Arizona Governor Signs Bill Allowing Concealed Guns in Bars
Rational Arizonans today are surely missing former Democratic Gov. Janet Napolitano, who left in January to become secretary of homeland security. From The Arizona Republic:
Arizonans with concealed weapons permits will be able to take a handgun into bars and restaurants that serve alcohol.
That’s under a bill signed into law by Gov. Jan Brewer on Monday.
It would require bar and restaurant owners who want to ban weapons to post a sign next to their liquor license. Drinking while carrying a weapon would be illegal.
The last point is a nice gesture, but it’s not unthinkable that such a law will greatly increase the likelihood that people will, in fact, drink alcohol while carrying a loaded firearm in a bar.
Opponents have said mixing guns and alcohol could cause violence, but supporters said people should be able to protect themselves at businesses that serve alcohol.
It’s a self-evidently bad idea for several reasons, not the least of which is the possibility that bartenders might be a bit more reluctant to cut off customers who have had too much if they think their patrons might be packing. It might be a good idea to keep an eye on the number of DUI-related traffic fatalities in the coming months.
It’s probably worth pointing out that as governor, Napolitano served as a check on the unique brand of wingnuttery found in the Republican-dominated Arizona state legislature, and she used her veto pen generously — including on a very similar guns-in-bars bill in 2005.
Now, with Brewer — a conservative Republican — in charge, Arizona has no voice of sanity at the top-levels of state government.