A Question for the Lawyers

by Joel on October 29, 2004

This is also a question for American Constitutional law experts, law students or anyone else with an opinion. The Tulsa (Oklahoma) World is reporting that the Whirlpool Corporation is suing the state of Oklahoma over a law that allows private employees to keep firearms in locked cars on company premises. Whirlpool insists it has a legitimate interest in reducing workplace violence by banning firearms from its property, including its lots. It claims that the law “deprive[s] Whirlpool of its fundamentally constitutionally protected property and liberty rights to deny access to, or exclude persons from its property in violation of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U. S. Constitution.”

State Senator Frank Shurden said Oklahoma passed the law to protect employees from “unwanted searches of their vehicles by employers.”

Whirlpool also claims the law is vague because it doesn’t make clear whether a locked convertible with its top down meets the test.

So what do the experts think? And for the majority of “Connexion” readers who aren’t American, do you think we are totally bananas over guns?

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1

Mike 10.29.04 at 12:20 pm

Yes.

It’s the most ridiculous thing I can imagine that guys over there actually take seriously. And when people talk about it as a human right…

2

Richard 10.31.04 at 9:46 pm

There’s a real “disconnect” between most Brits and Americans over this issue. We just don’t understand it. Or rather, we’re sure we do understand it! Bananas would be putting it mildly.

3

Andrew 11.02.04 at 4:01 am

as an american I think we are very interested in being able to protect ourselves and not having to rely on the government or police to take care of us. in fact (depending on the laws/rules) in some states the police are not there for the protection of individual citizens, but the general population and law enforcement. I agree with Patrick Henry in that the right to self-defence is of the utmopst importance.

4

Richard 11.02.04 at 5:51 pm

I understand that point of view Andrew — but how do you respond to the evidence? I mean, you would be much less likely to be the victim of a violent crime in Britain (with our tight restrictions on firearms) than you would almost anywhere in the USA where guns are more freely available.

I’ve been trying to find statistics on the use of firearms for self-defence, successful or otherwise. Does anyone know if these are gathered anywhere?

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