Guns

No, Texas Did Not Respond to El Paso Shooting by Passing Lenient Gun Laws

It's foolish for media outlets to imply that laws which were signed in May and June were passed in relation to the tragic shooting in El Paso.

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In the aftermath of mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton, U.S. media are struggling to report accurately on Texas's gun laws. A Time headline this week, for example, reads, "Texas to Enact at Least 9 Pro-Gun Laws in Wake of El Paso's Mass Shooting." This is technically accurate since new gun laws are taking effect on September 1. But the timing of the article and the headline suggest that the nine laws in question are a response to the shooting in El Paso, or, at best, are being enacted despite it.  

In reality, Texas's recent spate of gun law changes are unrelated to the recent mass shooting in the western part of the state: all nine bills were signed by Governor Greg Abbott over the course of May and June and were slated to take effect at the beginning of September. While the text of the Time piece makes this clear, it wasn't the only publication that wrote a headline suggesting Texas responded to a gun-related tragedy by further liberalizing its gun laws. 

A Daily Beast headline from yesterday reads, "Texas to Loosen Gun Laws to Allow Firearms in Churches and on School Grounds," while a USA Today headline says, "After El Paso Walmart shooting, Texas to welcome guns in mosques, churches and school grounds." A Yahoo Lifestyle headline claims, "After Massacre, Texas Moves Forward With Dumbest Gun Law Ever Conceived." Even a cursory glance at when these laws were signed, let alone introduced, shows these bills took months to move through the legislature and were signed by Abbott several months ago.

Take HB 2363, for example, which now allows some foster homes to store locked guns and ammunition in the same location. And HB 302, which prohibits landlords from banning tenants or their guests from carrying weapons on the landlord's property, provided the person is a lawful gun owner. HB 1143 bans school districts from regulating the way lawful gun owners store firearms in locked vehicles on school property. Perhaps the most oddly specific law taking effect in September is HB 1177, which pertains to gun owners' right to concealed carry their firearms with them without a license for up to 48 hours during mandatory evacuations (an issue presented during Hurricane Harvey, which hit the southeastern side of the state in 2017).

None of these laws will reduce gun use. Some libertarians may even object to the law that prohibits landlords from banning guns because of its infringement on property rights. Nevertheless, Texas legislators are supposed to create laws that reflect the will of their constituents and many of their constituents support strong Second Amendment protections. It would be both constitutionally suspect and politically foolish for elected representatives to flout the will of the people who elected them and curtail gun rights in the wake of a mass shooting.

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  1. Propagandists lie?

    Color me shocked!

  2. Since all gun control is an constitutional violation of the 2nd Amendment, good for Texas finally getting rid of restrictive gun control laws.

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    1. SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED!

  3. I love it when the media lies and gets caught. It has been legal to carry a gun in churches for more than 5 years. Each individual church has the right to ban carrying firearms by simply placing specifically worded and displayed signs at prominent locations. My church bans open carry. The issue with schools was to prevent people from being arrested for having a gun in their car on campus. It is legal for an adult over 21 to carry a handgun in their vehicle without a permit because your car is considered an extension of your home. You cannot carry it anywhere outside your car without a permit except locations like a gun range. In addition, businesses can ban guns carried open or concealed if they display the correct signs. As for the different bills passed this year, all make sense if you live in Texas because people have no clue how large and diverse this state actually is. We do not care if people in California or NY understand or criticize us or our laws because we think they are all nuts anyway.

    1. Conservatives don’t usually use tragedy for political gain, unlike Lefties who never let a tragedy go to waste.

      Your Texas Governor should tell Lefties trying to push gun control to go fuck themselves.

  4. Perhaps the most oddly specific law taking effect in September is HB 1177, which pertains to gun owners’ right to concealed carry their firearms with them without a license for up to 48 hours during mandatory evacuations (an issue presented during Hurricane Harvey, which hit the southeastern side of the state in 2017).

    Thoughts?

    1. That is a weird set of facts that must have led up to someone writing and passing that bill. The only thing I can think of is someone unable to retrieve their credentials (CHL, now License to Carry) from their flooded house, and having to immediately flee the area.

      It would seem easier to just allow evidence of having the license to avoid prosecution or arrest for illegally carrying a weapon—-like the police already have when they pull you over for a traffic violation—and omit requiring possession of the document, but I didn’t write the law.

      1. The only thing I can think of is someone unable to retrieve their credentials (CHL, now License to Carry) from their flooded house, and having to immediately flee the area….

        Thank you.

        1. I think it’s a strange law, because in my state, anyone 21 and over can carry a firearm concealed, no permit is required. Hell, the last time I was pulled over for speeding all I had to do was alert the popo I had a gun in my car, and he only asked me to step outside the car but didn’t try to search it or give me any hassle other than the ticket. The only time I ever thought about applying for a concealed carry permit was when I was traveling out of state.

          1. Hell, the last time I was pulled over for speeding all I had to do was alert the popo I had a gun in my car, and he only asked me to step outside the car but didn’t try to search it or give me any hassle other than the ticket.

