Proposed Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act ~ Much Needed Common Sense Legislation

“If you create a pretend gun-free zone, you’re liable for any harm it causes.”

Gun-Free-Zone Verboten
Proposed Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act ~ Much Needed Common Sense Legislation

USA – -(Ammoland.com)- Backgrounder

Originally introduced in Arizona as The Defenseless Victim Act of 2002, this bill recognizes that so-called “gun-free zones,” recklessly made and typically with no alternative security provided, border on the absurd, i.e., “NOTICE: You are protected by this sign.”

The original impetus for the bill came after “gun-free” massacres at the Luby's cafeteria in Texas, the Wakefield, Mass. slayings, and finally the hijacked airliners on Sept. 11, 2001, where pilots and passengers were defenseless, in the false name of security.

Congress responded to the Muslim jihad assault on our airlines with the “Arm The Pilots” law. The rest of the nation needs a similarly common-sense response.

The death toll at pretend “gun-free zones” continues to mount. The list is well known and needs no repeating — which mass murderers revel in –, and repetition is known to encourage copycat activity.

These posted locations are proud of their “no guns allowed” signs, laws or policies that keep out even FBI-certified citizens with proper permits — despite the disastrous results. The murderers, as in all such cases, disobey the signs or laws, which surprises no one, not even the media. The news media continues to suppress stories where armed individuals stop such mayhem. See, for example, The Bias Against Guns, by John Lott, for numerous egregious examples, or just Google the subject, which mainstream outlets refuse to do, or refuse to reveal.

Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act

The Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act says that, in public places, if you create one of these dangerous make-believe gun-free zones, you’re liable for any harm it causes. There is no cost or budget item associated with enacting this bill.

The idea that make-believe gun-free zones are safe — is fraudulent.

It is a mythology perpetrated by anti-rights activists who can often be recognized for their beliefs that:

  • 1 – self-defense should be illegal,
  • 2 – guns should be confiscated,
  • 3 – no one but “authorities” should have guns,
  • 4 – your right to arms can be denied by posting signs,
  • 5 – a government can take care of you better than you can.

The anti-self-defense lobby tells you to rely on the police for your safety, but they always omit these inconvenient facts:

  • 1 – Police have no legal duty to protect you;
  • 2 – Authorities routinely respond only after an event to pick up the pieces;
  • 3 – When seconds count, the police are just minutes away;
  • 4 – They like parading around in full battle dress for the cameras, for hours, after the action is over.

In the tragic homicides referred to above, and countless others you see on TV, the police don’t draw their guns; they draw chalk lines when you’re gone.*

A person who would deny your right or ability to self-defense is as violent and wrong as the person who assaults you.

Acting in self-defense against a criminal assault is legally guaranteed in all 50 states and federally, as it should be. It is as old as the first written laws of civilization (Code of Hammurabi, Five Books of Moses). Denying the fundamental right to self-preservation is unjust, immoral, dangerous and should not be tolerated.

The notion that make-believe gun-free zones are safe is a fraud perpetrated on the public:

  • a) Only innocent victims like you and me are affected. Armed criminals ignore no-guns signs and could care less — they’re laughing at you.
  • b) No alternate form of security is provided. You are knowingly and recklessly made vulnerable, while property management accepts no responsibility for your safety or their negligent behavior. The bill addresses only blatantly anti-gun-rights actions that would callously disarm you and ignore your plight.
  • c) Despite bias in news coverage and the fear-mongering left, privately held firearms have repeatedly been shown to deter and prevent crime in one scholarly study after another (detailed at great length in Armed, by Kleck and Kates). Since the nation’s inception, we have known and embraced the freedom-giving truth that guns protect the innocent, and that this is good.
  • d) Denial of your civil rights under color of law is a federal offense under 18 USC §241 and 18 USC § 242:

The Gist: Anyone who, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, custom or regulation, willfully deprives any person of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States, shall be fined, or imprisoned for up to one year, or both.

If bodily injury results, or if the violation includes the use or attempted or threatened the use of a dangerous weapon, explosive or fire, the prison term rises to up to ten years. If death results, or if such acts include kidnapping, attempted kidnapping, aggravated sexual assault, attempted aggravated sexual assault, or an attempt to kill, the violator may be fined, imprisoned for any term of years up to life, or put to death.

