Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Proposal to allow gun owners to carry concealed weapons sparks outrage

Roughly a day after a Jersey City police officer succumbed to wounds he suffered during a wild shootout last Thursday, members of the U.S. Senate are debating an amendment to a Pentagon spending bill that would allow gun owners to carry a concealed weapon anywhere in the country.

Senator John Thune [R-South Dakota] put forth the proposed amendment, but New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is among those who have blasted the proposal.

"This bill is an anti-police, pro-gun-trafficker bill," he told fellow mayors on a conference call. "This is going to put a lot more guns on the street."

The death of Det. Marc DiNardo, the murder of three Newark residents earlier this week, the shooting death of a Bushwick woman sitting outside her building with her grandson earlier this month and two additional Jersey City police officers who suffered injuries last night are among the series of recent incidents in this area that highlight the unfortunate reality Thune is arguably woefully ignorant of the unacceptable toll guns continue to inflict across the country. Freshman U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand [D-N.Y.], a self-described supporter of "hunter's rights," stressed to this reporter during an interview yesterday she remains a vigorous supporter of the Second Amendment. She testified against Thune's bill, however, on the floor of the U.S. Senate earlier today.

"In a city where 90 percent of guns used in crimes come from out of state, it is easy to see how Senate Bill 845 will pose a serious threat to New Yorkers," Gillibrand said.


Update: The Senate voted 58-39 in support of Senate Bill 845. It needed 60 votes for approval.

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