View Poll Results: Should stores be required, by law, to post conspicuous signage that firearms are not allowed?

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34. You may not vote on this poll
  • No, let them tell me if they want of me off of their property.

    19 55.88%
  • Yes, and violating that signage would be legally enforceable.

    3 8.82%
  • Yes, but it should not be legally enforceable.

    12 35.29%
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Thread: Which Would You Prefer?

  1. #1
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    Just out of curiosity, I thought I'd run this poll since I know there are a few different flavors of it exist -- I'm interested in seeing what people are happier with.

    EDIT: Just to clarify, with regards to the poll... The clause of being 'legally enforceable' is with regards to gun owners violating the signage. e.g. if a sign is posted and you enter the premises and it's legally enforceable, you would be arrested. Whereas, with the other option, you'd still have to be asked to leave or face charges of trespassing.

  2. #2
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    Though I don't agree with the opinion, I think some will be looking for the following option:

    "Stores are open to the public, so they shouldn't be allowed to discriminate against my rights."
    Participant in the Free State Project - "Liberty in Our Lifetime" - www.freestateproject.org
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  3. #3
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    I think choice 3 is the best because it asks businesses to address and specifically state their intent on the door. Ones which aren't posted obviously won't be patronized as much as I can afford to accomodate that intent. (for HankT because he picks apart everything and files it for later, social gatherings, emergencies, reasonable convenience withstanding)

    That way I'm not welcomed or kicked out depending on which manager is working shift that day, the policy is known to everybody who enters, and if I honestly happen to miss the sign on the way in, the manager can have a nice talk with me asking me to leave, instead of calling the cops to arrest me.
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  4. #4
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    If the sign is not enforcable why would there be any law regarding it at all? I can see the first two options but the third one is a waste of time involving the law.

    I think that if there is a law regarding signs then put some teeth into it and don't beat around the bush with the BS. Either the signs mean something or they are just advertisement.

  5. #5
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    I dunno PT111... But I *think*, in states like Viriginia, stores are required to have the signs, but you can't get arrested on the property if you violate the sign. In another state (which I forget), if the sign is posted and you carry onto the property anyway, you can be charged with carrying a deadly weapon where prohibited.

    I think the logic for me in not having that is simply you're having police enforce rules of private property. Like, if I posted a sign on my house that requires you to take your shoes off before entering, if you fail to do so, I can ask you to leave and have you arrested for tresspass if you didn't, but I couldn't have you arrested for scuffing my new floor.

  6. #6
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    In SC the appearance of the signs are stated in the law and carry the full weight of the law. If a business is posted (and it only applies to businesses) and you violate it you can be arrested. If a business discovers that you are carrying and does not have you arrested then they either have to give you permission or have you arrested. If they don't then they can be charged with abetting an illegal act.

    If a business is not posted then they cannot ask you to leave for carrying. They can ask you to leave because you are too ugly but not because you have a gun. This take all the guess work and discussion out of it. If it's posted then you don't carry and if not, then you can. With that I do not know of a single business in SC that is posted. There may be some but I haven't seen them. If they try to post without using the correct sign then it doesn't apply and you can't even be charged for trespassing if you refuse to leave.



  7. #7
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    Interesting info.

  8. #8
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    If a business patron is asked to leave for whatever reason and does not, they are infringing upon the property rights of the business. Otherwise, a business should not be able to discriminate against the public based on behavior that is otherwise legal. If they choose to do so anyways, that's their decision and not at all a matter for the police/government. Unless of course (insert first sentence here).

  9. #9
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    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    Though I don't agree with the opinion, I think some will be looking for the following option:

    "Stores are open to the public, so they shouldn't be allowed to discriminate against my rights."
    This is where I'm torn on this topic. It seems unfair that someone can tell me to leave a public business just because I'm armed. This would be similar to being kicked out for wearing red shoes, or having my hair too long. I wouldn't go so far as to compare it to racism, though, since you can't unholster your skin color. Anyway It just doesn't seem right.

