Oregon state senator Ginny Burdick (facing the camera) is a rabid opponent of gun rights of any sort. Long guns, handguns, toy guns, airguns or paint guns, Senator Burdick hasn’t met a gun she doesn’t want to ban. I’m only joking. A little. She’s such a tireless enemy of the 2nd Amendment that her campaign bumper stickers ought to read “Trying to Turn Oregon’s Citizens Into Subjects Through Disarmament Since 1997.” Luckily for Oregon gun owners and CCW holders like myself, Senator Burdick has had a very bad week.

As a single state senator from a left-leaning district in an overwhelmingly centrist-conservative state, her best-laid plans of civil disarmament and pacification gang aft agley. It doesn’t matter that hordes of patchouli-stinking unwashed Portland hippies vote for her time after time, because outside of her own district she’ll never convince The Rest Of Oregon to join her in her delusional gun-free, mass-transit, locally-grown vegan pacificist paradise. That doesn’t necessarily stop her: when the legislature itself hasn’t been sufficiently compliant with her schemes, she has reportedly retaliated against public employees who publicly disagree with her.

Poor Senator Burdick two two on the chin last week, when the Oregon senate defeated one of her favorite bills, and then passed another pro-gun bill which she desperately opposed. The defeated bill would have banned weapons from school, college and university campuses, and the 15-14 party line vote was a squeaker for gun-rights advocates. This bill was an attempted legislative end-run around last years Oregon Supreme Court decision allowing the otherwise-lawful carry of firearms on Oregon’s college campuses.

The winning bill prohibits the public disclosure of Oregon CCW holders’ personal information, and it passed with overwhelming bipartisan support. In fact, it was so unpopular that its only supporters were Burdick and four other leftist Portlandians. It faces an uncertain fate on the desk of left-leaning Governor John Kitzhaber, but with such broad political and geographic support it will probably become law in some form. Eventually. I think.

All was not rosy in the land of the Rose City, however: while the Oregon legislature was protecting gun rights, the Oregon State Board of Higher Education was taking them away by passing rules prohibiting gun possession on the campuses of Oregon’s seven state universities. The only upside is that this administrative fiat only covers seven campuses; it doesn’t affect K-12 schools, community colleges or private schools.

The Oregon Firearms Federation is likely to sue over this administrative end-run, but a legal challenge faces long odds because the recent Oregon Supreme Court decision specifically recognized that the Board of Higher Education has the authority to issue this rule.

Meanwhile across the river in Washington State, both chambers of the legislature overwhelmingly passed a measure to allow assisted-opening knives in The Evergreen State. This bill now awaits Governor Christine Gregoire’s signature, which is cool for me since I’m awaiting some soon-to-be-legal assisted opening knives for testing and evaluation.

After last year’s common-sense law finally allowing shooters to use federally licensed suppressors, this latest bit of “why-didn’t-they-think-of-that-before” legislation leaves only two legal PITAs for Washington shooters: the vagueness of the ‘Unlawful Display Of A Weapon’ statute and the brain-dead blanket ban on SBRs and machine guns.

This week’s regional political scorecard shows three points for common sense, and one point for the forces of “We Know What’s Good For You” statism. A bad week for Ginny Burdick is a good week for Oregon, and for Oregon CCW holders like myself.

Here’s hoping for more.

36 Responses to NW Legal Update: Three Steps Forward, One Step Back

  1. Okay, Chris, I totally agree that Burdick is a nasty piece of work, but I’ve got a couple of bones to pick with you.

    “It doesn’t matter that hordes of patchouli-stinking unwashed Portland hippies vote for her time after time, because outside of her own district she’ll never convince The Rest Of Oregon to join her in her delusional gun-free, mass-transit, locally-grown vegan pacificist paradise.”

    I manage to refer to my friends on the right without calling them “Ignorant inbred rednecks,” or what have you. I count some patchouli-stinking (though usually clean) hippies among my friends . Hell, some them are even armed, and not just a little bit armed. And how is a viable local food economy a bad thing? Seems like in a SHTF scenario, we might be happy to have a bunch of hippies nearby who can grow some veggies – perhaps armed rightwingers could enslave them, because everyone knows hippies aren’t human beings. Mass transit, well, you may have some points as to TriMet management, but as a concept, mass transit is quite practical.

    Finally, and most importantly, these dirty hippies whom you so revile are not, in fact, the people voting for Ginny Burdick. Look at her district:

    http://www.leg.state.or.us/maps/senate/sd18.html

    Those of you who know Portland will immediately see my point. We’ve got SW Downtown, Arlington Heights, pretty much the entirety of the West Hills and the West Slope, moving down through Multnomah Village, Metzger, and finally that hotbed of left-wing radicalism, f-ing Tigard! These are for the most part, the environs of the upper middle class white soccer mom/dad. Not saying these people aren’t anti 2A, but they sure ain’t dirty hippies. Dirty hippies are concentrated in inner NE, N and especially SE Portland.

