Louisiana legislators will likely take up four pro-Second Amendment pieces of legislation this week, but one pundit in the state claims that lawmakers have waited until the coronavirus crisis to do so in order to sneak the bills by the public. WWL-TV political commentator and editor of The Gambit newspaper Clancy DuBos says the bills could have waited until life returns to normal.
“This is happening now because the pandemic is keeping people from going to Baton Rouge and speaking out,” said Clancy DuBos, political analyst for WWLTV.
Two words for DuBos: Get real. The fact of the matter is that the state legislature is working on a number of bills, not just the pro-gun bills in question. Are they all getting votes now because the pandemic is keeping people home? In fact, is the pandemic really keeping people home in Louisiana? Malls are reopening, and so are casinos. The Louisiana state capitol building may be closed for tours at the moment, but even if voters can’t pack into the capitol rotunda to lobby for or against bills, there’s nothing stopping them from picking up the phone or emailing their state representative and senator.
Just this week Louisiana lawmakers have worked on bills to expand the state’s medical marijuana program, put a referendum on sports betting before voters, allow co-ops to offer rural broadband, and a host of other topics both controversial and non-controversial. The reason why lawmakers are taking up the pro-Second Amendment bills is simple; lawmakers are in session and these bills have a lot of support. It’s downright silly to claim that lawmakers are trying to pull a fast one on voters, and honestly, if this is the type of insightful political analysis that Clancy DuBos provides on a regular basis, WWL-TV would be better off taking the money they’re paying him and setting it on fire.
As for the pro-2A bills themselves, they’re expected to be voted on in the state House this week, and all four are worth supporting.
House Bill 746, sponsored by Rep. Ray Garofalo, allows those who lawfully possess a firearm to carry concealed for self-defense during a mandatory evacuation under a declared state of emergency or disaster.
House Bill 781, sponsored by Rep. Blake Miguez, establishes that firearms and ammunition manufacturers, distributors, wholesalers, suppliers, and retailers are “Essential Businesses” that shall not be prohibited from conducting business during a declared disaster or emergency. HB 781 further prevents law-abiding gun owners’ rights from being infringed during proclaimed curfews.
House Bill 140, sponsored by Rep. Blake Miguez, prevents local authorities and municipalities from imposing restrictions to prohibit the possession of a firearm. Preemption legislation is designed to stop municipalities from creating a patchwork of different laws that turn a law-abiding citizen into a criminal for simply crossing a jurisdictional line.
House Bill 334, sponsored by Reps. Bryan Fontenot, Blake Miguez and Charles Owen, authorizes a concealed handgun permit holder to carry a concealed handgun in a church, synagogue, mosque, or other similar place of worship.
If you’re a Louisiana gun owner, you should definitely be in touch with your state representative and encourage them to vote for these bills, which are truly common sense and would help to secure the right to keep and bear arms in Louisiana during the best and worst of times.