Minnesota Judge OKs Cop Carry Carve-Out for NFL Games

Vikings' new gun free zone under construction (courtesy vikings.com)

“A judge has struck down — for now — an NFL policy preventing off-duty Minnesota police officers from carrying guns at Vikings games,” abcnews.com reports. “Two police organizations challenged the rule, arguing that NFL policy cannot trump state law. Judge Ivy Bernhardson ruled in favor of the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association and the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis. However, the NFL’s policy will remain in place pending further court guidance. The ruling applies only in Minnesota.” And not to other civilians (i.e. all civilians). “Police groups argued that even off-duty officers need to be armed at Vikings games, to protect themselves and the public. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello says the policy is designed to keep fans safe. He says the NFL will continue enforcing it until the matter is resolved.”


  1. They don’t care about the human right of armed self-defense.

  2. avatar ST says:

    One: private property rights trump state law and the Judiciary. The NFL owns the land, so they can set the rules accordingly whether or not their patrons can be armed on their premises. Just like I can order my guest to leave their guns outside, so it goes for the NFL and public colleges.

    Two: No sober man would attend a Vikings game anyways, which means any armed man inside would be intoxicated. An undesirable state of affairs, indeed.

    1. avatar Jake says:

      On the first point: Yes. Absolutely. It really comes down to who owns the stadium.

      Now, if a private property owner publicly disrespects my human right of armed self-defense, then I have the freedom of saying FOAD and going somewhere else. I don’t have that option with city- or state-owned buildings.

    2. avatar tfunk says:

      Does the nfl own the land? I’m pretty sure a sh!t ton of taxpayer money went into the stadium, though I don’t know what kind of deal was worked out.

      1. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:

        I guarantee they don’t for the next two years, the Vikings are playing at the University of Minnesota’s stadium while the new billion dollar indoor monstrosity is built. After that, I’m not sure, Target Field where the Twins play is officially owned by Hennepin County and the Twins have a long term lease (I think 30 years). That sort of deal is pretty common.

    3. avatar Danny Griffin says:

      private property rights trump state law and the Judiciary

      They do, so this must not be considered private property.

      1. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

        This whole private property thing needs some further analysis. My house is private property as is the local supermarket. My house however is not open to the public. Only invited guests may legally enter my house without a warrant, so I should be able to dictate the conditions with which those that enter must comply. The local supermarket does not provide any method of assuring compliance with a ‘no weapons’ policy, nor do they provide security officers capable of any semblance of security. Further, they provide no weapons storage for people that might need a firearm in transit to/from their store. Common sense and societal needs trump the supermarket’s desire to be a ‘gun-free’ (victim-rich) zone. There needs to be a distinction between ‘private’ private property and ‘public’ private property. A private club should be able to enact whatever rules they want in this regard upon their members. Anyplace open to the public, not so much….

    4. avatar Ty King says:

      Places to which the general public have access have different rules than truly private places and have since English common law. The rules for trespass change if you own the land but don’t put a fence up. More recently look at laws enforcing segregation (businesses could not serve blacks at all no matter their private feeling) and now laws that ban segregation (business must serve all races no matter their private feelings).

      And it’s not like any property rights (even places truly private) are above the law, look at building codes and environmental laws. Those go into effect in your own home. Where I live you have to ask permission (get a permit) to change a water heater.

      1. avatar Peter says:

        Federal “Civil Rights” laws that extend to private property are unconstitutional. States may determine their own private property laws. Whether they are good and advisable is a different story.

        I personally don’t want the government telling me who I may and may not do business with and who I choose to employ, as that is none of the governments’ business (like your water heater).

        Nor do I think building, health, and safety codes should be mandatory (a landowner, restaurant, and business owner may post they are in compliance with a voluntary code, but to require it is a violation of private property rights)

        1. avatar Garibaldi says:

          I’m sorry sir but the government can, and does, dictate “who you may or may not do business with”. If you open a business to the public then you must open it to -all- the public. You cannot choose to not do business with black people because you don’t like blacks, nor can you choose to not do business with homosexuals because you don’t like homosexuals. If you don’t like that law then you are free to go live in a country that allows that kind of discrimination. The USA does not.

        2. avatar Danny Griffin says:

          If you open a business to the public then you must open it to -all- the public.

          Not entirely true. You just can’t discriminate against a protected class of people because of belonging to that protected class.

        3. avatar Chris says:

          [quote]I’m sorry sir but the government can, and does, dictate “who you may or may not do business with”.

          I was long debating whether I would roll this OFWG ass into a Curves and start a legal ruckus.

    5. avatar Nate S says:

      Well at least for the next two years in Minnesota, the NFL will not own the land.

      It will be state owned, specifically by the University of Minnesota. Ultimately the University could have ultimate say over what they will and will not allow in terms of LEO carry in TCF Stadium.

    6. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

      Nah, Green Bay going to own the land in Minnesota this year! ooohhh!!!

      1. avatar Go Pack Go! says:

        Finally! A patently true and sensible response!

    7. avatar T-DOG says:

      See here is the interesting thing about you statement #1. The NFL as far as I know doesn’t own any of the stadiums. Here in Seattle the Washington State Public Stadium Authority is the public authority that oversees CenturyLink Field. The key to that is it’s a government body. The public paid for the place. The people own it. Not the NFL.

  3. avatar tjlarson2k says:

    “Two police organizations challenged the rule, arguing that NFL policy cannot trump state law.”

    The irony in this statement considering the Police and the NFL both have had no problem trumping the Constitution for years…

  4. avatar Frank Masotti says:

    Can the policy trump the constitution? Oh wait, the serfs are not allowed to own guns or use the constitution to justify doing this that the [email protected]#$%^& police claim is a right only for them.

