Oregon Appeals Court strikes down unlawful campus gun ban

by Kevin Starrett

Yesterday, after several years of legal maneuvering, the Oregon Appeals Court decided that the rules the Oregon University System has had in place to ban lawful carry of firearms on their property are invalid.

The opinion reaffirmed what we have always held to be true. The law is the law.

This is a very important day for gun rights in Oregon. Our Educational Foundation brought this suit after Jeffery Maxwell, a Marine Corps veteran, was unlawfully arrested on the campus of Western Oregon University while in possession of a handgun for which he had an Oregon concealed handgun license.

WOU’s outrageous abuses of Maxwell are well documented, and now we have at least some vindication.

Looking at the response of the school system, it is clear that they will do all in their power to circumvent the decision of the court, and we are confident that this battle is by no means over. But today’s ruling is clearly a victory for gun owners, a victory for the Oregon Firearms Educational Foundation, and most of all, a victory for every one of you who stood by us, and, by your extraordinary generosity, allowed us to see this through. To each of you, we offer our thanks and gratitude.

Of course, there will be the predictable response by some of the more extreme anti-rights politicians, so we need to prepare for the up coming battles, but for now, congratulate yourselves on a hard-earned victory.

We also want to thank those in the legislature who stood up for the rights of Oregonians as this issue played out.

Below is the most important part of today’s decision.

Although the State Board of Higher Education is an arm of the state, it is not the Legislative Assembly. And while, as noted, the State Board of Higher Education has general authority to control and manage its property, ORS 351.060, and to enact administrative rules, ORS 351.070(4)(b), no argument can be reasonably made that OAR 580-022-0045(3)–which regulates the very subject expressly preempted by ORS 166.170(1)–was “expressly authorized” by the Legislative Assembly. See ORS 166.170(1). Therefore, we conclude that OAR 580-022-0045(3) is an exercise of an “authority to regulate” firearms that is not expressly authorized by the Legislative Assembly, and that it is preempted by ORS 166.170(1).1 Accordingly, the rule exceeds the agency’s authority, ORS 183.400(4)(b), and is invalid.

OAR 580-022-0045(3) held invalid.

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Posted by at 11:18 | Posted in 2nd Amendment, Oregon Government | 44 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • 3H

    Was he arrested?  Or was he suspended?  Or both?  What outrageous abuses did WOU inflict on Maxwell?  

    • 3H

      Never mind, it was both.  I found an earlier Oregonian article than the one I first read.  But outrageous abuse?  I didn’t find any examples of outrageous abuse.  Unless our definitions of outrageous are significantly different.  For example, I consider the James Chafee case to be one of outrageous abuse.   

      • Rupert in Springfield

        Wait a second – You don’t think arrested, suspended, ordered to undergo psychiatric evaluation and being forced to write a 10 page paper on why the perfectly legal activity he was involved in was wrong is outrageous abuse? You’re kidding right? I mean seriously, are you?

        • 3H

          The mental counseling requirement was removed.   And no, I don’t think it was outrageous.  But maybe I have a different definition of the word outrageous.  Rendition (with the knowledge that the person is going to be tortured) is outrageous.  Killing a homeless man for peeing in public and running is outrageous.   Waterboarding is outrageous.  Executing a man who very well may be innocent is outrageous.  What happened to Mr. Maxwell was wrong, but it was not outrageous.  Not at least by my definition of outrageous.  I suspect by yours as well, but you can’t pass up the opportunity for some faux outrage.

          So the real question is — you’re kidding right?  Given the truly outrageous things that do happen on a daily basis you don’t truly believe that this is an example of outrageous behavior, right?  Do you?

          • Rupert in Springfield

            So if you list something that is more outrageous, that makes something less outrageous not outrageous? What nonsense.

            Obviously you think asking people not to eat at a lunch counter because they are black is not outrageous since rendition is more outrageous. Good logic there!

            But wait, they didn’t have rendition when blacks were segregated, so maybe it was outrageous, but then when something more outrageous, like rendition came along, that made segregation not outrageous.

            I suspect you know arresting someone for something that is not a crime is totally outrageous, you just simply can’t condemn something that comes from the left.

            So the real question is, is you were arrested for something that was not a crime, and suspended from school because of it would you be calling it outrageous? Or would you be saying it was no big deal because they didn’t water board you.

            Yep, I thought so. Logic triumphs over dogmatism every time it’s tried.

          • 3H

            “Obviously you think asking people not to eat at a lunch counter because they are black is not outrageous since rendition is more outrageous. Good logic there!”  

            Did I argue that.. but since you mention it, yes that is outrageous too.   You spent a full third of your rant knocking the stuffing out of a straw man.  Was it fun?  Did it make you feel good?  

            But they thought they had the authority… that is the point.   They were wrong, the courts told them they were wrong.  At the time, though, they didn’t knowingly arrest a man who was innocent.  I suspect you know that, but you choose to gloss over inconvenient facts. 

            Let’s not forget..  the WHOLE term was outrageous abuse.   Not just outrageous.   I can’t help your selective reading or logic Rupert.  Well, not even logic.  But we agree on one thing — logic does triumph over dogmatism.  Better luck next time.   

  • FreddyFreeloader

    Of course their rule was invalid. They are complete morons. The next time some nut job starts shooting do we really want everyone else unarmed by rule? Dial 911 and wait 30 minutes?
    Libs run amok.
    And most have body guards who carry, by the way.
    Do as I say, not as I do is the only way to understand the lib mentality.
    They are failed in everything they do, think, and say.
    Failed do you hear me?

  • Rupert in Springfield

    This is a prime example of how government employees simply do not have the same responsibility as private sector employees.

    Will anyone be fired over this? Because I can tell you, someone in the private sector who took it into his head to make up his own laws, had somebody arrested and then cost the company an expensive trail, and possibly a lawsuit would stand a good chance of seeing a pink slip in about two seconds.

    Instead, as we all know, it will be Romper Room time because its government employment – zero responsibility whatsoever.

    Actually come to think of it, Romper Room kids probably had more responsibility. At least they could get a time out. My guess is nobody at WSU will face even a stern look for what is unquestionably bad decision making.

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