Texas Democrats Exploit Mass Shooting in Austin to Push for Gun Control

Austin Police respond to mass shooting on East Sixth Street (Credit: KVUE)

It never takes long, does it? Approximately 23 seconds after the news broke telling of the mass shooting that occurred in Austin, TX, the gun control lobby swung into action to call for stricter gun control measures.

It never fails.

The Austin American Statesman published a piece in which the author complained about how these pleas for gun control after a tragic shooting never result in any meaningful action to curtail Second Amendment protections in the Lone Star State. The author brings out the 2019 mass shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, noting that “Republicans vowed to work across the aisle to find common ground on gun safety measures.”

The author writes:

Instead, the GOP-led Legislature this year passed the permitless carry measure to allow anyone over the age of 21 who can legally possess a firearm in Texas to carry a handgun in public without a license. Lawmakers also approved bills to allow school marshals to carry concealed guns instead of keeping them locked away, let hotel guests bring guns to their rooms, remove sales taxes for firearm safety equipment and lift Texas-made firearm silencers from the state’s list of prohibited weapons.

State Rep. Vikki Goodwin called on Gov. Greg Abbott to veto the permitless carry bill that was recently passed in the legislature.

“We cannot ignore the pattern of gun violence that we have seen again and again,” Goodwin wrote in a letter addressed to Abbott. “While I realize that laws cannot singlehandedly keep guns out of the wrong hands, I also understand that they improve boundaries, create order and set a tone. We need you, as our governor, to send the message that we are addressing mass gun violence in Texas.”

The permitless carry bill, if Abbott signs it into law, will allow Texans to carry handguns without a license. As it stands currently, licenses are issued only after a gun owner takes a four-hour course in gun safety. The governor has already signaled in the past that he will sign the bill, which was sent to his desk last month. He has until Sunday to either sign or veto the bill – if he takes no action, it will become law without his signature.

Goodwin was not the only one using the tragedy, which killed one person and injured 12 others, to push Abbott to veto the bill. State Rep. Joe Moody, who represents El Paso, argued that issues related to gun control should be dealt with in a special session.

“When I think of the word ‘tragedy,’ I think of something uncommonly awful. Unfortunately, mass shootings have become so commonplace that tragedy is just a part of the Texas experience at this point,” he tweeted. “A special session is ahead, with another regular session not long after that. I hope we finally take meaningful action to make these tragedies rarer in our state.”

State Sen. Sarah Eckhardt called on the legislature to take “meaningful action.” In a tweet, she said she is “beyond angry” that the Texas legislature “just spent five months making it easier for violent people to access guns.”

This was, of course, predictable, wasn’t it?

Anytime a mass shooting occurs, the anti-gun crowd comes out of the woodwork and, with help from their close friends and allies in the activist media, begin suggesting strict gun control measures that would have done nothing to stop the tragedy in the first place. In this case, both of the individuals who participated in the shooting were minors, which means that not having permitless carry would not have stopped the assault. In fact, Texas has not even passed the law yet, so it’s pretty clear that these incidents can happen even with the gun laws the Democrats want to keep in place.

Penalizing gun owners in a way that would ensure only criminals would be able to carry firearms is about as brilliant as trying to kill a grizzly bear with a fork. But those who wish to make it harder to be a gun owner know this. Their objective is not to keep people safe, it is to grant the government more power over the citizenry, and they will not hesitate to use a tragedy like what happened on June 12 to accomplish their objectives.