Bill to allow permit-less concealed-carry of guns draws protesters on both sides

Bill to allow permit-less concealed-carry of guns draws protesters on both sides

Competing against chants from counter-protesters outside the office of a local Republican state lawmaker, gun safety advocates warned that a new bill allowing permitless concealed carry in Pennsylvania would make communities less secure, put children at risk and undermine public safety. Dozens of demonstrators used Rep. Natalie Mihalek’s Upper St. Clair office as a backdrop on Monday to criticize the Republican lawmaker and State Sen. Devlin Robinson, R-Bridgeville, for supporting the bill, which was passed by the Senate last week and would allow anyone 18 and older to carry a loaded gun openly or concealed, without a permit. Gov. Tom Wolf has said he will veto the bill, but the demonstrators said their state lawmakers should be held accountable for pushing a bill that, they claimed, would give potential shooters the right to take guns into public spaces and endanger safety. “Saying that you don’t need to carry a permit — that you can be 18 years and older and carry a concealed weapon — does that sound sane to you?” asked the Rev. Sally Jo Snyder of Mt. Lebanon United Methodist Church, alleging that the bill is only intended to score political points and would do nothing to make Pennsylvanians safer. The demonstrators, led by gun violence prevention advocacy organization CeaseFirePA, were met by a handful of gun rights protesters who chanted “USA” loud enough, at times, to drown out the speakers — some of whom had lost family members to gun violence and were recounting their experiences. […]

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