Letter: States’ rights should apply to guns

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Our federal government is considering a piece of legislation co-sponsored by Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Battle Ground. In a break from status quo, Herrera Beutler and many of her Republican colleagues suddenly believe that our federal government should override states’ rights. Federal concealed carry would allow people with a concealed carry permit to carry that gun across state lines, regardless of state statutes. There is so much wrong with this bill.

We live in a country that celebrates individual states’ right to govern for their residents. Some states are more urban and others more rural. Hunting is popular in some states and not in others. While states like California and New York have stringent standards for licensing (requiring training), purchasing (limits on types and number of guns purchased, ammunition regulation and waiting periods), and gun ownership, other states, like Alaska, Utah, Arizona, and Idaho, have permissive gun laws.

Federal concealed carry legislation is a “race to the bottom.” It’s a way for gun owners to bypass state laws. It’s baffling that Republicans would be pushing through a bill that negligently stomps on states’ rights. Contact Herrera Beutler and Sens. Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray, and urge them to oppose this dangerous legislation and to be vocal in their opposition.