VA-ALERT: Contact Senator Webb about National Parks!

-----Original Message-----
From: Philip Van Cleave
Sent: Thursday, July 24, 2008 9:32 AM
Subject: VA-ALERT: Contact Senator Webb about National Parks!

1. Legalize carry in National Parks!

The Department of the Interior has inappropriately extended the
comment period on allowing the lawful carry of firearms in National
Parks. It appears this
is being done to delay implementation of what the Senate has asked
the Department of the Interior (DOI) to do and what VCDL asked DOI to
do in our Petition for Rule Making.

The comment period was open for TWO months and everyone had their
opportunity to comment. The problem may be they didn't get enough of
the response they really wanted to hear.


We need to flood Senator Jim Webb's office with complaints about DOI's
inappropriate extension of the comment period, AND ask the Senator to
honor a campaign promise to gun owners to sponsor a BILL to repeal
the National Park gun ban and get it to the Floor of the Senate for a

Here is an excerpt from Senator Webb's pledge to gun owners in
October, 2006:

"... I value and will defend your right of self-defense....I also
will sponsor a bill in the United States Senate that repeals the
National Park Gun Ban that disarms only law-abiding citizens in
Interior Department/National Park Service across Virginia. And I
intend to get it to the floor for a vote..."

Please contact Senator Webb's office NOW at (202) 224-4024.


2. Let's send another message on National Park carry during the
remaining comment period

Here is the site where you can leave a comment for the Department of
the Interior on National Park carry:

Here is new suggested wording:


I strongly support the carrying and transportation of loaded firearms by
law-abiding individuals in National Parks and Wildlife Refuges.

HOWEVER, DOI's proposed regulation regarding firearms in National Parks
is NOT responsive to either the December 2007 letter to DOI signed by 51
Senators or the Petition for Rule Making (PRM) submitted by the Virginia
Citizens Defense League (VCDL).

-- The letter signed by 51 Senators stating that they support
allowing "law-abiding citizens to transport and carry firearms
consistent with state law where the National Park Service's sites and
the National Wildlife Refuges are located."

-- The VCDL PRM requested the regulations be modified to "permit
citizens to carry operational handguns for personal protection in
National Parks, consistent with the laws of the state in which the park
is located."

MORE IMPORTANTLY, pursuant to the US Supreme Court decision in District
of Columbia vs. Heller, both the existing and proposed National Park
Service & National Wildlife Refuge weapons regulations are invalid,
unconstitutional, and void.

The VCDL and over 4 dozen co-petitioning organizations advised the
National Park Service of this as long ago as 2004. Since the holding in
Heller is that the total ban on handguns infringes the 2nd Amendment,
DOI and NPS should accept the VCDL PRM language and implement the
regulation IMMEDIATELY after the comment period closing.

Under existing legal doctrine, once a law is held unconstitutional, it
is stricken. In the case of the Park Service CFR 36, Regulation 2.4, it
is almost exactly the same as that of the District of Columbia, and
therefore void. Further, the DOI proposed regulation with it's flawed
"analogous state lands" language is thereby also in violation since any
state level bans on bearing arms in analogous state lands would also be
implicated under Heller.

The Supreme Court held that the 2nd Amendment is an individual right
protecting the right to keep arms and bear arms and therefore supersedes
CFR 36 Regulation 2.4.

The Department of the Interior should IMMEDIATELY amend the current
National Park Service regulations pursuant to the VCDL PRM, pages 8 & 9.
(See: )

And for National Wildlife Refuges, the regulations should be modified to

"A person may possess, carry, and transport loaded and operable firearms
or other weapons within a National Wildlife Refuge area in the same
manner, and to the same extent, that a person may lawfully possess,
carry, and transport loaded and operable firearms or other weapons in
the state in which the federal Wildlife Refuge, or that portion thereof,
is located, provided that such possession, carrying and transporting
otherwise complies with applicable federal and state law."

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VA-ALERT is a project of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, Inc.
(VCDL). VCDL is an all-volunteer, non-partisan grassroots organization
dedicated to defending the human rights of all Virginians. The Right to
Keep and Bear Arms is a fundamental human right.

VCDL web page:
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