Capitol Hall Report – August 8, 2016 – Are Gun Free Zones Safe?

Gun Free Zones Safe?

Gun-free zones have become hunting preserves for Islamic terrorists and psychopathic murderers, who have declared open season on innocent civilians.

As I have articulated before, it is no surprise that terrorists and criminals seeking to commit mass murder target gun-free zones. Businesses that establish themselves as “gun-free” provide a guaranteed path of least resistance for terrorists and psychopathic murderers by ensuring that all of the law-abiding patrons in their establishment, including those licensed to carry a firearm, have surrendered their right of self-defense at the door. Ironically, there is no evidence to suggest that terrorists or psychopathic murderers have ever surrendered their ambition to kill patrons upon notice that the business had designated the premises “gun-free.”

The terrorist attack in Orlando served as a recent and painful reminder that, without the presence of an armed deterrent, a gun-free zone only will only remain gun free until a terrorist or criminal individual intentionally breaks the law by entering the zone and beginning their shooting spree. When these individuals attack, they do so with the legislative assurance that the targets inside these gun-free zones will be both unarmed and unaware of what is to come.

Currently, while these gun-free zone businesses possess the right to prevent legally licensed to carry permit holders from carrying a firearm while on their premise, there is no designation of responsibility to provide for the safety of their patrons during an active shooter situation. That is about to change this coming legislative session I intend to introduce a bill that holds gun-free zone businesses responsible for any harm that befalls a licensed gun carrier as a result of being deprived of his or her weapon.

The bill, to be modeled after Tennessee’s new law SB 1736, will dictate that gun free zone businesses assume custodial responsibility for the safety and defense of any permit holder while on the posted property and while on any property the permit holder is required to traverse in order to travel to and from the location where the permit holder’s firearm is stored. In short, the legislation focuses on creating a civil cause of action for any licensed to carry permit holder who suffered an injury that could have otherwise been avoided were they armed with their firearm.

This legislation will encourage Texas businesses to do the right thing and allow their patrons to carry the firearms they have lawfully trained with for self-protection. At a time when mass shootings are occurring frequently at gun-free zones, the elimination of these mass shooting magnets – not by ban – but with legal ramifications should something occur, would be a big step forward toward real progress for the safety and well-being of citizens.