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Gun-Crazy Legislature



With the 2013 Utah legislative session behind us, we’re safe from that idiocy for another year [“Bunker Hill,” March 21, City Weekly]. What is it about those guys and guns? They wanted to make it legal for anyone to carry a concealed weapon without a permit and without taking a gun-safety class.

This means that ex-felons, people with mental illnesses and every trigger-happy paranoid in the state can pack a gun because they can buy a gun from a private party and not be subjected to a background check. Somehow, putting guns in the hands of criminals and crazy people is supposed to make us all safer.

In Utah, concealed-carry-permit holders aren’t required to fire a weapon or demonstrate any gun-handling proficiency, but at least they learn about gun safety and the legal ramifications of carrying a firearm.

I was fortunate to have an instructor who insisted that we actually fire two types of weapons, a semi-automatic and a revolver, but this is the exception and not the rule.

I grew up with guns, but many others in the class had never fired a gun, yet there they were, applying for a permit to carry one for their personal “safety” and that of others.

Whether we had previous gun experience or not, we at least had to pass a background check and be registered with the state.

House Bill 76 would have allowed anyone, including people with criminal histories, to carry a privately purchased, borrowed or stolen weapon. Is this the “God-given right” we want to grant to every Dirty Harry wannabe and Second Amendment zealot who thinks that having a gun makes him a better Republican?

The concealed-carry-permit protocols already in place need to be the minimum standard for those who want to carry. The governor did see fit to veto this bill, but the Legislature may still vote to override the veto.

I can picture legislators closing the gallery doors, furtively fondling their pistols like little boys who have just discovered their penises, and having a collective orgasm at the end of each day’s session. Why else would they have such a fixation with firearms?

It’s disturbing, but Utahns continue to get what they vote for.