The Missouri House has passed a bill that would make gun owners a protected minority group. “Under the bill, gun owners who carry their firearms with them in a lawful manner (i.e. possess a concealed-carry permit) cannot be fired, denied benefits, or otherwise discriminated against.  It was sponsored by State Rep. Wanda Brown (R, Cole Camp),” stlousipublicradio.org reports. On the whole good/bad continuum, discrimination is pretty much out there on the bad end of the line. But especially given the strong libertarian bent of many gun owners, do gunnies really want to be made yet another protected class? Will gun rights groups then push for gun-owner affirmative action to ensure a company’s workforce (or a school’s student body) reflects the percentage of gun owners in the population at large? Is this just another part of the whole ‘we’re winning’ thing or a bridge too far in the effort to increase the acceptance of guns in society?

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23 Responses to Question of the Day: Should Gun Owners be a Protected Class?

  1. Certain people already have greater rights than some of us, they enjoy greater protections already and their 2A rights are probably safer as well.

  2. Wholeheartedly yes.The problem of anti-gun bias in the employers & schools of America got to the way it is by sanctioned discrimination against gun ownership.America was not always like this;in the not too distant past colleges and high schools had their own sponsored marksmanship teams.

    The 2nd Amendment is a civil right.Much like the Black civil rights movement in the early 60s,gun owners nationwide are harassed and jailed just for exercising their recognized rights.It took laws to enforce the status quo,so it follows that there should be laws created to put the anti gun zombie in the same masoleum as sanctioned racism.

  3. MN has similar protection for employees who leave their firearm in their car. I was working for Best Buy when the Personal Protection Act was passed, and told my manager that I was perfectly willing to comply, but that he should let corporate know that they were in violation of the law. Two weeks later I was fired for purchasing a book a day before it was supposed to come out. My firing had nothing to do with my having a permit or keeping a gun in my car. And you can believe that or not as you like.

    • In Texas I am allowed to keep my weapon in my car, to my understanding. The place I work doesn’t allow weapons on the premises. To include my Privately owned vehicle. So do I fight it and maybe lose my job. or do I comply and just leave the pistol at home?

      I may not get fired for having the weapon in my car. Win the battle lose the war kind of thing.

      • On the premises means inside the building. Parking lots, areas are excluded with the exception of school parking and some gas,oil lease property and chemical plants.

        A little more info,, http://www.txchia.org/txcarry.htm

        Just left click on the blue text for further explanation

        • I agree Parking lots are excluded but tell that to the multinational corporation I work for. They had one guy escorted off the property because he had a weapon in his car.

          I say again win the battle lose the war. I maybe legally aloud to have it in my car in the parking lot but because the company has a policy that, no weapons can be in our cars in the parking lot. If I choose to fight it they may find that because I am drinking coffee out of the wrong cup (They have a policy for that too) that I no longer need to work here.

        • Why do you continue to work for a company with such an oppressive policy and dismal view of your inherent human rights?

  4. Large swaths of recent generations of Americans have been indoctrinated into the anti-Liberty mindset. It will take time to correct the effects of this indoctrination and in the interim some legal protections will be needed. Even with laws like this one on the books there will still be problems from time to time due to the simple fact that since those in the anti-Liberty crowd see legal wiggle-room in the phrase “shall not be infringed”, they will certainly find multiple escape routes from any anti-discrimination law.

    An alternative: Make changes to existing laws that would be to expand any existing carry or possession exemptions currently made for LEO’s to cover all those legally able to carry in any state.

  5. No. Forcing people to involuntarily associate with others under penalty of law would not be “winning” when our goal is to promote true liberty.

    • While I agree with your point for the most part, I feel compelled to note that there is a difference between mandating association, and forbidding dis-association for specific reasons.

      That is to say that, as a general case, I don’t want to be hired as some kind of pro-gun affirmative action. However, given the anti-gun nature of many modern employers (many due to liability/insurance reasons), i think that laws that forbid them from disassociating with gun owners solely over gun ownership may well be appropriate.

      That is to say that there are already laws on the books that establish guidelines for terminating employment, and I see no reason why my choice to exercise my rights should be a reason for legitimate termination of employment.

