|Action||Promulgation of new regulation banning concealed firearms in executive branch agency offices|
|Comment Period||Ends 1/27/2016|
Both the Virginia and the United States Constitutions explicitly protect the right of the people to own and carry weapons. Among the legitimate (and protected) purposes for doing so is self-defense. The proposed regulation would constitute a serious infringement on the fundamental and constitutionally protected right of Virginia citizens to carry firearms and defend themselves, and the regulation would have the effect of making the community less safe.
Our recent state and national history is replete with examples of terrorists and the criminally insane resolutely ignoring gun laws (not to mention laws against murder). Gun-free zones accomplish nothing more than to deprive law-abiding people of the opportunity to defend themselves in emergencies.
Gun-free zones are not safe. All but two of the public massacres since 1950 were perpetrated in “gun-free zones.” This regulation would create more public spaces where citizens are denied the fundamental and constitutionally protected right of self-defense, and it would make them more vulnerable to attack when they are there.
If the regulation bans carry in rest stops, rest stops would become a prime target for violent crime of all sorts. Travelers in unknown and remote places, where many rest stops are, are vulnerable to a criminal element that thrives in such areas. The Commonwealth should not deny citizens their fundamental and constitutionally protected right of self-defense when they are traveling.
If carry is banned in state agency parking lots, then citizens will be forced to leave their firearms at home when traveling to the agency to conduct business. Since many people make multiple stops on such trips, they would have the option of making a separate and inconvenient trip to the agency or conducting all their legitimate public business and running errands while unarmed. Expanding a ban into parking lots would expand the dangerous “gun-free zone” wherein citizens could be targeted while going to and from their vehicles.
For the foregoing reasons, and for many others besides, the regulation is foolish and should be scrapped immediately.
Please keep the comment period open for an additional 30 days.