The Republicans in the Colorado state legislature are making another run at expanding gun rights, reintroducing legislation that would allow concealed weapons in schools and expand the “castle doctrine” to businesses. Republicans say they are just defending the Second Amendment while Democrats accuse them of grandstanding and straying from the job-creation agenda that both parties promised would be their legislative focus this year.
A proposal running simultaneously in the House and Senate would allow concealed weapons on school grounds and college campuses if a person has a permit and another bill would let business owners and employees use deadly force against intruders. Both proposals have previously failed, including last year when Senate Democrats rejected the concealed weapons bill.
Another proposal would prevent state officials from restricting the use of firearms during a declared state of emergency. Another bill would eliminate background checks done by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation for firearm purchases. Republican Rep. Mark Waller, the legislation’s sponsor, said the state is spending unnecessarily on its background check program because it duplicates checks already done federally.
CBI spokesman Lance Clem said the agency opposes Waller’s bill because the federal checks are not as fast or thorough as the state checks.
Republican Rep. Kevin Priola, a sponsor of the concealed weapon legislation, said the goal is to improve public safety by allowing people to protect themselves.
Just what the state that gave us the Columbine massacre needs! Guns on every campus!
The presence of guns in schoos does not make anyone safer. In fact, the presence of guns on campus creates a negative learning environment and increases the level of inherent danger by increasing the odds of a tragic accident occurring, as well as increasing the odds of a gun falling into the wrong hands via theft, a more common occurrence in communal settings than private residences.
But they aren’t stopping there. Oh heavens no! They are also considering legislation that would eliminate background checks for firearms purchases, which would make it even easier for people who shouldn’t have guns to get their hands on one — and that’s a problem that is already manifesting itself in tragic ways. It certainly doesn’t need to be helped along and made worse, which is exactly the results that would be realized if the GOP legislators in Colorado get their way.
[This post is written as part of the Media Matters Gun Facts fellowship. The purpose of the fellowship is to further Media Matters’ mission to comprehensively monitor, analyze, and correct conservative misinformation in the U.S. media Some of the worst misinformation occurs around the issue of guns, gun violence, and extremism. The fellowship program is designed to fight this misinformation with facts.]