Kansas City is a city with a problem, though the issue isn’t unique to them. They have a violent crime problem and desperately want to do something about it.
That brings us to its second problem.
That second problem is that lawmakers there swallowed the idea that gun control is a solution to these problems. So, the city council there decided to pass some.
Amid an alarming increase in homicides this year, Mayor Quinton Lucas and the Kansas City Council passed two pieces of local gun control legislation in a state that is notorious for its lax gun laws.
These ordinances are the first gun control measures put forth by Lucas as he begins his second term. Both ordinances passed with a 12-1 vote. One proposal bans certain weapons, including machine guns, firearm silencers and guns that are turned into fully automatic weapons. The second makes it illegal to transfer weapons, including ammunition, to minors.
City officials say the ordinances would target an increase in fatal shootings caused by the proliferation of automatic weapons and an increase in violence impacting young people.
So what they did was take a felony–possession of a full-auto switch or illegal possession of a machine gun or suppressor–and turn it into a misdemeanor.
Then there’s the issue of banning transfers to minors. The people giving guns to the minors that represent a problem aren’t exactly going to be deterred by a local gun control law.
And that’s just the problem with these particular measures. We haven’t even talked about the deeper issue, though at least one person on the city council was thinking about them.
1st District Councilman Nathan Willett, the sole “no” vote on both ordinances, said he worries the legislation would preempt state law and lead the city into a costly lawsuit with the state.
“This would lead us on a path towards a legal battle that would rack up hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees,” Willett said.
The mayor’s office is confident both measures comply with state law.
The mayor’s office is delusional.
Missouri’s preemption law permits local governments to restrict open carry and discharging a firearm. Neither of these are either of those.
As such, Willett is right that there will be a legal battle and the city is going to be on the hook for those legal fees. Kansas City surely has better uses for hundreds of thousands of dollars in a quixotic quest for something that will never stand.
Then again, Kansas City is much like a lot of other urban centers in that they think the rules don’t really apply to them. Officials in these places are constantly looking to restrict guns without a care in the world for people’s rights or the fact that these laws don’t actually stop criminals.
So if they’ll ignore that, why bother looking at preemption laws and following those?
Kansas City should have attorneys on standby, because they’re going to get sued and sued hard and they’ll deserve it.