Defenseless in National Parks — Again

Thanks to the gun control lobby, people who might be attacked while visiting any of our vast and often remote national park areas have once again been rendered largely defenseless. A ruling March 19th by a federal judge in Washington, DC, has at least temporarily overturned a rule issued in December by the Bush Administration. The ruling by the Bush Interior Department would have allowed campers, hikers and other persons travelling through or in any of our national park areas, to possess a loaded firearm to defend themselves, so long as they complied with the firearms laws of the state in which the federal park was located. Now, thanks to the judge’s ruling, a person may only possess that firearm if it is unloaded and packed away where it is not readily accessible. In other words, now you can only possess a firearm for self defense while hiking in a national park if the gun is kept somewhere and in such condition that it is not available to defend yourself!

The judge’s ruling is based not on facts, laws or policies that are even remotely relevant to consideration of the right of self-defense or any other legitimate interpretation of federal power. Rather, the judge pegged her ridiculous ruling on the fact that the Bush Interior Department had failed to conduct an extensive environmental impact assessment of the new rule’s effect before implementing it. An environmental impact assessment! In other words, according to the judge’s “reasoning,” even though the pre-existing rule (which is now once again the current rule) allowed a person to carry a firearm in a national park so long as it was unloaded and packed away, and the proposed rule would simply have permitted that very same firearm to be carried loaded rather than unloaded, the administration should nonetheless have engaged in a lengthy and costly environmental impact study — a process likely to have continued for years.

Once again, we are seeing the environmental laws, enacted initially in the 1970s, applied to matters and situations not remotely contemplated to have been covered by those laws, in order to thwart a rule from being implemented because a liberal interest group — in this case, the Brady gun control organization — doesn’t like the policy to be implemented. The National Rifle Association has filed suit to overturn the judge’s ruling.

Even though some Park Rangers have praised the ruling, the real beneficiaries of the ruling are criminals who prey on defenseless campers and hikers — people like Gary Hilton, who has been linked to, charged with, or confessed to several murders in national park areas.


127 comments Add your comment

Dan

March 30th, 2009
12:27 pm

Saul Good, would a militia not consist of individuals? & where in the Constitution does it say that those individuals can’t take their guns home for their own protection?

Also, there has never been any argument made by gun owners that they should have access to a WEAPON OF MASS DESTRUCTION.. You’re being ridiculous, & twisting the facts because you can’t come up with a rational argument against firearms.

Lastly, I’m sure you drive an automobile, which kills more people than guns do in this country, but I don’t hear you liberals asking to have your cars taken away.. You’re arguments are biased & idiotic.

Dan

March 30th, 2009
12:32 pm

Hey Saul Good.. Care to back up your BS claim (see below) with some data? Links? Proof? We’ll be waiting.. A LONG TIME I think..

“the MAJORITY of people that have been killed in our nations parks…have been killed by HUNTERS. Dare you now prove me wrong. You can’t. All statistics point to what I just wrote as being both true and factual.”

Jonesy

March 30th, 2009
12:32 pm

Saul Good: Check these statistics – more people die in car and traffic accidents every year than in all gun related incidents combined.

So here we all are going about our daily business in large, heavy, motorized deadly pieces of equipment that are all regulated up the wazoo (as if that does anything but generate revenues); and there are no calls to ban cars, not even those evil, deadly sports car types. Yet we go day to day trusting that the guy next us on the highway is going to do his best to NOT cause an accident and kill us on the way to work.

AJC Reader

March 30th, 2009
12:38 pm

Why does everyone assume that the loaded firearm would necessarily be used to defenda against another *person*? Was there something in the law/rule/proposed rule change that said that? Because it seems to me that if I am hiking in a national park, I am a heck-of-a-lot more likely to want a loaded firearm to protect me against wildlife than against another person.

Copyleft

March 30th, 2009
12:41 pm

It’s amusing how many of the gun fondlers claim to be experts on the Constitution, yet continue to insist that regulating gun ownership–an act specified in the Second Amendment itself–is somehow “unconstitutional.”

