Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Guns and Such

Owners of restaurants and bars in my county have said they will not allow guns and have posted announcements to that effect that they will enforce. I get so tired of people saying that we need guns to defend ourselves. I've never had to defend myself and don't want to start now. If for some reason someone wants to kill me, it won't be that difficult. If someone breaks into my house, I hope it's when I'm not here. If I am here, I'll pretend to be asleep and hope they don't hurt me but really hope they don't ever break in. We don't all need to go around armed like in the Wild West. How did that work out?

What gets me is that one of the state senators who co-sponsored it is a Democrat from my district, Doug Jackson. So that lets us know that he wants votes no matter what since the Republicans have a majority in our legislature for the first time in ages. I hope someone runs against him in the primary next time.

This article in the NY Times gives a different perspective on that TN gun law.

Gov. Phil Bredesen, a Democrat, who vetoed the guns-in-bars bill but was overridden, said in a statement late Friday that he would allow the exemption bill to become law without his signature. The bill “represents a fringe constitutional theory” that will be thrown out of court, Mr. Bredesen said, but letting it become law may speed that challenge and yield clarity sooner. He said that in the meantime, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives would enforce federal regulations, and he predicted confusion for gun makers, dealers and importers.

Gun-control advocates say these efforts to exempt states from federal gun laws will have a limited effect because few federal laws exist anyway. Those that do exist, said Daniel Vice, senior lawyer at the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, involve background checks and what he called “basic record-keeping.” But evading any federal laws, Mr. Vice added, could make it easier for criminals to get guns.

Whatever the practical result of Tennessee’s new gun laws, they may well serve a political purpose: firing up the conservative base before next year’s state, local and Congressional elections.

“The Republicans are trying to embarrass the Democrats,” said John G. Geer, a political scientist at in Nashville at Vanderbilt University. “They want to put these proposals on the table not only because they believe in guns, but they want to force the Democrats to come out as anti-gun,” Professor Geer said. “You can see the attack ads forming already. The Republicans have won this issue.”

Source for this:
Lawmakers have passed a bill that would allow guns in restaurants, that serve alcohol. A coalition will sue state lawmakers, to stop the law from happening.

The core of the coalition is restaurant owners, attorneys, and civic leaders who believe state lawmakers were duped.

When the bill passed lawmakers said Tennessee was joining dozens of other states with similar gun laws. The coalition begged to differ and said the state has one of the strongest gun laws in the country.

"Our legislators were actually mislead by some slick lobbyists to believe this is common in 37 other states, and it is law, and it was just a flat lie, and they fell for it," said attorney Adam Dread.

Some statistics:

Every year more than 30,000 Americans die by gunshot, most of them suicides, but at least 10,000 by murder. This is twice the number of 4,316 US soldiers killed in six years of the Iraq war. England and Wales, by contrast, had 50 deaths through gun crime in 2005-06.


miss alaineus said...

let them have their guns....someone needs to start an initiative to ban bullets.

we had a really bad shooting today not too far from where i teach. some students from one of the local high schools were ambushed at a city bus stop in what appears to be a hit on a particular kid.

i can shoot a gun but hope i never have to in self-defense. do i feel the need to own one- no. do i think people need to be fully armed to the teeth in case of armageddon? no.