The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


April 22, 2014

Our View: Bad aim

We continue to be amazed at the lengths to which Missouri Republican lawmakers will go to block even the threat of federal gun-control laws.

The latest is a proposed amendment to this session’s version of a bill aimed at nullifying federal gun laws. It takes aim at federal agents who might enforce laws the state sees as infringing on gun rights by barring them from any future careers in state law enforcement agencies.

Under the measure, federal employees who enforce or aid in a potential enforcement of certain gun-control laws would be disqualified from any state and local law enforcement jobs in the future. Missourians could also sue if they think a law enforcement officer was employed after being involved in the implementation of a federal gun law. If the lawsuit is successful, the agent would be fired and the state or municipality would be required to pay the resident’s court costs.

The employment ban was seen as a compromise — other versions called for offending federal officers to be jailed and fined.

Another provision of the law would lower the minimum age required to get a concealed weapons permit  to 19 — from 21 — and allow those permit holders to carry a firearm openly, even in  municipalities with ordinances prohibiting open carry.

Aren’t these the same Republicans who constantly say that local control is sacrosanct?

They challenge Common Core because they say it robs local school boards of control.

Then they turn around and say they’re going to tell cities and counties who they can or can’t hire for law enforcement officers?

And the gun owners, including teenagers, get to flaunt open-carry ordinances passed  by city councils and town boards?

We suppose the state could enforce the hiring ban on highway patrol or water patrol officers, though it is beyond us to understand why it would want to rule out adding to the state staff officers with federal training and experience.

But to ban hiring or take other decisions away from county sheriffs, city police chiefs and town councils, we believe that’s ridiculous and hypocritical.

We also believe there is every likelihood that the final measure will be successfully vetoed by Gov. Jay Nixon or overturned as unconstitutional.

There’s plenty that needs to happen in Missouri — and lawmakers have less than a month before the session ends. We hope they’ll spend their time on measures that will benefit all Missourians.

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  • Your View: ‘Right to Farm’ is wrong

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  • Your View: No on Amendment 7

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  • Your View: Bad way to get revenue

    I received two fliers through the mail today asking me to vote “yes” on Amendment 7, which would add a three-quarter-cent tax to Missouri’s sales tax to help maintain roads and bridges.

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  • Other Views Other Views: Symptom of bad policy

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    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rebecca French Smith, guest columnist: Amendment 1: Farmers are 'boots on the ground'

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    July 28, 2014

  • Your View; Makes no sense

    Chess was never my game. It’s too complicated.

    July 28, 2014

  • Your View: Time value of money

     I was shaking my head along with Anson Burlingame (“Much has changed in U.S. over 14 years,” Globe, July 22), then he offered his readers a chance: “Go ahead — take your pick.”

    July 28, 2014

  • Your View: Boiling a frog

    We voters are now being urged to vote on Aug. 5 for Amendment 7 “to fix our roads, highways and bridges.”

    July 28, 2014

  • Our view: 'Yes' on 7

    Opponents of Amendment 7 say this: “Missouri families are already hard pressed to pay their bills during this period of slow economic recovery.”

    July 26, 2014

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Given that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that electronic devices and communications are protected from searches and seizure without a warrant, do you think Missouri needs Amendment 9 added to its constitution?

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