Remember 2013’s HB 76? We did. Welp, it’s back again this year. This time, without a bullet in the chamber.
HB260 – Concealed Firearm Permit Amendments – this time sponsored by Representative Curt Oda (Republican – Clearfield). HB 260 would make it legal for anyone over the age of 21, and without a criminal record, the ability to carry a firearm in a concealed manner legally – a practice often known as “constitutional carry.” The bill is a copy/paste of the language from last time around, except with clarifying language regarding when a weapon is considered dangerous.
Currently, six states have some version of constitutional carrying on their books, an increase by two states since Utah Political Capitol last reported on this legislation two years ago. The concept is considered to be a strict and narrow reading of the Second Amendment, stating that “the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” In Utah, citizens are required to take a training course in weapons maintenance, gun laws, gun handling and safety before being able to conceal a weapon on their person in public. If HB 260 passes, that training requirement goes away.
As stated by UPC in 2013, lawful, competent individuals have the right to own guns, but everyone has the right to feel safe. There are some people in this world who shouldn’t own a gun. Furthermore, there are some people in this world that own guns and are irresponsible them. We should foster responsible, reasonable laws to foster responsible and safe gun ownership. Imagine every muzzle sweeper on the gun range, every idiot who does not follow basic gun etiquette and gun safety, having the ability to carry a gun on them, willy nilly. That’s bad. A gun is a tool. A gun is a tool to kill, period. The Utah Legislator doesn’t seem to understand that-to them, a gun is a politically expedient stance and fashion statement.
Increase funding for education?
Increase funding for our crumbling infrastructure?
“Hang on, gotta take a selfie with my guns.”
This year marks the fifth year Oda has produced a commemorative gun for legislators who want them. How many years have we neglected more important issues for bills like this? Do we get a commemorative plate honoring hundreds of thousands of Utahns who are without healthcare? A collectable pin for skirting education funding for 30 years? How about a limited edition gas mask?
This law moves Utah in the wrong direction, but when has that ever stopped the Utah Legislature from going there?
Unfortunately, all of these topics were of little consequence to the 2013 legislature. That bill passed the House 51-18 and the Senate 22-7. Only the veto of Governor Herbert prevented the bill from becoming law. With Herbert spending his political capital on Healthy Utah this year, it is doubtful that if Herbert is presented with HB 260 that he will repeat his veto.
To contact Representative Oda, click here or call 801-773-9796.
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