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The cheese-sodden, lefty haven of Madison, WI doesn’t like what it’s seeing coming out of the capitol building. No, not one little bit. First it was Governor Walker and the legislature curtailing public employee collective bargaining rights. Then it was the overall state budget. You probably saw video of all of the sturm und drang during the process when Madison’s considerable aging hippie population dusted off their tie-dyes and tiresome slogans (don’t forget the Nazi accusations!) and protested in and around the state capitol.  So now that the legislature’s moving forward on legalizing concealed carry, it’s time to throw up some more roadblocks…

Madison Mayor (and former campus radical) Paul Soglin’s evidently looked south and liked what he saw in former Mayor Daley’s efforts to make it as difficult as possible for gun owners to actually practice their second amendment rights. When the McDonald decision in the Supreme Court meant the city could no longer prevent Chicagoans from owning handguns, Daley and the Chicago city council enacted onerous licensing, training and gun registration laws.

So Soglin put his little thinking cap on and has come up with an idea to do Chicago one better. Like just about every other state in the union, the new Wisconsin law will allow property owners to post signs indicating that concealed weapons aren’t welcome. Soglin’s looked at this and decided that reductio ad absurdum isn’t so absurd after all. If he gets his way, CCW holders will have to get WRITTEN PERMISSION from every private property owner whose property they wish to visit while carrying a heater.

Dane County, of which Madison’s a part, is in the process of enacting regulations to keep guns out of county buildings. “We will work with County Executive Joe Parisi and other local leaders to ensure that firearms are not brought onto private or public property without written permission,” Soglin said.

Soglin’s no idiot. He knows damned good and well that this is going to be the subject of a law suit the minute the law hits the books. Assuming he pulls it off. “I believe that the Wisconsin and United States constitutions give precedent to property rights and therefore the presumption favors the desire of the property owner,” Soglin said. “This will probably be decided in the court.” Ya think?

Second amendment rights are never secured. They’ll always be obstructed and opposed by those who are concerned with “public safety.” The people of Chicago have shown what they think of Daley’s efforts to limit their freedom. There’s no reason to expect Wisconsinites will be any different.


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  1. The CCW permit counts as permission for public property, and I’d be surprised if the law didn’t include a way for owners of publicly-accessible property (stores, restaurants) to indicate they don’t want the business of concealed carry permit holders.

  2. Tort law will solve this one: Wisconsin holds a landowner liable for “for injuries resulting from conduct foreseeably creating an unreasonable risk to others.” Thus, if the owner refuses to allow a guest the means to protect himself, that foreseeably creates a risk of injury should the guest be attacked on the premises while disarmed, under the principles of Pagelsdorf v. Safeco Ins. quoted above. And yes, I are a lawyer.

    • Pagelsdorf v. Safeco is almost not relevant. And, you may be a lawyer, but you’re not an insurance agent. Do some more reading as insurance as governmental. I am just bacxk from Dallas where almost every place (and certainly, every bar) has a sign reading, “No Guns.”

      • I have some familiarity with Dallas, and I’m not sure where you’re getting the impression that almost every place has such signs… Additionally, I’m not sure how the existence (or not) of such signs has any bearing on the proposed Madison ordinance. As part of the law covering CCing in Texas there is a provision for property owners to prohibit licensed concealed carry on their premises. And a very specific sign to be used (it is not “no guns”). In the absence of the prescribed signage, CC is permitted. Written permission doesn’t enter into it. As to bars, the law also addresses this with reference to establishments that derive more than 51% of their revenue from the sale of alcohol for on-premises consumption. CC is prohibited, and the desires of the property owner do not enter into it.

        So…what’s this got to do with Madison?


        • That’s a more informed answer and I appreciate it. When I said, “No Guns” signs, I was simplifying. They were clearly more specific. And yes, I saw them just about every bar/club in the downtown area. Of course, after several sightings, I was looking for them.

          My comments are far more relevant than the mention of Pagelsdorf v. Safeco. Since we are discussing the right of owners to post specific signage to prohibit guns within their establishment, I think it is relevant, the WI law allows for such signage and an owner would not be held liable for injury to anyone who is denied their right to conceal carry within such an establishment – as was suggested by the “lawyer” above.

        • Okay, in the bar and club district most locations are going to be mandated by law under the 51% rule to prohibit CC. Makes sense. However, I’d hazard the guess that most locations , when not subject to the rule, are permissive. Anyroad.

          I’d probably agree that property owners are not liable for injury subject to their prohibition of firearms, given the legal provision . Has it ever been reviewed in court, to anyone’s knowledge?


  3. “The people of Chicago have shown what they think of Daley’s efforts to limit their freedom.” That they like it? They did reelect the guy every chance they got: six times.

    • … only the dead ones…

      Come to think of it — maybe that’s why they like gun control — it increases their voter base

    • He enacted the restrictions with a few months left in his final term so voters didn’t get a chance to express their thoughts on the matter.

      Not that it matters. If you think Daley would ever lose an election – in Chicago – that he actually wanted to win, I have some choice real estate in Joplin I’d be glad to show you.

  4. Private property rights are protect by the Constitution. Like it or not it is legal for any private property owner to prohibit guns on his property. No legislation needed. It is up to the permit holder to decide whether or not he/she will patronize a gun banning business.

    • Agreed. But in all the other jurisdictions in the country, private property owners can post the ‘no guns’ sign. No sign means it’s assumed that CCW is OK. Soglin wants carriers to get prior written permission before entering the property.

      • That’s an easy one to fix. If I am the property owner I would have a stack of pre-signed form letters saying I give you permission to care in my place of business either openly or concealed any time you want. Just fill in your name.

        For racer: If the gun is concealed sure he doesn’t know. My point is that he find out he can kick you ass out of his place of business. Property rights are co-equal with Second Amendment rights.

        • I had the same thought about the stack of “permission slip.” The trouble is, will most private property owners (homes, clubs, dry cleaners, hardware stores) do this?

          It’s an intentially onerous roadblock put in the way of CCW holders to make carrying more trouble than most people will put up with.

    • Not in Florida. They can make a RULE against “guns” on their property. But, it doesn’t carry the weight of LAW. If they catch me CCWing, they can ask me to leave, at which point I must leave. If I refuse, then it’s trespass and big trouble. But, concealed is concealed, as they say. So glad to be in Florida! 🙂

  5. State law 66.0409 prohibits any municipality from enacting firearms restrictions that are more stringent than state law. If Madison tries to pass this, yep they will be in court but not over private property rights, rather violation of 66.0409. It will go to the State Supreme Court and they will hold the 1995 (66.0409) statute constitutional which will nullify the city/county ordinance(s).

    Those property owners who don’t want carry can “opt-out” but a written permission “opt-in” ordinance will be more stringent and be struck down. Madison is already facing multiple lawsuits because of their anti-rights policies, you would think the people would be getting sick of spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on legal fees instead of services.

  6. Madison has had an ordinance on the books for a long time to the effect that handgun sales either public or private are banned. both MC Sports and Dicks Sporting goods ran afowl of this in the last 10 years and were made to stop sales of hand guns. Madison is definitely the home of liberal and self serving politicians and a strong Democratic base and their political behavior is now bringing a rash of shootings i.e. a little Chicago scene. I do my firearms business out of town or with a FFL in the Town of Blooming Grove


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