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SPOTLIGHT
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Moves ensure Second Amendment rights

Published on -3/19/2013, 9:31 AM

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On Wednesday, the House debated an addition to the Personal and Family Protection Act, also known as the Concealed Carry Act. The addendum added to the act ensures Kansans have the right to protect themselves in public places where adequate security is not provided. Public places that have adequate security would not be required to allow concealed carry; however, if a public building is not able to guarantee the safety and security of the public then individuals would have the right to protect themselves by carrying a concealed weapon.

If a city decided they do not want to have guns in their buildings they must be able to guarantee there are not guns. Placing a sign saying guns are not allowed is not a deterrent and does not provide the public with a safe environment.

It is a shame how we are treating our legal citizens who have gone out of their way to obtain training from a licensed individual as well as a background check by the Kansas Bureau of Investigation. The individuals who have obtained a concealed carry license are not the same people who shoot up schools. We should not treat gun owners as criminals, but rather as another line of community defense.

The House passed HB 2055 by a vote of 84 to 38. The bill is now headed to the Senate for further consideration and action.

On Thursday, the House passed HB 2052, a bill that would establish a uniform state law addressing unlawful discharge of a firearm within or into any city. The bill would define the unlawful discharge of a firearm as the reckless discharge of any firearm within or into the corporate limits of a city and would make such a violation a misdemeanor. Additionally, the bill would provide for circumstances in which a firearm may be discharged into or within a city without being considered unlawful.

One of the circumstances for when a firearm may be discharged into or within a city without being considered unlawful would be in the case of lawful defense of a person or property. Cities would be prohibited from enacting ordinances that would penalize discharging a firearm even if done in defense of person or property. This bill would unify the law for all Kansans, ensuring them the ability to use a firearm lawfully to defend themselves or others anywhere in the state.

The House passed HB 2052 by a vote of 121 to 2. The bill is now headed to the Senate for further consideration and action.

HB 2199, passed by the House on Thursday, would exclude from federal regulation any personal firearm, firearm accessory, or ammunition manufactured commercially or privately and owned in Kansas. As long as any such firearm, firearm accessory, or ammunition remained in Kansas, the bill would provide that it would not be subject to any federal law, regulation, or authority. Also, the bill would prevent any federal agent or contracted employee, any state employee, or any local authority from enforcing any federal regulation or law governing a personal firearm, firearm accessory, or ammunition manufactured and owned in Kansas, provided it remained within the borders of Kansas.

HB 2199 would essentially reaffirm the Second Amendment, which guarantees the right of Kansans to keep and bear arms. The bill would also state that because the Constitution does not grant the federal government authority in this area, any leeway to determine how the Second Amendment right is exercised is the prerogative of the states. Thus, any attempts by the federal government to regulate the use of firearms manufactured and owned in Kansas would be considered unenforceable in the state of Kansas.

The House passed HB 2199 by a vote of 94 to 29. The bill is now headed to the Senate for further consideration and action.

I was proud to vote in favor of all three of these pro gun rights bills. Of all the issues facing the legislature this session the issue I have received the most constituent contact concerning has been gun rights. I value the input of my constituents and with that in mind I have worked very hard on these and other pro-gun rights bills.

Travis Couture-Lovelady represents the 110th District in the Kansas House of Representatives. travis@travisforkansas.com

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