Clearly, some remedial reading training is needed… but not for those of us who can read the ENTIRE amendment.

Mafuta54

March 30th, 2009
12:42 pm

It is for defending against 2 legged as well as 4 legged varmints! It just seems that the “Anti’s” always refer to gun/2A enthusiasts as going to kill people left and right!

Mafuta54

March 30th, 2009
12:45 pm

If you read the second amendment, it says nothing about regulating the right to keep and bear arms. What part of shall not be infringed do you not understand?

A well regulated militia… not a well regulated bearing of arms!

ESR

March 30th, 2009
12:49 pm

Yeah Copyleft, reading a bill is critical. Would have been nice had you democrats read all of the so called stimulas package, you could have read Dodd’s little insertion about the AIG fatcats getting to keep the contractual bonuses. I suppose they were too busy kissing Obama butt to bother ot read it. That would have saved all the phony and fake outcry from Obama and his confederacy of dunces on the hill.

Bob

March 30th, 2009
12:54 pm

This is why I voted for you Bob. Keep it up!

JimInMT

March 30th, 2009
12:58 pm

Amazing how the anti-gun people are so “positive” that they cannot address facts, having to resort to insults and ad hominem attacks against perfect strangers — the rest of us, since they do NOT know who does or does not own a gun in their neighborhoods — including some NRA members who choose not to own, but belong to that group for its express defense of the ENTIRE US Constitution. What a bunch of stupid paranoid morons! How you idiot leftist weenie cry-baby sheeple like to be insulted? Makes you feel good and superior to the rest of us doesn’t it? But, it does not change FACTS. FACT: 60 million law-abiding gun owners in the US did NOT kill anyone this year. Or last. EVER!

shark60

March 30th, 2009
12:59 pm

While we are at it lets ban cars from National Parks. Better still ban cans period. They cause many more deaths daily than guns do. The idiocy of some people baffles me. Call 911 dial a prayer and a Police officer may get there in time to keep you from rotting and stinking too bad.

Jack Franklin

March 30th, 2009
1:04 pm

Stay out of parks & stay out of blogs & you’ll be OK.

JimInMT

March 30th, 2009
1:06 pm

Regarding, “well-regulated” in the Second Amendment, it refers to training and espris de corps (that’s French for something akin to coordinated in action, purpose, interchangeability of calibre of bullets so a dead soldiers lead projectiles can be fired from any other of the militia-persons’ weapons). One cannot have a militia full of morons who decide when or if to attack, or show up with hammers and sickles instead of the best fire power needed to take down tyrants attacking them… The latter “if” would probably be emanating from those who capitulate at the first sign of “trouble”, like those fools who give in to the gummint when it bellows at them from a “bully’s pulpit” — that would be “Obama, The Tele Prompter” Hollywood’s latest action hero — himself unarmed, but SURROUNDED by armed citizens, who by extension of the reasoning proffered by Nan and others, are no different than criminals — which may well be, but for entirely different reasons than they might suppose… the rationale for the Second Amendment.

Jonesy

March 30th, 2009
1:06 pm

Copyleft: since you are so “trained” and no doubt endlessly educated, I thought that you might know what “well regulated” meant in the Founders’ context. Back then “well regulated” meant proficiently trained, armed and well maintained – it did not pertain to the regulation of gunownership by the government.

I know that you probably just made an honest mistake right?

luangtom

March 30th, 2009
1:14 pm

Okay, history students, let’s look at what the 2nd Amendment says….militia is a term that meant the whole of the adult male population of the time to fight against a tyrannical government. The militia of the time did not refer to organized programs such as our current national guard or reserve. These programs did not exist. The arms referred to weapons equal to that of the foot-soldier used against the citizenry, such as muskets and side-arms, not cannons. This information was gleaned from listening to the presentations of Joseph Olson, Hamline University, MN, constitutional law professor….where did you other folks that speak against the gun-owner garner your information from?

luangtom

March 30th, 2009
1:18 pm

Oh, the side-arms carried by law enforcement are there for the protection of the officer wearing them. They are a reactionary force, not a protection unit. They respond to crime 90% of the time and prevent it 10% of time….I apologize for having to add this later rather than include it in my last blurb. So, to say that the Park Ranger or Police Officer is going to protect folks that are out and about is incorrect.

