Yael T. Abouhalkah

Whoopee, and pass the ammunition in Missouri

Updated: 2013-09-10T22:46:42Z

By Yael T. Abouhalkah

The Kansas City Star

This is it. Starting Wednesday, Missouri’s lawmakers are going to try to nullify federal gun laws in their state.

Oh, and let’s make it possible to arrest federal agents if they try to help local police get guns and gangs off the streets of Kansas City and other cities.

Whoopee, and pass the ammunition.

This will be seen as a big victory by gun lovers in Missouri, one of their prime objectives in 2013.

And it’s not just Republicans who are looking forward to a vote on House Bill 436 — the Second Amendment Preservation Act — as they attempt to override a needed veto by Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon.

Some Democrats in Jefferson City, scared of their gun-clinging constituents, also plan to vote for the override.

As Rep. T.J. McKenna, a Festus Democrat, said: “We love our guns and we love hunting. It’s not worth the fight for me to vote against it.... The bill is completely unconstitutional, so the courts are going to have to throw it out.”

With leadership like that, no wonder Missourians who want some sanity in the gun debate have to wonder who has the spine to help resolve this issue.

Actually, here are some who have that spine: Mayors Sly James of Kansas City and Francis Slay of St. Louis. Also, Kansas City police chief Darryl Forte, along with hundreds of other police chiefs and local law enforcement officers across Missouri.

Unfortunately for gun lovers, James, Forte, Slay and those respected law enforcement officials don’t support HB 436. They want Nixon’s veto sustained, because they know the obvious:

If the General Assembly does pass a bill that nullifies federal laws, it will make Missouri a laughingstock in many quarters. And the law eventually will be found unconstitutional anyway.

But, hey, at least the pro-gun lawmakers will be able to claim for a few weeks or months that they scored a major “victory” for their side.

What a sad waste of time.

To reach Yael T. Abouhalkah, call 816-234-4887 or send email to abouhalkah@kcstar.com. Follow him at Twitter.com/YaelTAbouhalkah.

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