Legislation has been introduced by Missouri Representative Mike Leara to the Missouri House of Representatives that would make introducing anti-gun legislation into the legislature a felony, according to a Feb. 19 CBS News article. The bill has been twice read, but is yet to be taken to committee, according to the Missouri House of Representatives website. Not only is this proposal ridiculous and entirely unconstitutional, it doesn’t foster a sensible discourse about gun rights. Serious, fair and balanced legislation is the path to solving the nation’s gun violence problems.
Rep. Leara himself states that he has “no illusions of the bill making it through the legislative process,” according to the same CBS News source. If that is the case, why is it being introduced? Instead of threatening his fellow legislators with a Class D Felony, politicians must focus on legislation that would be potentially palatable to both parties.
The notion that the purpose of this bill is to start a discussion is preposterous. Lines in the sand are long-drawn on the issue of gun control. Both parties feel strongly about their positions, as do their constituents. All rational proposals must be on the table, but Leara’s proposal is far from rational.
Furthermore, Missouri taxpayers are paying legislators for their efforts. As taxpayers and voters, we demand our legislators take these issues seriously. If legislators want to defend a hunting tradition and truly protect the right to a well-armed militia, then they need to pursue a middle ground, not portray themselves as extremists. We don’t know how the issue of gun control will be solved throughout the U.S., but senseless, unconstitutional legislation is not contributing to that solution.