After a shooting at a festival last year left three people injured, Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels vowed to outlaw guns in city buildings and parks. The proposal has languished for almost a year, with the state Attorney General’s Office saying the mayor lacks the authority to prohibit guns on city property, a Second Amendment group threatening to sue, and questions raised as to what the policy would really accomplish, says the Seattle Times. With another annual folklife festival approaching on Memorial Day weekend, the mayor is moving ahead with an executive order this spring and is prepared to defend it in court.
The festival will be gun-free through the city’s lease with festival organizers. Signs posted will remind people not to bring guns, and security will be trained to take firearms away or ask people to leave. The new city order would apply even to people who have a state permit allowing them to carry a concealed weapon. Without a permit, it’s already illegal in Washington to carry a concealed weapon in public. The shooter at last year’s festival had a permit to carry his weapon. Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation, said the new rule won’t make parks any safer. “Criminals who don’t abide by the law to begin with aren’t going to follow this law either,” he said.