  5. avatar NYC2AZ says:

    Time drag out the old Animal Farm rules.

  6. avatar Matt Richardson says:

    At what point do we call this for what it is and just agree that we’re witnessing the beginning stages of a class war?

    1. avatar Michael Davis says:

      Hah!!! Beginning?!?

      1. avatar John in Ohio says:

        My thought as well.

      2. avatar Matt Richardson says:

        Let’s set sarcasm aside for a moment.

        Lines are being drawn and sides are being chosen, but nothing has started yet. The political elites have been building themselves into the new aristocracy since around the time of the industrial revolution. Over the last generation or two, the shift in the mindset of policing agencies has solidified their position as the protectorate of the modern aristocracy. We, the lowly, citizenry are relegated to serfdom.

        Our votes don’t count on the national level, state elections are nearly as obvious a sham, and your mileage may vary on the local level. Instead of the citizenry being respected and listened to, lobbying firms and unions have become the voice of the people.

        It scares the sh1t out of me, but we are going to end up with our own Red October sooner rather than later if this keeps up.

        1. avatar John in Ohio says:

          Good post.

          we are going to end up with our own Red October sooner rather than later if this keeps up.

          If we get to a point of near irreversible tyranny then I’d prefer armed conflict to servitude.

  7. avatar Shandower says:

    I’m surprised nobody has argued that cops (and their guns) just shouldn’t attend NFL games, because nobody NEEDS to watch these violent assault-sports.

    Even if they do attend, are they barred from drinking? If so, why aren’t they arguing a cop carve out for that? If not, why isn’t there a twitter meme about when guns aren’t allowed at NFL games, the only guns at NFL games belong to drunk cops?

    1. avatar John in Ohio says:

      Good point. People argue that public accommodations can still strip individuals of the RKBA (but cannot discriminate for other reasons such as skin color) because the individual can choose not to enter that property. Off duty officers voluntarily enter the property so why is the reasoning any different? Are police officers now a distinct race, gender, or sexual orientation?

      1. avatar Jus Bill says:

        They are a “Protected Class of People.” Sort of like the Nobility, but not. Along the lines of the Praetorians, but again not quite.

        1. avatar Indiana Tom says:

          Silly serfs, gun are for your betters.

  8. avatar John in Ohio says:

    They can continue to be armed under privilege while the rest of the population cannot be armed under right because the off duty officers need to protect the public? But, it has been established that officers have no duty to protect.

    This is just more agents of government getting special treatment. Some complain about the “us versus them” mentality… special privilege does not help reduce that divide. It makes it wider. What is so difficult about each individual choosing to bear arms or not. If a crime is committed, then the legal system steps in on that individual case. No prohibitions needed. Carve outs become necessary. So simple even a progressive can do it.

    1. avatar Indiana Tom says:

      With the cops, we play catch 22. We need guns to protect the public, but we have no duty to protect the public.

    2. avatar John in Ohio says:

      Oops! I meant to type, “Carve outs become unnecessary.”

  9. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    I went to a Mariners game at Safeco field a few weeks back, (yeah, the mariners still suck), and had to walk through a metal detector. It did not detect a good sized pocket knife. I left the gat in the car knowing they had the detectors.

    1. avatar John in Ohio says:

      If it could be established that those not allowed to enter the stadium can get a full refund, a good protest move would be for everyone to carry going to the game. When they get told that they can’t enter the property then they get their refund and leave. If the NFL saw enough refunds at the gate for those carrying, perhaps it would send an even stronger message than letters and telephone calls.

      1. avatar Mike Spenser says:

        Great idea hit them where it hurts in the wallet…….

    2. avatar S.CROCK says:

      The M’s don’t suck to bad anymore. As of like two days ago they were actually ahead of the Tigers for the second wild card spot. They are just in the toughest division in baseball this year.

  10. avatar John in Ohio says:

    AFAIK, it’s when certain things alert the complicated filter system. That happened to a few of mine a while back and Matt in FL explained it to me.

  11. avatar Michael says:

    Some places, like private universities in North Carolina only allow “Uniformed Police Officers while on official business” to carry weapons.

  12. avatar Jus Bill says:

    Police unions prevail in court case; citizens lose.
    In other news, sun rises!
    Film at 11.

    1. avatar RALPH says:

      We citizens need a better union.

      1. avatar John in Ohio says:

        We’d have to disband the old one first but I agree. 🙂

  13. avatar Ralph says:

    If NFL headquarters were in Texas instead of New York City, its rules might give off duty cops a discount for carrying at NFL games. Its funny how the stench of NYC permeates everything, isn’t it?

  14. avatar Scrubula says:

    I wish they would have just struck down the ban on legally carried firearms in general.
    Off duty police are no different than CCL holders except that the police are trained in filing the crime reports.

    1. avatar Danny Griffin says:

      These off-duty leo laws were championed by the NRA as a stepping stone to relaxing restricted area carry by average citizens. It hasn’t always worked out that way, though.

  15. avatar Troy H says:

    I’ll say it again, like I always do.
    Concealed means CONCEALED!
    Cops, civilians, WHO-EVER!
    If you need it, great to have it.
    If its concealed and you don’t end up needing it….GREAT! They still didn’t know….its CONCEALED!
    If you don’t have it, need it, and their stupid law is the reason why……
    Its your own fault for not being a conscientious objector!

  16. avatar Dave says:

    Special rules for cops, piss on everyone else as usual…
    Off-duty cops need to protect themselves & others… I’d rather rely on myself to defend my life than a cop on his best day.

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