DDT

March 30th, 2009
1:33 pm

Wasn’t Timothy McVeigh a “law abiding” citizen until he blew up the federal building in Oklahoma City?

DDT

March 30th, 2009
1:34 pm

Too bad some of you 2nd Amendment experts don’t have the same regard for the 4th Amendment.

Doug

March 30th, 2009
1:36 pm

Amendment 2 – Right to Bear Arms. Ratified 12/15/1791. Note

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Copyleft

March 30th, 2009
1:37 pm

Read the cases, folks; the Supreme Court has come down on the side of constitutional regulations on gun ownership over and over.

U.S. v Miller; Robertson v City of Denver; U.S. v Oakes; U.S. v Johnson; Eckert v Pennsylvania; Burton v Sills; U.S. v Booker; Mullenix v BATF; U.S. v Walters; and so on….

Regulated ownership is Constitutional; you’re stuck with it, folks, so don’t bother trying to get all fundamentalist on this one.

Jimbo

March 30th, 2009
1:40 pm

For those of you who believe that the right to bear arms is a collective right (meaning you think it’s only for the militia and not individuals.. and have you thought about that? Is any other right in the Bill of Rights collective? No? Huh.. wonder how that works?.. oh wait.. it doesn’t.. yeesh) then I direct you to the Militia Act of 1903. Which says that all males age 17-45 are to be considered part of the “unorganized militia” so I guess the question is “why are we depriving 17-year-olds the right to bear arms?”

Mark

March 30th, 2009
1:42 pm

Copyleft, learn how to use a dictionary! “Regulated-To put or maintain in order;To adjust to a particular specification or requirement.” Therefore, a ‘well regulated Militia’ is one that is properly equipped and ready to respond to ‘provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare and secure the blessings of liberty.’ By the way, that’s also from the Constitution.

Copyleft

March 30th, 2009
1:46 pm

Mark: As I said, check with the Supreme Court. Regulated gun ownership has always been constitutional, and it still is today. HUNDREDS of case precedents back that up.

You may not like it, but you don’t get to make the call. Your preferred interpretation doesn’t matter; the Court’s does.

AtlantaConservative

March 30th, 2009
1:47 pm

It is interesting hearing some of the rhetoric by people such as Copyleft. I can sum this viewpoint up as being “pro rape.”

PRO RAPE – To be pro rape means you are telling your daughters, mothers, sisters, nieces, et al that you are making a collective decision to notify a person looking to commit a violent crime such as rape that the statistical chances of this person being armed for self defense are dramatically reduced, thus making the risk of committing such a crime also reduced.

Jonesy

March 30th, 2009
1:51 pm

DDT: Everyone should have the same regard for the ENTIRE Bill of Rights. That’s the problem. All the ammendments do not get equal importance, the 4th included.

Copyleft: yes regulation has been a part of guns for some time; but that was NOT the intent behind the 2nd ammendment. The fact that it exists has been a result the the slow but progressive encroachment of progressive and liberal idiologies into legislation, not because the Constitution says its OK. Its for “public safety” mentalitites and my favorite: “Do it for the children”.

AtlantaConservative

March 30th, 2009
2:02 pm

I think this whole matter can be summed up with the quote:

“If you outlaw guns, then only outlaws will have guns.”

I like the idea of having a person looking to perpetrate a crime against another person looking to ask himself if the person he is looking to attack is carrying a firearm.

Where the law falls short typically is enforcement of illegal guns. The reason there is a surge in gun sales, beginner’s shooting class and GA carry permits is because people do not have the confidence in the system (system = laws + law enforcement) to guard them against the threat of violent crime.

Where is the community outrage that people have lost their feeling of security to the point they feel they need to pick up arms. There are alot of new gun owners and first time carry permit holders having to grapple this question. It is a scary thing to ask yourself, ‘I am willing to point this gun at an attacker, fight for my life, and put the rest of my life on the line through litigation an court proceedings because of my actions and the fact I wasn’t willing to trust a violent attacker to spare my life.”

