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TX Law on church carry will NOT CHANGE in 2019.

Discussion in 'Legal' started by JohnKSa, Sep 2, 2019.

  1. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    TX church carry has been legal for over 2 decades. It remains legal.

    The original CHL law (1995) did prohibit church carry, but during the very next legislative session in 1997, the law was changed to allow it.

    HOWEVER, the when the law was changed to legalize church carry, it was done in a way that left it confusing. Instead of removing churches from the list of the prohibited places, the change added a caveat down farther in the section that said that the prohibition against church carry applied ONLY if there was notice given under the 30.06 (and later 30.07) laws. That change (confusing though it was) made church carry pretty much the same as carry any other place. It was legal unless notification was given per 30.06 (and later 30.07).

    The problem was that people would read the list of prohibited places and then stop. They wouldn't read the entire section of the law and so they never read the caveat. Furthermore, the caveat referred to church carry ONLY by noting the section of law that applied [literally, '(b)(6)' ] which meant that the word 'church' or 'worship' did not appear in the caveat. Thus, even searching the laws for anything else that might apply to carry in 'church' or places of 'worship' would not find it.

    Here's the caveat from Section 46.035 of the TX Penal Code as it appeared before the September 2019 revision. It's certainly not going to jump out at someone reading about prohibited places. It is placed around 600 words below the portion of 46.035 that apparently prohibits church carry, and there are 18 subsections intervening between the mention of churches/places of worship and where the caveat shows up.

    (i) Subsections (b)(4), (b)(5), (b)(6), and (c) do not apply if the actor was not given effective notice under Section 30.06 or 30.07.

    The obscurity of the caveat resulted in a common misconception that church carry was still prohibited in TX although that was only true for the 2 years between when the initial CHL bill was passed and when the caveat allowing it was added.

    In 2019, a bill was introduced (and passed) to clarify the law. It doesn't CHANGE anything in terms of legality, it just simplifies the law. Instead of relying on a caveat that appears after the list of prohibited places, the new law strikes churches from the list of prohibited places. It also strikes '(b)(6)' from the caveat since it is no longer required.

    I was just listening to the radio and some "research specialist" stated that church carry had just been legalized in TX. Apparently the term "research" doesn't mean what it used to...

    In addition, a coworker said that his church was now concerned about church carry with the "change in the law" and was going to make a public announcement this Sunday.

    Nothing has changed except the WAY the law is written. It was already legal and it still is.
     
  2. sparkyv

    sparkyv Member

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    Correct, JohnKSa. Notice how the media portrays this? The new law allows the carrying of firearms in places of worship as never before, and worshippers all across Texas are going to be killed in ever increasing numbers! Oh the horror! It's a LIE, FAKE NEWS!

    The reality is that the intenet of the clarification of the regs was so that worshippers could arm and protect themselves from predators who go after soft targets.
     
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  3. P5 Guy

    P5 Guy Member

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    Isn't a church privately held property?
    Isn't there separation between religions and the government?
    Why can't the property owner set the terms for people invited on said property as to carrying firearms?
     
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  4. GEM

    GEM Moderator Staff Member

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    The church ban, amusement park, mall ban, theater ban, parks ban, school bans, etc. - where implemented were a deliberate strategy to limit the places once could carry. Thus, folks would not want to leave guns in cars and would give up carry altogether. We know most licensed folks already don't carry much.

    The church ban was justified as God was insulted by carry as the Lord would protect you and we don't want violence in the Lord's house. Since divine intervention against church shooters (or in any other denominations' house of worship) seems not to occur, that is just an appeal with no validity. Also the state cannot decide how you worship and what the Lord thinks. So it is violation of the separation of Church and state as it sets a worship condition without a valid reason.

    Also, in TX the original ability to ban with something as simple as a ghostbusters sign was an attempt to limit carry. It WAS NOT about property rights, that is a falsehood which appeals to folks who get stirred about my CASTLE. TX reduced that with the 30.06 rules. However, OC folks brought about the 30.07s and some OC was so obnoxious (flame war) that folks put up both.

    John is absolutely correct in what is happening. However, the media and antigun politicians either don't understand or deliberately misinterpret it according to their agendas. I saw Beto with his hair on fire that the new laws will cause blood in the streets and TX will pay for them. Liar, deliberately misleading or stupid.

    Andrea Mitchell was moaning that TX now legalized OC in the schools. What?

    The state will get tarred with the brush, that TX didn't do SOMETHING!

    These incidents are fuel for AWBs, red flag laws and UBCs. If the Odessa shooter, who was prohibited from buying from an FFL, got his gun in a private sale, expect the UBC push to be enhanced. The person who sold the gun, when found, will be in a world of hurt. How you sell a gun privately is a different issue.
     
