I find it interesting to see that the Wisconsin State Journal is asking their readers what story they would like to see on the front page of Tuesday’s paper. Readers know I think this is a ridiculous way to run a newspaper. But putting that aside for a moment, I noticed that one of the possible reads was a story about the Wisconsin State Legislature being able to get anything done in the final week of their session.
There are plenty of things the Legislature should do, but between the stalling pattern of both the Republicans in the Assembly, and the Democrats in the Senate, all for political reasons of course, there is not much hope for the big issues being dealt with. All of those issues that were not voted on will then be fodder for the fall campaign. God, I hate this style of politics!!
I would think that if the folks that were elected to act this term on the issues of the day can’t see fit to finish their work, they might at least consider a small but very worthwhile piece of legislation that would make the state a bit safer given the number of guns that pollute our society.
As the Milwaukee Journal editorial notes, this is a no-brainer.
A bill that makes it possible for Wisconsin to join the 32 other states that share mental health information with a federal database that is used for background checks on gun purchases.
Guns – irrationally – tend to constitute a third rail of politics. The National Rifle Association would have it no other way. But this measure is so modest and so common-sensical that it should not be lumped into that category. And one indication that it isn’t is that Rep. Scott Gunderson (R-Waterford), a gun advocate, is one of the authors – with Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills).
The bill would make it possible for the state to apply for a federal grant to update technology that would allow the state Department of Justice to share its mental health records with a federal database.
Of course, this raises privacy questions. So please note that state Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen supports the bill because the records shared involve only those who have been involuntarily committed for treatment or are involved in court-ordered guardianships or placement. It doesn’t affect those who voluntarily seek mental health treatment.
It is time for the citizens to demand not only for sensible gun legislation in this state, but also that the elected officials complete their work BEFORE seeking another term in office!