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Monday, June 9, 2008


posted by on June 9 at 13:29 PM

Dear Greg Nickels,

If you want to do something about gun violence in the city, how about working to close the gun-show loophole, instead of passing yet another pointless, unenforceable (are you going to frisk everyone who goes to city parks, or just set up metal detectors at the gates?), probably unconstitutional ban on licensed concealed weapons in public parks?


A citizen who doesn’t think ending gun violence means selling out civil liberties

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A citizen who doesn’t think ending gun violence means selling out civil liberties.
You are wrong. The good news is that the supreme court agrees with me, not you.

Sorry kid. Guns rule.

Posted by Jeff | June 9, 2008 1:52 PM

How about state officials showing some sense and tightening the requirements for concealed weapons permits? As in: people with a history of mental illness, like this guy, don't get one?

Posted by tsm | June 9, 2008 1:53 PM

I think tsm has the best point - it's a state problem, not a city - or even county - problem.

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 9, 2008 1:57 PM

Nickels is going to be infringing civil rights worse than that around here in the future.

For one thing, he's planning to have Sound Transit's police do what the NYPD's Transit Bureau does: spot checks of the bags of every fifth rider on light rail, and checking bags of riders boarding ST Express Buses.

And don't expect the constitution will work for you - it'll be the judges here telling you the constitution doesn't apply.

Posted by Geraldo | June 9, 2008 1:58 PM

Jeff @1, your point is unclear.  It seems you're asserting the contrary point that ending gun violence does mean selling out civil liberties.  What I can't tell is whether you're implying:

1. We should sell out civil liberties.

2. We should not end gun violence.

Can you clarify this for us?

Posted by lostboy | June 9, 2008 2:01 PM

@5 - I think @1 is misreading ECBs point.

Posted by six shooter | June 9, 2008 2:10 PM

Guess I can't read the press release as well as ECB can because my version says "Nickels is a founding member of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, which is promoting federal legislation to assist law enforcement in combating gun trafficking" and "Nickels has urged lawmakers in Olympia to ban assault weapons, close the gun show loophole that allows criminals to buy weapons without background checks, deny guns to anyone who has been involuntarily committed to a mental health facility and require trigger locks and safe storage of firearms."

Posted by elrider | June 9, 2008 2:11 PM

I believe ECB is correctly saying that banning guns (concealed or not) in public places is as constitutional as banning free speech in public places.

Posted by six shooter | June 9, 2008 2:11 PM

We could protect the entire Second Amendment and make everybody who wants a gun have to qualify for and enlist in the National Guard. We could keep track of both the guns and the gun nuts that way.

Posted by elenchos | June 9, 2008 2:15 PM

You know your point has already been decided against by the Supreme Court, right elenchos?

That said, I would love the chance to yell "Fire" in a crowded theater.

Posted by six shooter | June 9, 2008 2:18 PM

BLAH. Restricting rights for people who have been involuntarily committed is a horrible horrible idea. People are involuntarily committed for conditions like anorexia, PTSD, and suicidal episodes -- not for having a violent or criminal history. People get BETTER from these conditions, which is why they are RELEASED from commitment.

Some states restrict gun rights based on drug and alcohol use. Should we ban guns for people who had an MIP 20 years ago or have ever smoked weed?

Posted by poppy | June 9, 2008 2:22 PM

Hazaa! Good point ECB. Kudos.

Posted by Rotten666 | June 9, 2008 2:27 PM



Posted by elenchos | June 9, 2008 2:27 PM

I agree the trade show loophole needs to be closed. It needs to be closed at the state level, ideally in every state.

Would you support tougher sentences for offenders, I'm curious?

Posted by Dougsf | June 9, 2008 2:33 PM

Holy shit. I read that wrong. I actually agree. My bad.

I'm just so used to Erica putting up a poorly thought out argument, that I assumed she was anti-guns.

My bad and my apology please.

Posted by Jeff | June 9, 2008 2:37 PM

My work here is done.

Posted by lostboy | June 9, 2008 3:14 PM

Are we passing a law just to pass a law, or have crazy felons been buying guns at gun shows?

