Michigan’s majority Democrats are forging ahead with what a report in Bridge Michigan is calling “gun reforms” in reaction to the Michigan State University shooting last month, and the Oxford High School shooting in 2021.
Second Amendment activists might argue these are not “reforms” at all, but gun control efforts Democrats began talking about almost immediately after they won the legislative majority last November.
According to the Detroit Metro Times, one group of gun owners—identified as the Giffords Gun Owners for Safety—“threw their weight behind the gun reform bills” now being pushed by the majority Democrats.
Proposals include so-called “universal background checks” and “red flag” legislation, which previously didn’t fare well in the divided legislature. But last November, Democrats captured a legislative majority and almost immediately began planning a gun control agenda.
According to its website, the Giffords group “Gun Owners for Safety unites hunters, sport shooters, and collectors who want commonsense gun laws.” Giffords is the gun control organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, now serving in the U.S. Senate. Giffords was the target of an attempted assassination in Tucson, Ariz.
The Metro Times quoted Jon Gold, president of the Michigan Chapter of the Giffords gun group, who told a press event, “I can’t think of any other issue in this state where the citizens of Michigan are more united.”
Gold is reportedly an NRA-certified firearms instructor.
According to WXMI Fox 17 News, Gold also stated, “I am here to speak out today for the vast majority of gun owners who are responsible and say that we support gun safety laws. We’ve supported them for years. This isn’t new… Responsible gun owners have always practiced safely and with respect to other people in their society.”
The National Rifle Association, however, does not appear to support bills pushing so-called “universal background check” legislation explaining, “Such ‘universal’ background check systems can never be universal, because criminals, by definition, do not comply with the law. These laws are unenforceable without a firearm registry and turn otherwise law-abiding citizens into criminals for simply loaning firearms to friends or many family members.”
The group has also raised alarms about so-called safe storage mandates, noting “In District of Columbia v. Heller, the U.S. Supreme Court held that storage provisions that prevent a law-abiding American from having ready access to a firearm for self-defense are unconstitutional.”
Bridge Michigan is reporting 797,000 “approved Concealed Pistol Licenses” in circulation as of Feb. 1, representing “more than one in 10 Michigan adults.”
How that might translate to support or opposition to the new gun control measures would be speculative at best.