Minnesotans talk gun laws in light of mass shooting in Maine
(ABC 6 News) – 18 people are dead and 13 more injured after a gunman opened fire at a Lewiston, Maine bowling alley and a bar. The suspect, Robert Card, is still at large.
It’s a scene that’s become all too common in the United States. 565 mass shooting have already happened in 2023, according to ABC News.
The effects of this mass shooting have hit all corners of the country including right here in Minnesota.
“I felt angry and heartbroken,” said Alisha Eiken with Moms Demand Action.
“Gun owners are saddened by the same thing. We don’t want to see this happen,” said Gregory Kemple.
And for the 565th time this year, the debate over gun laws in the United States is back on everyone’s mind and fingers are pointed at both directions.
“When are they going to stop and think it’s not the law-abiding people that they need to worry about,” said Kemple.
“This is a federal issue, but I think we need to see an assault weapon ban somewhere down the road,” said Eiken.
In the 2023 Minnesota legislative session gun laws were a big focus for lawmakers.
“This mass shooting in Maine would’ve been prevented in Minnesota by laws we passed in this last legislative session,” said DFL Rep. Andy Smith.
There’s a new red flag law in the state that allows courts to take guns away from people who may pose a threat to the public. This new measure has gun owners like Gregory Kemple furious. He says it hurts responsible gun owners.
“It’s totally unconstitutional the way the red flag laws are, and, the funny thing is, they think this is going to fix everything,” said Kemple.
But Eiken, whose family owns multiple guns, feels otherwise.
“But not one person in my small circle has been negatively affected by responsible gun laws,” said Eiken.
Kemple thinks legislators need to look beyond guns. “Actually, look at the mental health aspect of it. You can’t stop the evil in one’s heart, you can’t micromanage,” said Kemple.
Eiken agrees, but mental health isn’t the whole problem. “100% we need to do more to support the mental health of Americans, especially kids, but let’s not get it twisted. This problem is a gun problem,” said Eiken.
It seems, as usual, both sides believe that this is a problem, but have different ways of solving them.
Law enforcement in the area near the shooting say they have lifted the shelter in place order. The search for Card still continues as the medical examiner offices says his victims’ range in ages from 14 to 76 years old.