Initial reactions to the Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act have been highly supportive by knowledgeable people in the gun-rights movement. It has the potential and broad value to become a significant national issue. This could turn into one of the key gun topics of the decade (literally, the right to bear arms), especially if terrorist attacks and media-fueled copycat mass murders continue and defenseless innocent victims are slaughtered.

What good is the right to arms, if possession is banned everywhere?

The public-opinion value, forcing the opposition to support helplessness and victimization, are worth the effort. Now is an excellent time to bring this issue into the spotlight. All state legislatures should at least have similar bills introduced showing support for the principles involved.

The bill was first introduced as HB2456, sponsored by a dozen representatives, in the 45th session in Arizona (2002). The legislators say it gives them something to sink their teeth into. Give your legislators something this good — ask them to introduce the Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act in your state, for all the right reasons. Three states have had the bill on their floor, Arizona, Georgia and New Hampshire. Your state belongs on this list. Reach out to your elected representatives and encourage them to act. Bring the bill language to them, in person, on paper. Much more effective than just another email.

Some additional observations appear following the bill text below.

  • This is useful law, supportive of our fundamental rights,
  • A deterrent to criminals who would perpetrate attacks,
  • A winner in the publicity battle over gun rights,
  • It places responsibility squarely on those who cause harm by their direct actions.

It deserves to be enacted. Please give it your support. Ask your representatives to introduce and vote for The Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act.

ADDITIONAL IMPORTANT POINTS

  • If you have a problem with holding people accountable for death and mayhem they cause by enabling crime, then, of course, you’ll be against the Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act. That’s a position some anti-rights activists may take. Bring ‘em on. If nothing happens, i.e., they’re correct, and make-believe gun-free zones are pleasant, safe and crime free, then the bill has ZERO effect on anything — and costs nothing. Personally, I think that facet is particularly edifying. Sort of like, what harm could it do?
  • Despite what some people have claimed, private property rights are unaffected by the Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act. Read it yourself and see. Gun-free zones are allowed, entirely at a property owner’s free discretion just as they are now, and property rights remain 100% intact. You can keep guns, ban guns, allow only one type, open, discreet, it doesn’t matter, and the new law is silent on this. There is NO coercion (and also no government spending!) in this bill at all. That’s a big part of its beauty. In fact, only people who would ban your rights and ignore your plight are affected in any way, and then just if you’re attacked and harmed on their grounds. No blood no foul. It’s an indeed balanced and even-handed bill.
  • Also, note that genuinely private property like your home or ranch are exempt from the bill. ONLY public property or property open to the public is affected. There is a definite difference (well, some diehard libertarians might not agree, but you can’t please everyone) between truly private property (like your home) and a place that is open to the public and privately run, like a mall, or WalMart. Public areas have a well-established duty to provide a reasonably safe environment, and they have been getting a free ride on this issue, at your expense. They can still ban guns remember, and you can always go shop elsewhere. For a wonderful “No-Guns-No-Money” wallet card that you can leave with stores that won’t allow you to enter armed, visit the Arizona Citizens Defense League site.
  • All this does is make clear that whoever creates an obviously dangerous situation, by forcing the disarmament of innocent people entering — which they’re still fully entitled to do under the bill — there’s a consequence for that risky action. As there should be for creating such a self-evidently unsafe situation. And it only matters if the danger manifests, and some psychopath turns some hair parlor into a victim zone. If there’s no assault, then there’s no problem. Gun-o-phobes can sleep tight thinking the rest of us are just a bunch of paranoids. The bill merely addresses criminally misguided notions of safety.
  • You may find that your legislators object on the grounds that are hard to justify. I’ve had some tell me the bill would be fine if it only limited businesses, and left the government’s make-believe gun-free zones, like parks and buses, intact (talk about hubris!). Other legislators, including an attorney whose clients are in business, say businesses should be excluded but the government must be controlled! Just emphasize that make-believe gun-free zones are dangerous — who sets them up is not the issue.
  • Try thinking of this as the Luby’s Massacre Act. Maybe that will help emphasize the blatant and profound fraud of proposing make-believe gun-free zones as safety nets. The heartless, insensitive, thoughtless perpetrators of defenseless victim zones should be ashamed of themselves. At the very least they must be held accountable.
  • Try thinking of this as the Come-And-Go-As-You-Please Act. Instead of disarming in your car, using gun lockers, or avoiding some places altogether, you just travel about, armed or not as you prefer, and that’s all. It’s so much better when public places just let people come and go as they please, without signs and bans, to quietly go about their business. This is how most public places act, and it is responsible or even patriotic. Think about it — on a day-to-day basis, places without these deceptive gun-bans operate just fine. Going into 2018, Arizona has more than 325,000 CCW-permit holders, and many other openly armed citizens, routinely, legally and peacefully coming and going.
  • Think about what the opposition will have to sound like to say they don’t want any liability for murdered victims they had disarmed. They have to stand up for defenselessness. It’s a good time for the Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act.

