In state after state, proposals that would create or toughen laws intended to keep kids from getting a hold of unsecured guns have stalled.Yes, that's exactly what these laws would do.
Critics say the laws trample on the rights of gun owners who should be able to store their firearms however they want, and unfairly single out guns. Swimming pools and prescription drugs also can cause accidental deaths of children, they say ... the measure would allow government to tell law-abiding adults how to store their guns.
An often overlooked reason for just about any law:
Child access prevention laws allow prosecutors to bring charges against adults who fail to safely store their loaded guns, especially when they are obtained by minors and used to harm.The horrific assumption that existing laws and penalties are already adequate, misses the point: they're all AFTER THE FACT:
In Tennessee, MaKayla's law — named for an 8-year-old killed by a neighbor who got hold of his father's gun — would have made it a felony for gun owners to store weapons in a way that allowed children access to them.
Sponsors were outraged that the 11-year-old who shot MaKayla Dyer will be jailed until he is an adult while his father remains free. The boy was convicted of murder for killing the girl after she refused to let him play with her puppy.
Gun-rights activists claimed the measure would allow government to tell law-abiding adults how to store their guns, and a Republican-controlled committee voted 7-2 against it.
Sponsors addressed that criticism and returned this year with a simpler version allowing adults to be charged with reckless endangerment if children obtain their guns and use them to kill or injure. But in March, the proposed MaKayla's law met a similar fate. It was rejected 6-3 in committee. This time, lawmakers argued the bill wasn't necessary because prosecutors could bring charges under existing laws, such as reckless homicide.