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Old June 28, 2010, 01:54 PM   #1
JonnyP
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McDonald Decision and CCW on Military Bases

Now that this decision has reaffirmed the right to bear arms, any takes on how or if this will affect the current ban of personal firearms on military installations?

The "ban" of which I speak is not with regard to storage. I am interested in the current ban which prevents those of us who work on base from CCW while on base.

So the question really is, "Since my state has provided me a permit allowing me to CCW for personal protection in accordance with state law, can a US military installation within my state prohibit me from carrying while on base?"
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Old June 28, 2010, 02:10 PM   #2
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Seeing as how it was not the state or municipality restricting the ability to keep and bear arms on base, I don't think McDonald would have any bearing on the situation.

Even though there is no one single federal policy re: firearms on military bases (as far as I am aware, to my knowledge it's up to the base commander), it's still handled by the federal level of government (the military).

I'm not sure that anything is going to force military bases to allow CCW. Just not going to happen short of Ted Nugent moving into the White House, and I just don't find that a likely future.
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Old June 28, 2010, 02:15 PM   #3
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I joined the Army. Guess what? I have whatever Constitutional rights the Army, in its wisdom, decides that I have.



I don't like it, but MacDonald and Heller are not magic swords that are going to cut down every anti-gun law or regulation I, you, or anyone else doesn't like.
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Old June 28, 2010, 02:36 PM   #4
stargazer65
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Quote:
So the question really is, "Since my state has provided me a permit allowing me to CCW for personal protection in accordance with state law, can a US military installation within my state prohibit me from carrying while on base?"
Yep. They are federal property, it doesn't matter what the state allows or doesn't allow. This ruling has no bearing on it. I have a permit for CT but I can't bring a firearm on the base. Just last week when I was out with my family I would have liked to stop at the commisary for some groceries but I was carrying.
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Old June 28, 2010, 03:17 PM   #5
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Military bases are federal property and are NOT under state law. It's about the equivalent of you trying to conceal carry in NJ. NJ doesn't recognize any other states carry permit, so if you got caught you'd get a one way ticket to jail.

Now if you had some sort of federal equivalent, say as a requirement for being in the FBI or something you'd probably be allowed... at least if you were on duty
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Old June 28, 2010, 03:20 PM   #6
alan
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A military base, like Washington D.C. is a "federal enclave", or so I would think. I could of course be entirely wrong here.

Given that fact, I would think that USSC in Heller v. D.C. would prevail, however as another poster offered, as a soldier, you have such civil rights as the army deems appropriate. How this would effect civilians on a military post, who knows.
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Old June 28, 2010, 03:33 PM   #7
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Quote:
How this would effect civilians on a military post, who knows.
I am retired military, hence a civilian. You cannot bring a firearm on the base period whether military or civilian except in an official capacity.
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Old June 28, 2010, 03:40 PM   #8
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Also I've been looking at the ruling and I believe their are allowances made for federal buildings and military bases that still allow them to be prohibited.

There will NEVER be a changed to the ccw law on a military base. Sorry.
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Old June 28, 2010, 03:41 PM   #9
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Here's a link and pasted article relevant to this subject. (I'm using the Navy since I'm retired Navy, other branches might have different policy)

http://www.navy.mil/search/display.asp?story_id=54055

Quote:
NORFOLK (NNS) -- The Navy announced a policy change regarding personal firearms to consolidate and clarify the requirements for those who own these weapons.

The NAVADMIN detailing the new policy is available at http://www.persnet.navy.mil/NR/rdonl...0/NAV10196.txt. The change to OPNAVINST 5530.14E came after a review of existing policy indicated that there were inconsistencies in the way personal firearm regulations were enacted across the fleet, according to Rear Adm. Arthur J. Johnson, Commander, Naval Safety Center.

However, he emphasized that the policy change should not make life more difficult for those who choose to own weapons.

"This policy is more of a clarification than a change," said Johnson. "It's not meant to make owning a personal firearm more restrictive for Sailors. Instead, it aligns policy across the enterprise so Sailors know what's expected of them if they do own a firearm."

One highlight of the new policy is the ability for all Sailors to store their personal firearms in base housing or armories (when space is available), so long as they receive prior written approval from the installation commanding officer. Weapons must be stored in a locked container, a locked gun rack, or secured with approved trigger locks to keep the weapon from firing.

Weapons are still prohibited in other on-base locations, such as bachelor enlisted or bachelor officer quarters, work centers, and vehicles.

