Ah, Colorado! Where the women are armed and the men are generally well-behaved
Should domestic-abusers be disarmed? Most likely. Should the Colorado legislators be in a rush to do it? No. Ill-conceived legislation gets struck down by the courts and then valuable time, money and energy is wasted. Senators ought to know this.
Apparently, Colorado state senator Evie Hudak is too busy and harried to let others think about SB 197. This coverage by the Denver Post is very telling:
If Democrats really wanted to do something about domestic violence, Cadman said, they should lay the bill over until Monday. Then Republicans could work with them on it, he said.
Other Republicans complained of an 18-page amendment Democrats added to the bill on the floor and said there wasn't enough time to digest it.
But Hudak said there was no need for more time. She said the amendment was 18 pages only because it repeated the same language in multiple parts of the bill. The changes to the underlying bill were relatively minor, she said, and involved clarifying things such as how someone in jail would be able to surrender their firearms in domestic-abuse cases.
I'm reminded of a song by that good ol' Canadian leftist, Bruce Cockburn, in "The Trouble with Normal":
Suddenly it's repression, moratorium on rights / What did they think the politics of panic would invite? / Person in the street shrugs -- "Security comes first" / But the trouble with normal is it always gets worse.Rest assured, no party is above the "politics of panic," and Evie Hudak is simply trying to ramrod this measure through. The idea of disarming those who have no right to possess a firearm under existing federal law has merit, especially if the confiscation extends to felons and known gang-members (for example) and is rationally enforced.
The authorities know who the felons and gang-members are already; shouldn't they be as much (or more) of a priority for disarmament? Why are they not included? Perhaps because some Democrats fear the ACLU even more than they do the NRA! Now that's something to ponder. If meaningful law enforcement is difficult, this is no reason not to do it.
If it's worth doing, it's worth doing right. Just say No to the politics of panic. Civil liberties need to be balanced with getting guns out of the hands of the wrong guys (and I do mean guys, mostly). This balancing act takes time. If you're not willing to take the time to do it right, Senator Hudak, one must conclude you're not very serious about the reality of the situation, just serious about political appearances.