Oregon Senator's mock bill suggests more gun control is not a solution
SALEM, Oregon: Oregon lawmaker Brian Boquist, who represents the state's 12th Senate district, has introduced a mock bill outlining would-be "knife control" measures that parallel recent proposals for stricter regulations on gun acquisition and possession. Senate Bill 740 is not intended for passage, Boquist wrote, but for bringing attention to what he considers to be futile approaches to tackling lethal violence in schools - requiring background checks for prospective gun purchasers, for example, which have seen marked growth in popularity in the aftermath of the tragic elementary school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut last December. To support Boquist's call to replace the "rhetoric" of gun control legislation with a "solution" for the violence, he conjures a comparison to Japan and China, where despite sufficiently-enforced firearm bans, hundreds of injuries and deaths arise from knife attacks each year.
Boquist rejects the notion that tougher weapons control can heal the violence, asserting that efforts should instead target the underlying cause of attacks: a "growing mental health crisis."
While SB 740 was created in reaction to proposals for strengthened gun measures - ranging from more selective background checks to a blanket prohibition on the sale of semi-automatic weapons - no state-level legislation regarding guns in Oregon will likely amount to anything, according to Boquist's Democratic colleague in the State Senate, Floyd Prozanski. Prozanski is the current Democratic chair for currently the Senate Judiciary Committee, and he plans to cede gun-related laws to the federal government.
Boquist has been a Republican member of the Oregon State Senate since 2008. A long time Congressional Activist in Washington D.C., he was first elected to public office in 2004, as a Oregon State Rep. He ran unsuccessfully for United States House of Representatives in 2000, 2002, and 2004.
- The Oregonian, "Oregon Senator offers tongue-in-cheek bill requiring background checks on knife sales," accessed February 27, 2013
- Oregon State Legislature, "Subject SB 740 Knife Bill Example Comparisons," accessed February 28, 2013 (dead link)
- Oregon State Legislature, "Oregon State Senate: Senator Brian Boquist," accessed February 28, 2013