We recently reported that Washington state gun owners are planning an act of civil disobedience. In defiance of the Evergreen State’s freshly-minted Universal Background Check law – brought into being by a mid-term ballot initiative (I-594) – tooled up protestors will exchange firearms. Without a NICS check. In public. In front of the state capitol building. And now mynorthwest.com reports that they will do so without any law enforcement intervention from the State Patrol . . .
The Washington State Patrol say troopers won’t arrest demonstrators who plan to exchange guns at the capitol in protest of Washington’s new background check law.
Washington State Patrol spokesman Bob Calkins says troopers have no plans to arrest anyone.
“We’re not sure we can prove that’s a transfer under the law,” Calkins says. “And we really try to be very accommodating of people who come to the state capitol to express political opinions, engage in free speech.”
However, Calkins says the state patrol is asking demonstrators to practice “good firearm safety practices” by handling guns safely and not pointing them at others or intimidating people.
Calkins says the state patrol doesn’t expect any problems. But troopers will be on hand to monitor the protest and step in if protesters do other things that violate the law or intimidate other capitol visitors.
I’m a little confused by all this. Politicians push and voters pass draconian gun control measures (e.g. New York’s SAFE Act and Maryland’s “assault weapon” ban) that don’t get enforced. In this case, because the dog’s breakfast that is I-594 is so poorly written the state police don’t know if it’s enforceable. Or if they do, they can’t be bothered.
So what’s the point, exactly?