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Thread: PUBLIC libraries: their rules vs. our Constitutional rights

  1. #1
    Regular Member dave_in_delaware's Avatar
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    Short version:

    I was wondering if a PUBLIC librarycan set their own rules and prohibit weapons just like a private business can?? I understand that any private business can make up their own rules, and if they decide they don't want to allow guns (OC or CC) on their property, they can put up signs, or ask you to leave, etc. But what happens when it's a PUBLIC library? It's not a private entity anymore, right? Can they ignore the Constitution and just claim the rule (no weapons) is for the "safety" of the library patrons?Is prohibiting a Constitutional right in a public library Unconstitutional and can be ignored? Any input would be appreciated!



    Longer version:

    I started a specific thread on the subject as it pertains to my local library here in northern Delaware. Please, if you could read my post (complete w/ the library's rules), and reply inTHIS thread, I'd like to hear what everyone thinks, and more importantly, if you could cite any laws or statutesor case law that pertains to this issue.

    Then, I can either just OC there w/out worry that they'll call the cops, or I can call them and argue my point and see if they change their "rules"....

    Thanks!
    Dave
    Co-Founder & Global Moderator
    Delaware Open Carry

  2. #2
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    Can't speak to Deleware laws (obviously) but you seem to have covered those.

    Nothing I've ever read or heard of makes libraries a federal protected zone, so I think you're good to go.

  3. #3
    State Researcher
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    In our case, most of our public librarys are 'County Libraries', so I believe that, if they are indeed controlled/funded by the county, they would fall under county/municipal/state pre-emption.

  4. #4
    Regular Member compmanio365's Avatar
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    I carried at the PC library branch closest to my house; there isn't anything about no firearms posted, and while the librarian initially looked nervous, after talking with her for a little bit, she seemed much more at ease and carried on a conversation while my wife browsed the book rack. No problem here.

    If your state preempts OC, then I'd say they have no business whatsoever posting no firearms, and you should kindly inform this of this fact, along with the applicable state law that says they can't, and then carry as you would anyways.

  5. #5
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    i visit the library often and the ones in my area have no weapon signs..

    in ohio if someone has a no gun sign up you can't carry.. so i would assume in my state at least that it would hold up.. since businesses and private property can deny carry i would assume the libraries can do the same.

  6. #6
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    Maybe if you put up "tax free zone" signs on your property and stopped paying local taxes that go to pay for the library... they might get the idea?

  7. #7
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    Good question dave, if you have state preemption laws it shouldn't be an issue since it's a publically funded public building. In VA I've never had a problem at any of the libraries here (I go about once a month) and have even had a few say they support the Second as much as the First.
    -Unrequited

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