Monday, November 7, 2022

Florida Blind Man Falsely Arrest Over Openly Carried Gun (Actually Cane) © 2022 Phillip Evans

Once Deputy Gohdy verified the cane was not a firearm, the "reasonable, articulable suspicion" basis for the initial detainment vaporized. Mr. Hodges should have immediately been free to go. However, the deputy, admitting to be a "tyrant", pressed the issue as well as another deputy and demanded that Mr. Hodges identify himself.

When he politely refused, as well as properly asserted his right to not be searched, they cuffed him and rifled through his papers anyway, and took him to jail.

This incident is wrong on so many levels. Now that the Second Amendment's "shall not be infringed" is starting to mean what it says, due to Justice Thomas' brilliant opinion in Bruen, the handful of states that generally ban the open carry of firearms like Florida, are going to either repeal the ban, or have it ruled as unconstitutional. Voluntarily or kicking and screaming it will happen, and soon.

Look, I get it that most citizens who legally carry would never carry openly. But I'm at least hopeful that no one who claims to be a genuine supporter of our rights would agree to put someone behind bars for peacefully carrying a holstered, visible pistol. You might not think it a good idea, but you choose to live and let live, right?

Folks, this is Gov. Ron DeSantis' state, the one who promised to sign "Constitutional Carry" if a bill landed on his desk, but who has never publicly called for it in earnest to get to his desk. See the catch?

The general ban on open carry is just one. Others are the many enumerated off-limits places, as well as a slew of unenumerated off-limits places where a private entity can temporarily rent, lease, or have a permitted event on public property used for the general public, and can ban firearms carry on your tax-payer owned property. That's a big one, and should be fixed pronto.

Thursday, November 3, 2022

Zoo Atlanta Officials: LIE-ons, Tigers, And Bear-ers, Oh My! © 2022 Phillip Evans

Zoo Atlanta Photo (Public Domain)

I believe the very first sentence is a lie. I'm near 100% certain Zoo Officials consulted with legal resources at the City of Atlanta, and was told flat out they had zero legal grounds, otherwise the City would have gotten behind them and provided at least a little support for their position, but there was none forthcoming.

And if they really believed their legal position was sound, why did they fold so quickly on Oct. 28th? No one at all that I know of threatened any legal action. I certainly did not threaten to sue them, but I did email them on Oct. 20th that it could cost them a lawsuit if they violated anyone's rights. They were certainly free to make a knowledgeable determination as to how to avoid doing such. 

Another odd thing about their statement - If they really believed that lawful carry of weapons was a threat to visitors, they certainly placed avoiding "distraction" and "expense of litigation" at a higher priority than your safety, and it didn't take them long to reach that decision.

Perhaps they truly don't believe lawfully carried weapons are an issue at the Zoo. Such a sentiment is merely an excuse to support their political position of gun control. After all, their official policy since sometime in 2016 until Sept. 1st, 2022 was to ALLOW lawfully carried weapons, with zero problems at all by lawful carriers during that time.

What was the impetus for their Sept. 1st renewed gun ban this year? It was an attempt to piggyback onto the Atlanta Botanical Garden's case in it being decided that it possessed an "estate for years" type lease which gave it ownership rights.

Apparently, Zoo Officials were unable to realize that the Zoo possesses no lease at all for the publicly owned property inside Grant Park. The Atlanta-Fulton County Recreation Authority, a government entity, holds the lease. Some folks just don't know how to pay attention to details, and details often matter.

I've taken my family to visit Zoo Atlanta at least three times in years past, and wore my visibly holstered pistol on my hip, with no issues at all. No one seemed to bat an eye, not even the international visitors. Once, a member of Zoo Security asked to see my license to carry, and I politely provided it. Now, anyone who qualifies for a license is considered a lawful carrier. They are no longer required to do the paperwork and pay a fee to exercise their Second Amendment Rights in public, as it should be.

Some of the comments on this story out on the web are rather humorous. Some are saying because of the Zoo's capitulation, they are never going back. Did they not know the Zoo allowed weapons carry from 2016? Did they also not know the Zoo has never had metal detectors for general admission? 

Others are incredulous that anyone would need a gun at a zoo. I suppose one could make that same empty argument regarding any place that is supposed to be safe. Unfortunately, criminals don't care whether a park, bike trail, zoo, restaurant, theater, library, or school is supposed to safe. When bad guys make appointments, I'll know when I can leave my gun at home. But if I'm on the road traveling to the zoo, I'll be armed, and I won't be leaving my gun in the zoo's parking lot to be potentially stolen. People also sometimes get attacked walking in parking lots.

As for the racist comments that gun rights advocates are only doing this because of criminals who are Black, that's a load of garbage. In several of my blog articles I have made it clear that Black citizens should be armed for their protection. Percentage-wise they are victims of violent crime more than non-Blacks. I have seen Blacks carrying a gun on their hip in the open just like me, and felt safe around them, and have thanked them in person.

A human right such as armed self-defense belongs to us all equally, regardless of race. I wish Black Democrat politicians would believe that too, instead of trying to disarm their own people when they are at just as much or more risk from being harmed by crime than others.