Knife v. Fist

Knife v. Fist

Bring your fists to a knife fight.

A few days ago a disgruntled troll decided to seek vengeance for the perceived injustices foisted upon him, by attacking his fellow classmates at the University of California Merced,… with a knife.

It happened to be a large knife, which raises the real concern about unnecessarily large knives being available to the public at large…. yeah… someone has to do something about that… those kitchen tools need to be regulated!  For all we know tons of knives are being shipped south of the border to help fuel the drug cartels… (ummm they stab people down there too right?)

What is interesting, is that… literally days earlier, the California Governor signed legislation that specifically prohibits CCW holders from bearing concealed arms on campus.

Since the Goblin is dead (thanks to the Merced Police) we will never know if his actions were spurred on by a realization that there would not be anyone else in the vicinity armed and prepared to stop him.

This does raise an interesting civil liability issue though.

Not so much with a suit against the State… but against private institutions.

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A couple of days ago I ran into a past CCW student at the gas station.  We spoke briefly, and i asked him if he was carrying.

He proudly nodded.

“Every time I can… well… at least when I’m not a work.”

“Oh?  What type of work do you do?”

“I’m a financial planner.”

“Really… why can’t you carry at work?”

“HR says no dice.”

This is not the first time I’ve heard this.  “My company policy is weapons free… I can’t carry a gun into my work place.”

What drives this?

In the case of UC Merced it is misguided public policy, codified in odious legislation.

In the case of an HR department… it is usually a combination of institutional inertia, coupled by insurance coverage.

“We can’t allow guns in here!  We might get sued if it goes off!”

Guess, what HR… prepare to be sued if an employee, authorized by the state to carry a firearm is denied the ability to carry while at work.

If that plaintiff is injured as a result of an assault, and they were prohibited from having the tools to fight back they will sue for damages.

Normally, while at work an injury sustained is covered by workers compensation.  This insurance scheme essentially states that negligence is no longer an aspect of the litigation.  As a result, awards to the plaintiff are capped at a lower rate then they would be if the litigant were to bring a case under a tort theory.

As a plaintiff though there is a way out of this scheme… show that the defendant (employer) knew about a dangerous condition and still instructed the employee proceed.

This is destined to happen now with the number of CCW holders across the nation.  It is reasonable to assume that there is the possibility that a homicidal individual will walk into a place of business.  Failure to take adequate measures to prevent this from happening shows a gross negligence on the part of the employer.  Furthermore, preventing someone who has been licensed from carrying a concealed firearm at work is an active measure promulgated by the company to increase the amount of potential risk that the employee may be exposed to.

Having rules or laws that demand that individuals who have taken it upon themselves to take responsibility for their own safety forego the basic tools of self defense while at work will soon not only become an immoral proposition…. it will become an expensive one as well.

Memo to HR… govern yourselves accordingly. 


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