(OH) CCW Debate Evolving Into Battle Over Rights of Property Owners


PDA






Drizzt
May 26, 2003, 03:38 PM
Columbus Dispatch (Ohio)

May 26, 2003 Monday, Home Final Edition

SECTION: EDITORIAL & COMMENT; Pg. 09A

LENGTH: 788 words

HEADLINE: CONCEALED-CARRY DEBATE EVOLVING INTO BATTLE OVER RIGHTS OF PROPERTY OWNERS

BYLINE: Lee Leonard, THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH

BODY:
The debate over whether to allow concealed handguns in Ohio has always been about constitutional rights and individual liberty, but recently it has taken a turn toward property rights.

Some conservatives may be torn between supporting the right to carry concealed weapons and the right of a private-property owner to ban them.

That doesn't mean that a gun-rights advocate would drop his or her support of concealed carry just because a small portion of the proposed law may violate property rights. But it does set up an interesting conflict.

The House-passed bill is sitting in a Senate committee and is expected to emerge in several weeks.

One of the provisions would allow private-property owners to ban concealed weapons by posting a conspicuous notice at the entrance or entrances. The provision is mainly for stores and other businesses; residential-property owners may ask visitors to disarm, and if they don't, cite them for trespassing.

However, in what has become known as the parking-lot exemption, permit-holders could bring their weapons onto the business property as long as they leave the guns in a locked compartment of the vehicle. This provision is for employees who feel they need to protect themselves while traveling to and from work.

Gahanna Police Chief Dennis Murphy, who favors concealed carry, said last week that requiring people to store their weapons would draw more attention than if they just carried the weapons under cover.

Murphy said thieves would be drawn to cars if they saw the owners transferring their weapons to a locked location in the cars, such as the trunks.

Business groups are lobbying for elimination of the exemption, claiming it violates the right of a business owner to control the behavior of employees on the site of the business.

There are plenty of well-publicized examples of employees "going postal" and bringing weapons to the place of business to do harm. The business groups don't want to add to these instances.

They reason that employers should have the right to regulate what comes onto the business property, and that it should be the subject of employer-employee contract, not state law.

Once you get into handgun policies in places of business, the concealed-carry issue becomes more complex than ever.

For example, will insurance companies start charging higher premiums to cover businesses that allow concealed weapons?

Will employers' handgun policies generate more lawsuits, putting concealed carry into the category of medical malpractice, where insurance costs threaten to drive folks out of business?

Although House Bill 12 bars lawsuits against business owners for deaths or injuries resulting from a failure to ban handguns, there could still be legal challenges to a store owner's policy, whether it allows or bans weapons.

Proponents of the bill would argue that this has not happened in other states with concealed-carry laws. In fact, there may be some individuals in Ohio stores with concealed weapons right now. We don't know because the weapons aren't visible, no one challenges the carrier and, fortunately, nothing happens very often.

At the most recent hearing, Eleanor W. Helper of Columbus provided compelling testimony about how her daughter narrowly escaped with her life in early May by retreating to her office on the campus of Case Western Reserve University and slamming the door as a gunman fired through it.

Although House Bill 12 would prohibit guns on college campuses, this gunman probably wouldn't have heeded that ban. But gun-rights advocates argue that the disgruntled former university student, who killed one person, might have been stopped by a concealed-weapons carrier, perhaps even Helper's daughter.

Curt Winzenreid, an Ohio University sophomore from Martins Ferry, told the panel he'd like to see the proposed campus ban on concealed guns dropped. He said the ban is an advertisement for rapes, muggings and assaults, because the perpetrators don't worry about facing firearms.

The argument could still be made for a weapons prohibition on the Ohio State University campus, because many of the rapes, muggings and assaults take place in the off-campus areas.

Those who want the unrestricted right to carry prefer no bill at all to the restrictive House Bill 12. Sen. Teresa Fedor, D-Toledo, asked those testifying how the bill could be fixed, but got little help. "We as public officials are responsible for public safety," she said. "I'm trying to put you into our shoes."

The Second Amendment advocates say individuals are responsible for their own safety and should be allowed to carry concealed weapons.

Lee Leonard covers the Statehouse for The Dispatch.

If you enjoyed reading about "(OH) CCW Debate Evolving Into Battle Over Rights of Property Owners" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Standing Wolf
May 26, 2003, 07:20 PM
The argument could still be made for a weapons prohibition on the Ohio State University campus, because many of the rapes, muggings and assaults take place in the off-campus areas.

That's an argument? That's like saying I don't need to pack iron in Colorado because violent crime rates are much higher in Washington, D.C.

Leftists are such nitwits!

P95Carry
May 26, 2003, 07:33 PM
So much talk, and delay ... and so little action ...... petty squabbling on this and that ........... and yet, where is the sensible appraisal of other CCW states ... the adherance to the spirit of the 2nd? Some ''common sense'' even??!

Do these legislators stop and remember ...... that any permit to carry is NOT, in any way, shape or form .... a de facto permit to USE!! That is for the invidual to have to deal with if the need arises.... and then HE is the culpable party who has to explain his actions. It's the criminals who always could care less.