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  5. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes.
    Yes.
    The property owner can. There are three methods of effective notice prescribed in the law that a property owner can use to restrict the carry of firearms on their property.
     
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  6. TRX

    TRX Member

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    The larger reality is that even if state law permits carrying in church, the almost all "name brand" church authorities prohibit it. And some that don't specifically prohibit carry still officially support gun control on their web sites.

    I would list them by name, but that usually starts flamewars of butthurt and denial. But just because the friendly cleric at the neighborhood church says you can carry doesn't mean it's okay with his higher-ups; it means that if anything ever happens, the upper hierarchy will sell you both down the river, because that's their official policy that you both violated.

    Check the top-level web site for your church. You might not like what you read there.
     
  7. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't know how the church carry laws work in other states, but since this is a thread specifically about TX church carry, I'm just going to pretend that TX is the entire world. :D

    What an organization puts on its website has no bearing on the legality of carry in church. TX law requires that a property owner who wishes to make carry illegal on his/her property must give notice under one of the three methods spelled out in sections 30.06 and 30.07 of the penal code.

    1. The property may be posted with a sign that is strictly defined in the law, it must conform in content, general appearance and letter size to the legal definition. It must be displayed in a "conspicuous manner clearly visible to the public". Signs with improper wording or that don't otherwise fit the definition in the law have no legal effect.
    2. A person may be given a card prohibiting carry on the premises. The law specifies what must be written on the card. Cards with improper wording have no legal effect.
    3. The property owner or "someone with apparent authority to act for the owner" may verbally inform a person that carry is prohibited on the property.

    Other methods of notification have no weight of law.

    I have never seen a church posted with a 30.06/30.07 sign although there certainly are some that are. I don't have any way to assess how common it is for churches to be posted properly against carry. Based on the information in the link, it appears that posting against open carry is significantly more common than posting against concealed.

    I am aware of one large church (it has places of worship in every state and also overseas) that recently made a single public announcement in TX places of worship during services on the first service after the clarified law went into effect. The announcement was made under the misapprehension that the legality of church carry would change on 1 September and was apparently intended to make carry prohibited. The church stopped short of posting the premises or handing out cards. The single public announcement during the service would (in my opinion) have the effect of prohibiting carry for everyone who was present for the announcement, but is pretty difficult to enforce unless some kind of roll was taken to verify who was present for the single announcement and who wasn't.

    Since the verbal notice must be given by the property owner or "someone with apparent authority to act for the owner", it is my opinion that someone merely passing the announcement along to those who weren't present for the original announcement would place the person being told under no legal obligation.
     
  8. Dfwkid

    Dfwkid Member

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    Since the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed is equal to unenumerated state rights such as private property rights haven't the courts ruled that public access is the key as to whether owners can keep guns out or not ?
     
  9. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm sorry, I can't tell what you are asking. Are you asking about possible court rulings that relate to the constitutionality of TX church carry laws?
     
  10. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Member

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    ^^ I was going to ask that, in a way. Someone brought up "separation of Church and State." Instead of wondering what a church can do to prohibit carry in a jurisdiction in which such carry is legal, I'm wondering what a "supposedly-separated-from-the-state" entity can do to permit carry when carry is prohibited in that type of venue by the state. In other words, if a church is supposed to be "separate" from the state, why does the state get to restrict a constitutionally-protected right within that church's "private realm"?
     
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  11. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    In other words, what you're asking is: IF church carry really were illegal, (could/how could) a particular church allow people to carry on the premises?

    I don't know the answer to that question.
     
  12. old lady new shooter

    old lady new shooter Member

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    Even in CALI a person can carry in a house of worship, provided the relevant administrative authority (clergy or board of directors) gives permission.
     
  13. old lady new shooter

    old lady new shooter Member

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    He bought the gun from a person who was acquiring parts, assembling them, and selling the finished product, all without registering as a dealer. IOW, rather than demonstrating any need for universal background checks, what is demonstrated is that criminals don't obey laws in the first place. We need to publicize this.

    "Law enforcement officials said they have identified a person of interest they suspect of illegally manufacturing and selling the rifle used in Saturday's mass shooting in West Texas," The Wall Street Journal reported. "While private gun sales are legal under federal law, it is a crime to be in the business of manufacturing or selling guns without a license. Law-enforcement officials suspect the man was buying various gun parts to build his own guns and then reselling them."

    https://www.dailywire.com/news/5144...utes-cnns-claim-odessa-attacker-ryan-saavedra
     
  14. old lady new shooter

    old lady new shooter Member

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    All of the above.
     
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  15. JeffG

    JeffG Member

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    “Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.”

    Not seeing a "leave your sword outside" clause.
     
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