Eliminate the Carry Ban at U.S. Post Offices

Post office robbery (courtesy defendandcarry.com)

Donald Trump is the current front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination. Despite previous support for an assault weapons ban, Mr. Trump has adopted an irreproachable Second Amendment platform. (His son and surrogate, Donald Trump Jr., is pro-2A through-and-through.) Trump’s only credible rival, Senator Ted Cruz, has an unblemished record for supporting the Second Amendment, including filing an amicus brief on the part of 31 states in the Heller decision. That’s no coincidence . . .

So what should President Cruz or President Trump do for gun rights if and when they’re elected? Amongst other things, they should immediately eliminate the ban on arms (including firearms) in the public areas of the post office.

The first post office gun ban dates back to the 1920’s, when Uncle Sam prohibited the shipment of pistols through the postal service. The point: force pistols to travel through local retailers, where local controls could keep them out of the hands of the “undesirables”(i.e. immigrants). Americans who bought a Federal Firearms License ($1) could beat the ban. (Licensed gun dealers can still send pistols through the U.S. mail – to other licensed gun dealers.)

The second part of the Post Office ban was born from internal regulations. Unless an employee was carrying a gun for hunting or other lawful purposes, they couldn’t bring a gun into a post office. A general gun ban for federal employees — or anyone else — in federal buildings completed the ban. It is now applied to everyone and every weapon, except for those expressly allowed (e.g. law enforcement).

In 2013, the Post Office gun ban was challenged in federal court. It was partly struck down, then upheld by the 10th Circuit Court. In 2014, Senators Rand Paul and Ted Cruz tried and failed to eliminate the ban the through legislation.

A President Cruz or Trump could eliminate the ban by executive order. They could announce an executive finding that the public areas of Post Offices do not constitute “sensitive parts” of government buildings where the government has a “compelling interest” to override Americans’ Second Amendment protections.

The current ban on legal carry in a United State Post Office makes no sense. It ensnares otherwise law-abiding citizens, increases the possibility of gun theft from post office parking lots and to makes life more dangerous for people exercising their Second Amendment rights.

©2016 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included. Link to Gun Watch