Re: Firearms Policy
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Tue, 8 Jul 2008 10:13:55 -0700 (PDT)

On Jul 8, 2008, at 11:11 AM, Diana Kardia wrote:

From there, the community is much more capable of making an informed
and collaborative decision on this matter - and more quickly than if
the whole conversation starts in drama.

I think Diana's process for approaching a controversial, emotion- ladened, and cultural norm like guns is a very good one. There is another aspect to this subject, however. Does a community have the right to control what is done in a private home?

Early on my community faced an issue with a member who wanted the community to declare itself a drug free zone. While we had no members who publicly advocated drug use as a community practice or openly used drugs, people did object to one member imposing their values on the private behavior of others and refused.

The woman left the group taking her family with her. I think in this instance, after the community had specifically designed a unit to address her other fears of living in the city, she was just looking for a reason to leave. If Diana's process had been followed a different woman may not have left.

Our bylaws do stipulate that the community will abide by the law so there are some limitations even on private behavior.

We have military officers who live here who may keep guns -- no one would know. My son is a police officer who has a gun since he was 18 and began working is a security officer. Since he now does undercover work he carries it concealed on his person at all times. He doesn't live in cohousing but if he did, this would have to be a precondition. If he visited me, he would have to have authorization to carry in DC. But except for this email, the community would never know.

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing,Washington DC

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