Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Florida "Take Your Gun to Work"

From Reuters: "Most Florida residents would be allowed to take guns to work under a measure passed by Florida lawmakers on Wednesday.
...Backed by the National Rifle Association and some labor unions, the so-called "take-your-guns-to-work" measure would prohibit business owners from banning guns kept locked in motor vehicles on their private property.
"This is an attempt to trample upon the property rights of property owners and attempt to make it more difficult to protect the workers in a workplace and those who visit our retail establishments," said Sen. Ted Deutch, a Boca Raton Democrat.
"We are disappointed that politics clearly won over good policy," Mark Wilson, president and chief executive of the Florida Chamber of Commerce, said in a statement." Read the article

What a bunch of crap. Here's the real deal: companies across the US have for the past several years been implementing policies that force employees to allow their vehicles to be searched at any time while on company grounds. Generally, the company coordinates with cops so that, if something that is against any law in the jurisdiction is discovered, the employee will be arrested on the spot, not to mention losing their job. The stated intent of the search is to look for weapons; with a policy that the employee will be fired if any are found. Even if it is legal. Even if it is only there because the employee is planning to go hunting or to the local shooting range after work, as my friends and I have done many times.
See, this is a coup by large companies, insurance companies and increasingly (in part driven by the insurance companies) smaller companies; to negate individual rights by claiming that it is the right of the property owner. Even if the property owner doesn't really want to do it, but is forced by his insurance company.

This law, while being attacked by the ultra fascists, doesn't protect people's rights. The 4th amendment right to be free from having ones vehicle searched is not protected here. Nor, contrary to NRA types' claims, are 2nd amendment rights, as evidenced by the fact that only those who have bought and paid for a LICENSED PRIVILEGE to bear arms are protected; and that only from prosecution for exercising their license, not from having their property searched against their will.
The "right" of the company to search your vehicle, or to give cops permission to do so against your will, is not being contested.

Most everyone I know is now working under such a policy. So did I, before I became self-employed. When the policy was instituted, initially I refused to sign it. A deadline was set for all employees to sign the waiver of their rights, after which any holdouts would be fired. Then the waiver was re-written, and the new version stated "as an employee of..." and I signed that one to hold on to my job for awhile. With that clause added, I was not waiving my rights because had they ever demanded that I allow my vehicle to be searched, I would have quit on the spot, thus no longer being an employee. I would have done this, even if I had nothing to hide.
I even told the owner of the company this. See, the (then) owner of the company is one of my best hunting buddies. Lots of times on Fridays, he and the two or three employees who hunted with him would bring our guns and other hunting equipment to work in our vehicles, then we would all take a couple of vehicles and go hunting for the weekend. Sometimes we would even bring our guns into the plant to work on them.
So why did he implement this policy? To keep from having his insurance canceled.
He even told us that he had no intention of actually demanding such a search and, true to his word, he never did so.

This news article is a perfect example of the kind of doublespeak that keeps me from lending any credence, or my valuable time, to the mainstream news media, beyond what I happen to see in passing. See, this is a subject I am well versed in, and I can easily see through their lies. But what if they are "reporting" on a subject I know nothing about?
No thanks. If I can't find the real story independently, I'll choose ignorance over brainwashing, thank you very much.

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