The policy also clarifies that Sailors must comply with all federal, state, and local laws, and that concealed weapons are never allowed on Navy installations, regardless of local law.
(Emphasis mine)
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Old June 28, 2010, 06:24 PM   #10
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Heller would be the case to cite for carry on military bases, but given Alito's sensitive place doctrine, it would not have much chance to win. Congress is were it is at if you want to have carry on military bases. You would need a bill that extends the current National Park carry rights to military bases hopefully along with other prohibited federal lands and post offices.
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Old June 28, 2010, 06:47 PM   #11
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You cannot bring a firearm on the base period whether military or civilian except in an official capacity.
Almost right but slightly off...You can bring a firearm on a military installation but in order to do so it must be for the purpose of having it locked in a Arms Room and requires some paper work through the Provost Marshalls office and your unit. (Unless this has changed since 2007)

Soldiers that live in the barracks can and do own weapons but they can't access any weapons stored in the arms room without the Commanders Permission.

Typically not a huge problem for hunting as it tends to be seasonal but a real pain for target shooters like myself.
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Old June 28, 2010, 06:52 PM   #12
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^^^

Thanks for clarifying. That's correct, there is a policy for gun storage on base. I was thinking along the lines of carry, open or concealed.
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Old June 28, 2010, 06:55 PM   #13
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Quote:
Almost right but slightly off...You can bring a firearm on a military installation but in order to do so it must be for the purpose of having it locked in a Arms Room and requires some paper work through the Provost Marshalls office and your unit. (Unless this has changed since 2007)
You can also bring weapons onto installations that have a shooting range, if the range allows recreational shooting. Of course, you should proceed directly to the range once you're on base, and leave base immediately after you're done shooting.
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Old June 28, 2010, 07:01 PM   #14
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Yep, I shot trap on Pendleton as a civilian, he is enlisted. We rented guns but you can bring your own, it has to be checked and I believe locked at the gate.
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Old June 28, 2010, 07:56 PM   #15
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I joined the Army. Guess what? I have whatever Constitutional rights the Army, in its wisdom, decides that I have.
Thanks for your service. I spent over 20 years in the US Army. The lack of certain "rights" never bothered me one bit.
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Old June 29, 2010, 12:20 PM   #16
JonnyP
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No argument the ban is apparently in place. No argument there are exceptions for storage on base. But the question still remains, "Why is this so?" A little justification other than "because that's the way it is" would be nice.

It just seems very strange to me that military and civilians can carry while off base but not while on base. If we can be trusted with guns in the sandbox, why not here at home? Similarly, if we can be trusted to carry while off base, why not on base?

Just doesn't pass the common sense test.
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Old June 29, 2010, 02:52 PM   #17
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My Army experience (1967-1971 on Active Duty) and later in the Reserves (1976-1998) was that the Army is a very pantywaist organization and too many commanders would just as soon as not be bothered with small arms and the firearms enthusiast is derided as a "nut". My last year of AD in Germany 1970-1971 we didn't take firearms on guard duty and there were no rifle and pistol teams. Also the military is currently under an anti-gun CinC.
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Old June 29, 2010, 03:41 PM   #18
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The courts will defer to the authority of the military, as granted by congress and the presidnet, to exercise command and control over it's personnnel and it's bases. I don't agree with the way the military treats personally owned weapons or CCW but you aren't going to get a court decision over ruling the authority of the military to decide those issues.

The military is a unique insitution that is and will be granted wide lattitude in this area most likely under the sensitive places doctrine.



Quote:
Also the military is currently under an anti-gun CinC
The policy on the carrying, use, and storage of firearms on base has nothing to do with the current president. As you note it's been that way for awhile.

There's also 18 USC 930 to contend with.

Also how do you deal with CCW during duty hours?
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Old June 29, 2010, 04:53 PM   #19
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Also the military is currently under an anti-gun CinC

Quote:
Also the military is currently under an anti-gun CinC
That makes no difference at all,,,
I was in when Reagan was our CinC,,,
He was an NRA Life Member and we couldn't even have a bow and arrows.

Military mindset is all about having total control over it's members,,,
if you are not in combat you don't need combat tools.

I carried over six out of eight years in the USAF,,,
And I was not security or law enforcement,,,
I just had a very weird job,,,
And a weirder boss.

