August 2008

Friday, August 1st, 2008

 CCRKBA, using the gun rights Supreme Court decision against a federal enclave in District of Columbia v. Heller as the basis for its action, joined with the National Rifle Association in filing a civil rights lawsuit to confirm that the Second Amendment restricts state and local governments as well as the federal government from infringing on the right to keep and bear arms. CCRKBA and NRA filed the suit in federal court against the City of San Francisco and the San Francisco Public Housing Authority to invalidate the City’s ordinance and lease provision that bans the possession of firearms in public housing. Before the Second Amendment can be used to challenge unconstitutional regulations and laws at the state or local level, it must be “incorporated” through the Fourteenth Amendment to apply to state and local governments.

In Louisiana, Gov. Bobby Jindal signed into law a bill sponsored by July’s CCRKBA Gun Rights Defender of the Month that affords employees more freedom to take guns to work. With some exceptions, it recognizes an employee’s right to keep a legally owned firearm locked in a car in a parking lot at the workplace. State Sen. Joe McPherson said the legislation backs employees who are fired for unwittingly carrying their firearm in their personal vehicle because they went hunting before or after work. The measure does not apply to places where state or federal law prohibits gun possession, or to cars owned or leased by the employer and driven by the employee. It also does not apply to cars on parking lots where access to the property is restricted by a fence, security station, signs or other means – if the employer provides an unrestricted parking area nearby or provides onsite facilities for the temporary storage of unloaded guns.

In Michigan, western Wayne County authorities said a gun-toting Commercial Bank customer foiled a bank robbery. Joseph Webster, 53, was arraigned on bank robbery, armed robbery and habitual offender charges. Police told local media that Webster pretended to have a bomb one day in June and demanded a teller give him money. A co-worker alerted Nabil Fawzi, who reportedly has a concealed carry permit, and he held Webster at gunpoint until police arrived.

In Florida, a new state law provides that employees can bring their legally-carried guns to work if they keep them locked in the car. Walt Disney World, however, a major Orlando tourist attraction, maintains it is exempt from the new law because it stores fireworks on site. It told its 62,000 employees to keep their firearms at home. One employee, Edwin Sotomayer, a security guard, decided to test the Disney policy even though he could lose his job because the principle at stake means enough to him that he was willing to take the risk. When he went to work on the Fourth of July, Disney suspended him. Sotomayer said that while Disney is safe, Orlando is not, and he has the right to keep a gun in his car so he is protected during his 23-mile commute to and from the theme park. According to a local television station Internet opinion poll, 93 percent of the 8,156 respondents support Sotomayer and only seven percent support Disney.

The United Nations gun grabbers are still at it, promoting an international treaty on trade in small arms, including rifles, shotguns and handguns. They met again last month at UN Headquarters in New York City for several days in a gathering called a “Meeting of States.” The United States abstained on a vote to reach agreement on an international treaty on the subject. Americans’ Second Amendment rights are at stake in these meetings. The International Action Network on Small Arms (IANSA) is the guiding force behind the UN working group’s Programme of Action on Illicit Small Arms Trade. IANSA wants to impose domestic gun control regulations on all nations, including our own USA, and include broad scale bans on private firearms ownership. So far, the United States, under the Administration of President George W. Bush, has been resisting successfully these attempts.