Self Defense in City Parks, Washington State Validates Right to Carry and Gun Free Zones Continue to Be Violence Magnets

A female Superior Court judge in King County, Washington has ruled in favor of individuals who sought to end a ban on carrying firearms in city parks.

Judge Catherine Shaffer did not mince words in her order, part of which was handwritten and issued from the bench following an afternoon hearing in her Seattle courtroom.

“The court finds that the plaintiffs have a clear legal or equitable right to carry firearms under the federal and state constitutions,” she ruled.

The judge also noted that the “court finds that there is no genuine issue of material fact on which reasonable minds could differ.”

As some people are aware, Indianapolis Councilor Ed Coleman (Libertarian – At Large) has introduced legislation which would eliminate the unconstitutional city ban on individuals, who have gotten permission from the government by way of a permit to exercise their rights (sarcasm intended), carrying their personal firearms onto city park property. In other words, he has introduced a proposal to restore an individuals right to defend themselves in a way that would align city code with both state and federal law where such restrictions either don’t exist or are expiring this month.Now before the anti-gun folks have a fit, let’s consider the following.You walk up and down city streets and drive all over public roads every day with countless other people who are licensed to carry their firearms and have them on their person or in their vehicles either openly or concealed. The streets are not running red with law abiding citizens shooting each other are they? Do you feel unsafe walking around Monument Circle at lunch time because some of those folks have guns on them? Of course not. Interestingly enough, in some states (like New Hampshire) one can legally “open carry” into the State House (although bureaucrats are trying to play games with it now [see this link and associated video] )!Where should you feel unsafe? So-called “gun free” zones maybe?This past week we saw a faculty member at the University of Alabama kill three people and wound others when she was denied tenure. We also saw this month where an elementary school teacher shot other faculty members when he was told he would not have a job next year. We all remember what happened at Columbine or at Virginia Tech. All “gun free zones”. Yet, that didn’t stop crazy people with criminal intent from taking a gun into those areas and attacking people who were legally (but unconstitutionally perhaps?) denied the choice of defending themselves. It was great to see the Fraternal Order of Police speak publicly in favor of Mr. Coleman’s proposal. Unfortunately, the proposal caught Mayor Greg Ballard (R) off guard and he probably spoke too quickly when suggesting he would veto the proposal if it landed on his desk. There is never a wrong time to restore rights or liberty to the people. Most conservatives and libertarians would expect Republican officials to fully support this kind of thing if they truly believe in protecting people’s natural rights. One can only hope that the Mayor doesn’t feel backed into a corner as after careful consideration there would be no reason not to support this except to play silly political games.There was a rumor that councilor Mike Speedy, who is running for State House this year, has been interested in this kind of proposal in the past but never thought it would get enough support. Now that with the Heller and the Seattle decisions showing courts will support individual rights, there should be no reason other councilors shouldn’t jump on as co-sponsors. But, again, political games could trump actually doing the right thing. We’ll see.The important thing to remember is that “gun bans” are “massacre enabling” restrictions and do not protect anyone. You can’t protect the sheep from the wolf by making all of the sheep weaker.

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