    On the other hand, private property is private property, and if someone doesn't want people wearing red shoes on their property, they should have the right to say so. Right?

    I dunno...I guess I would have to say that if you're going to CHOOSE to have a place of business on your property that is open to the public, then you shouldn't be able to kick people out just because of what they're wearing or how they look. After all, it was your CHOICE to open a business on your property. If you want to be able to kick people out for not wearing a top hat, then you can keep your property private.

    I'm not really familiar with business licenses and so forth and how the constitution and lawsapply here, so I may be off base. I'm just saying if you're going to open a business to the public, then you shouldn't be able to discriminate at all, period. I'm sure someone will say that I'm wrong, but thats just what feels right to me.

  10. #10
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    I voted for 1. I want them to tell me because if its law the ones that don't know about people carrying will now know and would probably post a sign barring carry in their stores.

    And by making them post a sign they then may approach the legislature of thier state and ask for force of law to be given to the posting of signs. That way by mere posting of the sign you could be prosecuted for carrying on their property.

    Just my .02cents worth. Rantings from a paranoid mind

  11. #11
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    I dunno...I guess I would have to say that if you're going to CHOOSE to have a place of business on your property that is open to the public, then you shouldn't be able to kick people out just because of what they're wearing or how they look.
    Maybe think of it more along the lines of... you're my neighbor and I allow you to walk across my backyard every single day. But, one day, I'm in a bad mood and when you try to walk across my yard that day, I say no.

    Legally speaking, that's pretty much the end of it. Because someone opens up their private property to the public doesn't completely negate the rights they have with that ownership.

    Truth be told, most everything is derived from property rights... A quick quote from William Pitt:

    The poorest man may in his cottage, bid defiance to all the forces of the Crown. It may be frail, its roof may shake; the wind may blow through it; the storm may enter; the rain may enter; but the King of England may not enter; all his force dares not cross the threshold of the ruined tenement.
    There were a lot of reasons we fought for our independence -- the right to truly own property was one of them.

  12. #12
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    Wynder, I agree with you here, but lets discuss more. Lets say I have a well on my property, and it is the only well in a small town, the next well being 20 miles away. Lets also say that I allowed everyone access to my well, but when a drought comes, one day I change my mind and now no one can (except me). This IS my right, but is it fair? Does fair matter when it comes to rights?.....

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    DreQo wrote:
    Wynder, I agree with you here, but lets discuss more. Lets say I have a well on my property, and it is the only well in a small town, the next well being 20 miles away. Lets also say that I allowed everyone access to my well, but when a drought comes, one day I change my mind and now no one can (except me). This IS my right, but is it fair? Does fair matter when it comes to rights?.....
    Yes, it is fair, unless you have an agreement with your neighbors, in which case you are now in violation of a contract.

    The agreement can be verbal + handshake, but since that is not provable, the agreement should be in writing.
    Does fair matter when it comes to rights?.....
    Absolutely! The concept of rights is the best way to define "fair"! None of your neighbors have a right to take your free water unless they negotiate a consensual contract with you. If you are giving them free water, they should be thankful for it, and have no right to expect you to continue when water gets short.

    If you're nice, you can warn them ahead of time that they need to stock up for a drought or find another source, but there's no obligation on your part.

    (I am assuming this is a simple model, without the complications of mineral and water rights seperate from land rights, and all that BS.)

  14. #14
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    OK, good answers. So, in today's real world, are we required to sign any sort of contract before we open a business to the public?

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    DreQo wrote:
    OK, good answers. So, in today's real world, are we required to sign any sort of contract before we open a business to the public?
    Well, when you walk into a store, they don't make you sign a contract upon entering the premises, so no. You are there at the courtesy of the owner, and agree to abide by the rules or leave if asked for any reason. If you decide to buy something, now there is an obligation on the merchant's part to give you the good or service you paid for.

    That said, there is a theory of "common law" we inherited from Britain which covers things like taverns and inns, and the concept has been extended to other businesses open to the public in some states and localities. It's kind of complicated and based on a sort of "this is how we've always done it" mentality. So, under common law-based laws, it may be unlawful for an innkeeper to kick you out for peaceably bearing arms, or something like that.

