This notice is a bit belated, but I'd like to offer congratulations to FishOrMan, who has won his appeal while representing himself, striking a small but personally significant blow for open-carry.
I've stayed away from blogging about the case for a couple
reasons. First, it seems to me that his actions were on the
borderline of what the law allows; normal open carry is arguably legal
under state law, by way of an affirmative defense, but open carry
inside a bank strikes me as exactly the sort of situation that might
legitimately "warrant alarm", which would violate the law.
Second, representing yourself in court is usually a very poor decision,
and rarely bodes well for the results. Third, given that he was
representing himself, any commentary I could have offered would have
been uncomfortably close to legal advice, something I am not qualified
to offer, and might well do more harm than good. And fourth, I
was concerned that he had gotten himself into a foreseeable bad
situation without adequately preparing for it, and thus put the whole
concept of open-carry at risk in Washington State.
That said, I have been following the case personally, and I'm glad that he won.
I do have one caution, though.
Just because you won this one on a technicality doesn't mean you'll win
the next one. Pick your fights more carefully, and make sure
you're prepared to fight them before they start.
This entry was published Sat Dec 24 21:36:57 CST 2005 by TriggerFinger
and last updated 2005-12-24 21:36:57.0.