Uvalde Massacre: Too Much to Bear

The twenty-seventh U.S. school shooting of 2022 occurred 24 May 2022 in Uvalde, Texas. It is too much to bear. I am tired of politicians talking about praying for the families of the victims. It is high time we – they – DO something.

I don’t want to hear about mental health, candle-light vigils, the second amendment, or anything else except commonsense gun laws. President Biden says he’s tired of these massacres, well so are we all. And I can’t imagine how the people feel in every city in which these massacres have occurred.

Screen Shot 2022-05-25 at 11.27.03 PMTexas Governor Greg Abbott was disingenuous when he talked about gun laws in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York not reducing gun violence. Sure, there is gun violence in those cities, but not mass murders in elementary and high schools, churches, and Walmart, for goodness’ sake. Since 2009, there have been over four mass murders in Texas’ schools, churches, and stores. I’d say there’s something bad wrong here that the Texas legislature can do something about. But I’m not counting on them.

For since 2009, the legislature has done nothing but loosen restrictions on guns. Rather than improving the “wild West” ethos in our state, we now have open carry laws, and gun buyers are not required to be trained on firearm use. People carry long guns openly. And who needs a semi- or fully automatic machine gun? They only are used for killing people.

It is a travesty that Governor Abbott, Senator Cruz, and others stood before us today and talked about improving mental health care when Abbott and the legislature refuse to expand Medicaid. Texas has more uninsured folks than just about any state. But I digress.

The Texas Governor and legislature need to ACT. Immediately. Abbott can call a special session and show Texans and the nation that he is serious about reducing gun violence in our schools, churches, department stores and other public places. If the governor and the legislature do not act, and soon, I say we, you and I, take our discontent to the streets as many did in 2020 over the murder of George Floyd. This time, it’s for 19 dead children and two dead teachers that we protest.

Yes, WE must do something, too.

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Permitless Carry: A Not So Stellar Idea

The Texas legislature has passed a permit-less gun carry law. Who thought this up? The only good news about this for the rest of the country is that these permit-less gun-toting Texans probably can’t bring their guns into other states because they have NO GUN PERMIT! Another tidbit of good news is that guns remain prohibited in Texas schools, courthouses, and bars.

Who thought this up: According to Rep. Matt Shaefer who introduced the bill in the Texas House, “the ordinary citizen is the first responder” and the ability to defend oneself is a “God-given right.” In keeping with Shaefer’s wishes, the bill was not amended before it finally passed.

The Firearm Carry Act of 2021, allows a person 21 years or older to carry a handgun either concealed or in a holster. Schaefer clarified that the bill only applies to handguns, not AR-15s, or rifles. “I think it is a bill that is the strongest bill I’ve seen in my legislative career regarding the rights of our Second Amendment,” Republican Senate sponsor Charles Schwertner said.

The major problem with the new law – it passed the Senate 17 to 13, before Governor Abbott signed it into law – is that no permit means no gun use or safety training, either.