.
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Old June 29, 2010, 10:28 PM   #20
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I don't think it's a question of control so much as "Can't be bothered". Also the military is more about avoiding blame and responsibility than it is about control. The loss of a small arm is a far more serious offense than losing a multimillion dollar aircraft. Again, my experience-in 1967-1971-was the Army saw little if any need for small arms proficiency and it was much simpler to keep the weapons under lock and key where they could be accounted for.
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Old June 29, 2010, 10:33 PM   #21
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I joined the Army. Guess what? I have whatever Constitutional rights the Army, in its wisdom, decides that I have.
Yep, exactly right. You do not have the same right as civilians. And you signed a legal contract agreeing to that. Free Speech, gun rights, rights against search and seizure, etc,.. ALL the rights afforded to civilian citizens under our Constitution are in abeyance for you, as long as you remain in military service.

Everyone in the service is in the same boat. And we all volunteered to be there. If no one explained that to you before you went in, they should have.
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Old June 29, 2010, 11:00 PM   #22
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On any stateside military post I've been stationed in the last 21 years, the rules went like this:

1. If you PLAN on bringing a firearm on post, you MUST register it first with the PMO. You should call that posts PMO and ask if they want you to bring the unloaded weapon with you for serial number verification. Some posts let you bring the weapon that one time, others do not.

2. After registering your firearm(s) with the PMO, there are only two things you can do. Transport that weapon directly to your unit's Arms Room OR, transport it directly to the range, if there is one for civilian guns. Fort Campbell and Fort Rucker both had firing ranges for civilian and military use.

3. In an overseas assignment, if the host country, like South Korea, bans handguns for the civilians, you cannot bring yours with you. I ended up taking a very nice handgun air pistol with me and had no issues with having it. But the locals treated it like we would treat a weapon on post. It must be locked and in the trunk of your car. The ammo must be in plain view somewhere in the vehicle you're transporting the weapon in. In Korea, if you got pulled over and didn't tell the KNP's that you had an airgun in the trunk, God help you if they see your ammo after they've first talked to you. They are funny little people about weapons which I think is "funny" considering they've got 1 million North Korean's chomping at the bit to kill them.

As a civilian, ANY TIME you enter a military post, you give up your right to certain search and seizure rights you would normally have off post. In other words, if an MP tells you to stop, he wants to search your car, and you've got dope in there, you're screwed. Because they can search and seize at any time, any where on post, for any reason. When it comes up in court and the judge asks why the MP pulle dyou over to search your car, it's common to hear the NCO say, "I was taking the opportunity to teach PFC Snuffy here how to do it properly. Then we found weapons and dope." The judge looks at you and says, "Hope you brought an overnight bag."
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Old June 30, 2010, 08:09 AM   #23
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What Retired said.

I retired from the US Army in 1979. I often hunt and shoot on FT. Sill, OK. In order to legally bring a gun on the base it must be registered. Several of my guns are registered: This procedure has been in force for decades. Registration is done at the Vehicles and Weapons Registration Branch. It is a Pentagon database.

The hunter/shooter is given two copies of the private weapons registration form. This form must be carried in the vehicle when hunting or shooting.

At most US Army posts; the DOD police and MPs conduct security checks of parking lots. If a vehicle is unlocked it may be searched. If an unregistered weapon is found in an unlocked vehicle the owner is in trouble. At the very least there will be a trip to the US magistrate.
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Old June 30, 2010, 03:15 PM   #24
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It's been long established that the military is its own separate society and has to be that way to accomplish what they need to do. As a result they have to default to their lowest common denominator to maintain control and like any other govt organization, common sense need not apply.

I agree that there are a lot of commanders who are panty-waists about personally owned firearms and that the military in general seems to be that way.

But guess what? If you don't like it, don't sign up or re-up when your committment is up and if you're non-military, stay away from their sphere of influence.
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Old June 30, 2010, 10:50 PM   #25
alan
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For whatever it might be worth, my own personal experiences, as a civilian, with rifles and handguns on military bases are as follows.

Re rifle competition at MCB Quantico, Fort Barry, Marin County, Calif., Mare Island MCB, Vallejo, Calif. MCAS Cherry Point, N.C., Camp LeJeune, N.C., Fort Lee, Va., now and then, to enter Cherry Point, one needed a pass, obtained by showing vehicle registration. At other places mentioned, nobody, in-so-far as memory serves, ever asked question #1.

Going to a small pistol range in an odd corner of Camp LeJeune, the only thing the MP's said was "drive carefully sir". Admittedly, this was a number of years back, and things might have changed.

Re "things might have changed", the following attributed to P.O. Ackley comes to mind. Ackley supposedly offered, on the subject of change, "while change indicated movement, it is not necessarily movement in the direction of improvement", which always struck me as an interesting thought..

Last edited by alan; June 30, 2010 at 10:56 PM.
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