In the ongoing fight to restore Americans’ natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms, there are pro-gunners who support pragmatic incrementalism. They’re OK with laws clawing-back some gun rights, to prepare the political soil for a future day’s harvest. There are others who believe that “shall not be infringed” means “shall not be infringed.” Any stance removed from that position is abject capitulation to gun control advocates; an unacceptable compromise that emboldens the enemies of firearms freedom. We’ve seen this dilemma in . . .
Colorado, where legislators moved to increase the ammo magazine capacity mandate from a 15-round maximum to 30 rounds (as opposed to rescinding the ban completely). And in Texas, where permitted open carry replaced Constitutional carry on the legislative agenda. And now Michiganders may be facing the same “choice” . . .
Michigan law prohibits concealed pistol permit holders from carrying concealed weapons in schools, but the law does not prevent owners from openly carrying a gun on their hips.
“This has created a a quandary for school administrators, public safety advocates and police,” said Sen. Steve Bieda, D-Warren. “I think it’s something we need to address.”
Bieda proposed linking the air gun reclassification package to a House bill that would prohibit open carry in schools.
“Regardless of your stance on guns, I think we should all agree that the safety of our children should be paramount,” he said.
Jones, R-Grand Ledge, argue that Bieda’s amendment amounted an unrelated issue that should be debated separately. He said the Senate Judiciary Committee would debate the proposal if it passes the House. The amendment was not adopted.
Sen. Mike Green, R-Mayville, is preparing to introduce a bill that would allow CPL holders who undergo additional training to bring concealed weapons in schools.
Green, speaking to reporters during a lull in the Senate session, said he thinks there should be some restrictions on open carry in schools, and indicated that will “probably” be a part of his proposal.
“I think that to assure all of our rights, I think the best thing to do is concealed carry,” Green said. “I think that’s the best way we should go, but I’m only one vote. I can’t determine everything.”
No, he can’t. Thankfully. Because any “true” supporter of gun rights knows that the distinction between open or concealed carry is not a thing, Constitutionally-speaking. But it is a thing, politically, in The Great Lake State.
As the mlive.com article points out, the issue of legally carried guns in schools recently erupted in Ann Arbor. Parents and staff at Pioneer High School were “taken aback” when a gun owner openly carried a firearm into a choir concert. That led the Ann Arbor school board to create a “dangerous weapon and disruption-free zone” prohibiting guns on all district-owned property. A policy in direct contravention of state pre-emption on all firearms laws.
Last month, gun rights advocates brought their openly carried guns into Madison Heights’ schools, triggering two school lockdowns.
You could say this sort of thing is extremely inadvisable, given that “scary” long gun open carry demonstrations in California led to a blanket open carry ban. Or you could say what about the Woolworth’s lunch counter sit-in?
The last thing I would say is “extra training required” with “special certification.” That approach cedes the antis’ claim that guns are prima facie dangerous. That gun owners are ill-equipped emotionally to handle them in public – never mind a school! Besides, practically speaking, how would that work? Show us your papers! No thanks.
Nor do I accept that concealed carry is the best way to assert gun rights. That would be open carry.
Once again, I draw your attention to the civil rights struggle in the 60’s. Until American blacks showed themselves where they weren’t accepted by peaceful protest, their plight was invisible. Ignored. It was only when they and their supporters made their discrimination visible that the movement made the gains that led to legal reform. Restoring their rights.
Anyway, whether or not the People of the Gun support gun rights restoration incrementalism, they should respect those who choose to reject it. Publicly.