As gun control seems to be worming its way through the legislative process up in Pennsylvania, it sounds like a foregone conclusion that these bills will become law. Even the supposedly pro-gun GOP in the state seems to be embracing the bills.
To be fair, they’re not the most drastic anti-gun measures we’ve seen, but they’re still problematic.
Because of this problematic nature, pro-gun representatives probably feel like their backs are up against the wall. They’re looking for ways to fight this infringement on personal liberty any way they can.
I can’t say I find fault with this particular method.
Seeking to derail two bills that he said infringe on gun owners’ constitutional rights, state Rep. Aaron Bernstine has filed 79 amendments for the House to discuss and debate.
“We’re going to do every single thing that we can do to stop the folks in the anti-gun movement of achieving their goals of removing firearms from law-abiding citizens in Pennsylvania,” said Bernstine, R-10, New Beaver.
Bernstine is a staunch Second Amendment supporter who posted video on Facebook of himself at a gun range shortly after his driveway was vandalized last year and recently tweeted a photo of him and his young son target shooting.
House Bills 1872 and 2227, Bernstine insisted, would violate the Pennsylvania constitution, which states that the right for Pennsylvanians to bear arms “shall not be questioned.”
Both of the bills passed the House Judiciary Committee and have been referred the Rules Committee. House Bill 2227 passed in an 18-9 vote on Tuesday, while House Bill 1872 passed 14-13 on Wednesday.
Bernstine’s effort is a noble gesture, even if it turns out to be a futile one. Burying the bills in amendments slows down the process completely and may well “nerf” some of the more egregious possibilities of both of these bills.
As such, it’s a pretty smart move. Even if it doesn’t block the bill, it may well make them less of an infringement on people’s right to keep and bear arms. It sucks, but this is how the legislative game is played, and while I’m sure anti-gunners are already crying foul over this one, both sides do stuff like this all the time.
The goal is to either include poison pills or, at a minimum, make the least intrusive law humanly possible.
It’s just a shame that it’s even necessary.
The solution to many of these situations isn’t new laws, but enforcement of our existing laws. With news that so many of these shooters are domestic abusers, I can’t help but see enforcement of our domestic violence laws as being the key to stopping so many of these killings. Prosecute those who beat their families and then they can’t get legal access to guns in the first place.
Lock that down and stop trying to create new laws.
But, since politicians love to create new laws, Bernstine’s 79 amendments makes a valiant effort at trying to prevent Pennsylvania from embracing the stupid that has overtaken so many states in the wake of Parkland.