U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- To those who wish the population disarmed, gun laws do not need to make sense, be reasonable, efficient, or effective. Any reduction in the number of legal gun owners, guns, or use of guns is seen as positive.
It is why this bit of insanity at Washington State University (WSU) is unlikely to be addressed. Washington State University is primarily in the Southeast corner of Washington state, located at Pullman, Washington. It is an agricultural and rural area. Guns are popular. Even so, WSU has a very restrictive gun policy. From wsu.edu:
WAC 504-26-213 Firearms and dangerous weapons
No student may carry, possess, or use any firearm, explosive (including fireworks), dangerous chemical, or any dangerous weapon on university property or in university-approved housing. Airsoft guns and other items that shoot projectiles are not permitted in university-approved housing. Students wishing to maintain a firearm on campus for hunting or sporting activities must store the firearm with the Washington State University department of public safety
The Washington State University police maintained an area for students to store their firearms, where the students could check out and check back in their firearms, as desired, for gun related activities. It was popular enough the WSU police are reported to have designed a portion of their new building to be used for this purpose. The WSU police moved into their new headquarters in 2016.
Then Washington State passed the controversial I-639 referendum. The referendum calls for universal background checks. The WSU police read the referendum, and interpreted it to mean they could not return a student's firearm to them, unless a background check and a mental health check were done beforehand, every time the firearm was returned. From mynorthwest.com:
The way the law is written, WSU police say they’d have to conduct a background check every time a student checked out their gun, which would take several days. They’d also have to do a “mental health check” and send letters to mental health facilities to make sure the student is allowed to have a firearm.
That forced campus police to ax the program, due to the strain long wait times would impose on the system.
In effect, the combination of the University policy and the referendum mean the students have no way to legally possess firearms on campus. Critics of the WSU police policy say the police did not need to interpret the referendum this way.
In I-639, there are several exemptions to the mandatory background check transfer law. One of them is for law enforcement agencies, on page 20, section (4) (e). From sos.wa.gov:
(e) Any law enforcement or corrections agency and, to the extent the person is acting within the course and scope of his or her employment or official duties, any law enforcement or corrections officer, United States marshal, member of the armed forces of the United States or the national guard, or federal official;
It appears to be straightforward. An employee of the WSU police would be acting in the scope of their official duties when they would check guns in or out. Perhaps the WSU police are afraid of liability or lawsuit. I-639 is 30 pages long. There is a fair amount of micromanaging in it.
The people who are deliberately disarming others do not care they destroyed a multi-decadal tradition at WSU. They do not care they made the exercise of Second Amendment rights extremely difficult for students at WSU. Both of those things would be seen as positives by many people who wish Americans to be unarmed. After all, *they* are happy to go through life unarmed; why should anyone else (other than government agents) be allowed to be armed?
These sort of consequences are what the people who planned and executed the I-639 strike against the exercise of Second Amendment rights desire and hope for. They want firearms ownership and use to be so tightly regulated and controlled that legal use is logistically difficult and legally dangerous.
I witnessed this sort of thing in Australian states. As the gun culture in Australia attempts to reform some of the most onerous, irrational, and bizarre parts of the 1996 gun law, they are met by determined resistance in the media and by fanatical anti-gun lobbyists.
Those who want the people unarmed claim any reform would lead to blood in the streets. This sets the stage for the next failure. Then they push for more draconian provisions.
The leaders of those who wish for a disarmed society, do not see gun ownership as legitimate. They do not see armed self defense as legitimate. They do not see the Second Amendment as legitimate. They have shown the desire and the capability of lying, repeatedly, to achieve their political ends.
They wish to move society from the founding principle of law, where “Whatever is not forbidden, is allowed” to “Whatever is not allowed, is forbidden”, which is where much of Europe operates. It is what all the talk of “need” is about.
Government, deciding who “needs” what, is a Marxist concept. It is profoundly alien to the structure of the United States.
No government official should ever tell you what you need. Citizens should tell government officials what the government “needs”.
Because of technological changes, referendums, intended to give the people power over politicians, have become methods for billionaires to restructure society to their whims. Billionaires work with their allies in the media, restructuring society in the way they wish it to be. It is essential Progressivism in action.
I-639 is being challenged in court. It was struck down, once, before the voting. It may be struck down again.
About Dean Weingarten:
Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.