Is it illegal?

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mjmensale
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Post by mjmensale » Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:19 am

tector wrote:Well, my only "problem", as you put it, is that I've noted that your interpretation of the law is just that, yours. There is nothing wrong with that interpretation, IMO, except for the fact that you are not a judge.
If my use of the term "problem" doesn't sit well with you I'll apologize. I tend to use it flippantly and don't give it second thought.

It's not only my interpretation of the law but also Gutmacher's, as I pointed out. I'm not dispensing legal advice to anyone. If anything, I'd tell you to read Gutmacher and decide for yourself.

My point is if it's not illegal and no one can show me otherwise, I have no reason not to do the action in question. I'm not going to live my life waiting to discover that I've violated something that doesn't exist.

Ayn Rand summed it up rather nicely in her statement that the only way to control free men was to make everything illegal (very highly paraphrased!)

Moe
America is at that awkward stage. It's too late to work within the system, but too early to shoot the bastards. Claire Wolfe

Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you. John Steinbeck

If you try to take our firearms, we will kill you. Mike Vanderboegh

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TC
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Post by TC » Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:19 am

tector wrote:But, despite my opinion, I am not carrying in a post office, and, apparently, neither are you, despite YOUR opinion.
Um, because my opinion was that IT WAS ILLEGAL at that time and place when it was an issue for me. I don't think it's ever really come up in the years I've been here. I so rarely go to the PO now and when I have it's invariably been on the way to/from work where I also could not carry. Only recently am I in a situation where it might come up (now I telecommute -- and I have no policy against me carrying in my home office, so I can carry a lot more), and now the law has changed again and don't have an opinion about it yet.
based upon what are only undisclosed "opinions" dressed up as fact.
Like the one you offered about carry in a post office?

Point taken, but people should read Guttmacher, the law, etc and not take YOUR opinion either!

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Post by mjmensale » Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:20 am

HotShot308 wrote:Oops, somebody brought up the post office again...
I was glad to see that! I wasn't in the mood to go find it. Maybe that will get stickied somewhere.

Moe
America is at that awkward stage. It's too late to work within the system, but too early to shoot the bastards. Claire Wolfe

Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you. John Steinbeck

If you try to take our firearms, we will kill you. Mike Vanderboegh

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TC
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Post by TC » Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:28 am

Just mention that 39 CFR 232.1 changed which makes previous analysis suspect.

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TC
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Post by TC » Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:34 am

fljohn wrote:a post office is a government building correct?
Yes, but the laws that apply aren't exactly the same. They're partially exempted from one set and there are more that apply. It's all very complicated and messy. [Example of messy: in the new code (maybe in the old too, I didn't compare) there is something about how sidewalks that are on federal property but that are indistinguishable from sidewalks in the surrounding area are exempted from some subsections. I didn't bother to figure out what that all meant...]

And let's not even get into the whole thing about how the post office claims to be a corporation and not a government entity, except when it suits them -- they want to have it both ways.
Last edited by TC on Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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HotShot308
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Post by HotShot308 » Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:37 am

TC wrote:Just mention that 39 CFR 232.1 changed which makes previous analysis suspect.
Got a link to the "change"?
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Post by TC » Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:51 am

This is where I found out about it when I went to double-check something:

http://www.thegunzone.com/rkba/rtc-usps.html

I found the CFRs online and skimmed it briefly and I see what I think is the problematic part, but I didn't get a before/after comparison of the text to be sure. I really can't be bothered to do more research on the topic as personally I try to avoid the post office altogether. If it comes up I just won't carry there, unless I see some convincing new analysis.

BTW "recently changed" seems to be between March and May this year, judging by the wayback machine.
Last edited by TC on Mon Jul 23, 2007 12:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Mr. Smith » Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:53 am

TC wrote:And let's not even get into the whole thing about how the post office claims to be a corporation and not a government entity, except when it suits them -- they want to have it both ways.
I think I’m going to file my taxes this year as an individual and/or corporation. I’ll just find the best tax statutes for each and claim to be one or the other as it suits me. ;=je

Huh, what? Illegal? Why? Surely the government wouldn’t do anything that, you know, “We the people” were not allowed to do.

The last I heard it is only illegal to carry in a Post Office if there is a STATE Law forbidding it. The way the Federal law reads, or used to read – be sure to check before taking any advice off a website – is that the LEGAL carry of firearms in a Post Office is Federally legal.

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Eli BCP
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Post by Eli BCP » Mon Jul 23, 2007 1:30 pm

TC wrote:Just mention that 39 CFR 232.1 changed which makes previous analysis suspect.
In other words, "nevermind"?

This is the problem with us playing lawyer here.