* This phrase from a Cartridge Family Band song is used with permission.

HISTORY:

A version of the bill was first introduced in Arizona (HB2456 in 2002) by Rep. Randy Graf (R-6th), with considerable support (12 sponsors!).

Alan Korwin
Alan Korwin

In 2003, Rep. Graf re-introduced it in Arizona (HB 2320). The state of Georgia joined the effort to enact this important new legislation with HB31, introduced by Rep. Bobby Franklin (R-17th). At least two other states actively considered the bill. In 2008 the bill was introduced again in Arizona as SB1159. Prosecutors opposed the bill several years ago on the grounds that: without those excited utterances we won't be able to convict half the people we do. This is a partial list.

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  • 28 thoughts on “Proposed Gun-Free-Zone Liability Act ~ Much Needed Common Sense Legislation

    1. It is eminently clear the gun hating left either can’t read or their attention span is so short actually finishing the article is beyond their scope. The law and article both state, “Gun-free zones are allowed, entirely at a property owner’s free discretion just as they are now, and property rights remain 100% intact. You can keep guns, ban guns, allow only one type, open, discreet, it doesn’t matter,”
      To my view this law was more tongue in cheek much like the 1982 Kennesaw Ga mandatory gun ownership law and to exhibit the sheer stupidity of holding firearms manufacturers responsible for crimes committed with their products. I for one carry every day and in 30 civilian years have had to clear leather only once to stop a liquor store robbery. I didn’t even have to fire, I simply pressed the muzzle of my 1911 to the back of his head and told him I’d execute him like the cowardly punk he was. Gun free zones are target rich environments for criminals who will never abide by rules much less laws. Just check the murder statistics for Chicago this year alone.

    2. People need to realize how inanely stupid and dangerous “Gun Free Zones” really
      are. This legislation, pass or no, raises that awareness.

    3. Tennessee currently has a similar law that works well. It preserves property owner rights by allowing them to legally enforce rules on their property. If you carry on a property with signage.prohibiting it, there is no crime inless you refuse to leave after being asked to do so by the property owner or their representative – and if you refuse to leave it is only a minor misdemeanor. On the other hand, the property owner is not only civilly liable for your safety (if you have your HCP) while on their posted property, but they also assume liability for travel to and from their property from and to the place you had to leave your weapon for it to be secure while you accessed their property. So, companies who forbid firearms are liable for their employees who use public transportation from where they had to leave their gun (at home or in the mass transit parking lot). Seems to work well at protecting everyone’s rights. My opinion is that if no crime is committed by carrying on a property creating a personal preference gun free zone, then there should be no criminal charges against the property owner if an un protected person is hurt. On the other hand, if being caught carrying is a crime, then turnabout is fair play.

    4. All these new e-mail post notifications are nice; but, how about you just post what I have written and do it in a timely manner. Otherwise it makes conversation impossible. I am about to give up posting here. But maybe that is the end goal.

      1. It is the reason I stopped posting. This is the first time I’ve used this site (if this is even posted) The ridicule and language posted is intolerable, but reasonable posts are eliminated.

    5. The penalties in this law are absurd enough to stall it in Amy committee, Federal or State. I agree wholeheartedly with what it is trying to accomplish but it goes about it in the wrong way. Jail time for a private property owner exercising their rights to control their property is an overreach.

      Remove force of law from gun free zones on private property. This way a law abiding citizen can choose to patron the facility or not without breaking any laws. Here in WA state there is no force of law behind a gun free sign, the only thing that can be done is they ask you to leave. The only areas that are enforceable legally have metal detectors and armed response at hand (courthouses, restricted areas of police stations/mental health facilities/hospitals/airports).

      Unfortunately this seems to soon be changing as the Dem controlled state gov has a new bill to remove the state preemption protection that no lower government than the state can pass firearm laws more stringent than the state.

