Monday, May 18, 2009

Gun rights bills fade in Legislature

I do believe that Campus Carry legislation, for this Texas legislative session, is dead. There was an attempt to attach an amendment to a different piece of legislation that would have decriminalized the carrying of a concealed handgun by a CHL on the campus of public or private college or university. That attempt also failed on a "point of order".

This from Lubbock Online:

By Enrique Rangel

AUSTIN - Texans with concealed-weapon licenses will have to wait at least two more years before they can carry their firearms on college campuses.

The same goes for people expecting a sales tax holiday for the purchase of guns, shotguns, rifles and ammunition the last weekend of August. And workers who were hoping they could take their firearms to work as long as they left them inside their car or truck can forget it.

Texas may be one of the Second Amendment-friendliest states in the Union, but in this session the Legislature has pretty much decided that even in the Lone Star State gun rights have limits.

That's because, barring an 11th-hour surprise, in the last two weeks left of the current session, for all practical purposes a series of bills that drew all kinds of attention, not to mention strong opposition, are dead.

"My bills are toast. They are dead," said Rep. Joe Driver, R-Garland, whose most controversial bill was the one that would have allowed Texans with concealed-weapon licenses to carry their firearms on college campuses. Sen. Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio, filed an identical bill in the upper chamber but it has not gone to the Senate floor for a vote.

Driver, like Rep. David Swinford, R-Dumas, and other lawmakers who support gun rights, said such bills are dead because they never got out of committee or only passed in one chamber.

Had those bills gone to the House floor for a vote they would have passed, or at least the one that would have allowed people to carry firearms on college campuses, Driver said.

"I had 76 votes," which is the minimum needed to pass a bill, said Driver, who in 2007 was the House sponsor of the "castle doctrine" bill that passed overwhelmingly in both chambers and Gov. Rick Perry signed into law. The law, which does not mention firearms, allows Texans to use deadly force against would-be attackers whether at home, office or car...
The Employer Parking Lot Bill is not quite dead, yet. SB 730 has passed the Senate and still has time for a House vote.

Campus Carry on the other hand, is dead. Part of what we had going against us was the public perception of campus carry. Here is one of the comments to the Lubbock Online article:

I am a member of the NRA and own several firearms. I wholeheartedly support laws that allow for concealed carry and home defense. However, I do have a serious concern about firearms on college campuses. Many students tend to abuse alcohol and get seriously inebriated. Alcohol tends to cloud one's inhibitions and common sense. Such students with guns in their rooms could be a very dangerous thing. I am glad this bill stalled.
If this individual really holds the beliefs stated, then this individual is really misinformed. A Texas CHL can only be had by an adult, 21 years of age or older. How many adults who are responsible enough to obtain a CHL live in a dorm? How many adults responsible enough to obtain a CHL spend their time abusing alcohol and becoming seriously inebriated? We have two years to change this public perception, because as was pointed out in the article:

...What's more, even if the bills are not revived in the last two weeks of the session, these issues will be back in the 2011 session, Burnam predicted.

Driver agreed, saying he will introduce the same bills again.
There is an election between now and the next legislative session, pro-rights candidates need our support in both the primaries and the general election.


Anonymous said...

I see this kind of crap way too often...I'm very skeptical of the "I'm a Gun owner but..." or "I'm an NRA member but..." comments.

I think this is a calculated tactic used by anti-gunners to give the impression that "even" gun owners support their "reasonable" restrictions.

Considering how many gun owners there are, I'm sure there are some that hold any number of viewpoints...but this meme just seemed to start fairly recently and has become almost standard fare in comment threads in a very short period of time. Considering the blatant falsehoods and intentional misdirection that the anti-gunners use regularly, this particular type of comment being a calculated tactic wouldn't surprise me at all.

Frances Clements said...

Oh, that is really too bad. I was hoping it would get through.

Crucis said...

The Missouri Campus Carry and other CCW bills are also held up in committee. There is still work left to let them move forward so it's not a dead issue yet for this session.

Unknown said...

I just think it is sad that we had enough votes for house and senate, but a few senators/reps that find this to be scary are very able to kill a bill. I hope that it does not take a tragedy to give students the right to defend themselves.

Anonymous said...

Humph! At this point, my attitude would be, what they don't know won't hurt me.
Better to ask forgiveness after the fact, then permission beforehand.

B Woodman
SSG (Ret) U S Army