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Posted: 9/4/2003 11:30:16 AM EDT
(lies, lies, and more gooey bullshit)

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Tuesday, September 02, 2003 3:32 PM
Subject: Fwd: URGENT CONCEALED WEAPONS ACTION ALERT

Please pass this along to anyone you know who opposes legalizing concealed weapons...
Urgent Action Alert
Concealed Weapons Bills Introduced - Public Hearing Sept. 9

Dear Friends:

Bills to legalize the carrying of concealed weapons (CCW) in Wisconsin have been introduced, and there is a good chance they will pass unless we take action immediately. Wisconsin is one of the 16 states that sensibly prohibit or restrict carrying hidden, loaded guns in public places. Assembly Bill 444 and Senate Bill 214 will turn back the clock on gun violence prevention and allow nearly anyone to carry concealed weapons nearly anywhere.

Please help defeat this dangerous and irresponsible legislation. Here's what you can do:

1. Call and write your State Senator and State Representative and ask them to vote against AB444/SB214. To find out who your state legislators are, call the toll free hotline at 1-800-362-9472. You can also contact your legislators directly through the web site, www.legis.state.wi.us <http://www.legis.state.wi.us>.

2. Attend the public hearing on the CCW bills and register and testify in opposition. The joint Senate-Assembly committee hearing will be held on Tuesday, September 9, 10:00 a.m. in Madison, State Capitol Room 411 South. It is important that the room be filled with as many people as possible to show strong support for keeping Wisconsin's law against concealed weapons. Bring others along to the hearing. Arrive as early as possible to get a seat in the hearing room.

3. Write letters to your local newspaper expressing your concerns about legalizing concealed weapons, urging your state elected officials to vote against AB444/SB214, and urging Governor Jim Doyle to veto the bill if it passes in the legislature.

Again, we need to act NOW to keep our state free of legalized concealed weapons. It's time to take a stand for common sense and make sure the gun lobby does not prevail over the vast majority of Wisconsinites who support the current law.

WAVE and the other coalition members thank you in advance for doing anything you can to help out. Please let us know what action you have taken. Copies of published letters to the editor and updates on legislators' responses would be very useful. Reply via email or call (414) 351-9283 if you would like more information for your calls or letters or if you are planning to attend the hearing on September 9. Some of the major points against legalizing concealed weapons are listed below.

There's just no need to legalize concealed weapons. Wisconsin's law against carrying concealed guns in public places has served us well for more than 130 years. Compared to states that have passed "shall issue" concealed carry laws, our state remains a relatively safe place to live. By many measures, crime rates are dropping in Wisconsin even as the Midwest as a whole experiences an increase in crime. Even in states with "shall issue" concealed carry permits readily available, only one or two out of every one hundred adults carries hidden guns. There's no justification for the state to sanction an unsafe practice that 98% of adults know will likely do far more harm than good. Despite the gun lobby's rhetoric, concealed guns are generally a terrible self-defense tool and are hardly ever used to actually thwart burglaries or assaults. Allowing nearly anyone to carry hidden, loaded guns nearly anywhere simply won't make us safer. Common sense and years of history tell us that there's just no need to legalize concealed weapons.

Law enforcement supports the current law. The Wisconsin Chiefs of Police Association strongly supports the state prohibition against carrying concealed weapons in public and opposes AB444/SB214. Police officers and sheriffs from around the state oppose the carrying of hidden, loaded guns in public. Law enforcement is our "front line" in dealing with gun crime. We should listen to law enforcement instead of the gun lobby on this issue. Police, sheriffs and troopers don't want to approach every situation assuming that someone is carrying a hidden, loaded gun. And they don't want the state to sanction what is an inherently unsafe practice.

Our Supreme Court backs a general prohibition against concealed guns. In July 2003, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled in favor of Wisconsin's prohibition against carrying concealed weapons. The court supported keeping weapons concealed only for persons in their own residences and private business owners in their own premises. The court also said that the general prohibition against carrying concealed weapons in public is supported by our state constitution. The majority decision was crystal clear as quoted directly: "Wisconsin's prohibition of the carrying of concealed weapons is, as a general matter, a reasonable exercise of the police power, and serves many valuable purposes in promoting public safety."

Permissive laws on concealed guns consistently indicate more gun deaths. 14 of the 15 states with the highest firearm death rates have permissive "shall issue" concealed carry laws like the one being proposed for Wisconsin. 11 of the 15 states with the lowest firearm death rates (Wisconsin included) prohibit concealed carry or have restrictive laws.

Wisconsin residents, gun owners included, don't want to legalize concealed weapons. Polling data in Wisconsin consistently shows opposition to legalizing concealed weapons in the range of 75% to 80% of all adults. The public is absolutely against legislation such as AB444/SB214. About two-thirds of gun owners in the state oppose legalizing concealed guns. Carrying concealed is not a part of responsible gun ownership, as our law has stood since the 1870s without hindrance to hundreds of thousands of hunters and competitive shooters. Only a vocal minority of state residents,
led by the extremist pro-gun lobby, actively supports legalizing concealed weapons. Just because a very small group of people wants to carry loaded guns around in public doesn't make it a good idea or good public policy.

Guns would be allowed on school grounds, nursing homes, churches, banks...just about anywhere. While concealed weapons should not be allowed anywhere in public, it is particularly disturbing that AB444/SB214 allows hidden guns on school property adjacent to school buildings, in daycare centers, in malls, on college campuses, in nursing homes, in churches, in restaurants that get up to 49% of their receipts from serving alcohol, in banks and other business establishments, and in all workplaces with no notice or recourse available for business owners, customers or employees.

The Legislature needn't send a dead wrong message to our young people. A permissive state law allowing nearly every adult to carry concealed guns will send a terrible and troubling message to our young people, telling them loud and clear that "the solution to crime and gun violence is more guns carried by more people." Common sense and credible data say otherwise. Our kids deserve better than a dead wrong signal from the state about the "value" of carrying loaded guns around.

CCW provides an irresponsible boost for industry marketing and increased handgun sales. Permissive laws allowing the carrying of concealed guns have swept the nation, not because of public demand but because they are a good marketing tool for the sale of handguns. Evidence abounds that the gun industry and gun lobby believe that CCW is not a matter of rights or effective personal self-defense, but rather a way to put more guns on the streets.
Thank you,
Dan Ullrich
Program Director
Wisconsin Anti-Violence Effort Educational Fund
wavefund@earthlink.net
Link Posted: 9/4/2003 11:40:54 AM EDT
Man! I wish I could be there next week!

I wonder if WAVE will roll in that old black lady in the wheelchair they have.

The one from Milwaukee they roll in at every anti-gun rally where she gets up and says, “The doctors told me not to come today, but I told them I just have to leave my hospital bed to be here today – because guns, and this law, are just WRONG!”

It’s kind of neat really, when she’s done speaking it’s like a cue for the Milwaukee news station camera crews to pack up and leave. You’d think they’d have enough stock footage of her by now.
Link Posted: 9/4/2003 1:49:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Dolomite:
Man! I wish I could be there next week!





Dammit man! You need to call in sick or something. I can tell that you're already feeling the effects of that virus that's been going around.
Link Posted: 9/9/2003 10:10:08 PM EDT


Law enforcement supports the current law.



Apparently the Milwaukee Police Association (the 'rank-and-file' police union) wasn't consulted for this statement...

According to the MJS, they're pro-PPA (hmm... Maybe because the rank-and-file cops recognize it might help them personally some day, or have seen one too many cases where they just couldn't get there in time...)

Interesting, the other side thinks the PPA stands a good chance of passing...

One can only hope...
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