EJ Moosa

March 30th, 2009
2:15 pm

For all of those that believe in using statistics for your safety, I have to laugh. Statistical averages did nothing to stop Jennifer Ewing from being attacked on the Silver Comet Trail.

What is the problem with letting individuals protect themselves? If you are not up to that responsibility, so be it. Some of us are up to it.

Roads Scholar–is that you Michael?

EJ

Stupidity

March 30th, 2009
2:16 pm

Copyleft – Since when did a criminal ever give a damn about gun laws? It’s not the honest citizen out hiking or camping with friends and family we need to worry about endangering someone because they HAVE A WEAPON FOR SAFETY…it is the “Couey-type” guys out there who are looking for their next UNARMED victim we should be worried about.

I guess this is another example of sitting around waiting for the Guberment to save us!
STUPID, STUPID, STUPID!!

D.B. WILSON

March 30th, 2009
2:19 pm

I’M 51 YEARS OLD AND I’VE HAD A HAND GUN PERMIT SINCE I WAS 21 YEARS OLD! NEVER BEEN ARRESTED OR EVEN HAD A PARKING TICKET!MY TWO BROTHERS ALSO HAVE PISTOL PERMITS AND MY THREE SONS WILL BE GETTING THEIR’S SOON.WE WERE RAISED TO RESPECT AND PROPERLY USE FIRE ARMS! WHAT’S MORE WE WERE TAUGHT THE DIFFERNCE BETWEEN RIGHT AN WRONG,GOOD AND EVIL!MAYBE THAT’S THE REAL PROBLEM,PEOPLE DON’T KNOW OR DON’T CARE ABOUT THE DIFFERENCE ANY MORE!SO I CARRY A HANDGUN WITH ME IF I GO TO THE STORE OR A WALK IN THE WOODS WITH MY WIFE! TO PROTECT US AGAINST MAN OR BEAST!IT’S BETTER TO HAVE A GUN AND NOT NEED IT, THAN NEED ONE AND NOT HAVE IT! THANK YOU!

Mark

March 30th, 2009
2:21 pm

I challenge anyone out there to find a case of a concealed carry permit holder engaging in a mass shooting. The nursing home in NC? The VT shooting? The 4 Oakland PD officers? All the way back to Lubby’s in Kileen! NONE! Some of them were even prohibited persons who STILL managed to acquire firearms DESPITE laws to the contrary. When are you people going to learn that laws DO NOT stop crime; competent, aggressive, and (when necessary) armed resistance is what STOPS crime. Less live criminals equals less crime! To quote Mr Burke, ‘All that is required for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing.’

SaferThanYou

March 30th, 2009
2:31 pm

Since The U.S. Constitution and The Bill of Rights framed our inalienable rights and predates activist judges, my right to own a gun which can not be infringed, CAN NOT BE INFRINGED by Copyleft or any judge, bill or law.

I choose to protect my family with the gun I’ve never had to use to do so. But, crime still gets reported daily about murders, robberies, home invasions, etc. These crimes are not imaginary. They really happen and guns are often the leverage which allowed the criminal to win.

Any person who willingly allows their family to be subject to force does not deserve to be defended, even though our laws provide him or her with that right.

The thinning of the herd continues.

Maybe we gun owners should provide a hotline for the spouses and children of individuals like CopyLeft. It might be our moral responsibility to protect the defenseless.

Future Park Ranger

March 30th, 2009
2:42 pm

There was a comment made by Road Scholar that make said if there is a problem in a park that you should contact a park ranger and they can defuse the situation. There are a few points I would like to make to this comment. First there are not enough park rangers in most parks to be everywhere all the time. One big reason for this is that most parks whether they are state or federal are having to make cut backs on the number of rangers due to lack of funding. Not to mention the fact that it would be impossible to have a ranger covering every inch of a park to prevent a situation.

