This week the Washington state House Civil Rights & Judiciary committee will hear testimony and have an executive committee meeting regarding SB-5038, the bill that would ban open carry.
SB-5038 “Prohibiting the open carry of certain weapons at public demonstrations and the state capitol.”
This bill makes it a crime to openly carry, on the person or in a vehicle, a firearm or other “weapon” if the person is participating in or attending a “demonstration” in a public place. “Demonstration” is loosely defined to mean any behavior by at least one person expressing views or airing grievances that is intended to or attracts an unspecified number of onlookers (a “crowd”).
The Constitution was not written with gradually disappearing ink where one right is more important than another. The Second Amendment should not be infringed upon in any capacity, especially where other Constitutional Rights are being freely and openly expressed.~NRA – Institute for Legislative Action
The bill also prohibits openly carrying a firearm or other weapon within 1,000 feet of a demonstration in a public place after a law enforcement officer advises the person to leave. The intent of the bill is called into question because a single person expressing their views on the sidewalk could be considered a “demonstration” under SB 5038. Senate Bill 5038 potentially causes those who are engaging in otherwise lawful activities to become criminals because of the actions of others.
The public hearing is already in progress/passed but we are asking you to still take the time to contact the committee and voice your OPPOSITION to this bill. So far, those in favor of this bill are outnumbering those of us who oppose. Therefore, it is imperative that we make our voices heard.
You can comment on this bill and track it here: Washington State Legislature