Guns as a First Amendment Right

Discussion in 'Legal & Political Archive' started by Provincial, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. Provincial

    Near Salem, OR
    Well-Known Member

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    I attended the rallies at the Oregon Capitol building in January and February. Both were peaceful, orderly, and polite. Many of those present were carrying firearms. Many of those with concealed carry permits exercised their right to carry loaded guns. That right extended into the Capitol Building itself, and some exercised that right as well. The police assigned to security detail reported NO incidents that caused them concern at either rally, and indeed complimented those in attendance for their courtesy and cooperation.

    Now we have Ginny Burdick wanting to exclude firearms from the Capitol because she is fearful. While she may not understand or respect the Constitutional (both Federal and State) rights to keep and bear arms, her proposed bill is in conflict with the First Amendment as well.

    A firearm displayed at a rally like this is, in fact, a political sign. It is the same as a piece of poster board on a stick with a slogan painted on it. It makes a statement about that persons stand on his or her rights as a citizen. It is the same as holding a sign that says "I have a right to own and use my firearms" or a sign saying "I demand the right to vote." If the firearm is not loaded, and there is no ammunition present, it is EXACTLY like the political sign, a harmless piece of wood, metal, and/or plastic that is expressing the view of the bearer.

    To prohibit this form of expression from the Capitol is a blatant attempt to limit freedom of speech, since Ms. Burdick has shown no proof that this form of expression has ever presented a threat to the safety or order of the State of Oregon.

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