Your editorial board’s “Contradictions in debate over carrying guns,” missed the mark as it relates to the Maine Constitution, law and fundamental common sense.
Speaking to the issue of firearms, open carry of firearms is allowed by Maine law and there has never been an incident in the State of Maine where this lawful activity violated the rights or injured unarmed citizens. Never.
Individual law abiding citizens exercise open carry or concealed carry at the Maine Mall Food Court, because it is perfectly legal. Maine has a long list of prohibited persons: (http://www.mainelegislature.org/legi...e15sec393.html ) that may not own or possess a firearm. Should one of these individuals violate Maine law by simple possession he or she should be arrested and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
Maine statutes specifically prescribe remedies for the armed citizen to protect themselves and innocent others in active shooter situations:
§101. General rules for defenses and affirmative defenses; justification Conduct that is justifiable under this chapter constitutes a defense to any crime; except that, if a person is justified in using force against another, but the person recklessly injures or creates a risk of injury to 3rd persons, the justification afforded by this chapter is unavailable in a prosecution for such recklessness.
§108. Physical force in defense of a person: 2. A person is justified in using deadly force upon another person: A. When the person reasonably believes it necessary and reasonably believes such other person is: (1) About to use unlawful, deadly force against the person or a 3rd person; or (2) Committing or about to commit a kidnapping, robbery or a violation of section 253, subsection 1, paragraph A, against the person or a 3rd person.
Creating gun free zones only affords the criminal element of our society the opportunity to harm innocent men, women and children of all walks of life. Maine’s low crime rate is attributed to the population’s high degree of gun possession and ownership. Portland’s Chief Craig has publicly stated he is amazed, Maine liberally gives out Concealed Firearms Permits and has a very low crime rate and where he came from Los Angeles, seldom authorized a Concealed Firearm Permit the crime rate was very high.
Councilman Skolnik’s proposal is in direct conflict with his oath of office to uphold the Maine Constitution and the laws of the State of Maine. A fifth grader could interpret Article I of the Maine Constitution~ Section 16. To keep and bear arms. Every citizen has a right to keep and bear arms and this right shall never be questioned.
Quite frankly, I feel safer knowing more law abiding citizens around me have a firearm on them should an active shooter situation arise. Law enforcement can’t be everywhere so I make it my personal responsibility to protect myself and family. After all, it is my unalienable Right under the U.S. Constitution.
Last but not least, Maine legislators did not ban guns in their workplace. It is a “RULE” created by the Bureau of Capitol Security.