Washington State Lawmakers Look to End Gun Ban in Stadiums

(Photo: Fox Sports)

(Photo: Fox Sports)

It’s a long shot, but it could expand the number of places law-abiding gun owners are permitted to carry a concealed firearm.

Washington State lawmakers recently introduced HB 1015, a bill that would prohibit public facilities districts, public stadium authorities, or any other local government entity from banning the possession of concealed firearms as long as the carrier holds a valid permit.

The bill’s language includes major sporting arenas like CenturyLink Field where the Seattle Seahawks and Seattle Sounders FC play, and Safeco Field, home of the Seattle Mariners.

Republican State Representatives Matt Shea, David Taylor and Bob McCaslin are sponsoring the bill, and their proposal has already received some pushback.

Danny Westneat of the Seattle Times helpfully informed his readers that it’s “patently insane to fill stadiums with pumped-up, drinking, heavily-armed fanatics.”

He continues:

Yet three Republican lawmakers have decided stadium safety would, in fact, be enhanced if the bare-chested guy next to you in face paint is also packing to defend you from ISIS.Oh well, think of the home-field advantage we’d have for the Seahawks if the 12s were all armed.

It’s that kind of condescending nonsense that got Trump elected, of course, but anti-gunners are sometimes a little slow on the uptake.

Unfortunately, it isn’t just left-wing columnists for the Seattle Times that don’t get it.

Major League Baseball told Forbes that their current policy – which prohibits the possession of firearms at stadiums – is the result of “a recent study of best security practices and MLB’s continuing work with the Department of Homeland Security to elevate and standardize initiatives across the game.”

Patrick Courtney, MLB’s chief communications executive, emphasized that the league doesn’t plan to change that policy any time soon: “Major League Baseball is committed to providing a safe environment at all our ballparks and believes that our current policy is the right one for all of our fans,” he said.

The NFL responded similarly last year when a police union asked the league to reconsider its ban on concealed weapons: “We concluded that public safety inside NFL stadiums on game days would be best-served by the carrying of firearms by on-duty officers specifically assigned to work the game as part of the comprehensive public safety plan for the event,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told Fox News.

If Washington’s HB 1015 passes, however, league officials might not have a choice. Large public events like football and baseball games are prime targets for terrorist attacks, and in the wake of large mass murders more and more Americans are realizing that police and security forces can’t be everywhere at once.

Hopefully, the Washington legislature will realize that too and make the best decision for the safety of its residents and sports fans.

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  • xLoCxRambo January 2, 2017, 11:46 am

    The only place I can see this being bad is soccer stadiums because has anyone ever seen how the crowds react to a bad call from a ref? or an obvious intent to hurt someone by the player’s? it turns into a bloodbath and that’s before they pull knives on each other!!!! I am not just referencing foreign soccer attendees I mean at a global level especially in the states. So just saying most other event stadiums would be okay but just to put that into perspective that idiot’s will always work to find a way to ruin things for the rest of us.

  • Capn Stefano December 19, 2016, 2:22 pm

    “Patrick Courtney, MLB’s chief communications executive, emphasized that the league doesn’t plan to change that policy any time soon: “Major League Baseball is committed to providing a safe environment at all our ballparks and believes that our current policy is the right one for all of our fans,” he said.”

    Thanks for your “wisdom” Mr Elitist.. will your vaunted “homeland security” be in the parking lot as the family loads up to leave?

    Didn’t think so

  • BRASS December 16, 2016, 7:45 pm

    As a law abiding citizen who accepts the responsibility to protect and defend my family, myself and others, if I can’t go legally armed, I don’t go. Period.

  • Tim December 16, 2016, 4:09 pm

    …and in NC, one can carry concealed where alcohol is served, as long as they don’t drink, so lifting gun restrictions in stadiums here would be beneficial. I may actually attend games again. But with the current rules, I don’t even go near a stadium on game day. It’s a massive, target rich environment. It’s just a matter of time before the gun grabbers execute a false flag event in a stadium.

  • Tim December 16, 2016, 4:03 pm

    Imbibing and carrying concealed are already prohibited. Anyone who feels safe in a stadium because everyone has been searched, is a nincompoop. I guess you missed the story about the group of people who smuggled climbing gear into a panthers game and suspended themselves from the upper level to protest something. They were searched too.

  • Micah Hills December 16, 2016, 11:01 am

    As a CC person I hate the thought of leaving my gun at home, but I do feel safe at a stadium. You are searched going in and go threw a metal detector. I feel I am in a equal place. There is cops everywhere. It’s not like going to a campus that says no weapons yet there is nothing preventing it from happening. The stadiums won’t even let you have a pocket knife. In these years of terrorism and wanted mass murder large public gatherings need as much protection they can get.

  • Ken December 16, 2016, 7:48 am

    I have been a life long Washington resident and a concealed carry license holder since the late 90’s. This is a STUPID idea and a waste of time. It has been illegal to carry both open and concealed in any establishment that serves booze for years. I can’t think of a professional sports venue that does not serve alcohol. Second this flies in the face of common sense. As someone else pointed out there are already enough problems with drunks in the stands. Add firearms to the mix and the chances of some one becoming “collateral damage” skyrockets. And just how do you think the antis would use an incident like that? I don’t know if this bill was well intended to remove restrictions on our God given right to protect ourselves or just a set up.
    Either way, bad legislation I hope the firearms community fights to strike down.
    BTW DRAINO, you are somewhat right. The I 5 corridor from Olympia to the Canadian border is a writhing liberal cesspool and refuge for Kalifornians. But they are not the only residents of Washington. Once one gets away from that mass of “progressives” there are more than a few folks like myself.

    • DRAINO December 16, 2016, 11:08 am

      Exactly why I said that. Spent 5 years in Spokane. Loved it!!! Should be a different state though on the other side of those mountains….it sure is a different world, it seems…..the people are different for sure. Wish the Kali-commies would leave ya’ll alone. Loved eastern WA!!

      AMERICANISM!!! NOT Globalism!!!!

    • Capn Stefano December 19, 2016, 2:24 pm

      “Either way, bad legislation I hope the firearms community fights to strike down.”

      Sorry, Charlie. ANY restriction on our RIGHT to Keep and Bear ARMS is a violation of our natural rights. Your hand wringing leaves a sour taste in my mouth

  • DRAINO December 15, 2016, 9:05 am

    It will never go anywhere. WA is ran by the moron liberals in that one huge city that runs all up and down the west coast called Seattle, who are transplants from Kalifornia. These Comm-unites would never go against “mutha Kalifornia”. And, yeah….when did it become legal to be drunk and carry a firearm??? Does that mean drinking and driving is legal now too??!!

  • moishe mendez December 14, 2016, 6:15 pm

    private property is a constitutional right too. if i choose to keep guns off my premises it’s my right to do so. no one can enter my home or my place of business without my approval. if you don’t like my rules for access to my property, go somewhere else.

  • Will Drider December 14, 2016, 5:24 pm

    It appears that Westneat of the Seattle Times is ignorant of the Law concerning being armed while under the influnce of intoxicants. There are several cases of sports fans being beaten and robbed at stadiums, in their parking lots AND during travel to and from the events via pubic transportation.

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