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tector
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Post by tector » Mon Jul 23, 2007 3:39 pm

mjmensale wrote:
tector wrote:Well, my only "problem", as you put it, is that I've noted that your interpretation of the law is just that, yours. There is nothing wrong with that interpretation, IMO, except for the fact that you are not a judge.
If my use of the term "problem" doesn't sit well with you I'll apologize. I tend to use it flippantly and don't give it second thought.
Well, I had a problem with "problem", but no longer, thanks. We have enough problems with the antis, we don't need to foster them here. A healthy discussion on these topics can only do us good.
Last edited by tector on Mon Jul 23, 2007 3:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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tector
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Post by tector » Mon Jul 23, 2007 3:53 pm

Here's my bottom, bottom line:

Why am I going to incur some unknown quantum of risk to me (meaning my liberty AND property--$$$) to buffalo my way into an anti-gun business to give them my hard-earned money? They don't want me and my gun, screw them, all other issues aside. But on top of that, I am supposed to take some legal risk (which we have been unable to quantify at all here) in the process? It just seems crazy to me.

Everybody who carries (legally) is an adult, and adults can make their own choices when it comes to risk, that's fine with me. But I just don't want to take a legal risk to give some damned anti-gun store my money. Your choice can differ, but I still don't understand it. That's what makes the world go 'round, I guess.

The post office is a whole other thing. It has a government enforced monopoly on first class mail, period. You HAVE to deal with them. But I think if that Parker case stands up in front of the Supremes (fingers crossed), that is the FIRST law that should be challenged. It has no basis in any "rational' test of any kind. If we can't get that stupid law struck down after the Second Amendment has been determined to be an individual right (fingers crossed), than anything other than a total ban (which is what DC had) will be allowed and the Parker victory (fingers crossed) will have been nice on paper, but an illusion in the real world.

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Post by Mr. Smith » Mon Jul 23, 2007 5:07 pm

So if a store put up a sign stating that no firearms were allowed does that mean that a uniformed police officer would have to disarm before entering the property?

Okay, what about an undercover LEO?

The Federal government passed a law stating that all retired police officers that still qualified with their weapon and met some other requirements could carry concealed anywhere in the United States – would they be banned from carrying concealed in the store or shop that had a sign banning firearms?

What about a person that holds a State Issued Concealed Firearms Permit?

What if you didn’t see the sign?

There is a lot of room for misunderstanding. My interpretation is that the signs stating no firearms allowed are put there to make it clear that no ILLEGAL firearms will be tolerated on their property.

But getting back to the point, what if by some miracle somebody saw your legal firearm and the manager asked you if you had a firearm – are you required to answer?

If it became clear that you had a firearm but instead of asking you to leave they tried to hold you until the police arrived wouldn’t they be guilty of kidnapping or false arrest?

A commercial business that is open is inviting customers and visitors to come in to their store, they are not allowed to post a sign stating that minorities or those belonging to a particular religon are not allowed, how could anybody think that it would be okay for them to discriminate against law abiding citizens exercising a Constitutional right?

Smith
"Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon depriving a whole nation of its arms as the blackest."
- Mohandas Gandhi

"If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.”
- Dalai Lama (Seattle Times, 05-15-2001).

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HotShot308
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Post by HotShot308 » Mon Jul 23, 2007 6:33 pm

Unfortunately some states allow businesses to do this. #-o Luckily FL is not one of them. =D>
HotShot308

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Post by tector » Mon Jul 23, 2007 7:02 pm

Guys, even Moe and Gutmacher agree you have to leave if asked.

But be my guest and find out for yourself.

Just remember: gun board bravery is a completely different animal than jailhouse bravery. Don't confuse the two.

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Post by anathema » Mon Jul 23, 2007 9:59 pm

Ignore the fact that you had a concealed weapon, if you're on private property, they can ask you to leave at any point for any reason. Under Florida Law, it is not illegal to have a concealed weapon in these types of places (even if they have posted a sign) but it would be illegal if you refuse to leave the premises when told to (though you aren't violating any laws related to firearms - only trespass).

Its seems rather straight forward.

Also, don't confuse this with recent issues related to EMPLOYEES who want to carry to work and leave the firearm in their car. The same seems to hold true though. Since the legislators did not pass the law, they effectively upheld the right of a business to ban certain activities. If its a patron, they are simply told to leave, if its an employee, they may be subject to termination. Again, they can't be arrested for breaking workforce rules that are (or would be) otherwise perfectly legal in any other circumstance.

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Post by rob_s » Tue Jul 24, 2007 5:19 am

tector wrote: Just remember: gun board bravery is a completely different animal than jailhouse bravery. Don't confuse the two.
How about gun board cowardice?

What is the point of this whole discussion again? #-o
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tector
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Post by tector » Tue Jul 24, 2007 10:24 am

rob_s wrote:
tector wrote: Just remember: gun board bravery is a completely different animal than jailhouse bravery. Don't confuse the two.
How about gun board cowardice?