    If you ever want a driving, or, God forbid, a bike tour of dirty hippies, I can hook you up. But as far as 2A goes, it’s not the dirty hippies you need to worry about. It’s people that look just like you.

    • All that is great, but it still doesn’t un-do the fact that Portland, OR has an uncommonly large proportion of its population that either has a problem with operating a shower or tries to look like they ransacked the flood victim donation van.

      Doesn’t mean that they are bad people. Beaverton is a really nice place.

      Oh yeah. PBR tastes like licking a dirty shovel.

      • Okay, you totally blew it with “Beaverton is a really nice place.” Maybe if you like LA traffic with nothing to do.

        Dirty hippies mostly don’t drink PBR. That’s the Hipsters (and wannabee hipsters) and some of the Punks. Hippies drink good beer, and often make it themselves. Your comment is an insult to dirty shovels everywhere. Anyway, I think the PBR fad is running its course. Now it’s just a reaction against actual beer.

        Fun fact, or maybe urban legend: PBR supplied free beer to Portland bike messengers to make it hip. All these super-cool bike messengers were being seen downtown with the cans of PBR.

        • Back in the day, PBR and Bud were the two choices, as were Marlboros and Winstons. Winstons and PBR pretty much went the way of the hippies (freaks was the preferred nomenclature). I was a PBR fan (the quart fit between you legs nicely, allowing you to use one hand to hold the Marlboro/steering wheel and one to shift//tune the AM radio). For trips though, distance was measured in cases of Old German. The time from DC to Ocean City was one case of Old German, $2.00 at Eagle Liquor in Georgetown (for three people). You young guys don’t know what it was like here in the good old USA. The legal BAC limit was 1.5.

    • NCG, “Seems like in a SHTF scenario, we might be happy to have a bunch of hippies nearby who can grow some veggies…” It seems to me that in a SHTF situation there isn’t time to grow veggies and the ones already sprouted will be gone within a day unless, of course, they’re under armed guard. True about who elects the Burdicks of the world. I’ve nothing against hippies. Soccer moms? Now there’s the problem. And those folks who collect items with bird logos. Boy, is Portland in trouble.

      • I’m talking long term with the veggies. I think the main problem we’d have here in the Willamette Valley is the massive influx of people from places with no water. We have some of the best farm land on the planet.

  2. Great job Chris (and reply from NCG), and I hope the voters override the “dirty hippies” and vote this no good COMMIE out of office. I know she’s not really a COMMIE (I don’t even know what a real COMMIE is) but I like calling all gun grabbers/haters COMMIES. I hope those gardening gun packing hippies aren’t growing weed and smoking dope from gardens, because the feds will ruin their whole day.

    • You know, Oregon State law says you can legally grow the medical weed and have a CHL. Lee Berger, the lawyer that argued the case before the Oregon Supreme Court, was a client of mine. In fact, he would totally describe himself as a dirty hippie – when he’s not in court, he’s in tie dye. He has one of those “Hippies Use Side Door” signs on his office/garage. The Feds, that’s another matter…

      Another fact with organic farming around here, a lot of people had to put their green thumbs to other uses to stay in business in the early days. I don’t think that’s the case as much any more, now that markets for local organic produce have matured.

      • The FEDS don’t like dirty hippies and they don’t care about any state laws, because it’s still against Federal law to grow dope.

        • It’s against Federal law to snort coke with your Hill intern in Aspen, transport a hooker across state lines in your constituent’s Citation, take a kickback on a gov’t contract (even if it’s disguised as a no-work fee to your law partner), or to intentionally overbill on a defense contract. So? What’s your point?

  3. Oregon is not unusual in that their state Board of Education decided to ban firearms on College property. Even in conservative Red States college administrations still take it upon themselves to ban firearm possession on college grounds for lack of a law that says they cannot.

    The U.S. Constitution is considered by educators to be ancient colonial history that has no bearing in our modern utopic & enlightened era of no crime, no economic disparity, and no wars.

    • “The U.S. Constitution is considered by educators to be ancient colonial history that has no bearing in our modern utopic & enlightened era of no crime, no economic disparity, and no wars.”

      Neocons think the same thing. Well, except for the war part. Funny.

      I am disappointed about the campus carry situation.

      • If by neocons you mean conservatives, you don’t know much about Conservatives. Conservatives are the only ones that defend the Constitution. And please save any nonsense about the left of center libs that make up the majority of the republican party. Their just not total socialist like 99% of the democrats. That’s right, I called them socialists, because their opinions and ideas mirror every socialist/comie dictator that ever lived.

        Oh and those stinky hippies Chris is talking about, I’m betting their not his friends.

        • Almost everybody is a little bit of a socialist. Hard not to be in a modern society where we like things like roads, bridges, air traffic control, etc.

