Sunday, November 23, 2014

Governor, lawmakers good with guns — with exception

4/23/2014

The Kansas Legislature sent Gov. Sam Brownback a bill containing our state legislators’ decree that they, and they alone, shall establish the gun ordinances that shall be the law of the land.

The governor signed the legislation — House Bill 2578 — this week, apparently concluding he and the lawmakers in Topeka know best. So now he just needs to explain the sign on the gate to Cedar Crest, the governor’s mansion where he lives. You see, he isn’t so wild about folks packing guns around his humble abode.

The Kansas Legislature sent Gov. Sam Brownback a bill containing our state legislators’ decree that they, and they alone, shall establish the gun ordinances that shall be the law of the land.

The governor signed the legislation — House Bill 2578 — this week, apparently concluding he and the lawmakers in Topeka know best. So now he just needs to explain the sign on the gate to Cedar Crest, the governor’s mansion where he lives. You see, he isn’t so wild about folks packing guns around his humble abode.

And neither do legislators like folks bringing weapons into their beloved Statehouse.

And yet these same people think that everywhere else we all ought to be perfectly comfortable with guns. Could it be that meets the definition of hypocrisy?

The bill that passed the Legislature in the waning hours of its regular session essentially nullifies local gun ordinances, prohibiting cities and counties from enacting or enforcing any such ordinances that regulate the “purchase, transfer, ownership, storage, carrying or transporting of firearms.”

This follows the law passed and signed last year essentially requiring cities and counties to allow concealed carry of firearms into public buildings.

This latest edict to cities and counties from on high in Topeka includes some real gems. Such as:

Thou shalt not deny or delay transfers of machine guns to private buyers. And, furthermore, “a generalized belief by the chief law enforcement officer that certain firearms have no lawful purpose and that certain persons should not possess such firearms shall not be sufficient reason to deny certification.” (We might see what people think of that one if, God forbid, we ever have a mass shooting with a machine gun somewhere in Kansas.)

Thou shalt sell all guns seized in crime investigations and return them to circulation unless the gun has been used in a homicide.

Thou shalt not use taxpayer money, even if it is your local taxpayer money, for gun buy-back programs to take firearms out of circulation.

The supposed need to pass such a bill was to eliminate inconsistencies in gun laws from one place to another in the state. As it is, it is confusing to gun owners, the gun lobby says.

And yet Kansas has plenty of laws that vary from community to community. Liquor laws, for one. Somehow consumers manage to figure out where they can find a liquor store open on Sunday and where they can’t.

Surely gun owners can figure out where they can take their guns and where they can’t. They could always err on the side of not taking the gun.

No, really, this isn’t about confusion. This is about how some people are comfortable with guns — the more the merrier — and others are not. And this is about those who are comfortable being insensitive to those who aren’t.

And this is about the hubris in Topeka, where lawmakers with agendas really don’t care what other people think. And this is about hypocrisy on many levels, including the same people who complain about mandates from Washington having no such concern about issuing mandates from Topeka.

Governor, now that you’ve signed this bill, you really should take down the sign.

The Hutchinson News

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