Wednesday, November 22, 2006

UPDATE: George Allen wants you to bring your guns to the park

Looks like the bill got passed quickly over to the Senate floor to be looked at by the now lame duck Republican Congress. Hat tip to the Liberal Progressive for the update. Check it out.

From Ohioans for Concealed Carry:
Bill Introduced to Allow Carry in National Parks
Written by Mike Kinsey
Friday, 17 November 2006

Senator George Allen (R-Virginia) has introduced SB 4057, the National Park Second Amendment Restoration and Personal Protection Act of 2006. If adopted as law, this legislation would allow legal carry of firearms into National Parks so long as the state does not prohibit carry in all parks.
Well, I don't own a gun and I do not spend a lot of time in National Parks. I realize that Virginia (as opposed to my home state of New Jersey) is very proud of their right to carry law, and I do not mean to offend those that are pro-firearm. But I have to say, the author's premise for wanting this bill to be passed just doesn't sit well with me:
The arbitrary prohibition of your right to self-defense in a National Park needs to end. Your life is not worth less while visiting one of our country’s beautiful parks than it is anywhere else you may be. Personally, I believe that lonely wilderness trails may be one of the places that I would most want to have my self-defense firearm. Armed citizens regularly argue that we may not be able to wait for 911 to save us. Imagine the additional delay that will occur when you’re hiking in the middle of nowhere! Also, any location that is known to be frequented by tourists would probably be very attractive to criminals. Tourists are generally carrying a lot of money and are unfamiliar with their surroundings. I am certainly not a criminal mastermind. If I can see that this environment makes one more vulnerable to violent attack, I am certain those with less scruples have realized it as well.

It is up to those of us that care about the safety of ourselves and our families to get this legislation enacted. Please contact your U.S. Senators and urge them to support this bill. Tell them why it is important to you. Contact Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist and ask him to fast track SB 4057. Spread the word to other gun owners and concealed handgun licensees about this issue.
OK, a couple of things here; first of all, I just do not buy into the notion that muggers and rapists are going to hang out in parks waiting for prey. The author employs an interesting twist and spin, but I just don't see the logic behind his reasoning. Secondly, the whole line about "not being able to wait for 911" just reads to me like you shoot someone down who MAY OR MAY NOT BE threatening your life, and then you call 911 and plead self-defense. Interesting. This argument would never work in the inner-city of Richmond, so I find it border-line hilarious that the author thinks that a sportsman in a park should be given a special priviledge while a black man on the 1100 block of Main Street would be hauled off to jail quicker than you can say "But they were asking for it!" Additionally, and maybe it's just me, but isn't it a bit frightening to think that guns will be allowed in secluded places where some people may think it is very easy to hide a body? National Parks are open year-round, and in the winter, there may be only a handful of visitors a day. So feasibly, someone could go to the park with their legal firearm, throw on a silencer, shoot someone down and cover the body in leaves (or not) and get the heck outta dodge. Doesn't sound very sane or "common sense Jeffersonian" to me. And what about people that may have some sick animal killing fetish (like our POTUS did when he was young) who would bring their legal gun into a park and go on a chipmunk shooting spree? What about the frightened and antsy gun carrier who shoots an innocent runner because their imagination got the best of them? And LASTLY, and probably what jumped out at me the most, is the plea to call Frist and get this "rushed" through the now lame-duck Republican Congress. THIS is how the Republicans are spending their time and energy? To make sure people can shoot people and animals in a park, hiding behind their "everyone is out to get me" self-defense argument?

Well, at last I can say I am not surprised that this is how George Allen is choosing to spend his last few days of employment.


Blogger DougHed said...

I hope I can cuss here. This sort of thing drives me batshit insane. I used to go out shooting with my dad in the National Forest. Our National Forests are an order of magnitude larger than our National Parks. Our National Parks are holy sites, and should always remain so. You enter in reverence and honor, and you leave in penance and peace.

Not only should guns not be in National Parks (this is not about hunting- there is absolutely NO hunting allowed in National Parks) but we should introduce bills to ban cars, except to camp on the outskirts. We should ban cell phones, laptops, any electronics except the occasional professional radio for workers.

Gah, shudder, kabloom! When does this idiot leave office!!?!

8:16 PM  
Blogger Greg L said...

If all those dangerous scenarios are valid, how come nothing like that has happened in state parks and national forests where there is no federal prohibition on concealed carry?

I guess I have to remind you that a couple of years ago there were a number of murders and rapes along the appalacian trail, as well as several notable murders in other national parks.

Not only are there demonstrable, albeit somewhat rare dangers in national parks, but the fears you have regarding this are provably unfounded.

9:07 PM  
Anonymous Philip Van Cleave said...

There is plenty of crime in National Parks. There are murders, rapes and robberies which are documented in various news stories. If you don't believe your life is worth defending wherever you go, then it is YOUR life after all. For my life, I prefer to be able to defend it 24/7/365. Here is a link to information on the ban and to crimes in National Parks:

11:42 PM  
Blogger Terry said...

"I prefer to be able to defend it 24/7/365"

So people should be able to bring weapons into bars?


5:25 PM  
Blogger Phriendly Jaime said...

Hahahahaha, good point Terry. Only, you CAN in Virginia. Certain restaurants allow it, and whenever I see the sign on the door or a patron inside an establishment with an out in the open weapon, I refuse to pay and I leave. I have never ONCE been told that I have to pay if a warning sign is not outsdie the establishment that tells me the situation before I choose to eat there. It's almost like they KNOW they are offending sane customers.

C'mon...who the hell needs a gun to eat?

5:46 PM  
Blogger Terry said...

Hmm, for some reason I was thinking that it was against the law to carry weapons in establishments which serve alcohol. Guess I was wrong. Oh well, my point still stands.

6:07 PM  
Blogger Phriendly Jaime said...

Aaaaaaaaaah, but the city of Richmond has a weird, lame ordinance on the books; in order to serve booze, one MUST serve food...

6:35 PM  
Blogger Terry said...

I thought that was the entire state of Virginia....

9:05 PM  

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