Wednesday, April 8, 2009

New gun "convenience" bill screws metro gun owners

As told by Joe Olson.

This bill must be stopped.

In the last two weeks while the bill was "hidden" in committee, Rep. Dill's uncased, unloaded CONVENIENCE BILL for shotgun hunters has morphed into a monstrosity that does the following:

1. Recognizes that the 7-county Metro area is "different" from the rest of the state, that the metro area needs "more stringent" gun laws, and makes metro gun owners into second-class gun owners,

2. Identifies handgun hunters as second-class hunters,

3. automatically bans firearm discharge in cities of 2500 population irrespective of the city's desire with no exceptions possible,

4. automatically bans firearm discharge on all "school grounds" including off-campus open fields, owned by a school district, where hunting has always been allowed with no exceptions possible, and

5. continues the ban on carry of long guns in a vehicle under a carry permit.

This bill does nothing of significant value, provides a minor convenience to a few group hunters and sporting clay shooters, and ACCEPTS the policy that METRO AREAS ARE DIFFERENT FROM THE REST OF MINNESOTA AND NEED MORE STRINGENT GUN LAWS.

If you live in the metro area, rural "pro-gun" legislators just agreed with the most virulent anti-gunners that YOU are the problem and that SECOND-CLASS GUN OWNERS like YOU need to be subject to MORE STRINGENT gun prohibitions. Yup, they sold you out for a golf cart ride!

The antis are getting, courtesy of some narrow-minded, politically insensitive, "pro-gun" legislators their most prized desire. A POLICY THAT TREATS THE METRO AREA AS A DANGEROUS PLACE TO ALLOW GUNS. They couldn't get this in 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 (they tried to add it to the Carry Bill but lost big), 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, or 2008. But they are getting it now!

Either this provision must be KILLED in its entirely or the "unless" clauses stripped out (which will probably kill it). The bill is now in the House Environment and Natural Resources Finance Division. The offending provisions should come out in that committee.

It is time to HAMMER on, on, and on
Senator list to come later.

Here is HF128 which is now on page 15-16 of a larger game and fish bill (HF)1238:
15.10 Sec. 31. Minnesota Statutes 2008, section 97B.045, subdivision 1, is amended to read:
15.11 Subdivision 1. Restrictions. (a) A person may not transport a firearm in a motor
15.12vehicle unless the firearm is:
15.13(1) unloaded and in a gun case expressly made to contain a firearm, and the case
15.14fully encloses the firearm by being zipped, snapped, buckled, tied, or otherwise fastened,
15.15and without any portion of the firearm exposed;
15.16(2) unloaded and in the closed trunk of a motor vehicle; or
15.17(3) a handgun carried in compliance with sections 624.714 and 624.715.
15.18(b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), a person may transport an unloaded, uncased
15.19firearm, excluding a pistol as defined in paragraph (c), in a motor vehicle while at a
15.20shooting range, as defined under section 87A.01, subdivision 3, where the person has
15.21received permission from the lawful owner or possessor to discharge firearms; lawfully
15.22hunting on private or public land; or travelling to or from a site the person intends to hunt
15.23lawfully that day or has hunted lawfully that day, unless:
15.24(1) within the seven-county metropolitan area as defined in section 473.121,
15.25subdivision 4;
15.26(2) within an area where the discharge of a firearm has been prohibited under section
15.28(3) within the boundaries of a home rule charter or statutory city with a population
15.29of 2,500 or more;
15.30(4) on school grounds as regulated under section 609.66, subdivision 1d; or
15.31(5) otherwise restricted under section 97A.091, 97B.081, or 97B.086.
15.32(c) For the purposes of this section, a "pistol" includes a weapon designed to be fired
15.33by the use of a single hand and with an overall length less than 26 inches, or having a
15.34barrel or barrels of a length less than 18 inches in the case of a shotgun or having a barrel
15.35of a length less than 16 inches in the case of a rifle:
16.1(1) from which may be fired or ejected one or more solid projectiles by means
16.2of a cartridge or shell or by the action of an explosive or the igniting of flammable or
16.3explosive substances; or
16.4(2) for which the propelling force is a spring, elastic band, carbon dioxide, air or
16.5other gas, or vapor.
16.6"Pistol" does not include a device firing or ejecting a shot measuring .18 of an inch, or
16.7less, in diameter and commonly known as a "BB gun," a scuba gun, a stud gun, or nail gun
16.8used in the construction industry or children's pop guns or toys.

To understand the above you need to know about this existing statute:
Subdivision 1.Terms.
For the purposes of this chapter, the terms defined in this section have the meanings given them in this section, except as otherwise expressly provided or indicated by the context.
Subd. 4.Metropolitan county.
"Metropolitan county" means any one of the following counties: Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott or Washington.

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