OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Oklahoma lawmakers have spent a lot of hours in session the last few years passing multiple gun bills that supporters say protect Second Amendment rights.
One law that is currently in the process would actually prevent the State of Oklahoma from doing business with banks that don’t do business with gun businesses.
HB 3144 focused on banks that won’t do business with gun businesses. That bill has cleared the House. It’s sitting on the Senate side right now, but Senate leadership tells KFOR that no more policy bills will be heard this session. So, it’s very likely dead this year. But gun legislation was very much on the mind of lawmakers at the State Capitol Wednesday in light of the tragedy in Texas.
“We spend significant time on legislation protecting guns, making sure no one can discriminate against guns and I really hope, I really hope that some of my colleagues are thinking twice about that now,” said Rep. Forrest Bennett.
Lawmakers were speaking out on the horrific mass shooting in Texas on Tuesday.
“Our male-dominated legislature is more concerned with controlling children’s bathrooms, restricting a woman’s access to health care, as opposed to making sure our kids are safe, making sure that individuals who are dangerous do not have access to firearms,” said Rep. Jason Lowe.
Democrat lawmakers are calling for the Oklahoma legislature to strengthen gun laws and limit access to some firearms.
“Are these assault rifles weapons that people need to simply defend themselves in their homes and go hunting? I would argue that they are not,” said Rep. Emily Virgin
“I view guns as a tool. It can be used for evil also, if you have it in the wrong hands. (We need) more safety training in schools on guns and explaining how dangerous they are and they are not toys, this isn’t an X-Box game,” said Sen Casey Murdock.
One Republican lawmakers is calling for better firearm education in schools. We reached out the Oklahoma 2nd Amendment Association for comment. They gave us this statement:
“We have to continue to work towards recognizing mental illness and eliminating the no gun zone where mental illness is making its great abuse.“
The statement is referring to places like schools where guns are not allowed. However, officials in Texas told the media on Wednesday that the shooter had no documented history of mental illness.
“There are signs. Is it training our teachers to recognize these signs? There is evil in this world and doing away with guns is not going to prevent these kinds of things from happening,” said Murdock.
“I would also ask all responsible gun owners in Oklahoma, and across the country, to ask yourself if you are willing to give up a little bit of freedom in exchange for ensuring safety for more kids, for people in supermarkets, for people at movie theaters, for people in churches. No one is safe anywhere,” said Bennett.
With the session over on Friday, its very unlikely any new laws would be passed this year.