Buckeye Firearms Assoc. Chairman posts open letter to Justice Paul Pfeifer as another brutal crime occurs in Ohio park

"What's the need to be packing in a public park? What's the compelling need?"
- Republican Ohio Supreme Court Justice Paul Pfeifer, April 9, 2008

Two weeks ago, it was a man stabbed in the face in a Toledo park at the conclusion of an evening jog. This week, it's a woman kidnapped from the Equestrian Center of the Lorain County Metro Parks’ Carlisle Reservation, raped and shot in the back before being stuffed in the trunk of her own car.

Compelling enough, Justice Pfeifer?

That's just what Buckeye Firearms Association Chairman Jim Irvine is asking in an open letter to the Ohio Supreme Court Justice.

The text of the letter follows:

Justice Pfeifer,

On April 9, 2008 during the oral arguments of the Ohioans for Concealed Carry v City of Clyde lawsuit in which Clyde’s ban on concealed carry in parks is being challenged, you said:

“What’s the need to be packing in a public park? What’s the compelling need?”

Do you consider being stabbed in the face acceptable or good? Do you consider having your dog killed acceptable or good? What about being shot and crammed into the trunk of a car? Do you think rape is good? Or might these constitute a “compelling need?” Decent people certainly think so, but judging from your harsh words as you sit on high all dressed in black to judge others, you certainly argue against it. All of these things happened in an Ohio parks last month.

Lest you think these are rare events, I encourage you to visit our web site. This is far from a complete list of crimes committed in Ohio parks:


I consider rape a heinous and vile act. Maybe you don’t. But society in general believes that crime victims have a “compelling need” to protect themselves. Ohio law recognized that right.

While the sheer numbers are not as large, for each individual and their family, violent crimes are every bit as damaging as severe car accidents. Maybe you also think there is no “compelling need” for seatbelts in cars, but it would clearly be wrong for you to prohibit someone else from using seatbelts for their own safety. A gun is no different. (Except of course that a gun has some constitutional protections.)

I hope the future you will think before making such stupid and insensitive remarks. Crime victims deserve much better from a Supreme Court Justice. I pray you are willing to rule based on the facts of this case and not your personal dislike of firearms.


James M. Irvine

Click here or on the letter image to download the letter in .pdf format.

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