CEASEFIRE oregon News
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Ban assault weapons
February 21, 2013
NEW BILL INTRODUCED IN LEGISLATURE
TO PROTECT OREGONIANS FROM GUN VIOLENCE
• Legislation creates sensible safety measures to help keep military-style weapons out of wrong hands
• Another bill regulating the number of rounds in ammunition will also save lives
• Supporters say victims of gun violence across the state deserve a vote
A new bill, HB 3200, was introduced today in the Oregon legislature that regulates military-style weapons that are very deadly in the wrong hands and used often in mass shootings. Supporters say that too many Oregonians are needlessly dying and there are things we can do – today – to prevent the fear and hardships caused by gun violence.
"No more Newtons is something everyone supports, so we need stronger gun laws,” said Penny Okamoto, Executive Director of Ceasefire Oregon. "Now is the time for Oregon legislators to act to safeguard the fundamental right of children and all citizens to live free from gun violence and fear."
Supporters believe that a news report and legislator's comments that gun reform legislation is not moving were premature and that citizens in Oregon want better laws to prevent mass murders in our state. Supporters of gun law reform pledge to demonstrate support and demand action in Salem through this legislative session. Victims of gun violence across the state deserve a vote.
Given the circumstances of the Clackamas Town Center murders, supporters say that had this been the law last December, the Clackamas Town Center shooting might not have taken place.
Gun safety legislation that can save lives will also regulate oversized magazines (ammunition that holds more than ten rounds), which supporters say are a key enabler of mass killings. They noted that regulations already limit hunters to using ammunition with only three to five rounds before reloading.
“We give ducks, elk and deer a chance to get away from guns so why are we not giving people a chance too?" said Okamoto.
February 8, 2013
CEASEFIRE OREGON URGES STATE TO BAN LOADED WEAPONS
FROM STATE CAPITOL BUILDING
In response to a proposed rally today at the Capitol by gun-rights advocates carrying loaded weapons, Ceasefire Oregon announced its intention to go ahead with plans to meet with legislators on Friday, Feb. 8, 2013. The organization is scheduled to take part in the Oregon Public Health Association lobby day at the Capitol so its members can meet with legislators to discuss public health issues.
The association invited Ceasefire Oregon to join them to discuss the public health implications of gun violence.
“We ask our legislators and those who bring guns into our state Capitol to consider the chilling effect that the expectation of loaded weapons has already had on our fellow Oregonians,” said Penny Okamoto, Executive Director of Ceasefire Oregon. “Oregonians who want to meet with their legislators should not have to encounter armed civilians to do so. The Second Amendment does not trump our First Amendment right to free speech. "
News of the armed gun-rights rally led an Oregon school to cancel its scheduled trip to the Capitol planned for Friday and to the distribution of a memo advising Capitol employees to press one of the Capitol’s panic buttons to alert state police if they feel threatened by the demonstrators.
Ceasefire Oregon urges Gov. John Kitzhaber and state legislators to join 40 other states in banning loaded weapons from state Capitol buildings and grounds.
For many years, Ceasefire Oregon has worked to reduce gun violence by advocating for better gun laws. The statewide advocacy group has endorsed two bills already introduced in the state Senate: SB 347, to remove a provision allowing anyone with a concealed handgun license to bring loaded guns into Oregon’s K-12 schools, and SB 346, to prohibit the sale of large-capacity ammunition magazines.
In addition, the group backs a proposed bill requiring background checks on the sale of every gun and another prohibiting assault weapons as well as large-capacity ammunition magazines. Learn more at www.ceasefireoregon.org.
December 13, 2012
CEASEFIRE OREGON SEEKS ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN SPONSORS
WILL CALL UPON STATE LEGISLATORS FRIDAY to “SHOW SOME COURAGE”
Ceasefire Oregon will go to Salem on Friday, December 14, to seek legislative sponsors for a measure to ban the sale of assault weapons in Oregon. Ceasefire Oregon’s objective is to have Oregon join the seven states and the District of Columbia that have enacted laws banning assault weapons (California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York).
The Oregon Legislature is scheduled to convene for a one-day special session called by Governor John Kitzhaber to pass a corporate tax bill for Nike. “We’re hoping to find a legislator in Salem with the courage to sponsor a bill banning the sale of assault weapons in Oregon,” stated Penny Okamoto, executive director of Ceasefire Oregon.
In the immediate aftermath of the Clackamas Town Center shooting on Tuesday, December 11, the group issued a renewed call for enactment of an assault weapons ban. On that day, shooter Jacob Tyler Roberts killed two mall patrons and injured one before killing himself. Authorities say Roberts carried an AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle and was wearing an ammunition-loaded vest. Reportedly, the weapon jammed at one point, lessening the death toll. Ceasefire Oregon issued a similar call for a ban on assault weapons following the massacre in Aurora in July 2012.
Okamoto noted that state Senator Ginny Burdick’s proposed legislation to ban oversized ammunition magazines represents a major step in the campaign to stop the mass killings associated with semi-automatic weapons. “We need more legislators like Ginny Burdick. Congress has failed to act, and the President has failed to lead. The Oregon Legislature needs to show some courage and protect our citizens from these weapons. Next time, the gun might not jam,” said Okamoto.