    I dislike that approach because it is not based on the very logical concept of rights (which is what I used in the water well example), but the common law concept is traditional and goes back to the colonial days.

  16. #16
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    I dislike that approach because it is not based on the very logical concept of rights (which is what I used in the water well example), but the common law concept is traditional and goes back to the colonial days.
    I agree that common law can contradict the theory of rights in some cases. I can see how, even in that contradiction, one might agree that it makes sense, like in the case of someone being peaceably armed. The fair thing to do is allow everyone to enter your business, unless they are directly harming yourself, your property, or your customers. I guess the argument there is that an armed person might scare customers off, which would in turn hurt the business.

    I think my opinion stands that there should be no law regarding carrying weapons on other's private property, period. It is private property, and they may do what they wish. You may also do what you wish unless you are asked not to or asked to leave.



    Now we have so far agreed that it is ultimately the right of the property owner to decide who can be there and what they can do. So now I pose the question, should a property owner have the right to refuse a person entry or services because of their race, gender, or essentially any other trait which was not chosen and cannot be changed?

  17. #17
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    DreQo wrote:
    decide who can be there and what they can do. So now I pose the question, should a property owner have the right to refuse a person entry or services because of their race, gender, or essentially any other trait which was not chosen and cannot be changed?
    Strictly speaking, yes. The guy who pays therent or mortgagedecides.

    You are thinking in terms of what is fair to the customer, but since this is private property, you have to consider what is fair to him, first, and if he's the owner of the business and he's paying the bills, he has the right to choose whom he does business with, even to be a jerk.

    Obviously, believers in modern civil rights law do not hold my view, they would go with the common law outlook on it.

    As would I in practice, I suppose, but I don't see any strict principles behind that approach, whereas the concept of property rights is pretty easy to work out.

  18. #18
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    All in all, fairness to others doesn't matter. It's yours -- you own it. If someone goes into a court of law and say to the judge, "Well, he just wasn't fair," chances are, he'll get laughed out of court. Same thing with morality -- if you do something that is immoral, but not illegal, guess what, no charges for you.

    In the long run, legally, you can only be held accountable for what's on the law books. If there's no state, federal or local law saying that you must allow anyone on your private property, whether it be a bussiness or not, you don't have to.

    This IS my right, but is it fair? Does fair matter when it comes to rights?
    On the flip side, at what point of people using YOUR well and YOUR water on YOUR land does it no longer become fair for you? What if there's not enough well water during that drought to support your neighbors AND your family? What if someone fell down your well -- you'd be liable and possibly sued; that wouldn't be fair, which is why fairness is for games.

    OK, good answers. So, in today's real world, are we required to sign any sort of contract before we open a business to the public?
    When you get a business license, you agree to certain things, though I can't remember what. But, the framers gave us unlimited ability to contract which basically means we can sign a contract to do about anything and be held to it... you could, technically, make everyone sign a contract on the way into your store, which would be a pain, but most gun ranges make you do it at least once and keep it on file.

    should a property owner have the right to refuse a person entry or services because of their race, gender, or essentially any other trait which was not chosen and cannot be changed?
    As Tomahawk mentioned, strictly speaking, yes. Just like shop owners should choose whether or not they wish to ban smoking in their establishment. However, there are discrimination laws that legislate what you're refering to. You CAN'T kick someone out because they're white, black or hispanic, but you CAN kick them out for no reason at all.

    Kinda makes you think the same should apply to people with guns; however, until 'armed citizens' becomes a class of people recognized by discrimination laws, we're SOL. ;p

  19. #19
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    Wynder wrote:
    All in all, fairness doesn't matter. It's yours -- you own it. If you go into a court of law and say to the judge, "Well, it's just not fair," chances are, you'll get laughed out of court. Same thing with morality -- if you do something that is immoral, but not illegal, guess what, no charges for you.