Another point I would like to make is the simple fact that a criminal is not going to wait around for a ranger to show up. If there is a criminal with a gun and he is willing to use it on another person, do you really think that the ciminal will allow the person being attacked to call for help??? Or with the person does manage to call for help do you really think that he ciminal is going to wait around to get caught. I do not think so.

So lets take a step back. Not enough protection due to not enough rangers due to not enough funding. A gun man is not going to wait for the ranger to eventually get there if somone manages to get a message to one. By this point in time the criminal is either long gone with all of your stuff and your sitting there going I wish i had a way to defend myself. Or you are on the ground dead because you didnt have a to protect yourself against the guy that had a gun and to ranger to be found to protect you.

Road Scholar

March 30th, 2009
2:52 pm

Well, you could dial 911 or the number posted at the entrance to the park or your entrance pass to the park! Duh! While I have to admit the criminal won’t wait for the Ranger, you could help them find the a$$holes by describing their appearance, license tag, etc. They could close the entrances/exits (ie lockdown) until found. Oh, I know it doesn’t provide you with the instant gratification of blowing someone away, but there are other means!Give them what they want, then aggressively contact the police.

Bodacious

March 30th, 2009
2:54 pm

Hey Lefty and Nan, Please submit your photos so that we,the lawful bearers of arms, can walk off and leave you at the mercy of the bad guys instead of saving your sorry asses

Road Scholar

March 30th, 2009
2:54 pm

PS Why aren’t we funding adequate security? Raise the price of admission.

centermass

March 30th, 2009
2:55 pm

Well guys here is the problem, as long as we have a Gov’t that is nothing but a bunch of bed wetting lib’s, we are always going to fight for our gun rights. Its the LIB’S way or no way as far as they are concerned and that is whats so disturbing about this country.

Road Scholar

March 30th, 2009
2:56 pm

Forgot to add: Cut taxes some more, that will pay for the security!

Sasquatch

March 30th, 2009
2:57 pm

1. When seconds count, the authorities are only minutes away.

2. I’d rather have the means to protect myself and my loved ones, and never need it, than not have the means and need it just one time.

I’m a former police officer, and I believe that honest citizens who are prepared and equipped to protect themselves, their loved ones, and each other if necessary are the best deterrent to our society continuing its headlong plunge into lawlessness.

Gandalf, the White!

March 30th, 2009
2:58 pm

I hope Copyleft tries to break into my home…. :-)

Redneck Convert

March 30th, 2009
2:59 pm

Well, I keep my anti-tank weapon and the two machine guns I use for hunting and self defense loaded all the time and I’ll keep them that way when I go to a park. People give you a wide berth when you stake out a camping site and they see you with a M-60 and a big long string of ammo for it. If one of the criminals ever come for me they’ll need a vacuum cleaner to pick up the remains. This is GA, not some yankee state.

Have a good day everybody.

Bodacious

March 30th, 2009
3:03 pm

Red, I’ll bring mine and we can camp next to each other and have covering fields of fire.

Bodacious

March 30th, 2009
3:10 pm

Bad Boys, Bad Boys, What ya gonna do, What ya gonna do, LEFTY when they come for YOU ?????

BUCK-50

March 30th, 2009
3:11 pm

WE NEED TO POST SIGNS AT OUR PARKS; WARNING ,ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK! THE BEARS DON’T NEED GUNS,ONLY THE CEIMINALS HAVE WEAPONS AND YOUR 911 DIAL A PRYER PROBABLY WON’T EVAN HAVE ANY BARS!!!

Smitch270

March 30th, 2009
3:24 pm

What a LINE Of CRAP!! It is my second ammendment right to bear arms and protect myslef and my family form any threat, person or animal. I have spent thousands of hours hunting fishing and enjoying the outdoors. I have had to use my firearm to protect myself from an unleashed violent dog. I have never shot,robbed or raped any person,or have broke any Laws you see I obey the laws and yes I carry and firearm were ever the law allows me to. It it my choise “Not to be a victim” so it is two shots center mass and one shot in the head!

For all the anti-gunners and Liberals it is my tax dollars spent on hunting and fishing permits, tags, and licenses pays for the upkeep of the National Forest and Parks.

