Secret Service answers petition to allow open-carry of firearms at GOP convention

© Jason Reed
The Republican National Convention will be a “gun free zone,” despite a petition to allow the open-carry of firearms receiving tens of thousands of signatures. The Secret Service has put its foot down, citing US law against Second Amendment enthusiasts.

The Change.org petition launched last week is on its way to garnering the 50,000 signatures needed to achieve its ostensible goal. Ostensible, because, despite the outpouring of support for the initiative’s message, the author appears to be a jokester. 

“The Hyperationalist,” the blog and Twitter account behind the appeal, has been retweeting people finding humor in what increasingly looks to be an exercise in satire. The Secret Service, however, wasn’t laughing, reiterating to the petition’s signers that the law is on their side to keep private firearms out of the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland during the GOP convention, July 18-21.

"Individuals determined to be carrying firearms will not be allowed past a predetermined outer perimeter checkpoint, regardless of whether they possess a ticket to the event," the Secret Service said in a statement. "Only authorized law enforcement personnel working in conjunction with the Secret Service for a particular event may carry a firearm inside of the protected site."

Even without the Secret Service, the policy would in all likelihood stay the same. The privately owned venue already has a policy in place against weapons of many kinds being allowed inside. The petition not only called upon the Republican National Committee to “rectify this affront to our Second Amendment,” but also demanded the Quicken Loans Arena suspend its “unconstitutional” policy.

The Second Amendment is a prohibition on the power of Congress, not private property owners.

The petitioners, depending on how genuine this whole effort is, also want the National Rifle Association to condemn the “gun free zone” policy and for presidential candidate Ohio Governor John Kasich to issue an executive order to do away with it.