      • Republicans and Democrats ignore the parts they want to pretend don’t exist. Dems act like the second isn’t there, Repubs act like the 4th and 5th don’t exist, and they both ignore the 10th unless crying about it suits their agenda du juor.

    • The enlightened utopians of academe know the dirty little secret, that tenured faculty have manufactured some nasty labor practices that milk many grad students and non-tenured faculty of years of intense work encouraged by intimations of a bright future, only to dump them like Dixie Cups. Tenure was theoretically designed to permit academic freedom. Speak your mind? No tenure for you! Tenured faculty often get weirder and weirder and nobody can pull them back. I’m not in academia, but everyone who’s been through university understands that faculty are loathe to give up their right to speak abusively to students, solicit potential mistresses, and fire their betters without a gun in the room. Laugh.

  4. One more for the Washington State Wishlist: carry in bars. As the law stands now, you can go into a restaurant and drink beer after beer while carrying concealed, but sit in a bar drinking diet coke with a gun under your shirt, and that’s a crime. It doesn’t make sense. Virginia recently allowed carry in bars and not only has mayhem not ensued (like it never does), but as was highlighted on this blog, an armed robbery was foiled by someone carrying in a bar.

    Personally, I’d love to see that fixed. Not that I drink or go to bars much, but it’s a law that doesn’t make much sense.

    • Pure Puritanism. Washington and Oregon have weird prohibition era liquor laws in general, and it carries over to concealed carry. It really messed me up when I needed to pull my Colt .45 on that rounder that was cheatin’ in the poker game over at the saloon. I just had to spit some tobacco in his eye.

    • Virginia law opened bars and resturants serving booze to concealed carriers, before the change you had to open caryy, but you cannot drink while carrying in either mode.

      • And Virginia’s law makes more sense to me, as I can at least follow the logic. Agree or not, the rationale is clear.

        Washinton’s law is just kooky. There’s no case to be made where being drunk in a restaurant is better than being sober in a bar, but the former is legal and the latter illegal.

    • Missouri just says you cannot be intoxicated while carrying. I have gone into bars and restaurants and enjoyed a single glass of adult beverage, but stop at one b/c I am carrying. Saves me a ton on bar hopping and as a bonus, since I am the designated driver, no DUI tixs!

  5. Chris, a big thank you for all your advocacy work on the RKBA. While I’d like to see Ginny dumped out of office asap for her anti-gun efforts, I am in support of mass transit and locally grown food production in Oregon. I believe in self-sufficiency and self-reliance on the state and individual levels.

  6. Giving careful consideration to the issue of campus carry, I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t give a rat’s hat one way or the other. If the administrators and parents won’t work to keep the students safe, why should I? If parents and administrators won’t allow self-defense and are happy with VT-style mass shootings, then I’m happy, too. See — we all can get along.

  7. As a member of Oregon Firearms Federation (OFF) I received updates on these two bills and others during this legislative session. While I would have preferred the original version of bill that prohibits the public disclosure of Oregon CCW holders’ personal information, but the final version was better than nothing.

    The loss on the bill banning weapons from school was a near miss where we thankfully won on the votes.

    I found the colorful colloquial language of the post entertaining and took it as somewhat tongue in cheek. I’m surprised at the seriousness of some of the comments on this aspect of the post. Compared to what one might read on Daily Kos, Fire Dog Lake or numerous other lefty blogs, Chris was extremely tame and well mannered.

    While I don’t agree with a lot of the politics here, being a libertarian, I do appreciate the Oregon liberals who like their guns. And there seem to be a lot of them, Ginny Burdick and her constituents aside.

  8. My comments about Portland’s liberal politics were aimed at the well-meaning but naive Butinski’s and social engineers who take too keen an interest in telling me what to eat, how to get myself to work, and (all too often) which constitutional rights are ‘reasonable’ to exercise in the 21st Century.

    It appears that my aim was a bit wide of the mark. Mea culpa.

    • I’m with you on the nanny state know-it-all authoritarians. I just had to speak up for the many hippies and radicals and whatever you want to call them (and I have many of those tendencies myself). You may not agree with them, but they are not, for the most part, the people trying to take away your rights. And do seriously consider the demographics of Ginny Burdick’s district.

  9. Chris, I looked up the bill the Washington legislature passed and it actually provides no joy for the average citizen on assisted opening knives. Basically all it does is exempt police and military, and those involved in contracts supplying police and military with assisted opening knives. In the beginning, there was an exemption for those with valid CPLs as well, but it fell out in committee for some reason.

  10. Maybe my reading comprehension is off, but the forth paragraph makes no sense to me,. Specifically this

    “The winning bill prohibits the public disclosure of Oregon CCW holders’ personal information, and it passed with overwhelming bipartisan support. In fact, it was so unpopular that its only supporters were Burdick and four other leftist Portlandians.”

    Someone please tell me what it is supposed to say.

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