Tell Us: Does Retail Center's Rule Conflict With Gun Owners' Rights?

Some gun owners have objected to The Promenade Shops at Saucon Valley's "Rule #13," which states "weapons including guns...may be confiscated and given to proper authorities."

A recent topic thread on the Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association (PAFOA) Discussion Forum has members taking a closer look at the  Code of Conduct. 

In a message board thread titled "Center Valley Promenade Shops don't allow guns, but is their policy legal?" board member WolfMacabre9 wrote:

"I understand that it is private property and that they are within their rights to say no firearms, but are they legally able to confiscate my firearm? I don't plan on going there anymore because I don't like to support anti-gun supporters, it just doesn't seem legal to me though that they could confiscate a firearm."

The policy, known on the discussion board as "#13," reads, "Any weapon such as guns, knives, swords, laser pointers, and any other items that can harm the customer wil be confiscated and given to proper authorities." 

The discussion thread mirrors on the in Hellertown that took place earlier this summer. 

A representative of the Promenade Shops, which is in Upper Saucon Township, confirmed that the Code of Conduct has been in place since the outdoor "lifestyle center" opened in 2006. They did not return calls for comment. 

Several contributors to the discussion thread confirmed that they have visited the Promenade Shops with a concealed weapon and had no issue.

A few writers also commented on recent mass shootings, including the  and the  in Wisconsin that left six people dead. 

Some forum members, such as Ten*K, said that if they aren't allowed to bring concealed weapons to the Promenade Shops, they won't be returning.  

"The moral of the story: If you don't like the rules the property owner places upon entry - don't go there. Your property right to keep and bear doesn't trump his property right to manage his kingdom."

What do you think of the Promenade Shops' Code of Conduct? How do you feel about the policy to confiscate weapons? Tell us in the comments below.

Robert Preston August 13, 2012 at 12:15 AM
FYI - The person responding here as "Phil Kline" is an imposter.
Bob Linney August 13, 2012 at 02:22 AM
My spirts are refreshed! The above "Comments" and "Replies" constitutes the most civil and informative discourse I have ever read in Patch. Congratulations to all of the writers, imposters included.
BHirsh August 13, 2012 at 07:59 PM
There is no provision in Pennsylvania's Uniform Firearms Act giving the force of law to private gun bans, other than trespass law, which requires several procedural hoops to be satisfied. If the proprietor of any shop in this center, or the security of the center, attempts to confiscate a sidearm from a person with a valid gun permit, it is illegal. The most they can do is to ask the patron to leave the premises, and failing that, summon the police and issue a trespass warning in their presence. Only after that procedure can a trespass violation be enforced. A word to those comparing property. While the gun may be property, this is not a property v. property argument, it is property v. self-defense rights. The right to life trumps property rights, EVERY TIME.
Wildfire August 26, 2012 at 01:02 PM
Hmmm, do I understand this correctly? As I understand it, it is considered "reasonable" that the property owner's "Property Right", allows the Owner of the Property to say "No Guns Allowed!", and those who wish to shop there must give up their Civil/Human Right of self-defense in order to shop? Wouldn't this mean, under tort law, that the Retail Center would then legal assume liability for the customer's safety (because the Retail Center replaced the customer's ability to protect themselves) should a customer be criminally assaulted coming into, while inside and upon exiting the Retail Center until they enter their vehicle? "It is their *PROPERTY RIGHT*! If you don't like shopping where guns are forbidden that's just too bad!" It is their property rights, and I understand that. But the big question I have: Why can't the Retail Center also say: "No Blacks Allowed!"? It is still "their *PROPERTY RIGHT*!" isn't it? Couldn't The Retail Center become the KKKmart if they wished? "It is their *PROPERTY RIGHT*!" . . . isn't it?
Robert Preston August 26, 2012 at 04:14 PM
Wildfire, The customer doesn't give up his right to self defense. Self defense isn't narrowly limited to the use/possession of guns, knives, or other weapons. The only time you do not have your right to self defense is when you have been sentenced to execution, at the time of execution. About the liability issue - they aren't responsible to begin with for your safety from criminal acts, so that doesn't change. Their liabilities are held within the safety of their products and general stuff like slips, falls, etc. They aren't responsible for the criminal acts of another person. About the "No Blacks Allowed" - federal anti-discrimination laws prevent that. The only things a business cannot discriminate on are the protected classes of people like: gender, race, national origin, creed, religion, disability, veteran status, and a couple other things.


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