    In the long run, legally, you can only be held accountable for what's on the law books. If there's no state, federal or local law saying that you must allow anyone on your private property, whether it be a bussiness or not, you don't have to.

    This IS my right, but is it fair? Does fair matter when it comes to rights?
    On the flip side, at what point of people using YOUR well and YOUR water on YOUR land does it no longer become fair for you? What if there's not enough well water during that drought to support your neighbors AND your family? What if someone fell down your well -- you'd be liable and possible sued. Fairness is for games.

    OK, good answers. So, in today's real world, are we required to sign any sort of contract before we open a business to the public?
    When you get a business license, you agree to certain things -- following business laws, being liable for what happens on your property.

    should a property owner have the right to refuse a person entry or services because of their race, gender, or essentially any other trait which was not chosen and cannot be changed?
    As Tomahawk mentioned, strictly speaking, yes. Just like shop owners should choose whether or not they wish to ban smoking in their establishment. However, there are discrimination laws that legislate what you're refering to. You CAN'T kick someone out because they're white, black or hispanic, but you CAN kick them out for no reason at all.

    Kinda makes you think the same should apply to people with guns; however, until 'armed citizens' becomes a class of people recognized by discrimination laws, we're SOL. ;p
    Since this thread started with a question about what you thinkthe law should be, not what it is, all this talk of licensing and laws on the books is not firm.

    I don't believe in forcing business owners to get a license to persue happiness, any more than I think you need a license to own a gun or worship your deity.

    Also, you are right about the word "fair" getting you laughed at in a courtroom, but I think it's interesting to discuss the meaning of the word and its relation to the concept of rights.

  20. #20
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    I support business's property rights, and respect their right to ask me to leave. However, I would preffer that there was signage on the door, so I could know in advance that they don't want my money,instead ofwasting a half an hour and having an uncomfortable conversation with the manager.

  21. #21
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    Tomahawk wrote:
    Since this thread started with a question about what you thinkthe law should be, not what it is, all this talk of licensing and laws on the books is not firm.

    I don't believe in forcing business owners to get a license to persue happiness, any more than I think you need a license to own a gun or worship your deity.

    Also, you are right about the word "fair" getting you laughed at in a courtroom, but I think it's interesting to discuss the meaning of the word and its relation to the concept of rights.
    Well, more of for a matter of opinion, since all three of these methods of handling firearms on private property exist today, but I agree that it's an interesting concept.

    Basically, it all boils down to this -- and this is why the country is founded on property rights -- once you're on someone elses private property, your rights go away. You may not speak freely, your religious views are invalid, you may not bear arms, you may be searched at whim... Unless the property owner says otherwise.

    However, and I think this is where it gets more interesting, let's assume the above scenario takes place in my house. Let's move it to a place of business... If some of those restrictions are placed on the customers, that can be protested by a boycott -- the business looses money and eventually shuts down. Once again, let's move the same argument to an academic environment... public pressure to allow the right to free speech and to stop invasive searches are all that can really be done.

    So, since we're off on a different, but somewhat related, topic, how about thoughts to that respect in a business and academic environment?

  22. #22
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    expvideo wrote:
    I support business's property rights, and respect their right to ask me to leave. However, I would preffer that there was signage on the door, so I could know in advance that they don't want my money,instead ofwasting a half an hour and having an uncomfortable conversation with the manager.
    I know where you're coming from exp... I think the only reservation in my mind and, perhaps, on the minds of other people is, if a store owner who's not, themselves, a gun enthusiust hears about the law, he may simply rush out and get the signs.

    Whereas, the people who take more of an activist approach might rather see no sign so they have the chance to get in there, maybe talk with the manager if an issue arose and tried to educate them instead of making uninformed decisions.

  23. #23
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    Wynder wrote:
    expvideo wrote:
    I support business's property rights, and respect their right to ask me to leave. However, I would preffer that there was signage on the door, so I could know in advance that they don't want my money,instead ofwasting a half an hour and having an uncomfortable conversation with the manager.
    I know where you're coming from exp... I think the only reservation in my mind and, perhaps, on the minds of other people is, if a store owner who's not, themselves, a gun enthusiust hears about the law, he may simply rush out and get the signs.

