BFA's Sean Maloney offers testimony in support of firearms-related bills

On Wednesday, May 13, Buckeye Firearms Association Region Leader (and NRA Board of Directors member) Sean Maloney testified on behalf of BFA before the House State Government committee in support of two pro-gun rights bills that are under consideration.

Rep. Anne Gonzales' (R-Westerville) House Bill 20 seeks to to correct several problems with current law regarding concealed handgun licenses' behavior in school zones. HB 20 mirrors legislation which passed in the House last session by an 81-2 vote. In the waning days of the lame duck session, the bill's language was inserted into HB 234 in the Senate, but Republicans in the Senate Civil Justice Committee amended the language back out at the last minute before passage.

Following is BFA's testimony on HB 20 (Rule Modification for Concealed Carry in School Zones):

Chairman Maag, Vice Chair Kunze, Ranking member Gerberry and members of the House State Government Committee. I speak today in support of House Bill 20.

O.R.C. Section 2923.122 has been one of the most problematic sections for concealed handgun license holders. It has proven difficult for license holders to comply with, causing problems for schools, parents, and prosecutors. HB 20 will better align Ohio with Federal law in school zones, and clearly allow normal activities that occur on school property every school day, while maintaining the existing prohibition for license holders carrying firearms at school activities or inside school buildings.

Current law forbids a person with a concealed handgun license from being on school property while in possession of their firearms unless they are “immediately in the process of picking up or dropping off a child.” HB 20 extends that exemption to other persons and objects.

HB 20 changes the mandate that the license holder remain in a vehicle, to requiring the firearm remain in the vehicle.

This is a simple bill that solves real problems while making the law easier to understand, comply with and enforce. We ask for your support for this legislation.

Maloney also offered testimony on Rep. Ron Maag's (R-Lebanon) House Bill 48, which seeks to restore Ohioans right to bear concealed firearms on college campuses, places of worship, day-care facilities, private airplanes, school safety zones and certain government buildings.

Following is BFA's testimony on HB 48 (Eliminate many 'no-guns' victim zones):

Chairman Maag, Vice Chair Kunze, Ranking member Gerberry and members of the House State Government Committee. I speak today in support of House Bill 48, which eliminates some restrictions on people licensed to discretely carry a handgun.

Many will question “why” these changes are needed. Defending one’s life is the most basic of human rights. With guns, we are talking about constitutional rights that are enumerated at both the State and Federal level. Second Amendment rights should be treated the same as all other constitutionally protected rights.

Those rights are not unlimited. There may be restrictions placed on those rights, where the state can show just cause. It is not our job to justify why we need constitutional rights. It is the duty of the state to prove a justifiable need to restrict those rights. No such proof has been offered for any aspects that H.B. 48 seeks to remedy.

Columbine, Virginia Tech, Aurora movie theater, Lubys Cafeteria, San Ysidro, Ft Hood. Unfortunately we have become all too familiar with these tragedies. Again and again it happens, almost always in a “gun free” zone, more appropriately labeled victim zones. Mass killings are often planned events. The goal is to kill as many people as possible, setting a new “high score” to become famous. They are crimes of violence and control committed by a coward. The criminal looks for a place where he can kill quickly and easily in a limited time. A law that disarms his victims enables such a killer.

In October 2000, John R. Lott and William M. Landes compiled a paper, “Multiple Victim Public Shootings.” In it they found that the states with the fewest gun free zones have the greatest reductions killings, injuries, and attacks.1 They concluded that differences in state right-to-carry laws are also important: restricting the places where permits are prohibited increases murders, injuries and shootings.

By allowing a potential victim to defend their own life in more places, it makes law abiding citizens safer, deters would-be mass murderers, and protects the public in general. It is good public policy and I encourage your support for this bill.

Buckeye Firearms Association maintains a vigilant watch on gun legislation in Ohio. Stay tuned for updates as this legislation receives additional hearings.

Chad D. Baus is the Buckeye Firearms Association Secretary, BFA PAC Vice Chairman, and an NRA-certified firearms instructor. He is the editor of, which received the Outdoor Writers of Ohio 2013 Supporting Member Award for Best Website.

Media Coverage:

Dix Communications newspapers - Gun groups urge officials to lift prohibitions

Sean Maloney, representing the Buckeye Firearms Association, cited school shootings and other incidents nationally, among reasons for the proposed law changes. Perpetrators, he said, plan such crimes in advance to kill as many people as quickly as possible.

"By allowing a potential victim to defend their own life in more places, it makes law-abiding citizens safer, deters would-be mass murderers and protects the public in general," Maloney said.

Gongwer News Service - Proponents Tout Concealed Carry Bill As Effort To Increase Public Safety

The Buckeye Firearms Association and other proponents urged support for the legislation (HB 48) which would eliminate certain so-called victim zones, allow for concealed carry on college campuses and clarify that existing affirmative defense statutes apply uniformly, in testimony before the House State Government Committee.


Seeking to address questions of why the proposed changes are needed, Sean Maloney, who spoke on behalf of the Buckeye Firearms Association, argued that the state has yet to prove a justifiable need to restrict Second Amendment rights.

Pointing to gun-related tragedies that have occurred across the country, Mr. Maloney said many have taken place in "gun free" zones. Such mass killings are planned and "a law that disarms...victims enables such a killer," he argued.

Mr. Maloney cited a 2000 analysis that he said found states with fewer gun free zones had the greatest reduction in killings, injuries and attacks. The report, he said, further concluded that variances in state right-to-carry laws are important, as restricting places where permits aren't allowed increases murder, injuries and shootings.

"By allowing a potential victim to defend their own life in more places, it makes law abiding citizens safer, deters would-be mass murderers and protects the public in general," the witness said.

WSXY (ABC Columbus) - Lawmakers Consider Changes in Gun-Free Zones on Campuses, Churches, Schools

Sean Maloney with the Buckeye Firearms Association said "gun-free zones are becoming victim zones" and we want to change that. "Look at Columbine, Virginia Tech, Fort Hood, we all know them by heart, those tragedies over and over again."

Maloney said "House Bill 48 seeks to remedy many of the restrictions which prove to interfere with the ability to protect our lives."

Help us fight for your rights!

Become a member of Buckeye Firearms Association and support our grassroots efforts to defend and advance YOUR RIGHTS!

Subscribe to our FREE Newsletter

Get weekly news and instant alerts on the latest laws and politics that affect your gun rights. Enjoy cutting-edge commentary. Be among the first to hear about gun raffles, firearms training, and special events. Read more.

We respect your privacy and your email address will be kept confidential.


Buckeye Firearms Association is a grassroots organization dedicated to defending and advancing the right of citizens to own and use firearms for all legal activities, including self-defense, hunting, competition, and recreation. Read more.