      1. Removing force of law isn’t sufficient. Many states have rules under CCW that can result in the rescinding of your permit if you enter a business that has posted a proper “no guns allowed” sign in a visible place. There is no liability for arrest, but you lose your CCW permit if you violate the rule.

        1. Hence removing force of law from them solves this problem. If the gun free zone has no backing in law then the CCW holder can choose to enter, or not, the place of business. Holding the property owner criminally responsible with jail time punishment is an abuse of private property laws and would never pass public scrutiny.

          If a state or local municipality is not allowed to levy punishment, criminal/monetary/revocation of CCW/etc, then the armed citizen has nothing to fear but a trespassing charge if they refuse to leave the premises as would any non-armed citizen.

      1. This bill does nothing but infringe on ALL of our rights. [The Gist: Anyone who, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, custom or regulation, willfully deprives any person of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States, shall be fined, or imprisoned for up to one year, or both.]

        This too general and law violates the rights of business owners and individuals by claiming that a US law supersedes their right to decide what they require on their property. The Constitution does NOT secure or protect our rights, individuals do! The Constitution simply prevents GOVERNMENT (whether federal, state, or city) from infringing on our rights. If I as a land owner do not permit you to pray, carry a gun, or whatever on my property, it is up to each individual to decide whether they want to visit me or patronize my business. This law should be SPECIFIC about the right to self-defense and where a business refuses to allow a “law abiding” citizen to exercise their right to self preservation., meaning the lack of that right could lead to death!

        1. The first ten amendments to the Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights, does secure and protect our Civil Rights. James Mason insisted on our Civil Rights, that were thoroughly, understood at that time, be written down so that those Civil Rights would be enshrined and remembered, That way future generations would not say that those Civil Rights do not exist or that those Civil Rights had been remembered incorrectly. Many at the convention, thought that he going overboard. But just look at where we are now.

          1. As you said “look where we are now”. The Constitution doesn’t secure or protect anything if the people do not stand up and fight to keep those rights. That is why we have constant violations of our rights by government through unconstitutional laws because previous generations weren’t paying attention or just didn’t care; and even the SCOTUS has violated those rights. At some point the constitutionalists will be outnumbered and the Constitution will crumble – OR, as our forefathers did, the people will stand up and fight.

            1. @Rattler, You are quite correct, in observing that it takes people to act. The pen on paper document is only a record. We are clearly not our founding fathers’ descendants, or we would have gone to Washington District of Corruption with all the rope that we could find long ago.

    6. For twenty two and a half years my wife knew she was to sue everyone responsible for anything that might happen to me going to and from work that could have been mitigated by my having a firearm with me during those times. They prevented me from having one in my car in my employer’s parking lot.
      Yesterday I had to deliver a parcel to a Oklahoma State Agency building. No firearms, knives or other weapons allowed inside. I had already left the gun in the car and asked the guard if I was going to have to put my knife in the car. You see, there was a metal detector one had to pass through at that entrance. He asked me if my parcel was a certain type and I said yes and he said I had to take it to the back entrance. So I went around there and was admitted by him without any searches or even questions about weapons. Though I didn’t, I could have carried a big loadout in under my parka to say nothing about having whatever in the 18 inch cubed parcel that also wasn’t scanned. It is all a big scam to make people “feel safe”; that is all it is and don’t ever forget it.

      1. 100% correct Roy. Results are unimportant to the left. As long as the intention results in feeling good their results are justified. Whenever one of their programs goes awry their answer is “well we tried.” President Trump is results oriented as most of us are and it scares the crap out of them. Especially when he accomplishes something they have claimed for decades was impossible. Keep carrying, stay safe!

    7. ‘Parading around in full battle dress for the cameras’? How old are you Alan; twelve? Or is that your IQ score?

      1. Clark, as if you haven’t seen pictures and video of officers dressed as para-military with their body armor, tactical holsters and carrying ARs, etc.? I believe that is what he was referring to, not a patrol officer wearing a wide-brimmed hat and a sidearm on his hip.

      2. Not to worry super dude. You can still use your ‘gun free telephone booth’ to change into your super dude outfit. Unless someone can’t read the ‘no guns allowed’ sign, you’re screwed.

