On the heels of the deadly February 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, a variety of states have been stepping up their gun control efforts. Although lawmakers and citizens are still often divided along party lines at the national level, there has been a growing increase of support to change the laws at the state level. Here are some key initiatives and actions that a few states are engaging in to do their part in advocating smart gun control laws:
OREGON: In the week following the Florida tragedy, Gov. Kate Brown (D) spoke in front of the Oregon state Senate Judiciary Committee committing her support to expand her state’s existing law which prohibits people convicted of either domestic violence or stalking from purchasing or owning firearms as well as ammunition.
ILLINOIS: It did not take long for Illinois state Rep. Marty Moylan (D) to get to work on passing new legislation in the wake of the tragedy. Just two days after the Florida shooting, he introduced a bill which would not even allow the manufacturing, sale, purchase, or ownership of a variety of fire enhancement items such as bump stocks. Along with his colleague state Sen. Julie Morrison (D), Moylan has continued to move forward to introduce new gun control bills to the Illinois state legislature, including a bill to completely ban assault weapons.
HAWAII: As a result of the Parkland shooting, Hawaii lawmakers are now debating legislation that would make it a felony to either sell, import, or own rapid-fire mechanisms or other trigger modifications on guns. Like the Illinois law proposal, this bill would also ban the controversial bump stocks from being used.
PENNSYLVANIA: Buoyed by strong support from citizens, lawmakers in Pennsylvania introduced a whopping 11 bills with the intention of stopping gun violence in the days after the Florida shooting. The proposed legislation covers a myriad of measures including the ban of bump stocks, more stringent background check requirements, and more. Another key component of the bills would make it possible for individual citizens to petition the court system and remove guns from a person that is exhibiting violent tendencies. The legislation is being headed up by State Rep. Warren Kampf (R).