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Upper Macungie Alters Park Rules for Guns

Township had banned guns from parks but resident said prohibition was unconstitutional.

How do you alter the posted rules in a public park to allow guns without putting residents up in arms? The answer: very carefully. 

Upper Macungie had posted rules for its parks in the township newsletter that said it was illegal to carry a gun in its parks. A resident told the township supervisors that such a rule was unconstitutional, according to officials.

Supervisor Kathy Rader said she researched the question and found that the township couldn't prohibit people from carrying a gun in the parks. They could only bar someone from discharging a weapon there. The supervisors voted to change the language to say that.  

"They cannot discharge or hunt but we can't stop them from carrying," Rader said at Thursday's supervisors meeting. 

Township Solicitor Andrew Schantz said the language should be clear that people still need a permit to carry a concealed weapon. 

The question came at the end of the supervisors meeting and they clearly didn't want residents to get the impression that allowing guns in township parks meant Upper Macungie was the new Wild West. 

"We don't want people to be all upset," Rader said. 

Ginny Creyer December 11, 2012 at 12:54 PM
People are finally researching what should be common knowledge, taught in our public schools....our Constitutional rights. Even some police forces are woefully ignorant of this document, even though they swore to uphold it! Educate yourselves and your children, please!
Joe December 11, 2012 at 01:38 PM
I am glad this was rectified so quickly. The township has no right to preempt state law. In reality, while you need a permit to conceal carry, there is no permit at all to carry openly, as long as you are permitted to own a firearm....
Ginny Creyer December 11, 2012 at 02:04 PM
What is sad, however, is the lack of what should be common knowledge by anyone in local government positions. A while back, a man was arrested for carrying...openly... his gun at the Whitehall Home Depot. He won his appeal, because not even the cops knew about this right to bear arms.
Erin T December 11, 2012 at 05:40 PM
GOOD! I'm glad they now know what our RIGHTS are but it's a little late now they already have been put into a position as "Supervisor". I sure hope they read the rest of the CONSTITUTION before making any more decisions that are UNCONSTITUTIONAL!!! SHAME ON THEM!!

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