New Amtrak Policy To Allow Guns On Trains

Posted Nov 30th 2010 04:32 PMUpdated Nov 30th 2010 05:08 PM


Amtrak passengers will soon be allowed to bring guns aboard trains, a policy change pushed by gun advocates.

Congress ordered the reversal of a gun ban that had been in place on the government-owned railroad for nearly a decade, reports the Sacramento Bee. The policy change takes effect Dec. 15.

The new rail policy is in line with air travel rules that allow unloaded guns to be stored in locked baggage holds.

Gun owners will need to let Amtrak know 24 hours in advance of their intention to bring firearms onboard and the unloaded guns will need to be packed in hard-sided containers. These will be placed in special storage lockers - guns will not be allowed on trains that don't have checked baggage service.

Amtrak says gun storage lockers are being added to rail cars. But officials say they don't know how many people will want to bring firearms on trains.

The National Rifle Association and U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Mississippi pushed for the policy change.

"We worked hard for this," says NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam. "It is reasonable for law-abiding people who wish to travel with firearms to be able to do so."

A Transportation Security Administration (TSA) spokesman tells the newspaper the change is fine as long as security rules are enforced. "It's deemed safe and appropriate," says TSA spokesman Nico Melendez.

But Daniel Vice of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence warns the new policy makes it easier for terrorists to bring weapons on trains.

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Not true. Where is your evidence that legally checking guns makes us less safe? Have you flown on a plane in the US before? Every single airline in the US allows passengers to legally check their firearms. Have you experienced the "Wild Wild West" on any of your flights?

Florida was one of the first states to pass a shall issue right to carry law in the 80s. While the bill was being debated, people like you predicted bloodshed in the streets and the OK Corral all over again. It didn't happen. People like you predicted the same when Clinton's Assault Weapons Ban expired-- didn't happen. It was allowed to expire because studies (by our government, among other organizations) could not prove that the ban did anything to reduce crime. People predicted the same when DC's unconstitutional 30 year gun ban got shot down. Over 30 states have passed shall issue right to carry laws since the '80s, yet all the fear-mongerers' predictions of mass bloodshed in the streets and the return of the Wild Wild West have not come true.

Virginia has a shall issue right to carry law, except that the law makes it illegal to carry in colleges and universities. What happened at VA Tech? This law did nothing to stop Cho. Have you heard of any mass shootings in a Utah institution of higher learning? This mass carnage would most likely never occur in Utah's public colleges and universities because it is legal for law abiding RTC permit holders to exercise their rights while in school.

Learn the facts before you post fallacies like this. Use your logic, not emotion. Just because it "feels" more dangerous to you, does not mean it actually is more dangerous. Just because one is afraid of heights doesn't necessarily mean that being at elevation isn't safe.

February 09 2011 at 8:30 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

One more instance of how these gun-toting types still want America to be the Wild West.
Contrary to what they keep asserting, everyone having (and carrying) guns does not make us safer. It's just an arms race, and we will have more and more people (like children) accidentally shot, and more people shot in anger, etc.

November 30 2010 at 6:24 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Richard's comment
Mr. Perspective

Not so. Over the past few decades, concealed carry laws have eased substantially, with no evidence of the horror stories some expect. No increase in shootouts at the corral, no frequent bar fights among licensed gun toters... Guns are a reality in the USA. Until you can show me that they've been removed from the hands of those who might do me harm, I will continue to fight for my right to provide for my own defense.

December 27 2010 at 12:15 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
John Thompson

Frank and Mr. Perspective have certainly provided balanced, intelligent comments. I have little to add really other than if you do not like our freedoms and rights why don't you leave? There are many countries many of which the nations our ancestors left that do NOT afford this right so explicitly as the USA. My ancestors came here for this reason, they wanted the freedom, the recognition of unalienable rights and better chance at economic prosperity. I have 100+ year old letter from in family telling relatives in Europe of how good it feels to be free to say what you wish and one letter mentions having a handgun and how their "oppressors" in Europe would never allow such a thing. You Richard are just that and oppressor! Leave this nation, we have no room for your kind!

January 09 2016 at 2:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply