Gun supporters worry what lawmakers will do

6:36 PM, Jan 9, 2013   |    comments
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Bills are being proposed that would limit types of weapons and strengthen background checks.

Between 100 and 200 protesters demonstrated outside the Capitol Wednesday against gun control measures.

"I think that the gun control that they've been doing in Denver is going to be spread to the rest of Colorado by the Democratic House and Senate," Denver firearms instructor JJ Swiontek remarked.

Lawmakers who support gun control say the protesters are worrying more than they need to.

"I don't want to take your gun away," Rep. Claire Levy (D-Boulder) said. "I think [the protesters] are more concerned about the slippery slope than they are the specific measures in front of us."

Pro-gun legislators aren't so sure-- they think there's good reason to oppose gun control measures being discussed today. They don't believe gun control works.

"If I thought there was some piece of gun control legislation out there that would make my kids safer, I promise you I would be the prime sponsor of that legislation," said minority leader Rep. Mark Waller.

The new Speaker of the House, Rep. Mark Ferrandino was careful to point out that gun control isn't the lone issue to be confronted when aiming to avoid tragedies like the mass killing at the Century Theater in Aurora.

"The conversation will include guns and mental health," Ferrandino said.

There seems to be some support on both sides of the aisle for proposals that would prevent mentally ill people from obtaining guns.

Some of the demonstrators were skeptical.

"I don't believe the mentally ill should be able to access weapons, but much like the Sandy Hook shooting, he tried to obtain a firearm legally, couldn't get one, so he killed his own mother and stole her guns that were purchased legally," Joshua Rose, a Thornton gun supporter, said. "I think it's a good idea, but I don't think it's going to work."

Gun control supporters say measures like background checks may not always work, but it doesn't hurt for the state to make it more difficult for people who shouldn't have weapons to get them.

An ideological rift remains between the two sides.

Gun supporters think the world would be safer with more guns in the hands of bystander, to stop violent acts in process.

Proponents of gun control think that constraints on firearms will lead to fewer incidents in the first place.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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