At Public Hearing In Randolph, Opponents Denounce Waiting Period For Gun Purchases

At Public Hearing In Randolph, Opponents Denounce Waiting Period For Gun Purchases

Gun Rights

Rodney Chayer, of Duxbury, urged lawmakers Tuesday to reject legislation that would create a 48-hour waiting period for gun purchases. Supporters of the bill say it could help reduce suicide rates in Vermont. About 200 gun rights advocates traveled to Randolph Tuesday evening to weigh in on proposed gun legislation that they say violates their right to bear arms. The death of a 23-year-old Essex man by suicide last year has many lawmakers pushing for a 48-hour waiting period for gun purchases. Andrew Black took his own life hours after purchasing a firearm, and his parents — and many public health officials — say a waiting period will help protect Vermonters from acting impulsively on suicidal thoughts. For Monkton resident Scott Chapman, the question before lawmakers this year boils down to this: “What we have before us is a pure civil rights discussion of whether or not our right on the Second Amendment, and Article 16 of the Vermont Constitution, is a right as equal to our other individual rights,” Chapman told lawmakers at a public hearing Tuesday. The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution couches the right to bear arms within the framework of a “well regulated Militia.” But Article 16 of the Vermont Constitution is more unambiguous in its construction: “that the people have a right to bear arms for the defence (sic) of themselves and the State.” It’s sacred language to gun rights advocates like Chapman, and he told lawmakers that they’re treading on gun rights […]

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