As Colorado Public Radio’s Bente Birkeland reports, the Democratic majority in the Colorado General Assembly is moving ahead with two new pieces of gun safety legislation meeting the established criteria for a wild political ride: overwhelming public support and common-sense appeal up against the bunker mentality of today’s embattled gun lobby:
Colorado gun owners could soon be required to report within 48 hours if their firearm is lost or stolen or face a small penalty under a new bill expected to be introduced late Friday. Democratic backers say the goal is to educate gun owners to be more aware and responsible for their weapons.
Another soon to be introduced measure would make failure to store a gun safely against the law.
These are the first gun proposals of the session from Democrats, who hold the majority in both chambers of the state legislature. Lawmakers had a robust debate in the last session over 2nd Amendment rights and public safety following the passage of the so-called ‘red flag’ gun law in 2019.
As FOX 31’s Joe St. George reports, Republican opponents are…well, reaching to construct coherent arguments against these bills:
“It’s really just a gun tax because it makes it mandatory they have to sell one of these locks with every gun,” Rep. Patrick Neville (R-Castle Rock) said. [Pols emphasis]
Given the obvious life or death consequences of failing to safely lock up guns, it’s hard to imagine a less persuasive argument.
Compared to last year’s pitched battle over the state’s new extreme risk protection order (ERPO) law, which opponents were able to cast in much more sweeping sweeping terms as a grave violation of the sacred right of Americans to be crazy and possess a gun, legislation merely requiring gun owners to report thefts and lock up guns safely would seem like small potatoes. Nearly 80% of respondents in public polls say they support mandatory safe storage of guns, and for reasons we can’t fathom 40% of gun thefts are not reported–a huge impediment to what should be every responsible person’s common goal preventing guns from falling into the wrong hands.
With all of this in mind, we’re genuinely curious to see what the opposition to these seemingly uncontroversial bills consists of–most likely a mishmash ranging from “slippery slope” logical fallacy to Quentin Tarantino shootout fiction. But in the real world, a pistol stashed in the kid’s cereal is more of a risk than it’s worth in the off chance Uma Thurman shows up looking for revenge.