Judge Andrew Napolitano weighs in gun free zones at military bases

Napolitano has an interesting discussion about how when he was in the army all the officers wore their sidearms with them on the army base.  More importantly, he discusses the impact of trying to change the military into a regular workplace has on the safety of those in the military.  The video is available here.

Statements regarding those at the Navy Yard who wish that they were able to protect themselves.
Here is a father of a Marine who was stationed at the DC Navy Yard who was discussing statements from his son.

Here is a statement of a concealed carry permit holder who wished that she could have had her permitted concealed handgun with her.
Although she emerged unscathed, Pat said she would have felt safer if she had been permitted to carry her own gun to work. ‘I’m a gun owner, and so is my husband,’ Pat said, ‘but I work in D.C. so I can’t carry a weapon. Now I wish they would let us do it anyway. I felt like a fool walking around unarmed after shots were fired.’ . . . 
UPDATE:  The ban on carrying at military bases policy might have been in effect prior to the Clinton administration.
The Blaze has information here that the policy for military personnel not having guns actually goes back to the very end of the George H.W. Bush administration. 
The question of why military members aren’t armed on base garnered attention back in November 2009 when Army Maj. Nidal Hasan opened fire at Ft. Hood and killed 13 people. He was sentenced to death on August 28. Now, nearly four years later, many are asking the same question. 
So what’s the answer? It appears this “gun-free zone” type policy can actually be traced back to Department of Defense (DoD) Directive 5210.56, signed into effect in February 1992 by Donald J. Atwood, deputy secretary of defense under President George H.W. Bush. . . .
It looks like the Clinton administration may have simply reissued these orders in March 1993



Blogger Unknown said...

I was an MP in the Marine Corps from 1993-2000. The only people armed on the base are the Military Police and Armorers during their working hours. I always thought this was downright goofy. I might could see junior enlisted not being allowed to be armed but if we allowed, or preferably encouraged, properly trained NCOs/Petty Officers and Officers to carry our bases would be the safest places in the country. Instead they are potential targets of mass shootings.

9/21/2013 4:55 AM  
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11/20/2013 7:45 AM  
Blogger OTAP said...

I'd like to hear from more service members on this issue.

I've been in both the active Navy AND Army, as well as the National Guard and I can tell you there is an institutional-cultural issue at play here.

When In the Navy (as a submariner), WE - the crew of the sub, did not trust anyone else to guard, defend and protect the sub while in port (whether at home or abroad). To us, that whole black tube of doom was a classified "asset vital to the national security of the United States of America" and we guarded it ourselves, at ALL times, with loaded guns. We were thoroughly trained on the use of deadly force, and I'm confident that if something similar to Ft. Hood were to happen on or near the sub, it would be brought to a swift conclusion.

In the Army, on the other hand. I've been on DEPLOYMENTS to the Middle East where we were not trusted to have both guns and bullets at the same time! We were on guard duty with unloaded weapons. I suppose, if something had happened we would have to yell, "STOP! Or I will be forced to yell 'STOP!' again!"

You see, there has never been successful mutiny in the Navy, whereas that is not quite the case in the Army. In another of the 'Ghosts of Vietnam' where between the "sit down strikes/protests" in the jungles of SE Asia and the drafting of 'less than desirable recruits' with sociopathic tendencies, institutionally, the Army simply does NOT trust its troops.

Additionally, the way the Army, particularly "middle management" treats its personnel is not in keeping with the idea that you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar and as long as you keep that in mind, you don't have to worry about anyone giving you a hand grenade in a shoebox (or a .45 bullet in the case of Ft. Hood this time). And they know it! They know that they behave in a way that would make people WANT to shoot them. But, instead of correcting their behavior, they ban guns instead. Couple this with the fact that this is done by the very same group responsible for the aforementioned Vietnam era sit down strikes, i.e. they know what happened before and are on the look-out to keep it from happening begin.

In recent years, in Army circles, there has been much talk of 'toxic leaders', but the truth is that it is a toxic environment all around. There are no checks and balances on the people that perpetuate these conditions on the active duty side, unlike in the Guard/Reserves.

People are treated a lot better in the Guard/Reserves. They are treated...well, like people. Why is this? Well, just think about it... If someone is only the sergeant, first sergeant, platoon leader, unit commander, other authority figure for maybe two months of the year, they are a lot less likely to be a downright jackass when they have subordinates who are police officers, lawyers, reporters, city council members, managers of businesses the other 10 months.

As they say, peel back the onion. Why is this happening on Army bases and not Navy or Air Force Facilities? These people don't just suddenly "go crazy", someone pushes them to that point.

I fully support the idea of people carrying guns if they are trained [and licensed] to do so. An armed society is a polite society. But at the same time, institutional/cultural changes are needed to no longer make people feel that they've been backed into a wall and that they need take such extreme measures into their own hands with regards to people that, in many cases, just plain have it coming to them. But, failing that, having more people around who also have guns can and will act as a fail safe to keep things from getting out of hand and to prevent more people from being injured and/or killed than otherwise would have while waiting on "911" to arrive.

4/03/2014 4:33 AM  

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