For whatever reason, some people have the notion that posting a sign will cause universal obedience. The sign may be in the form of a sticker on a door, or to stretch the point, an order of protection.
So-called gun free zones are named that because some person or legal entity posted a sign designating the building, school, space, street, etc. For example, here is a sign at a welcome center in Alabama:
These areas would more appropriately be called gun ban zones, because, as current events tell us over and over, they are not always gun free.
Arbitrarily designating these areas shows that those who do so are out of touch with reality. There are at least two fatal assumptions they, perhaps subconsciously, make:
- Criminal who don't obey the law will obey their sign
- Good people with guns will turn bad when they enter the designated ban area.
The first assumption was destroyed by a knife carrying criminal in a Knoxville, Tennessee green-way recently. The second assumption has not been proven by any quantifiable evidence that I can find. However, it is has been disproved by the six years experience in Knox County. Since 2009, Knox County parks have had defensive handgun carry legalized, while Knoxville City and the Town of Farragut which are both inside Knox County have prohibited carry. There have been no known felonious acts by permit holders in the County parks.
We can divide the ban zones into two logical divisions, those that provide meaningful security, and those that don't! Those that provide meaningful security include (at least theoretically) airport sterile zones and secured government buildings such st the City-County Building and Federal Building. These facilities have security personnel and metal detectors.
Others, including municipalities, school systems, legislative bodies and sadly, church fathers, all too often carve out these gun ban zones and expect evil people to honor their bans. Then, we are all heart-broken when the evil ones invade and massacre the innocents. Thus, the bans prove to be futile.
The fact remains that as much as society would like to have these safe zones, we simply cannot. The best that can be done is to mitigate the carnage. That means someone with a gun to respond quickly when the attack occurs. Two to ten minutes later, when the police, arrive is too late!
If you are in a position of authority over one of these gun ban zones, you should carefully consider your position. If you are depending on some pixie dust to protect those that enter, think again. John Lott of the Crime Prevention Research Center has compiled mounds of data for you to study.
If you can legally carry a defensive firearm, carry it everywhere it is not prohibited. Avoid, when possible, those gun ban zones.