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January 27th, 2011
Now This is Excersizing Your 2nd Amendment Rights...

State closer to adopting gun as symbol
By Lee Davidson

via The Salt Lake Tribune

During an official, one-time-only holiday honoring legendary Utah gun-maker John Moses Browning, a House committee voted 9-2 on Monday to endorse a bill to declare his M1911 handgun as the official Utah State Firearm.

But an anti-violence advocate told the Legislature that sends the wrong message about Utah to the world.

“Semiautomatic pistols are the weapons of choice for those who are committing massacres” such as the recent shooting of U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., and others in Tucson, testified Steven Gunn, a board member of the Gun Violence Prevention Center of Utah. “Is this the time to adopt as a symbol of the state the same kind of weapon used to kill all these people?”

Only Democratic Reps. Jennifer Seelig, Salt Lake City, and Marie Poulson, Cottonwood Heights, opposed the bill in the House Political Subdivisions Committee. Seelig said that especially because Utah would be the first state to adopt an official state firearm, “In terms of what we want to be known for, no, I’m not voting for this.”

The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Carl Wimmer, R-Herriman, however said he does not view the gun as a symbol or implement of death.

“It’s an implement of freedom that has defended America for 100 years. … This firearm is Utah.”

While Gunn (who noted that his name is ironic for a critic of the bill) painted verbal pictures of mass-murderers using such weapons, Wimmer said he prefers to remember that the M1911 was used by military heroes such as Alvin York and Audie Murphy.

Committee members overwhelming sided with Wimmer and praised the bill, which was endorsed by several gun rights groups.



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