- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 25, 2014

COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho (AP) - A northern Idaho city is considering allowing weapons at parades and festivals with a move that would overturn a local ordinance enacted years ago when Aryan Nations members used to march annually.

The Coeur d’Alene Press reports (https://bit.ly/1dKsVN7 ) that the General Services Committee on Monday voted to have the city attorney’s office review the constitutionality of weapons ban currently in place. Their findings will be presented to the City Council.

City Councilman Steve Adams wants to eliminate the ban because he said it’s unnecessary and unconstitutional.

“The whole thing was just a knee-jerk reaction to the Aryan parades,” he said.

City Attorney Mike Gridley said the ordinance was enacted following conflicts between marchers and spectators. He said Aryan Nations marches through town in the 1990s attracted many protesters.

Adams said he’s partly motivated by Idaho lawmakers, who in the recently completed legislative session approved a law allowing students, faculty and visitors to carry a gun on college campuses.

“I thought, ‘Why not continue this momentum to bolster the Second Amendment and eliminate this ordinance?’” Adams said.

The law allows retired law enforcement officers and people with Idaho’s enhanced concealed-carry permit to bring guns anywhere on campus except dormitories, stadiums and concert halls.

“I don’t want some poor guy with a concealed weapon attending a parade to be subject to a misdemeanor,” Adams said about the Coeur d’Alene ordinance.

After the ordinance was enacted, a protester at an Aryan Nations march was cited by police for using his protest sign as a weapon.

The protester challenged the citation in court, and eventually the U.S. 9th District Court of Appeals ruled a protest sign isn’t considered a weapon. The city amended the ordinance to reflect the court’s decision.

“Other than that, I don’t think the ordinance has ever been challenged,” Gridley said.


Information from: Coeur d’Alene Press, https://www.cdapress.com

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