Re: Firearms
From: Evan Hunt (evanhsco.COM)
Date: Mon, 31 Jul 2000 14:31:52 -0600 (MDT)
> Early in our process of community definition, we consensed on some Values
> and Bylaws including the following:
> 
>     Weapons are barred from common areas, and 
>     Firecrackers, explosives and ammunition are barred from the property.  
> 
> Now we are faced with the situation of a family joining the community, one
> of whom is a Federal law enforcement officer who is required by his job to
> maintain a handgun and ammunition.  We are struggling with either making
> an exception for this family or changing the bylaw. 

I think you should really seriously consider your reasons for having
made that bylaw in the first place.  You all believed then that there's
no legitimate reason for a person to have a gun and ammo that outweighs
your need to feel safe in the community.  Now, you've been confronted
with what you (apparently) all agree is a legitimate reason.  You need
to examine your position in this new light and decide whether, if you'd
known then what you know now, you would have made that rule in the first
place.

If your reasons for making an ironclad rule still hold, then stick to
your guns (sorry) and reject the cop and his family.  But if you decide
you're willing to make one exception, then to my mind you're basically
admitting that the rule doesn't work and should never have been on the
books to begin with.

I understand the need to be concerned about safety when kids might be
visiting this person's house (and with your geographic location, I
wouldn't be surprised if this were a particularly touchy subject for
some members).  But, while I'm no fan of guns myself, I have several
friends who are enthusiastic (and responsible) gun collectors, and
I've been reassured that guns *can* be stored safely.

I'd suggest discussing it openly with this federal agent; as someone who
deals with guns on a regular basis he'll be able to discuss safety
options with you, and perhaps allay your concerns.  Maybe you'll all
be able to reach consensus on a new bylaw that addresses community
safety without an outright ban--requiring guns and ammo to be kept in
locked gunsafes, for instance, or to be unloaded and trigger-locked
when on the property.

                                                eh

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