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Blue state Dems eager to push ‘outrageous’ gun control nationwide

via Ava Flanell

Colorado Democrats are pushing a slate of gun control bills mirroring those in states like California.

Key bills would ban assault weapons, enact an 11% tax on gun and ammo sales, increase concealed carry training, and prohibit carrying guns in certain areas.

“This should be making national news as it doesn’t just impact Colorado, but the nation as a whole,” firearms instructor Ava Flanell stated. “Lawmakers are using these outrageous bills as blueprints, changing the state names and implementing them across the country at a state level because they don’t have the votes to do it nationally.”

If passed, the legislation would significantly restrict legal gun ownership in Colorado.

Supporters argue it will curb violence, while critics say it will undermine Second Amendment rights and self-defense, disproportionately impacting minorities and the poor.

“Last year, it was Washington where they all passed, and the laws are decimating gun stores without a single positive impact on crime. Today, it’s Colorado. These same bills will show up in other states tomorrow if we don’t come together as a whole to fight this,” Flanell said.

“The so-called ‘assault weapons’ ban bill is the most concerning, but they all have tragic consequences for law-abiding citizens. The ‘assault weapons’ bill is incredibly deceptive. They want to ban not only every kind of ‘scary’ gun like ARs and AKs, but also 80-90% of semi-automatic firearms popular today, including handguns and shotguns,” Flanell said.

“The bill sponsors claim these features increase lethality, when, in fact, they don’t. They’re merely cosmetic. A muzzle brake, which could be interpreted as a compensator, is another characteristic lawmakers have decided to make a firearm ‘more lethal.’ Muzzle brakes are one of the most popular features to tame recoil and are growing in popularity among female shooters, those who lack upper body strength or have physical limitations.”

“After seven years of training women, it is abundantly clear that women prefer an AR-15 for the defense of their home, their family and themselves,” stated Antonia Okafor, the founder of a nonprofit firearm education group called EMPOWERED.

“Despite the anti-gun rhetoric pushed by the media and gun control organizations, the AR-15 allows women to have a larger firearm without having to physically absorb as much recoil as a smaller, handheld firearm. The AR-15 makes it easier for those who have a physical disadvantage to have an upper hand against an attacker and creates a larger perimeter of protection. Simply put, a firearm levels the playing field.”

“The bill defines the term ‘assault weapon’ and prohibits a person from manufacturing, importing, purchasing, selling, offering to sell, or transferring ownership of an assault weapon,” the bill’s summary states. “The bill further prohibits a person from possessing a rapid-fire trigger activator. A person in violation of the prohibitions will be assessed a first-time penalty of $250,000 and $500,000 for each subsequent violation.”

“The vast majority of Americans and over 80% of Democrats support an assault weapons ban and are fed up with weapons of war in our communities,” Rep. Tom Hernandez said. “My entire childhood, I was afraid to die in school because adults wouldn’t be bold enough on guns, and those fears only grew when I became a teacher and I saw my students struggle with those same anxieties. We must take action to protect our communities, especially our students, from the death and destruction assault weapons inflict on so many innocent people.”

The bills face opposition from Colorado gun groups and instructors who believe they will not reduce crime but will damage businesses and limit lawful gun access.

With Democrats controlling the state legislature and governorship, the measures have a strong chance of becoming law and could serve as a template for other states.

“Twenty-nine states currently have constitutional carry. While over 50% of the country recognizes the Constitution, states like Colorado are going backwards,” Flanell said. “Our homicide by firearm rate has surpassed the national rate for the first time in over 40 years, while states who have passed constitutional carry are seeing a decrease.

“This comes after Colorado lawmakers have already enacted gun control measures such as universal and expanded background checks, magazine capacity limits, safe storage, red flag laws, etc. And the state has even created their own Office of Gun Violence Prevention. The same trend of higher crime with more restrictive gun laws has been proven repeatedly in other states, and politicians refuse to recognize that the firearm violence occurring is overwhelmingly not from legal firearm owners.”

“In 2012, my mom, who was a firearms instructor, sadly passed away. I moved back to Colorado from New York City, where I had been living for eight years, to help my dad with the family businesses. A week before my mom passed away, I shot my first firearm with her instruction. At that point, I knew very little about firearms and was determined to learn as much as I could, so I could help keep my parents’ businesses alive and thriving,” she said.

“Roughly 600 people signed up to testify against the ‘assault weapons’ ban bill, and testimony was cut at 12 hours with hundreds still waiting to testify,” Flanell said. “Colorado has over 2,500 federal firearms licensees, which means they have a license to sell firearms. In my opinion, every one of these people should have been standing at the Capitol fighting this as it will undoubtedly decimate their business if this law passes. Understandably, many feel exhausted by the constant assaults on their rights, but right now is not the time for any gun owners or stores to be complacent.”

“Colorado law currently allows for individual school districts to determine their own armed security protocols, something that is often utilized by charter schools and rural districts across the state,” Flanell said. “I’ve personally certified school employees to carry on school grounds. One particular school is located over 20 miles from their sheriff’s office. If there’s an active shooter, children and staff don’t stand a chance if they relied on law enforcement response.”

“Most of these proposed bills in Colorado will hurt the underprivileged the most, ensuring only the wealthy can protect themselves or express their constitutionally protected right,” Flanell said. “Firearms are not inexpensive, averaging a little more than $500 each. When you add an 11% tax to that and on ammunition, it adds up quickly. Especially for someone to maintain proficiency with their firearm. They need to practice, and they can’t afford it at a time when most Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.”

“Self-defense is not a sin; self-defense is a human right.”

“Another pending bill, HB24-1270, requires gun owners to get liability insurance,” Flanell said. “Not only does this increase the cost for gun owners, but I think it will be difficult to find a company that will cover them, making the few companies that do a monopoly. As we’ve seen with banks, many merchants refuse to do business with gun stores and gun-related accessories and training, often dropping accounts without notice.

“My goal was and has always been to help people learn in a safe, fun environment, but I really wanted to be a resource and role model for women.”

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