Monday, August 08, 2005

Politics in a "Conceal & Carry" State

by Kyle Michaelis
It was only a few months ago that State Sen. Jeanne Combs of Milligan was featured in the Omaha World-Herald brandishing a hand gun and talking about her push to allow concealed weapons on Nebraska streets and in Nebraska businesses. In the article, she spoke of life in Kentucky, where 11 years earlier:
She purchased her stainless steel Smith & Wesson revolver when she was a home health-care and hospice nurse in Jackson County, KY....

"In that culture, everyone has a gun," she said. "They carry them clipped to their belt, like people around here do a Vise-Grip."

Note that Combs was speaking of everyone carrying a gun in a good way. And, she's just doing her part to bring that backwoods Kentucky charm to her newly-adopted home. Of course, she never quite got to the downside of this gun culture she's doing her best to import into Nebraska, which is pretty clearly demonstated by the following article:
Fight about Iraq war ends in fatal shooting

PRESTONSBURG, Ky. (AP) - A disagreement between two friends over the war in Iraq ended with the fatal shooting of one of the men.

Prosecutors and Kentucky State Police determined that Douglas Moore, 65, of Martin, acted in self-defense when he shot Harold W. Smith, 56, in the chest on Thursday.

Both men had booths at a flea market when they began arguing over the war. "I think Doug was supporting it, and this other guy was against it," said Floyd County Coroner Roger Nelson.

Police said the argument escalated into a fight, and Smith drew a small pistol from his pocket, threatening to kill Moore. Witnesses said Moore pulled a .38-caliber pistol from his pocket and shot Smith once in the chest.

That may sound like home, sweet home to Jeanne Combs but it's not the Nebraska I've grown-up in and love. Combs' bill to bring this sort of absurd violence into Nebraska didn't receive a vote in the 2005 session of the Unicameral but she received a promise from Speaker of the Legislature Kermit Brashear that it would be put to a full debate and vote in 2006.

When that time comes, I pray the Unicameral proves reasonable enough to protect Nebraska's way of life from the childish insanity of eccentric gun enthusiasts who have proven incapable of restraint and without any regard for reason when it comes to temporarily separating them from their weaponry.

But, be warned, Senators - arguing with Combs could prove a dangerous proposition. As the above story attests, those immersed too heavily in this gun culture sometimes have a different way of deciding political debates. Purchasing a Kevlar vest may not be a bad idea.


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