Just leave the guns at home, OK

Ethan CooperThe Norman Music Festival is an event I look forward to every year. The diverse music and energetic atmosphere combine to create an entertaining experience for all to enjoy. But this year, I didn’t feel as safe as I normally would have in the past.

Recently, the Oklahoma Second Amendment Association claimed the Norman Music Alliance and City of Norman infringed on their Second Amendment rights by not allowing people to bring guns to the festival.

The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution pertains to our rights as Americans to own and carry firearms, and reads: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

The OSAA decided to take the case to court.

A Cleveland County judge ruled in favor of the OSAA, who argued banning licensed gun carriers from bringing guns to the event was a violation of both state and federal law, and an infringement on people’s constitutional rights.

Many people who attend the music festival every year were hesitant to show up this year. Who could blame them? The festival sells beer. I don’t want to go to an event where some drunk idiot could accidentally shoot someone.

NMF organizers were only doing what they felt was necessary to keep the event safe.

The Norman Music Alliance rents four city blocks in downtown Norman, obtains a special events permit from the city to hold the festival and, “as a business operator,” can request a ban on guns. However, since the festival wasn’t able to ban guns they instead asked people to leave their firearms at home.

Bringing a gun to the festival is wrong-headed.

Sure, I have the right to bring my loud dog to my grandma’s funeral, but that doesn’t mean I should.

Unless it’s the event’s purpose is to sell, trade, or shoot firearms, I wouldn’t encourage people to bring a gun anywhere just because they have the right to do so.

And if they are going to an event they believe is dangerous and feel they need to have a gun to protect themselves, then they probably shouldn’t go in the first place — especially if many people are drinking.

Just because a right exists doesn’t mean you have to use it.

To contact Ethan Cooper, email pioneerphotog@occc.edu

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