Recent Developments In U.S. Gun Safety

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As of late last year, 60% of Americans said that they supported stricter gun laws in the country. This comes as no surprise, as gun violence continues to be one of the most significant problems for the nation. Unfortunately, 2019 has been another year filled with regular gun violence.

To combat the problem, community and national leaders have stepped up to make major changes in the law. Each week, in nearly every state, groups and individuals who support changes to current regulations have campaigned, sought out petition signatures, and pushed politicians to change the existing laws. Recent days have been particularly busy for the gun safety movement. The following are just some of the top developments that have taken recently.

Gun safety advocates have campaigned in multiple states

Those who want to see the responsible use of guns have been routinely campaigning for tighter laws, and more extensive user education. Taking steps to keep citizens safe, while also protecting gun ownership, has especially been an active topic recently. In Montana, the gun safety debate has now reached the state’s Supreme Court. At the same time, several major groups gathered in Caras Park in Missoula to raise awareness for the cause. NBC Montana reported that both ‘Be Smart Montana’ and ‘Moms Demand Action’ gathered to share stories of personal tragedy, and to provide education on gun safety. Additionally, after the accidental shooting death of a 6-year-old in South Carolina, activists handed out gun locks and educational materials about gun safety.

Florida gun safety group takes a major step

On June 10th, UPI reported that “enough petition signatures [were gathered] in Florida to force a review by the state Supreme Court for a proposed ballot initiative that would ban the sale of assault weapons.” The group that began the petition, ‘Ban Assault Weapons Now’, successfully collected the signatures of over 103,000 individuals. This major step is one of the most significant measures that has taken place in the state since it was affected by two major mass shooting incidents in recent years. Both the Parkland and Pulse night club tragedies occurred in the state. From here, the group hopes to have the review result in a state constitutional amendment that will fully ban sales of assault weapons in 2020.

Ohio also makes new progress toward gun safety

In Ohio, the group ‘Ohioans for Gun Safety’ stated that they filed a ballot initiative with the Ohio Attorney General’s office on June 10th (as reported by CleveScene.com). This initiative seeks to close the current background check loopholes that exist in the law. As it stands now, people seeking to buy a gun in Ohio do not have to go through background checks (with the exception of those buying through a federally licensed dealer). However, the group that has filed the ballot will seek to have all gun sales performed through federally licensed dealers. If they acquire enough signatures, the proposal would be reviewed in either 2020 or 2021.

For the many individuals and groups seeking to prevent gun violence, recent events show progress. Although tragedies of this nature continue to occur each day, leaders in multiple states have taken successful steps toward enacting new laws. The goal with every rally, ballot filing, and educational piece handed out is to make this the first year of real change for America. It is now up to these same leaders to keep moving forward with their proposed initiatives into 2020.

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