The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors approved a gun ban in parks, county buildings, and at permitted events in a six to three vote March 2. The vote is the culmination of months of consideration of the ban, made possible by legislation passed in the 2020 General Assembly.
Chair Phyllis Randall said, “To the argument that if you don’t have an armed officer in every building, you have to have a good guy who’s allowed to have a gun: first of all, you don’t know who’s going to be in those buildings.”
Randall added that it is statistically uncommon for “good guys with guns” to successfully intervene in mass shootings.
The board did approve an exemption that allows Concealed Carry Handgun CCH permit holders to carry in county parks. Randall said that by leading on the CCH park exemption she wasn’t trying to compromise, she was trying to come up with a common-sense solution.
Randall said, “While it makes sense to me to say, ‘You should allow concealed carry in parks,’ it’s not the same thing as buildings.”
Supervisor Caleb Kershner introduced an amendment to the resolution stating that the prohibition only applied in buildings with active security like X-ray or magnetic detectors.
“I don’t generally support what we are doing here tonight. I just fundamentally disagree with some of the arguments that are made by some of my colleagues that are up here that somehow guns make things less safe. Guns actually make things safer,” he said.
He argued, “If we’re going to take away your ability to carry a firearm in a government building here in the county, then we’re also going to provide a means to protect you while you are in the building.”
Kershner’s amendment was defeated.
As at previous Board meetings, many members of the public were present to speak about the ordinance.
Speaker Esther Martinez told the Board, “I’m here today first and foremost as an American. And for the woke social justice warriors, I’m here as a minority, as a woman of color in descent of Hispanic immigrants who migrated to this great country legally.”
She said, “Any law brought forth to regulate the Second Amendment is an infringement of my constitutional rights. Those seeking gun control tell us we don’t need guns. These are the same people who are making law enforcement jobs harder while victimizing the criminal.”
– – –