So they apply, just so the "questionable spouse" can have a gun handy. This is something that maybe an in-person interview may be picked up on, whereas it may be missed in an application going through the normal bureaucratic channels.
Even with our problems, it still a lot better than many of you have. I've heard that Madison (Huntsville) and Jefferson (Birmingham) counties are difficult to get permits in. However, the beauty of ELECTED (not "appointed") Sheriff's is that they tend to do what the local population asks or they don't have a job next election.
After reading the hoops that many of you have to jump through to exercise a right, $25 and 10 minutes is a very small price to pay.