    Whereas, the people who take more of an activist approach might rather see no sign so they have the chance to get in there, maybe talk with the manager if an issue arose and tried to educate them instead of making uninformed decisions.
    I can understand that take on it as well. I suppose from an activist standpoint it's probably better that they don't have signs. But for a regular gun-carrying guy who doesn't support businesses that don't support the 2nd amendment, the signs would be convenient.

  24. #24
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    I am not really for the signs being posted other than to let me know which businesses to not patronize. However, if signs are to be posted banning the carring og weapons in that business, then there should be a guideline on the signs to set requirements as to size and where they are to be posted. This past week I was in Jacks Beach, FL. where if a place is posted and you carry anyway you can be prosecuted. Well I went to a movie. Looked real hard on the way in for a sign banning guns. Could not see it. On the way out I gave another look just to make sure. About knee high for me (eye level for all the small kids that CC) was a sign on the inside of the glass and the no guns part took up about 1 sq inch. Oh, did I mention that the glass had that sun reflective quality to it so you would have to be on your knees pretty much with your face on the glass looking in.

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    sccrref wrote:
    I am not really for the signs being posted other than to let me know which businesses to not patronize. However, if signs are to be posted banning the carring og weapons in that business, then there should be a guideline on the signs to set requirements as to size and where they are to be posted. This past week I was in Jacks Beach, FL. where if a place is posted and you carry anyway you can be prosecuted. Well I went to a movie. Looked real hard on the way in for a sign banning guns. Could not see it. On the way out I gave another look just to make sure. About knee high for me (eye level for all the small kids that CC) was a sign on the inside of the glass and the no guns part took up about 1 sq inch. Oh, did I mention that the glass had that sun reflective quality to it so you would have to be on your knees pretty much with your face on the glass looking in.

    SC sign regulations
    Have to go by this because I don't think I have ever seen one.
    SECTION 23-31-235. Sign requirements.
    (A) Notwithstanding any other provision of this article, any requirement of or allowance for the posting of signs prohibiting the carrying of a concealable weapon upon any premises shall only be satisfied by a sign expressing the prohibition in both written language interdict and universal sign language.
    (B) All signs must be posted at each entrance into a building where a concealable weapon permit holder is prohibited from carrying a concealable weapon and must be:
    (1) clearly visible from outside the building;
    (2) eight inches wide by twelve inches tall in size;
    (3) contain the words "NO CONCEALABLE WEAPONS ALLOWED" in black one-inch tall uppercase type at the bottom of the sign and centered between the lateral edges of the sign;
    (4) contain a black silhouette of a handgun inside a circle seven inches in diameter with a diagonal line that runs from the lower left to the upper right at a forty-five degree angle from the horizontal;
    (5) a diameter of a circle; and
    (6) placed not less than forty inches and not more than sixty inches from the bottom of the building's entrance door.
    (C) If the premises where concealable weapons are prohibited does not have doors, then the signs contained in subsection (A) must be:
    (1) thirty-six inches wide by forty-eight inches tall in size;
    (2) contain the words "NO CONCEALABLE WEAPONS ALLOWED" in black three- inch tall uppercase type at the bottom of the sign and centered between the lateral edges of the sign;
    (3) contain a black silhouette of a handgun inside a circle thirty-four inches in diameter with a diagonal line that is two inches wide and runs from the lower left to the upper right at a forty-five degree angle from the horizontal and must be a diameter of a circle whose circumference is two inches wide;
    (4) placed not less than forty inches and not more than ninety-six inches above the ground;
    (5) posted in sufficient quantities to be clearly visible from any point of entry onto the premises.




    The part I like about this is there is no confusion. If they post and you carry any way the Wally World greeter just calls the police and they haul you to jail. If they aren't posted then if the greeter stops you then you call the police and have him arrested for harassment. No argument about corporate guidelines or 2A rights. If you want to discuss 2A rights you can do that with the judge.

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