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They knew ahead of time; wanted to make a point
Legislative pistoleros told they can't pack heat on refinery tour
By Glen Warchol
The Salt Lake Tribune
Salt Lake Tribune
Article Last Updated:08/16/2007 02:15:07 PM MDT

LAYTON - Wednesday was shaping up to be a long, boring day for Utah lawmakers on a Davis County visit that promised presentations on composite technology, highway congestion and a hoedown on Antelope Island.

Then their tour buses pulled over at the gate to the Chevron refinery and four of their colleagues dramatically filed off to unholster concealed guns.

"It was one of those 'Only in Utah' experiences," said Rep. Roz McGee, who, along with everyone else, watched from the bus.

The four dug out their handguns (one from an ankle holster) and turned them over to National Rifle Association lobbyist Clark Aposhian, who stored them in his car until they finished the tour of the refinery.

Chevron, unlike the Legislature and the University of Utah, does not allow weapons on its premises.

The identities of three of the pistol packers came as no surprise to lawmakers: Rep. Curt Oda, R-Clearfield; Sen. Mark Madsen, R-Lehi, and Rep. Carl Wimmer, R-Herriman.

But several were startled to learn that Sen. Howard Stephenson, R-Draper, president of the lobbying group Utah Taxpayers Association, packed heat.

Oda, who regularly sponsors guns-rights legislation, acknowledged that the pre-arranged stop to stow their handguns was meant to make a point: "If we have to find ways to carry our guns, we'll find them," he said.

Many lawmakers thought the pistol hand-off, which delayed the tour a few minutes, inconsiderate. They wondered why the four could not have left their guns at home for the day considering they were forewarned the tour was stopping at sensitive security sites, including Chevron and Hill Air Force Base.

"Are they paranoid or what?" asked Rep. Carol Spackman Moss, D-Holladay.

Wimmer, a cop, explained, "I would sooner leave home without my pants than my gun."

Madsen, a gun rights advocate, said, "I didn't want to be without protection all day."

A member of the Republican leadership, a self-described staunch Second Amendment supporter, shook his head. "When you take it to this level to make a point, it's asinine and hurts your own cause."

http://www.sltrib.com/portlet/article/h ... siteId=297

KSL also has an article based on this Trib story.
 

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Car Knocker said:
A member of the Republican leadership, a self-described staunch Second Amendment supporter,
Yeah, they all describe themselves that way. Sunshine friends.

Good on them all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The Chevron refinery is private property. As such, they can legally prohibit firearms and either refuse to admit anyone carrying or eject anyone found to be carrying; it would just be a policy violation, not an illegal act, and would only become illegal if the person refused to comply, triggering the trespassing statutes.

I would suspect that most refineries also prohibit the possession of matches and lighters on their property as a safety issue.

There is no state law that states a private property owner MUST allow legally concealed firearms on his property.
 

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natehunts said:
So is the chevron refinery considered a secured area? If not, wouldn't state law trump thier company policy?
Yes, carrying a weapon onto private property where it is restricted by policy (not law) is not against the law. Not leaving if/when they ask you to (regardless of the reason), is trespassing. And having a weapon in violation of policy IS NOT trespassing. It only becomes trespassing if you don't leave when asked.

Seeing as it's fairly common knowledge that the legislators have CFPs, it made sense for them not to bring them in violation of the policy. For you or me, what they don't know won't hurt them.

I can't help but wonder if the spectacle of this all was a bit over the top. I'm all for their rights to do it, but simply not touring the refinery because they prefer the security of having their weapons with them would have sent a much more powerful and less inflammatory message. I'm afraid this simply teaches businesses that they can post a sign and CFP holders will oblige in leaving their weapons at the door and that's not the point we want to make.
 

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apollosmith said:
... I'm afraid this simply teaches businesses that they can post a sign and CFP holders will oblige in leaving their weapons at the door and that's not the point we want to make.
A very good point. There are many who would like this power, and if granted it would make concealed weapons pointless in many cases (unless you want to leave your gun in the car most of the time).

People must remember that the "property rights" argument is bogus. "Property" is of two forms, "real" (real estate, buildings, etc.) and "personal" (anything else not permanently affixed to real property).

They're trying to say that real property trumps personal property, i.e. they want the same power as being able to discriminate based on the colour of your underwear.

At any rate, there is a pecking order to the "natural" rights of life, liberty, and property. Life is the paramount Right. None of the others matter if you're dead. Liberty is next, as owning property without liberty is slavery.

So, again, "Life" trumps "Property." Property is useless if you're dead.
 

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I found it a very interesting story. I believe that it has been correctly stated above that it is not illegal to be carrying on the private property of an oil refinery -- with this caveat: not illegal by Utah law.

I don't feel so confident that at the Federal level we couldn't be blind-sided by some homeland security law or regulation prohibiting weapons at oil refineries. I don't think that I would like to chance it, especially since refineries are considered at-risk places for terrorist attacks. I would certainly want to research the laws at the Federal level before feeling comfortable in the knowledge of whether or not it is legal to carry a concealed weapon at a refinery.
 