            I’m against mandatory reporting. It escalates the situation for law abiding people.

            1. Do you mean mandatory reporting to the popo I had a gun in my car? Yes, I’m against that, too. It often does escalate the situation for the law abiding person. Especially considering that I’m legally allowed to carry concealed or open without a permit (only limited to gun-free zones, federal buildings, and bars for the most part). But the popo mandates that if they ever show up at my car (or home or anywhere else) I have to tell them I have a gun with me. I find it an infringement of my rights.

              1. I once forgot I had my revolver (during the stop that is) under my seat when I got pulled over on the Glenallen Highway. It was my bear gun. At the time Alaska was a mandatory reporting state (not sure if it still is).

            2. Not every cop is Officer Harless of Canton, Ohio.

              Any cop anywhere in the USA who runs my Tennessee car tag will get returned the drivers licence number of the registered owner (me) and my carry permit status (positive) before they even approach the vehicle. There is no need to notify.

              When my son went on vacation including a stop in Ohio at the Christmas Story house. I advised him to get a rental car for the vacation.

      2. As described, the law doesn’t require that you have a concealled carry at all.

        So it would cover the guy that doesn’t have a CC license at all, but grabbed the gun that normally stays at home on his way out the door.

    2. I’m for it. I’d extend it way past 48 hours, but sure.

      1. This looks to be so people won’t be required (legally) to leave their valuable guns in their evacuated house. Who is surprised at that?

        1. Leftist who also push for criminalizing those who fail to report a stolen gun within 48 hours.

        2. That is what it is exactly for. Many people had to evacuate during Harvey in short notice. Taking their guns with them was a big deal.

  5. if yahoo doesn’t like the gun law then. god bless texas.

  6. Saying guns people is like saying forks make people fat.
    Somebody much smarter than me wrote that, but it bears repeating.

  7. It’s foolish for media outlets to imply that laws which were signed in May and June were passed in relation to the tragic shooting in El Paso.

    That’s never stopped them before, why should it matter now?

    1. Exactly; most never read much beyond the headlines, so it serves their agenda perfectly.

  8. If only the law had not allowed the massacre.

      1. It’s about time we get more common sense massacre control.

        1. Make criminal homicide a felony offense. Don’t allow it. Zero tolerance.

  9. As someone who taught Texas State and Local Government since Dolph Briscoe was in office (look it up yourself, but I did just date myself…), the ideas that laws have been recently passed is just plain wrong.

    The Texas legislature only meets for 140 days every other year, heeding Mark Twain’s advice that “no one’s life no property was safe while the legislature (any) is in session.” (Yes, Texas has a part-time legislature, compared to Congress, California, or New York.) The Texas legislature went sine die on May 27th, 2019. Unless a bill is specifically written to become law upon the signature of the governor, all bills become law on September 1, 2019.

    So, even the implication that the legislature passed new legislation in response to El Paso is not only factually wrong, but intellectually dishonest. But, CNN… I repeat myself.

  10. The media is having a hard time finding journalists who research and use facts, so they have to hire neanderthals with opinions instead.

  11. There is now no disceranble difference between my shocked face, and three consective botox treatments.

  12. Lmaoing at the “pro-gun law” snippet. Yeah, because it’s pro gun and not pro Constitution/civil liberties/freedom to defend 2A.

  13. If you expect the truth from looters, those news items must seem odd. They are, in fact, quite normal.

  14. I looked at the first linked article, and it makes it clear very quickly that the laws were passed months ago.

    So if all you’re complaining about is the headlines, may I offer you a mirror, Mr. Kettle?

  15. They like to piss on Texas, they like to piss on gun owners. That’s a two-fer.

    We’re used to that in Texas. A plus is that it results in fewer Yankees moving here for the jobs. We got along fine without them.

  16. I’m sure snopes will immediately ignore all of these headlines…. But give 9 more negative ratings to Babylon bee articles.

  17. No they didn’t, but it makes great and controversial headlines, so who cares? (sarc)

  18. “Some libertarians may even object to the law that prohibits landlords from banning guns because of its infringement on property rights.”

    When a property owner “hangs a shingle” — notifies that they are open for business with the general public — they have surrendered quite a few private property rights on excluding members of the general public. Don’t want do deal with the general public including gun permit holders (or people with maroon hair, too many tattoos, non-Swedish ancestory, whatever)? Start a private membership club and issue membership cards after a vetting process to keep out the shunned classes. Or just keep your private property to yourself.

  19. “Nevertheless, Texas legislators are supposed to create laws that reflect the will of their constituents and many of their constituents support strong Second Amendment protections. It would be both constitutionally suspect and politically foolish for elected representatives to flout the will of the people who elected them and curtail gun rights in the wake of a mass shooting.”

    No. Legislators can try to appease the desires of constituents but NOT contradict Constitutional fundamentals. Otherwise they are no better than the progressive nitwits in the state houses in NY and CA.

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