      This is to say that if an employer chooses to terminate employees simply due to exercise of civil rights, and not any legitimate work-related cause, the firing should be treated legally as one without cause, and therefore open to wrongful termination suits, and payment to the state for unemployment benefits.

      I really don’t want to be a protected class, but what is the present alternative?

      • Employment is a voluntary contract between two parties. If either party violates the contract, it can be declared void and just compensation rewarded to the wronged party. This should be done through mediation, arbitration, or (as a last resort) the law. The “present alternative”, at least with regards to voluntary contracts, is to ensure you enter into an agreement with your employer that respects your inherent rights.

        Outside the realm of contractual agreements, one is free to associate (or dis-associate) themselves with whomever they see fit, for whatever reason, regardless of rationality. Stifiling that freedom under penalty of law is contrary to liberty.

        • The “present alternative”, at least with regards to voluntary contracts, is to ensure you enter into an agreement with your employer that respects your inherent rights.

          ********************

          And this is the rub.Not many major corporations respect the RKBA. Some places in urban America located in states which respect the RKBA ban possession of firearms by policy. When the options are unemployment, risking your family’s ability to eat by starting your own business which may fail, or working for a company that demands you be a victim in waiting at your cubicle, its a situation which benefits no one. The enemy here is a cultural discrimination of people who choose to arm themselves, not the right to choose who to hire or where to work. What does concealed carry have to do with work performance in an office?

        • I bet more major corporations would respect our inherent rights if principled and productive folks refused to enter into their employ.

          As a matter of personal policy, I never advocate more government or more laws as the answer to any societal problem. Since the enemy in this case is “cultural discrimination,” it must be solved through a shift if societal morays not through legislation and forced association. It didn’t work to end racism, and it wouldn’t work for this either.

    • +1.

      “Forcing people to involuntarily associate with others under penalty of law would not be “winning” when our goal is to promote true liberty.”

      It’s really as simple as that. Enough with all of the “protected class” stuff already.

  6. Actually there should be no protected classes at all. Everyone should be treated equally, and the Constitution (with all amendments) should be taken as the highest law, using the writings of the framers as a guide to determining the intent.

    • In perfect nation this would be the case. In real life we have Port Authority police in New Jersey & New York arresting legal gun owners for simply landing at the wrong airport, corporations who operate in Right to Carry states which explicitly bar their employees from being armed under penalty of termination, and law enforcement officers who treat a hoplophobic neighbors’ phone call of “man with assault rifle & mebbe drugs” as probable cause for a 2am SWAT raid.

      Imagine what would happen if the local police kicked down someones door because a neighbor claimed a Mexican lived there.

      Imagine one’s wife being arrested on landing at Newark because she’s a woman.

      One can only imagine the national outrage that would happen if a pregnant woman were to be fired on account of her condition. Lawsuits, negative press, the works. If that same company sacks the same woman because she owns a Glock , the same organizations of people named above would stand mute or take the side of the company.

      In an imperfect world where people will be prejudiced, the law stands as a reason for thinking individuals to put their prejudice aside. So it would be for us who keep and bear arms.

  7. NO, please. It would give the ACLU fits, but no. Protected classes based upon a personal choice are not productive or useful. Likewise, conceal carry is not the business of any but the carrier. Imho.

  8. Creating a protected class would make it real easy to impose rules on members of that class. Or to round up the hardware. Or worse.
    I like the option that anyone could join the 2A club provided they are not a felon or a non-citizen and leave it to the overlords to guess who belongs.

  9. Employers can, and do have the right to prohibit weapons inside the work place. That is a private property issue, at least here in Texas and I can respect that. However I do carry at work, my boss knows it, everyone that works here knows. And my boss is going to get his permit as well so he can go where ever wearing one. He does carry at work now and travels with one in his vehicle.

    The best thing is to get on the good side of your boss, give him some really good reading material and discuss with him what it means. Maybe you can win him over and get him involved with you.

    • I worked a night job where the place didn’t have a policy on carrying. The truth was 2 women were assault at night leaving and they looked the other way.
      I was not alone in the decision to pack. Fortunately I never had to use it.

  10. Tyranny: “That which is legal for the government, but illegal for the people”

    Government is not party to the contract between employer and employee. Period. Any and all intervention in that contract is nothing more than strongarm coercion.

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