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Personal property does not always "trump" real property. For instance, if you hate gun-toters, gays, whites, or people who wear red underwear, you don't have to allow them in your house. That's an example of real property trumping personal property. This should (and does in many cases) apply to store owners as well. They should have the right to have a policy disallowing guns in their store or refuse services for any reason (red underwear). If we don't agree with their rules, we can choose not to go there.
 

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ebrinton said:
Personal property does not always "trump" real property.
Again... people keep thinking that this is a property issue when it's LIFE (i.e. self-defense) that we're talking about.

When you say that real property trumps personal property, you are describing and effect, not the cause. Ask "why" this works.

A person may do this because no person has the moral authority to intrude on another's property (real or personal) without permission. If one does not have this the prior restraint against trespass (including personal property), the concept of "property" as a natural right would disappear since others would be able to freely utilize others' property without their consent.

The permission must be had first. It is not the property that grants the natural right. It is the liberty of exclusive utilization of physical things, whether "real" or "personal."

... This should (and does in many cases) apply to store owners as well. ...
False, false, false, false... stores are inviting the public at large into their store. This is an explicit, general invitation for all and sundry to come. They do not have the moral right to deny people self-defense just to assuage their paranoia or politics.

If they wanted to engage individuals in a contractual arrangement whereby the individuals agree to engage only in limited means of self-defense, the store owner and the individual are free to do this.

However, if the store owner wishes a third party to force others --- at gunpoint --- to not enter with a weapon, (1) the owner does not have the moral authority to do this, and (2) government does not have delegated this authority to it. Government can only have the same moral authority delegated to it that individuals have. No person can ask a third party to forcibly cause another to not exercise natural rights.

Again, property is a distraction. It's the effect, not the cause.

If one accepts the idea that this is a "property issue" and extend this idea generally, then the government can outright ban guns on "public" (government) property. This is a de facto total gun ban because unless you can figure out a way to not use "public" (government-owned) streets.
 

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ebrinton said:
... if you hate ... gays, whites, ... you don't have to allow them in your house.
The fact that one can do this with gays and whites should be a clue that personal property is not at issue... something else is.
 

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I don't understand all the fancy talk, so let me just put it this way. Are you really saying that it should be illegal for a store to not allow guns?
 

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In fact, there is no statutory basis in Utah on which a store can ban guns from the premises. If a store-owner posts a no-guns sign, you can safely ignore it, but I would personally carry concealed rather than open into such a place ... my preference. If it's concealed, how's the store-owner going to know?

Clark Aposhian has commented several times on just what constitutes trespass, and it doesn't include being legally armed in a store that has posted no-guns.
 

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I think a store open to the general public (note: Costco, Sam’s club, and others that have memberships would not apply) should not be able to limit who comes in. They are acting as if they are public property, and should only be allowed the rules of public property during business hours.
 

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ebrinton said:
I don't understand all the fancy talk, so let me just put it this way. Are you really saying that it should be illegal for a store to not allow guns?
Your assumptions are all backwards --- well-trained by the anti-gunners.

How about, "they can't disallow guns from in the first place." Is that simple enough?
 

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xmirage2kx said:
... note: Costco, Sam’s club, and others that have memberships would not apply ...
That depends on the details of the contract, and whether they truly enforce the "members only" arrangement. If they don't, then they lose the claim that it's a strictly "by contract and consent only" arrangement.

Even then, it's still not wrong to carry. You simply risk them terminating the contract (losing the membership) if you're caught. You have to decide which is more important to you.

- - - - - - - -

An interesting point about "inalienable" rights is the word "inalienable." It's a legal term that means something different from what most people guess it means. According to my Black's Law Dictionary (8th ed.):

inalienable, adj. Not transferable or assignable
In other words, you can't give up inalienable rights, even if you desperately wanted to.

You retain them as long as you're alive by virtue of being alive.

Government may make their exercise illegal. Moralists may decry their exercise reprehensible. You may personally believe that inalienable rights are a farce and refuse to exercise them.

But you still have those rights, and their exercise is moral, regardless.

That really sticks in the craw of professional do-gooders.
 

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blackpuma said:
xmirage2kx said:
... note: Costco, Sam’s club, and others that have memberships would not apply ...
That depends on the details of the contract, and whether they truly enforce the "members only" arrangement. If they don't, then they lose the claim that it's a strictly "by contract and consent only" arrangement.

Even then, it's still not wrong to carry. You simply risk them terminating the contract (losing the membership) if you're caught. You have to decide which is more important to you.
Totally agree. But by claiming a membership then they would be stating "either you follow our rules, or we won’t let you in". By allowing a store like Wal-Mart to ask you to leave because you obey the law they don’t like is absurd. Many states are much worse than Utah... so I can complain too much. I think if they allow just anyone in, then what you have on you hip shouldn’t matter.
 
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