A Confusing Clarification

In my previous post, I discussed the unintended (presumably) consequences of the new definition of "journey" provided by the Arkansas State Legislature. Well now the Attorney General's office has issued and opinion saying the law has not been as broadened as I, and many others, have read it to be. 

While I wish that the Attorney General's opinion on this matter were persuasive, it simply isn't. The AG bases his opinion on the ambiguity inherent in the terms "journey" and "travel". I agree that those terms can be construed as ambiguous; however, the Legislature's clear action of defining the term "journey" removes any of that ambiguity. Even if you grant the ambiguity of the term, that only opens the door to look at the legislative history behind the statute, which the AG opinion purports to do. If a discussion of legislative history then followed, I might have been persuaded. Instead, the AG opinion delves immediately into the judicial interpretation of "journey" that was rendered in the absence of a legislative definition. 

That being said, until someone gets arrested and raises this issue as a defense, no one will know what the law on this matter is. So grab your gun and head out of the county if you want, but prepare to be arrested and settle in for a long, convoluted, and likely nonsensical, court fight.