Robert W. Kennedy Jr., founder of “gun rights” group BamaCarry believes his gun has the right to go anywhere he does. But this Tuesday, he learned how very, very, very, very wrong he is after he brought his trusty .357 Magnum Taurus revolver into an Alabama church.
Alabama state law allows the open carry of firearms unless otherwise posted, and each Shelby County polling location asked voters to leave guns outside. However, ammosexuality is a life choice that causes some self-important morons to summon up the willingness to ignore the rules if they do not like them, as was the case with Kennedy.
“Each polling location in Shelby County will have a ‘No Firearm’ sign posted at the entrance of the precinct, at the requests of the private property owner or governing body of the property. This will be enforced in accordance with Alabama law,” the Sheriff’s Office said in a statement last week. “Our goal is to allow every registered voter in Shelby County the right to vote in an influence-free environment. Voting is a constitutional right and it is our job to facilitate the process effectively and efficiently.”
However, Kennedy and other run rights “activists” believe the law does not apply to them, because they have an over-inflated and absolutist view of their Second Amendment rights — and Kennedy argues that bringing a loaded weapon to a polling location that specifically prohibits firearms is not a breach of the peace.
He argues that Alabama election code 17-17-1, which states, “”An elector must not be arrested during attendance at elections, or while going to or returning therefrom, except for treason, felony, or breach of the peace or for a violation on that day of any of the provisions of the election law,” protects him from punishment.
Kennedy also says he is protected by the state Constitution, Section 192, which reads, “Electors shall in all cases, except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at elections, or while going to or returning therefrom.”
The Sheriff’s Office inmate log lists the charge Kennedy is facing as a “voting violation.” Burchfield told Al.com in an e-mail that the gun rights activist was arrested for violating Section 17-17-33, titled “Obstruction, intimidation, etc., of voting rights of others.” The section reads:
“It shall be unlawful for any person to obstruct, intimidate, threaten, or coerce any other person for the purpose of interfering with the right of such other person to vote or to vote as he or she may choose, or for the purpose of causing such other person to vote for, or not to vote for, any candidate for state or local office or any other proposition at any election. Any person who violates this section shall be guilty, upon conviction, of a Class A misdemeanor.”
Kennedy was previously warned about bringing weapons to polling places when he brought a loaded Smith and Wesson Sigma .380 along with him to the same polling location.
“I’m not going to surrender a right to exercise a right. Nobody should have to,” Kennedy said at the time, when he and other members of his group brought their toys along with them. Kennedy’s actions then triggered a sizeable police response, and he was told by Pelham Police Officer Scott Duffey, “I’m just asking you politely to respect their wishes.”
The Alabama Attorney General’s Office said in July that while counties can not issue a blanket ban on firearms in polling locations, individual property owners may prohibit them. “The owners of private property may also choose to forbid firearms on their property, even if the person with the firearm has a permit. This is no less true for property that is being used as a polling place,” the AG’s opinion said.