Gun safety reform discussion held with Gov Whitmer, Gabby Giffords and law enforcement
FOX 2 (WJBK) - Former Arizona congresswoman - and shooting survivor - Gabby Giffords spoke at gun control rallies at Michigan State University and in Warren on Wednesday.
"Even though there are tears in my eyes because I still feel pain - I felt the pain of those young people, the three young people who lost their lives at MSU and the five that were hospitalized," saiud but I also felt the pain of my son who passed away and even my nephew who was just going across the street in Grand Rapids and he was gunned down."
The effects of gun violence are tremendous and broad-reaching.
"We’re living in challenging times - but we’re up to the challenge," said Giffords.
The bills Michigan Democrats have introduced in the wake of MSU’s deadly shooting focusing on safe storage, universal background checks, and so red flag protections - which allows for the seizure of weapons if someone is deemed to be a threat to themselves or others under certain circumstances.
Democrats feel confident their proposals will mitigate gun violence.
"If we work together, we can continue to make it better for people,:" Whitmer said.
Law enforcement in attendance say that gun safety clearly impacts their ability to protect the community.
"The largest mental health facility in the state is the Wayne County Jail," said Dearborn Police Chief Issa Shahin. "That shouldn't be the case."
Republicans aren’t so sure about how effective the current proposals are, and are looking to alternatives.
State Rep. Gina Johnsen (R) for example, has introduced a bill to allow law-abiding citizens to have weapons on campuses - which she thinks could reduce threats.
"Then they can defend themselves and they can defend others," she said. "That's campus staff, teachers, administration, maintenance, anyone on campus."