December 11, 2012
IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE CLACKAMAS MALL SHOOTING, CEASEFIRE OREGON CALLS ON CITIZENS TO DEMAND SANE GUN LAWS
The gun-massacre nightmare revisited Oregon today, at the Clackamas Town Center. Our thoughts are with everyone who was shot and their friends and families.
We do not know all the facts yet, but a few things are already clear. Our communities can never be safe while the gun industry profits from arming the deranged and the dangerous with increasingly lethal weapons. As long as weapons that belong only on battlefields are sold in our communities, the lives of ordinary citizens will continue to be sacrificed as mere collateral damage by the gun lobby and the politicians who turn a blind eye to the carnage.
The outrage must outlast the news cycle if we are to stop the bloodshed. Penny Okamoto, Executive Director of Ceasefire Oregon stated, “This kind of terror will continue in America until our legislators stand up to the gun lobby and put the lives of our families over the profits of one industry. Ceasefire Oregon has been working to ban assault weapons and large-capacity ammunition magazines. We have also been working to require background checks for every gun sold.”
When asked about the action people can take, she added, “Call your senators and your representatives, on the state and national levels. Call the White House and demand action! Do it in memory of today's victims, and in defense of tomorrow's."
OREGON ATTORNEY GENERAL TAKES STAND AGAINST
OUT-OF-STATE CONCEALED HANDGUNS
On November 30, 2012, Oregon’s newly elected Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum and several other state attorneys general sent a letter to the United States Senate objecting to the National Concealed Carry Reciprocity (S. 2188 and S. 2213) bills supported by the NRA in Congress. Rosenblum joined New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, the attorneys general of California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, and Nevada, and the attorney general–elect of Pennsylvania to take a stand against the legislation. If enacted, it would require every state, including Oregon, to accept the concealed carry permits and gun-carrying visitors from every other state.
The effect of the proposed legislation would be to make the weakest concealed carry laws applicable everywhere, overriding states’ legislative and regulatory authority to determine who can—and who cannot—carry concealed weapons. Perhaps because Oregon’s very liberal concealed-carry laws permit concealed handguns in elementary and secondary schools, colleges, bars, sports arenas, and state government buildings, the Oregon legislature has repeatedly rejected concealed-carry reciprocity bills that would accept concealed handgun permits from states with lower standards for issuing the permits.
LEGISLATIVE PROSPECTS IMPROVE
Among the changes wrought by the November election, four legislators who regularly voted with the gun lobby exited the Oregon House. Democrats Mike Schaufler (defeated in the primary) and Jefferson Smith (defeated in the Portland mayoral race) and Republicans Matt Wand and Katie Eyre Brewer (defeated in the general election) were all replaced with the help of Ceasefire Oregon supporters. Since the election, there have been numerous media reports questioning the NRA’s reputation for electoral effectiveness. For an insightful analysis of the NRA myth, read What the NRA’s All-In Failure Means for the Media .
NRA MEMBERS SUPPORT COMMON-SENSE GUN LAWS
A recent poll of NRA members shows strong support for common-sense gun laws, exposing a significant divide between rank-and-file members and NRA leadership. Click here to download the Gun Owners Poll from Mayors Against Illegal Guns.
Americans want stronger gun laws. A poll taken Jan. 11–13, 2011, shows overwhelming support for several proposed laws to keep guns away from people who cannot lawfully own them. The poll shows that 86% of Americans, including 81% of gun owners, support requiring background checks for all gun sales. 94% of Americans favor requiring the reporting of lost and stolen weapons, a requirement that took effect in Portland this year. 58% of Americans support the banning of high-capacity ammunition magazines, while only 36% oppose such a ban. For more information, see the Mayors Against Illegal Guns website or this article by one of the pollsters.
is very pleased that the Portland City Council enacted new and revised ordinances to reduce the illegal use of guns in Portland. These revisions to the Portland City Code took effect in January 2011 and are now the law in Portland. Ceasefire Oregon strongly supported the ordinances that make it unlawful to endanger a minor by allowing access to a firearm (Portland City Code Section 14A.60.050), require the reporting of lost and stolen guns (Section 14A.60.060), and increase the penalties for the possession of loaded guns in public places (14A.60.010).
Thank you, former Mayor Adams and Portland Commissioners, for standing up to the gun lobby.
Tragic Shootings in Oregon
Oregonians continue to be shot and killed and injured in senseless shootings across the state. Our thoughts are with those who have been injured by gun violence and those whose loved ones have been killed. Firearms are used to kill and maime 100,000 people in the United States every year.
As our state and country are plagued by gun violence, the need for citizens and legislators to stand up is great. It is time to stand together to prevent senseless violence and unnecessary death and injury. Ceasefire Oregon works to prevent gun violence. Please help us stop the shootings.
Guns Present an Unwarranted Risk of Unintentional Shooting
Dennis Henigan, former vice president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, recently examined the risk of unintentional shootings posed by guns. His conclusion? "So, yes, the accidental shooting by the NRA safety instructor provides a teachable moment. It teaches us this: the gun in the home, or in a public place, owned and carried even by a law-abiding and well-trained adult, presents a persistent risk of death and injury to the innocent. That risk is far greater than the often-claimed protective benefits of guns."
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