State Sen. Jennifer Shilling
Press Release

Every Day of Inaction Is One Day Closer to a Preventable Mass Shooting

Republicans Ignore Public Pleas for Action on Gun Violence

By - Nov 7th, 2019 02:40 pm

MADISON – After a series of horrific mass shootings across the country Governor Tony Evers called for a legislative Special Session to address gun violence by strengthening background checks and enacting Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPO). Despite the public demand for action, Senate Republicans are refusing to bring the legislation up for a vote, or even allow discussion on the Senate floor. In response to their neglect for public safety, Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse) released the following statement:

“Gun violence is one of the most pressing public health issues we face today, and this special session is the legislature’s opportunity to take meaningful action. It is dangerous and irresponsible for Republicans to say, ‘There is nothing we can do.’ As legislators, we need to have the strength and courage to stand up for the lives lost from gun violence and the survivors that still grapple with the trauma they went through. For the first time in eight years, we have a Governor and Attorney General who are offering more than thoughts and prayers to end gun violence and support victims and their families. Let it be clear that what stands in the way of voting on commonsense gun safety issues are Republican politicians and their loyalty to the NRA. Every day that Republicans ignore this crisis is one more day closer to another tragedy.”

Mass shootings similar to El Paso, TX and Dayton, OH have happened right here in Wisconsin communities including Middleton, Brookfield, Oak Creek, and Wausau. A Marquette Law Poll found 80 percent of Wisconsinites – including the vast majority of gun owners – support strengthening background checks. That same poll also found that 81 percent of Wisconsinites support Extreme Risk Protection Order legislation that would reduce an individual’s access to firearms if they pose a danger to themselves or others.

Mass shootings can be prevented. PolitiFact Wisconsin recently confirmed the troubling reality that a loophole in state law allows dangerous convicted felons and domestic abusers to purchase firearms without going through a background check. Several individuals have already exploited this loophole to acquire firearms and stockpile arsenals that are then used to commit mass murders.

More about the Gun Violence

Mentioned in This Press Release

14 thoughts on “Op Ed: 5 Ways to Reduce Gun Deaths”

  1. GRNPAKWH says:

    What we need to do is get the guns off our streets and to this end I suggest a constitutional amendment. Replace the second amendment with one that reads like this: “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

  2. Armatus Rebellio says:

    Tired trope is tired. Not one of these things would have prevented any mass shooting to date.
    Universal Background checks.
    “Requiring background checks for private gun sales … can reduce gun sales to felons, straw buyers … or buyers with misdemeanor domestic abuse convictions.”

    Washington state and Colorado passed Universal Background Check laws that extend to private part transfers. They had little effect because they were, at their heart, unenforceable.

    “Straw buyers”… The sole purpose of a straw buyer is to circumvent the background check.

    Here’s a list of straw buyers and the results of their crimes.
    Robyn Anderson was not charged with a crime for transferring the three guns she had bought in a straw purchase for the Columbine killers.

    Emanuel Romo receive probation for was convicted of the straw-purchase of a pistol later used to shoot Milwaukee Police Officer Brandon Baranowski.

    Marcus Wheeler, a felon, killed Omaha Police Officer Kerrie Orozco with the gun he gave money to Jalita Johnson and told her what to buy.
    Jalita Johnson received one year of probation.

    “The man who purchased the gun allegedly used to shoot a pair of Milwaukee police officers received two years in federal prison”

    Mark Manes, who knowingly sold a TEC-9 to minors Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold in the Columbine High School massacre received 6 years.

    Reinstate or extend the 48-hour-waiting period for transfer of purchased handguns.
    “A study of suicide survivors revealed that 70 percent of responders said they made the decision to shoot themselves within one hour of the attempt; 24 percent said the decision was made within 5 minutes.”
    [citation needed] Did the study ask how many were already gun owners or are you just presenting a half truth and hoping the reader will make the leap?