Posted by bg checks at all antiques roadshows | June 9, 2008 3:33 PM

After all, if they want a gun that much, they should be pulling two tours of duty in Baghdad ...

Posted by Register All Gun Nuts Not In Iraq | June 9, 2008 3:40 PM


So you're saying that everyone who is pro-gun should serve in the military first? What exactly is your reasoning?

Last I checked, the military has almost nothing to do with constitutional rights and protecting civil liberties.

Posted by I served in Iraq and I carry a concealed gun | June 9, 2008 4:15 PM

Or, god forbid, everyone who buys a gun should be tested on whether they know what they are doing with said gun. They make you do that to buy a hunting license.

Not to mention getting a driver's license.

Posted by Sha | June 9, 2008 8:17 PM

I really hope you all understand that Oreg nickels is just grand standing. No city may enact a law that can supercede Washington state law. He cannot just make a law just because he wants to. Its in the constitution of Washington state. Maybe it's just me but isn't this an election year for him.

Posted by Rashaan | June 9, 2008 8:45 PM

I knew it was unconstituional

RCW 9.41.290: State preemption
The state of Washington hereby fully occupies and preempts the entire field of firearms regulation within the boundaries of the state, including the registration, licensing, possession, purchase, sale, acquisition, transfer, discharge, and transportation of firearms, or any other element relating to firearms or parts thereof, including ammunition and reloader components. Cities, towns, and counties or other municipalities may enact only those laws and ordinances relating to firearms that are specifically authorized by state law, as in RCW 9.41.300, and are consistent with this chapter. Such local ordinances shall have the same penalty as provided for by state law. Local laws and ordinances that are inconsistent with, more restrictive than, or exceed the requirements of state law shall not be enacted and are preempted and repealed, regardless of the nature of the code, charter, or home rule status of such city, town, county, or municipality.

Posted by rashaan | June 9, 2008 8:51 PM

Hey everyone -- let's get guns out there everywhere. If only we had lots of guns in America, we would be safe !!

More guns = more safety,you can see it in Guatemala, Pakistan, Kazakstan, Nuevo Laredo -- everywehre that has guns is more safe!!

No guns, like Canada, Japan, Germany, Holland -- totally scary and unsafe!!

Also: why stop at guns, why not bazookas, too?

Posted by Ten shooter | June 9, 2008 9:06 PM

According to State law, I believe RCW chapter 42? states that only the State may make laws pertaining to weapons and No County or Municipality may do so.
His action is illegal under washington state law.
Same as Bellingham's anti Taser law.

One more good reason to get rid of our current governor who is anti Individual Liberty.

closing the percieved gun show loophole is just a feelgood reaction.

why is it gun banners think that revoking our god given right to self defense is a good thing?

Posted by Poindexter P. Parkenfarker | June 10, 2008 9:11 AM

Speaking of grandstanding: The law that "closes the gun show loophole" would simply require anyone who offers a gun for sale at a gun show to be a licensed dealer.

That doesn't close any "loophole", that adds an additional requirement that does not exist outside a gun show.

It would still be perfectly legal for me to sell a personally owned firearm across the street from the gun show, or in my house, or in the parking lot of a 7-11.

It would do absolutely nothing to prevent criminals from illegally buying guns and only make it more difficult for uncle Buck to sell his 20 year old duck gun that he no longer needs.

I'm confused about the whole concept. It is already illegal for a felon to possess a firearm. How does this law prevent them from breaking that law? By making it illegaler? These laws don't make it more difficult for criminals, they make it more difficult for your average Joe.

I actually don't oppose the CONCEPT of preventing criminals from obtaining guns...the only problem is that it is impossible to put into practice. Criminals will always find a way...even if it means (gasp!) breaking the law.

By making it harder for law abiding citizens, you don't effect the criminals in the least and the only effect is to create more and more disarmed sheep for the victim pool.

