Thursday, December 20, 2007

Should Proprietors of "Gun-Free Zones" Where Shootings Occur Be Shielded From Liability?

This columnist laments the fact that the vast majority of media reports of incidents like these rarely ask why these shootings most often occur in "gun free zones", but he also advocates that those who block peoples rights to self-defense, and therefore their right to life deserve to pay a financial penalty.

From an op-ed column in the Las Vegas Review by Vin Suprynowicz:

Nebraska issues permits "allowing" qualified individuals to carry concealed handguns. (The Second and 14th amendments reaffirm that carrying a weapon is a right, not a privilege -- states have no more legitimate power to require a "permit" for weapons carrying than they have to require a "permit" to attend church or publish a newspaper.)

Leaving aside this "permitting" scheme, Nebraska law allows property owners, such as the Westroads Mall, to post signs banning permit holders from legally carrying guns on their property.


The question is not whether private property owners have a right to bar firearms on their property -- they do.


Rather, the first question here is whether our government agencies are making it fully clear to the managers of buildings otherwise open to the public -- such as Clark County's courthouses and public libraries -- that they will not be shielded from the financial repercussions should employees or customers die under circumstances where they could otherwise have defended themselves and others with their own firearms.


If you frequent public buildings or work for an employer who bars you from carrying your otherwise legal self-defense weapon, consider advising your loved ones in writing that -- in the event you should die under circumstances where you could have saved yourself and others with your handgun -- you want the proprietor sued personally.

Guns save lives. Since banning guns costs lives, shouldn't the individuals who ban self-defense -- not the victimized taxpayers -- pay the price?

It's an interesting column. Read the whole thing.

By the way, I've put up a poll over on the sidebar. If you have an opinion regarding proprietor liability, be sure to vote.