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Posted: 4/17/2001 4:32:09 PM EDT
The Washington Post
Tuesday, April 17, 2001; Page A16

Guns at the Fairgrounds

A NUMBER OF Montgomery County lawmakers are taking aim at gun shows that have been held at county fairgrounds in Gaithersburg for the past decade. To end the practice, a bill sponsored by County Council President Blair Ewing would extend the county's "gun-free zones" to include "multipurpose exhibition facilities," such as the Gaithersburg fairgrounds. The bill also cuts off county funding for any group that allows the display or sale of guns on its property; the fairgrounds receives government grants. A close vote previously expected today is now likely to be postponed for a few weeks at the request of swing-vote council member Isiah Leggett, who wants more time to study the bill.

If we had our way, there would be a federal ban on the general sale of handguns. Failing that, we support regulating the sale and ownership of handguns, registration of those weapons, licensing of handgun owners, a federal law closing gun show loopholes, tighter gun safety measures and curbs on the easy flow of other firearms. That said, we can understand the cautious approach to the proposed county gun ban law.

In the first place, a key provision of the bill may not achieve its stated purpose. The council's legislative attorney has stated that the provision banning gun sales at "multipurpose exhibition facilities" would not apply to the county fairgrounds because it is in Gaithersburg, an incorporated municipality. To ban gun shows at the fairgrounds, he said, Gaithersburg would have to adopt the new county law or a similar provision of its own. County Executive Doug Duncan has asked Gaithersburg to go along with the council. But the municipality thus far has stayed put. In addition, the gun show loophole found in many states -- which prompts our call for federal legislation -- is not a real problem in Maryland. Gun show purchasers in Maryland are required to undergo the same waiting period and background checks as customers at stores.

Gun show ban proponents, however, want to do more than close loopholes or improve safety programs. "Public money," said Chevy Chase resident Leah Barrett, "should not be going to a place that holds guns shows. It's morally objectionable." Reducing the easy availability of guns is the prime objective of bill sponsor Blair Ewing, and a worthy one. But we have sympathy with council members who aren't sure that this bill is the best way to accomplish that goal.

Link Posted: 4/17/2001 4:54:50 PM EDT
I live in Mont.Cty MD. I read that piece this morning. [puke]

I am getting pretty disgusted with the post. Started a Washington Times subscription a few months ago.  Let me tell you, what a breath of fresh air!

I am thisclose to cancelling my Post subscription.  Liberal bird cage lining...
Link Posted: 4/17/2001 5:18:44 PM EDT
I live in Alameda County, CA. It's in the east S.F. bay area. Gun shows used to be held at the county fairgrounds on a regular basis. The county board of supervisors, which is headed out of Oakland (yes, that Oakland), saw fit to shut down the gun shows at the fairgrounds on the basis of reducing crime by limiting access to guns.
What a joke! If we didn't have Oakland in our county borders, we wouldn't have any real crime stats. And what criminal is going to buy a gun anyway?
Oh, and if gun sales are "morally objectionable" and therefore no "public money" should go to any place that holds a gun show, then no "public money" should go to abortion clinics or the funding of abortions. I find that morally objectionable.
I really don't like CA very much. I live in the most gun unfriendly county in the most antigun state in the union.
Link Posted: 4/17/2001 6:27:46 PM EDT
Former Tampa Mayor Sandy Freeman tried that at
the convention center and got bitch slapped in court.
Link Posted: 4/17/2001 8:39:42 PM EDT
These kinds of laws are very likely unconstitutional, but who has the money (other than the government) to persue them?

Said it before and I will say it again...time to move to Virginia!!  Seeing how huge my Maryland tax bill is this year Virginia makes financial sense too.

Link Posted: 4/17/2001 10:55:09 PM EDT
Tucson tried to do the same crap no guns on city property but are getting the pants suid off em in court sad thing is my tax dollers are paying there damn legal bills
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