Friday, July 22, 2011

No Sympathy

Two American citizens were arrested and spent 5 days in a Canadian jail after trying to cross the border with several undeclared guns. 
The Canadian Border Service Agency said when officers searched their 2008 Winnebago after the pair said they had nothing to declare, agents found a derringer-type pistol, a revolver, three semi-automatic pistols and a shotgun.
While I fully support all of the rights of our citizens, including rights to firearms, those rights don't extend once you leave our borders.  When you leave the jurisdiction of the United States, you have to follow the laws of the country you visit.  The same goes for any behavior, but firearms laws are probably enforced just as stringently as drug laws.

Even when you travel from one of our states to another, you have to know what the laws are.  For example, in Kentucky, you can put a loaded pistol in the glove compartment of your automobile without having a concealed carry permit and you are perfectly legal.  The same does not go for all of the neighboring states, and it certainly isn't legal in less gun friendly states such as Illinois and California.  An excuse of "But it's legal in my state!" isn't going to fly.

When you're travelling, you have to learn what is legal and what is not in all of the states you will be going through.  If your CCW license isn't recognized in one of the states you will be crossing, then you can either play felony bingo and hope you don't get stopped by the local police or you can stop before crossing the state line and secure your firearm in the manner that's legal in that state.  If you're crossing an international border, it is incumbent on you to know the laws that deal with bringing your firearms with you and to follow them.

We as gun owners will be judged as a group by the actions of the most stupid of our brethren.  We have two things to do.  First, don't be that guy.  Don't impede the progress we've been making by willfully breaking the law because you think it's garbage.  Second, we have to educate and police ourselves.  If our lowest common denominator messes up, we should make sure they aren't having their rights abused, but we shouldn't defend someone just because he's a member of our tribe.

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