Posted by Sailorcut | June 10, 2008 12:49 PM

Ten Shooter, have you ever been to Switzerland? It's one of the safest countries on earth and just about everyone there over the age of 18 if all but REQUIRED to own a gun, and not just any gun, and assault rifle. It's part of their national defense. As far as Kazakstan, Guatamala, etc. where are you getting your numbers about more people owning guns there than in the US? It really has to do more with the level of criminal activity, drug trade, etc, than how many people own a gun. When you out law guns only the outlaws will have guns. Please, everyone, try to get that through your heads. You're not going to solve the gun violence problem by telling people to stop it. A criminal is going to be a lot more retiscent about pulling out a gun in a crowded park or at a school or robbing someones home if he knows the chances of someone else having a gun to fire back is a lot greater. And even if he's just looking to commit suicide, at least he won't be able to take out 30 people before he does it.

Posted by Warm Fuzzy Puppies | June 10, 2008 3:29 PM

As usual most of the craziest bullshit gets spewed out of the mouths who know the least about a particular subject.

The mayor is a fucking idiot but everyone knows that. This just magnifies that fact.

The idiot psycho who fired the gun at the park should not have been issues a permit in the first place. That was a failure of the system in place. Fix the fucking system for doing the background checks if you want to solve the root of that problem.

Given that he was a mental patient and had problems with rationalization, does anyone here think that any law was going to stop him if he was intent on shooting someone? Why was he even out in public at all if he was that unstable?

If someone who is that unstable is going to be possessing a gun, and all the law abiding people are following the law and not possessing guns, tell me this... when the shooting starts from the crazy guy ignoring the law... who is going to stop him?

If I am going to be attending an event, and I have the ability to defend myself and my family from said crazy guy, how do I feel safe being total defenseless to a mad man firing a gun? Do I just stick my head in the nearest gopher hole and wait for the cops to show up 5-10 minutes... err I mean 3 or 4 pistol clips later?

Create all the laws you want. The only people being infringed upon are the law abiding and sane. Yet we are the ones most exposed by this type of feel good nonsense.

Did anyone see the victims of the shooting were TOTALLY OPPOSED to the suggested ban by Mayor McFool?

Ohh... and to the other point. The "Gunshow Loophole" is another bullshit point ECB. Tell me your highness... how many crimes are committed with guns purchased at a gun show? Are terrorists and felons really attending these shows ? Really? The sad thing is... you gun control wackos need to rely on sensationalism to garner sympathy for your cause.

The real world isn't so touchy feely. I will not compromise my individual right to self protection just so you can fell all fuzzy inside that "more guns off the street" equates to safety. I do not trust SPD for my safety. They have proved themselves highly incompetent and undependable in crisis situations, or worse yet, understaffed and inadequate to provide the necessary security that is required of them.

Posted by Reality Check | June 10, 2008 3:55 PM

#4 - Sound Transit doesn't have a police force. They use a hired security company - Securitas - for all their facilities.

Nickels can't make Sound Transit do anything its Board doesn't want to do - although he is on the Sound Transit Board (but not in a Chair position or anything like that).

Posted by Michael | June 10, 2008 8:13 PM

I am a Police Officer by trade. I agree not every yahoo out there should own a gun. But I do think that there are many more responsible gun owners than yahoo's. The Mayors plan is pure grandstanding and totally unenforceable. I think that state law is pretty clear on this. We do have a problem with issuing concealed weapons permits to people mentally unfit. But in this area we have a clash of Federal and State laws. On the one hand Federal Laws protecting patient privacy, on the other state laws on licensing CCW's. Just try calling a hospital to ask on the condition of someone, what a nighmare that has become.
I do know that removing guns does not create utopia. A very close friend of mine lives in Dublin. She hates the fact that she and her husband cannot walk freely at night downtown because of groups of young men that roam and prey on people. You really don't see that here, strong arm enough people and the odds will catch up to you. Eventually you'll run into that old man armed with a .45
We are never going to agree on guns, concealed carry, more gun laws etc. I think we can all agree that we need to take a harder line on gun crimes. Felons in possession of guns should be sentenced to at least 5 yrs as a starting point, not the 2-3 months they get in this state.
A final note here...I am a police officer, I try hard but I cannot protect you from everything. You have a responsibility to be able to protect yourself. King County encourages people to have food, water and essentials to survive a natural disaster for the first 3 days. It may take that long to get help to the region. Think about it, It may also take that long for us to re-establish law and order.

Posted by Kahana | June 11, 2008 12:16 AM

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