It should be my right to carry a firearm just as the Laws of Arizona allow me to do so. Just remember if you come to me for help and I am unarmed because of this B.S. law…expect NO HELP form me! I don’t know if your intent is to do harm, so I will leave you and your family to your distress and I hope you the best!

Just remember Americans that have a sack will protect thier individual rights and will keep this country safe.

Californication

March 30th, 2009
3:28 pm

CopyLeft, you are very illiterate when it comes to guns. If you stop all law abiding citizens from carrying guns then only the bad guys would have them. Do the bad guys follow the law? I think not, so next time you are robbed at gun point at a place where nobody but the bad guys have them what are you going to do? Oh that’s right Obama will take care of you.

Georgia Gomer

March 30th, 2009
3:43 pm

Interesting that the example Barr gives is Hilton, whose crimes were in National Forests which comply with state carry rules, unlike National Parks. National Forest carry rules weren’t changed by Bush or Obama.

Californication

March 30th, 2009
3:46 pm

CopyLeft, why do you hate America? If you don’t believe in the constitution you are free to leave. In fact let me know where to send you your one way ticket to China, you seem like you would be a good fit there. Only the bad guys have guns there, and they are the government.

Paladin

March 30th, 2009
3:57 pm

I will carry a self-defense gun. Why? Because a cop is too heavy.

Melvin

March 30th, 2009
3:58 pm

Come on people it hasn’t anything to do with safety of non firearm owners. Simply put it has all to do with a activist/political wing exercising they’re ability to take something away from another group that does not chair they’re political ideology.
Look around us, we are surrounding by ankle biting activists who are against everything. They’re against cigarettes, fast food, hunting, fishing, walking on the beach, riding four wheelers, dirt bikes, riding horses, fireworks, motor vehicles, nuclear power plants, light bulbs, fur coats, and humans in general.
Why do we put up with their horse squeeze, like one putz said, “You have your guns we have our legislation to take your guns away from you.” Its bout time we put these little pesky cretins back under the rocks from whence the came.

MojaveGreen

March 30th, 2009
4:14 pm

I’m sorry she feels that way. It don’t have any impact on my life. Why? because the U.S. Supreme Courts (easily verified threw simple research) have ruled time and time again that law enforcement is not obligated to protect me. That that obligation for my own safety rests squarely on my shoulders and mine alone. As such I will do what ever I deem necessary to protect myself up to and including lethal force. Yes I will continue to carry my sheath knife or Colt Commander 45 acp. Yes it will be loaded with ball ammo or +P hydra-shock ammo. Why? because I refuse to be a victim of crime. Yes If some scum sucking pos criminal wants to try his or her luck, I will of course do what I need to do to ensure my safety and well being. Why? Because you law enforcement types, Despite the great jobs you do to try and make the population feel safe, No disrespect intended ,are incapable of protecting me when I might need it. I am forced to live in the real world not a make believe world that these brain dead politicians and judges seem to live in. As such I am forced to acknowledge reality for what it is and act accordingly, and until I see Park Rangers or Police Officers at each corner and at mid point location of a city block or at a tree or desert bush every 500 feet where you can respond faster and until the US Supreme Courts holds you responsible to the obligation of my safety. I will continue to do what I need to do to ensure my own safety as well as that of my family and close friends. If the government don’t like that way of thinking. The to bad so sad. You politicians need to go to the hospital and ask the surgeons to remove your heads from your butts. because it apparently is stuck so far up there that you can not get it out on your own. You also need to recognize that by handing out real punishments to those that choose to attack otherwise law abiding citizen is what works. Not doing things that make it easier for them to make more victims. But then you are on the same side as the criminals anyways. lol. If some people dont want to own fire arms. That is their right. They can rely on the government sponsored dial a prayer, better known as 911 if they choose. Maybe someone will get to them in time maybe not. That is their choice and I respect that. I however will not respect them imposing their beliefs down my throat. I will take my safety in my own hands. Now, what the hell does an environmental study have to do with personal self defense anyways?