It's like the various mentions in the past of ''oh my - there'll be blood running in the streets'' ... sheesh. Why cannot people see thru all the fog and be aware of the extreme benefits, instead of finding only obstacles.

Always struck me BTW .... if anyone in a place of work wanted to enter with a gun and ''go postal'' then he will ... regardless. That then is when it is even more highly desirable that someone has a gun to defuze or negate the danger.

Sorry - ranting........:cuss: <mutter>

Coronach
May 26, 2003, 08:20 PM
The argument could still be made for a weapons prohibition on the Ohio State University campus, because many of the rapes, muggings and assaults take place in the off-campus areas.That's an argument? That's like saying I don't need to pack iron in Colorado because violent crime rates are much higher in Washington, D.C.Well, the idea is that few of the crimes occur on campus, so its "okay" if you don't have your gun there. This is not a good argument for a number of reasons, one of which you mention. Another is that one cannot carry a weapon for protection if one is going about the area on foot, seeing as how the destination would often be part of the campus, or involve a stroll through part of the campus.

Mike

Wildalaska
May 26, 2003, 08:38 PM
Property owners have the right to keep guns off their premises...

WildandgunownershavehterightnottopatronizeAlaska

Shaggy
May 26, 2003, 09:27 PM
I could give a wit if WalMart says no guns allowed. As long as the legislature does not make it a crime if you do pack heat. I know in some states, they can post no guns and if you have a gun they can ask you to leave. But it is no crime. Now if you don't leave when asked, then it's trepass I guess.

Any store that hangs a sign, "no guns" I won't go in. Period!!! Or if I do, it will be concealed and they will never know. Screw 'em. They do not gaurantee your safety, so I'll provide my own defense. They don't need anything in the law. Private property owners can say who comes on their property and who does'nt. No CCW will change that. Just like no smoking. If ya smoke inside, they can ask you to leave, but they can't arrest you for it.

This whole thing in Ohio has become a big fat joke.

Standing Wolf
May 26, 2003, 10:13 PM
If an enterprise posted a no firearms sign, I wouldn't patronize it: I don't do business with anti-Second Amendment bigots, nor do I trust people who don't trust law-abiding American citizens.

Desertdog
May 26, 2003, 11:08 PM
Scenario:
You are a CCW holder but leave your firearm in the car due to an owner posted "No Firearms" sign.

A BG comes in, he doesn't obey rules, and although you have plenty of time to take the BG out, your firearm is in the car and you are rendered helpless.
The BG shoots, and wounds you seriously.

Since the State said it is OK for you to protect yourself, will the business owner be liable for damages because he was not able to protect you and forbids you to protect yourself?

To me, this is something they should carefully consider before posting a "No Firearms" sign!:rolleyes:

Coronach
May 26, 2003, 11:10 PM
Agreed.

I wonder if anyone has tried such a lawsuit yet.

Mike

Wildalaska
May 27, 2003, 12:18 AM
will the business owner be liable for damages because he was not able to protect you and forbids you to protect yourself?

No liability...too much of a stretch...sort of like holding the gun maker liable...

WildthelawisnotanasssAlaska

Feanaro
May 27, 2003, 01:45 AM
Maybe it's just me but if someone wants to go postal at their work-place, do people actually think they will OBEY a "no guns on property or parking lot" sign? :scrutiny:

c_yeager
May 27, 2003, 03:26 AM
Ok ive heard this liability thing a thousand times. People keep saying that if a private property owner doesnt allow you to carry on thier property then THEY are responsible for your safety. The fact is that if you are so concerned about your safety in the first place WHY would you go into a place that didnt let you defend yourself? I mean is going into wallmart so important that you are willing to relinguish your only means of defense? And if you CHOOSE to go into wallmart then isnt that a CHOICE that YOU made? Thats exactly what the opposing council is going to say if this lawsuit ever happens. Now personally i think its a different story entirely for publicly owned buildings.

braindead0
May 27, 2003, 09:57 AM
This article didn't stress the the point very well. The real issue is allowing businesses to ban firearms in the parking lot (in your car!). Which would effectively keep you from carrying to and from.

I have no problem with allowing businesses to post a 'no guns' sign..just as I have no problem taking my business elsewhere.

I think the issue boils down to: Is your car your property when it's parked on someone elses property?

I think so.

Esky
May 27, 2003, 10:01 AM
"For example, will insurance companies start charging higher premiums to cover businesses that allow concealed weapons?"

Why should they charge higher premiums? Seems to me that rates should drop, once the BGs realize that they're not the only ones with guns. The business would be safer, wouldn't it?

Sort of like the anti-gunners, how many of them actually put signs up on their doors saying, "No guns allowed here." Well, maybe some of them really are that stupid, but if they get robbed more then it's their fault. So it's the businesses who only allow criminals to carry guns that should pay the higher premiums!

If you enjoyed reading about "(OH) CCW Debate Evolving Into Battle Over Rights of Property Owners" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!