      3. Guess you’ve never seen the government parade at and after some signficant event. I knew exactly what Alan was describing, as I’ve seen it many times. In my state, after any signficant highway crash, the state coppers parade about, having brought every imaginable piece of equipment to the scene, mulitple agencies represented, and for many hours busy themselves about photpgraphing, marking, measuring, searching for every imaginable and quite a few imaginary items, wasting thousands of MY tax dollars every time. For what? As I drive by the scene and observe the four cars tht had plowed into each other, shorting the train of them into the length of three, it is blatantly obvious.. SOMEONE< and likely the three behind the first, were FOLLOWING TOO CLOSELY. Duhhh….

        so yes, Alan's little vignette is not only valid, it is quite normal ctivity by those who slop at the public trough.

        And YOU are the one acting like the twelve year old, though that is a serious insult to the few dozen twelve year olds I personally know.

    8. “If you create a pretend gun-free zone, you’re liable for any harm it causes.”

      I think that this is a perfectly reasonable statement. A similar one would be that firearm manufacturer’s are legally responsible for every death caused by their products. Genius!

      Logical arguments, like guns, should only be wielded by those mature and intelligent enough to handle them responsibly.

      1. Well let’s take your flawed logic a little further shall we. GM, FORD Motors, Chrysler, etc etc. Should also be held responsible for the misuse of their products as well. And as far as the only certain people should be allowed to have a firearm, who would make tha t determination? Let me guess something along the line as Los Angeles California! Where out of a population of almost 4 million only 150 concealed carry permits have been handed out! Sorry I don’t think that the framers of our constitution had in mind when they added the second amendment.

        1. I am supposing that Colin was pointing out the absurdity of punishing a property owner along the lines of gun manufacturers, as you pointed to car !manufacturers. This proposal has merit in intent but fails in proposed execution.

          Property owners have the right to restrict actions on their property and this includes posting a gun free zone. However, our right to self defense supersedes this in that a CCW would not be detected and if it were then the property owner has the right to ask one to leave. THIS is as far as it should go. Imposing punishment upon a lawful property owner is akin to punishing lawfully armed citizens for criminals using guns. Both are absurd yet only one is championed by gun control advocates. Imagine the uproar if a bill based on this language landed in the House or Senate. The left would be screaming property rights and the media would tarand feather the supporters of such languaged bill.

        2. Meanwhile, a hundred fifty miles up the road, in Tulare County, population a shy 100,000 souls, there are FOUR THOUSAND Mother May I Cards currenlty issued to the residents of that county. And that’s of about five years ago, it is more now. I don’t have the numbers handy, but someone else can do the digging into the crime stats in those two counties. Yes, Tulare COunty have crime… petty pproperty crimes. Their crimes against persons and violent crime rates are vanishingly small. Not so in Los Angeles County.

          Which county would YOU rather have as your home, ignoring the sad fact both are in California?

      2. Colin, no, that is not a logical progression of thought. There’s a huge difference between holding a manufacturer liable for what you do with their product and you telling me I can’t be armed, but don’t do anything to protect me and mine (wife and daughter).

        As James stated, who makes the decision about who is “mature and intelligent enough” and even then the GFZs still apply to them, unless they are LEOs. Yet, your types also believe LEOs aren’t “mature and intelligent enough” to carry because of the news reports about “bad shoots”.

        Unfortunately, meanwhile, the criminals are still armed and dangerous, and the GFZs have yet to protect anyone. Are those the “mature and intelligent enough” that you are referring to, since they carry regardless of any laws?

      3. The biggest flaw in your logic is, a gun manufacturers create a product that is sold to a distributor, that is then sold to the consumer. That consumer is the one responsible for how that product is used…not the manufacturer nor the distributor.
        On the other hand, a business that denies a person their right to self-preservation through posting these gun free zones, becomes liable for any injury that may occur to that person by allowing someone with intent for bodily harm, to freely conduct their illegal activities unimpeded.
        Your logic follows the path of taking away individual culpability. If I owned a store & there was a spill & I failed to mop it up but put up a “wet floor” sign…but you slipped & fell & broke your arm or leg, would you sue me or the mop manufacturer? Signs protect ZILCH!

        1. Wayne is correct. JPLewis is not comparing apples-to-apples.

          The correct comparison would be to a situation in which Ford, GM, etc insisted that their vehicles had to be operated without any safety equipment (lights, bumpers, seatbelts, etc). Manufacturers would indeed bear the legal responsibility for accidents resulting from the lack thereof… and those manufacturers would (and rightly should) indeed be sued.

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