What is the point of this whole discussion again? #-o
The point, originally, was that somebody asked a question.

As far bravery v. cowardice, my comment came in the context of addressing people who didn't seem to quite grasp that if they are asked to leave, they have to leave, period. Failure to do so is an armed trespass, which is a felony. This means you get to spend some time in very close quarters with a lot of people you may not ordinarily associate with; you get to give lots of money to lawyers; and, oh yeah, if you are convicted, you lose the right to own a firearm, almost certainly forever.

The was the context of my comment. What is the context of yours?

As an aside, and not directly fitting the facts we have been talking, but showing that prosecutors LOVE to escalate charges when they can, check these out:

http://heraldtribune.com/article/200707 ... /707030369

(I can't decide who is the bigger idiot, the columnist, the prosecutor or the guy carrying):

Tom Lyons
A good gun law test case is ruined

No defense attorney could object to the way David Otteni got a not guilty verdict at his armed trespass trial.

But I'm disappointed.

The verdict is fine. I never thought the Palmetto man deserved a felony conviction. But I had hoped his trial would enlighten us about the possible legal hazards of carrying a concealed weapon to places like the mall or, as in this case, The Home Depot.

Otteni was at a Home Depot and became an unhappy customer when refused a refund on some plumbing parts. When he tried not to take no for an answer, his assertiveness held up business at the customer service line.

When the manager told him to leave, Otteni didn't. A store employee called 911.

That almost certainly would have resulted in a trespass warning, normally, unless Otteni had also refused to leave after police arrived. As it happened, Otteni thought better of his position and was already outside when a Manatee County deputy arrived. But before Otteni went outside, he had told employees to tell police that he had a concealed weapon permit and a gun.

His attorney, Mark Lipinski, says Otteni had been taught it was the right thing to do, so police aren't surprised at finding a gun and don't assume it is illegally concealed. Otteni had learned that while acting as a civilian volunteer for the Palmetto Police Department.

Still, the mood of the plumbing parts disagreement didn't become more relaxed with mention of a gun. And that's the thing. If you get into an argument with a stranger and he says he's got a gun, you'd probably think he was using it to win the argument.

When a deputy arrived, she quickly arrested Otteni. She charged him with armed trespass, a felony.

Otteni was shocked. But prosecutors decided it was a reasonable charge. Assistant State Attorney Jamie Rosenberg said a gun, permitted or not, becomes part of the offense if you break the law while carrying it.

That would make sense if the charge was armed robbery, certainly. But for staying a few minutes after being asked to leave a store?

Lipinski was pumped to argue that this was a ridiculously extreme view of the armed trespass statute. And this might have been the perfect test case to determine if legally carrying a gun totally raises your risks if you step into a gray area of the law.

Instead, at trial a deputy and two other witnesses looked right past the defendant and into the audience and identified the defendant's brother as the man at The Home Depot service counter.

So, instead, the case was dismissed and became just another example of how wrong eyewitnesses can be.


Here is an earlier story on the case, which gives some other important background:

http://www.heraldtribune.com/apps/pbcs. ... /702120364


And, in another context altogether, here is another recent case of a prosecutor trying to escalate charges into felony trespass:

http://tkcollier.wordpress.com/2007/06/ ... in-felony/

The shooter is certainly an idiot. But should he be a felon, losing his right to vote, self-defense, etc.?

So, the next time you do your "cowardice v. bravery" calculations, you might want to consider how things actually work in the legal system. Nobody involved in that system cares one damn about anything anyone ever posts here--me, you, and Moe included--unless, of course, they can use it against you to show a premeditated intent.

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Post by Mr. Smith » Tue Jul 24, 2007 10:25 am

I finally made the connection! I got it when I was re-reading Jon H. Gutmacher’s analysis of the “Protection of Persons & Property” law.

http://floridashootersnetwork.com/phpbb ... hp?t=14238

According to Florida law when you’re in a public place you are required to retreat, even if you are confronted with great bodily harm or death – if that place has a sign stating that firearms are not permitted.

According to the law if you are in a place where you
“have a right to be” there is no duty to retreat – but if a person is carrying a firearm on property posted with “no firearms allowed” signs there is enough ambiguity in the law to raise the question of whether they are trespassing.

If a court [somehow?!] found that a person that had used a firearm on posted property was in fact trespassing and did not retreat – they could be facing manslaughter charges.

The moral of the story is if you’re carrying on posted “no firearms” property and the store is being robbed it’s best not to try to help or defend any of the store personnel.

Only use your firearm after retreating to the best of your ability and to defend your own life.

Although this begs the question of what happens if you don’t see the sign?

Smith
"Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon depriving a whole nation of its arms as the blackest."
- Mohandas Gandhi

"If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.”
- Dalai Lama (Seattle Times, 05-15-2001).

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