    Safety locks:
    “However, a law passed in San Francisco requiring guns to be kept in locked boxes or equipped with trigger locks was held to be constitutional.”
    Just because the 9th circuit held that mandatory locking a gun is constitutional doesn’t mean that it is. Remember the 9th held that a person who already owns a gun is still subject to a mandatory waiting period to “cool off”. This is what they call “common sense.”

    “prevent a child’s playing with the loaded gun that grandma bought for protection”
    Yes it might. But it puts grandma at risk.
    Heller has held there is a right to having a gun in the home for protection. A gun locked is, by definition, not available for protection. I’m sure you’ve never Googled “home invasion” before.
    If a child negligently accesses a gun and causes harm, the law can be used to punish those allowing negligent access. You cannot legislate against stupidity.

    Mandatory registration:
    “The legal consensus is that mandatory registration does not violate the Second Amendment.”
    Only in the 9th circuit.

    “Mandatory registration could be used to require a gun owner to undergo certified safety training in the safe use and storage of firearms”
    Why is registration needed? Would you be against a firearm owners safety card that proves the owner has had safety training?
    What purpose does registration serve? The Firearm Owners’ Protection Act of 1986 (FOPA) made registration illegal. Yes it can be changed. Yes it will be tough.

    “It could also verify the gun buyer has a safety lock if legally mandated.”
    The ATF already requires that all guns be sold come with a safety lock. (This is ignorance approaching deceit.)

    Smart Guns:
    “The technology is here for guns that only the owner can fire.”
    Not in any practical sense. No law enforcement agency uses “smart gun” technology.
    There are some proof of concepts, but nothing (anyone who knows anything about firearms) would trust their life to.
    When a 3/10 of a second can mean the difference between life and death, are you willing to trust your life to the technology that unlocks you iPad?
    For now, “smart guns” are a unicorn.

  3. Vincent Hanna says:

    Ah yes the same tired trope that nothing works so nothing should be done. This story proves that isn’t true.

    The Deputy Prime Minister at the time, a conservative and a gun owner himself, spoke to NPR earlier this month and reiterated many of the points in this story. Saying nothing can be done is nonsense.

  4. Armatus Rebellio says:

    Yes. The Australian gun confiscation. I will admit, if you eliminate all the guns, you will eliminate all the gun deaths.
    There’s an easy 5 step process to doing that, and a somewhat more difficult 6th step.
    You should immediately get to work on that. We’re not Australia. We value our liberty here.

  5. Armatus Rebellio says:

    From the “We gotta DOOOO something” department.
    In 2015, 10,265 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes, accounting for nearly one-third (29%) of all traffic-related deaths in the United States.

    That’s nearly the number of firearm related homicides. All illegal, all totally preventable.
    Are truly willing to DOOOO something about that?

    How about universal breathalyzer interlocks? You just have to blow into a tube before your care starts.
    Of course this doesn’t work for drug impairments, so just a tiny blood sample. This also doesn’t eliminate straw breathers. You’re less impaired buddy puffs for you and off you go. What about Smart Car technology so only the registered owner/breather can operate the car? Doesn’t infringe on the right to operate a motor vehicle because there is no right to operate a motor vehicle.

    Vincent would be all for this, am I right?

  6. Vincent Hanna says:

    They didn’t confiscate all guns. Apparently you can’t read. Typical gun nut.

  7. Dennis Grzezinski says:

    GRNPKWH is correct. All we really need to do is follow the requirements of the United States Constitution, as stated in the 2nd Amendment. Unfortunately, the made-up history spouted by the late unlamented Justice Scalia, falsely claiming to be an “originalist,” utterly distorted the meaning of those quite straightforward words. As long as there is a majority of unprincipled so-called conservatives willing to radically alter our legal system, none of us is likely to be safe from the flood of guns — ranging from the Saturday night special cheap handguns to the military weapons used by mass murderers.

  8. Armatus Rebellio says:

    Vincent Hanna: I did not say Australia confiscated all guns. I said Australia confiscated guns.
    The “all” reference was solely scoped in the second sentence: eliminate all guns, eliminate all gun deaths.
    Which means: Leave some guns, leave some gun deaths. Apparently you cannot comprehend.

