Wisconsin Democrats are spending their time amping up their war on guns, gun owners, resident’s right to carry, and common sense in general.
Just three months after Governor Walker repealed the (unnecessary) 48-hour waiting period on gun sales, WI state Democrats want it reinstated.
Republicans argue that not only is the waiting period unnecessary since background checks come back to dealers within an hour, but that the measure also serves to leave victims aiming to protect themselves with a firearm defenseless. Democrats also fail to see the real issue with gun violence: illegal guns.
“The cooling off period has been proven not to work. It didn’t have any effect on anybody in the time that it was in place,” said Jon Gafner, owner of Jon’s Sport Shop in Oshkosh, WI.
Instead, Gafner says we should focus on guns obtained illegally, “What we really need to do is have somebody step up on either side of the aisle and let’s talk about doing something about the laws that are on the books. Let’s do something about the guy who breaks in and steals the gun.”
In addition to the 48 hour waiting period being argued, we are also facing dueling legislation regarding campus carry here in WI. Earlier this week, Rep. Jesse Kremer (R-Kewaskum) and Sen. Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg) proposed a bill which would allow students and faculty to carry concealed guns inside public university and college buildings.
Under current Wisconsin law, people can carry guns on the grounds of public colleges and universities, however schools can ban weapons inside campus buildings. Kremer and LeMahieu’s bill would repeal the UW system’s gun ban prohibiting firearms on campus for individuals with concealed carry permits.
Not to be outdone, a trio of WI Democrats then countered Kremer and LeMahieu’s proposed bill with their own legislation which would make it a felony to possess a gun (or other dangerous weapon) on a university or college campus.
While UW campuses have “Gun Free Zone” signs at entrances to every building on campus, Kremer says nothing is stopping those who wish to cause “mayhem” from doing so on and around campus.
“How are we stopping them from carrying guns on campus?” he said. “We’re not.”
The pair of proposed bills also has state law enforcement piping up in response. Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn stated, “I am confident that the same Legislature so unwilling to make common sense changes to keep firearms out the hands of career criminals will figure a way to nuance this proposed legislation so police will still be able to protect students by stopping and questioning armed subjects on campus before another mass murder plays out in the most heavily-armed industrialized nation on the planet.”
But leave it to Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. to drop a healthy dose of common sense to the debate, saying the proposal is the beginning of a discussion “we have to start to have.”
“Restricting a person’s constitutional right to defend themselves anywhere, I find it to be unconscionable,” Clarke said. “The only person who’s safe in a gun-free zone is the mass murderer.”
“What other constitutional rights do we ask people to check at the schoolhouse gate?” Clarke asked. “Everybody isn’t going to carry anyway … but this is an individual right,” the sheriff said.
State Democrats will happily continue to perpetuate the “gun show loophole” lie and claim any gun rights bills proposed by WI Republicans are “out of far right field.”
“Who asked for this bill?” Rep. Chris Taylor (D-Madison) questioned rhetorically. “I proudly represent a big chunk of UW-Madison and I know it wasn’t the students, it wasn’t the parents and it definitely wasn’t the majority of staff and faculty.”
Well, Chris – I’m a Wisconsin parent with a son entering college in a few months, and I know many students, school staff members, parents, and common sense educators, law enforcement officers, and residents who welcome any legislation that would ensure our right to protect ourselves on campuses and beyond. Keeping us defenseless, be it for 48 hours or during an entire school day on campus, is an injustice I refuse to accept.