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Concealed gun bill to come to vote Change may allow guns on campus(LA)
lsureveille.com ^ | 7 June, 2012 | Joshua Bergeron

Posted on 06/07/2012 4:38:49 AM PDT by marktwain

With the legislative session complete, a Nov. 6 vote is the only obstacle preventing Louisiana Senate Bill 303 from being passed.

The Louisiana State House approved Sen. Neil Riser’s SB 303 on May 29 in a 77-22 vote after a 31-6 approval by the Senate in April. The proposal calls for an amendment that would change the wording pertaining to firearms in the Louisiana constitution.

The Louisiana Constitution currently reads: “The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms shall not be abridged, but this provision shall not prevent the passage of laws to prohibit the carrying of weapons concealed on the person.”

The proposed amendment would change the constitution to read: “The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms is fundamental and shall not be infringed. Any restriction on this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny.”

Many are concerned the change will allow students to carry firearms on campus due to its ambiguity.

“There are plenty of people who are worried because they don’t know what the bill is actually going to change,” said Gordon Hutchinson, senior concealed carry instructor for the state of Louisiana. “It is really going to just keep firmly cement everything that is currently in place.”

Louisiana’s current open carry law allows those of age to carry a weapon without having to obtain certification.

However, places such as government buildings, schools and certain public establishments restrict open firearm carry.

Brian Apple, electrical engineering sophomore and owner of a concealed handgun permit, said even if the bill passes, he doesn’t think many will take advantage of the ability to carry a firearm on campus.

“It creates an awkward situation for everyone,” Apple said. “People are scared of guns. I think a small percentage of people would actually carry a handgun openly.”

Open carry is not the only way that a Louisiana resident can possess a firearm in public. Louisiana residents can also obtain a concealed handgun permit.

Apple said having a concealed firearm near campus might save his life.

“Personally, I would take advantage of [the amendment], if it allows concealed carry on campus,” Apple added. “It’s no secret that the University is next to one of the less safe areas of Baton Rouge. If I am walking around campus at night, I don’t want to be left defenseless in front of Pleasant Hall. Sometimes just showing a gun is enough to scare off a criminal.”

The following are the requirements for an individual to obtain a concealed handgun permit for the first time: 1) Be at least 21 years of age.

2) Attend a handgun safety course with a certified instructor. These classes run approximately nine hours with varying costs. Hutchinson said he usually charges $90.

3) Contact the nearest police office or the state police headquarters for fingerprinting and a background check. This comes with a $10 fee.

4) Mail the completed application to the Louisiana State Police. The application fee is $125 for anyone aged 21 to 64. If applicants have not continuously lived in Louisiana for 15 years immediately preceding when the application is received, an additional $50 fee is required.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: Louisiana
KEYWORDS: banglist; constitution; gun; la
I see this change to the Louisiana constitution passing with overwhelming numbers.
1 posted on 06/07/2012 4:39:03 AM PDT by marktwain
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To: marktwain
The Louisiana Constitution currently reads: “The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms shall not be abridged, but this provision shall not prevent the passage of laws to prohibit the carrying of weapons concealed on the person.”
I love this sentence in the current law.

So what they were saying when they originally wrote this:

The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms shall not be abridged, except when WE feel like abridging it!

2 posted on 06/07/2012 4:41:45 AM PDT by samtheman
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