Starting today, loaded guns will be allowed at all national state parks. "The law lets licensed gun owners bring firearms into national parks and wildlife refuges as long as they are allowed by state law," KTVU reports. Will this lead to an increase in gun-related violence at national parks, like Crissy Field, Presidio Park and Muir Woods? Only time will tell. But first, let's look at the law.
[G]uns will be allowed in all but about 20 of the park service's 392 locations, including some of its most iconic parks: Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon, Great Smoky Mountains, Yosemite and Rocky Mountain National Park. Guns will not be allowed in visitor centers or rangers' offices, because firearms are banned in federal buildings, but they could be carried into private lodges or concession stands, depending on state laws.
So, yeah, the new gun law is hard to interpret -- i.e., you can bring a loaded gun into Point Reyes National Seashore; you just cannot fire it. -- and it's sure to draw a deeper line in the sand among pro- and anti-arms ilk. While a pistol would have come in handy when Cary Stayner knocked on these three ladies' Cedar Lodge motel room in 1999, State Senator Mark Leno, questions such logic, explaining to ABC 7, "If you take that logic to a conclusion, a rational conclusion, it would suggest that we all need to be armed at all times because if we're at risk to our safety in a national park, then what about every place else?"
Today's gun law is due in part to the effort of the National Rifle Association, who has "lobbied hard to allow guns in parks and has spent millions to challenge its opponents" after fearing that Obama and those much talked about, though non-existent, socialists will strip Americans of their right to stab people with bullets.