  9. Armatus Rebellio says:

    Dennis Grzezinski Have you read the Heller opinions? Both majority and dissent?

    GINSBURG, and JUSTICE BREYER join, dissenting.

    The question presented by this case is not whether the Second Amendment protects a “collective right” or an “individual right.” SURELY IT PROTECTS A RIGHT THAT CAN BE ENFORCED BY INDIVIDUALS. (emphasis added) But a conclusion that the Second Amendment protects an individual right does not tell us anything about the scope of that right.

    Even the dissenting opinion agreed that the second amendment guarantees the individual right to bear arms not contingent with service to the militia.

  10. Tyrell track master says:

    LOL. Having spent time in Australia, I can assure you there is at least as much, if not more ‘liberty’ there than in the US.

  11. TransitRider says:

    Armatus, you grossly misstated the position of the 4 dissenting justices in Heller. You said, “Even the dissenting opinion agreed that the second amendment guarantees the individual right to bear arms not contingent with service to the militia.”

    It most certainly does not!

    Instead, it said the 2nd Amendment ONLY provides an absolute right to own guns “for certain military purposes”. The sentences immediately following your citation make this clear:

    “Guns are used to hunt, for self-defense, to commit crimes, for sporting activities, and to perform military duties. The Second Amendment plainly does not protect the right to use a gun to rob a bank; it is equally clear that it does encompass the right to use weapons for certain military purposes. Whether it also protects the right to possess and use guns for nonmilitary purposes like hunt­ ing and personal self-defense is the question presented by this case.” (emphasis added)

    According to those 4 justices, the 2nd Amendment ONLY protects gun ownership in connection with militia service, and the right to bear arms is wholly contingent with service to that militia.

  12. Armatus Rebellio says:

    “When each word in the text is given full effect, the Amendment is most naturally read to secure to the people a right to use and possess arms in conjunction with service in a well-regulated militia.”

    You are correct. While I don’t agree with the dissenting opinion, the dissent is arguing the right to bear arms is wholly contingent with service to that militia.

  13. Michael Schwister says:

    Growing up in Wisconsin we never had a problem with our gun ownership. Transporting firearms was legal if the arms were unloaded and cased. If not, you were in violation of the law. If you were at home and confronted with a burglar, you had a right to protect yourself. But if you shot this burglar, he had better fall inside your home because a fleeing burglar was no longer a threat to your life. What we do now is insane. Cops used to be able to tell the good guys from the bad guys because only the bad guys had guns on the streets. Wyatt Earp had more sense than the entire US Congress. But then he didn’t have to deal with a government bought by the arms industry. We never felt threatened that “our guns” would be taken or that our rights were being violated. My, how the radio can make us see things that aren’t based in reality.

  14. steve again says:

    The Book: Living with Guns made an impression on me as it examined the history of 2nd amendment and the history of challenges to gun restrictions that it has been involved with. Among other things, it suggests methods of containing guns and containing the debate and assertions about guns that run on
    without much reality check. In general, it seems that the current perception of the 2nd is very far
    removed from the everyday experience of the original writers. At that time, it was not questioned that
    people on the frontier needed guns for hunting and for protection, but local ordinances barring guns and other weapons in cities or other locales with a local police force were also common and unchallenged. The first truly legal cases of 2nd amendment and individual rights came in the twentieth century. For myself, I am most concerned with States writing legislation that precludes local laws or referenda that could limit ownership and use – say in an incorporated area. While the 2nd is fairly clearly addressing the validity of states having their own militias (which G. Washington complained of as useless in the Rev. War, and which now seems to be institutionalized in State control of the National Guard) the idea that gun ownership, concealed or open carry, and protection from the same could be pre-emptively removed from local consideration as needed or desired seems
    reckless and far from the orginalist intention. Have these laws (FL is the one I have read the most about) been challenged? Can the State Legislature prevent us from enacting local laws for our own protection or perceived safety? I have questions, not answers!

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