Mayor Steve Benjamin calls for ordinance to ban bump stocks in C - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Mayor Steve Benjamin calls for ordinance to ban bump stocks in Columbia

Steve Benjamin (Source: City of Columbia) Steve Benjamin (Source: City of Columbia)
COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) -

Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin says he plans to introduce a city ordinance to “ban the use of ‘bump stocks’ and ‘trigger cranks’ in the City of Columbia.

In a statement released Wednesday night, Mayor Benjamin said that since the Las Vegas shooting that killed 58 people and injured more than 500, one question has stayed in his mind.

“It’s been 45 days since Las Vegas and while our nation has once more plunged into the same old gun debate with the same old talking points and the same old outrage, one question has repeated itself over and over in my head: How can we help?” Mayor Benjamin said.

Benjamin said he respects citizen’s Second Amendment rights and that he has no intention to “demonize gun owners.” He recalled the time he spent in law enforcement where he carried a gun around to serve warrants and goes on to say that he still owns several guns today.

“I believe in responsible gun ownership, and I believe in common sense,” Mayor Benjamin said. “That’s why I’ve decided to do what our federal and state governments are either unable or unwilling to do. I’ve decided to act by introducing a city ordinance to ban the use of “bump stocks” and “trigger cranks” in the City of Columbia.”

He goes on to say this isn’t the first time Columbia has taken the lead on issues of public safety.

“Whether it’s banning texting while driving, cracking down on “bath salts” or issuing body cameras to all of our police officers, we have consistently stepped forward to meet the challenges before us when others have failed to act,” Benjamin said. “This is not the first time we’ve taken the lead, but it may be the most important.”

What is a bump stock or trigger crank used for? Those devices can be attached to guns making them fire more rounds in faster succession.

You can read the Mayor’s entire statement below:

A Time for Action


On October 1st, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock prepared an arsenal of 23 weapons, high-capacity magazines and countless rounds of ammunition, placed the “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door of his 32nd floor suite at the Las Vegas Mandalay Bay hotel, then went to the window overlooking the Route 91 Harvest music festival where some 22,000 concertgoers had gathered and opened fire.

Over roughly ten minutes, aided by the use of legally purchased bump stocks, he fired hundreds of rounds into the crowd, killing 58 people and wounding 546 before turning the gun on himself in the single deadliest mass shooting in American history.

It’s been 45 days since Las Vegas and while our nation has once more plunged into the same old gun debate with the same old talking points and the same old outrage, one question has repeated itself over and over in my head: How can we help?

I have a real and healthy respect for rights guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and have no interest in demonizing gun owners. As Director of South Carolina’s second largest law enforcement agency, I carried a firearm while serving warrants with my officers, and I own several to this day.

I believe in responsible gun ownership, and I believe in common sense. That’s why I’ve decided to do what our federal and state governments are either unable or unwilling to do. I’ve decided to act by introducing a city ordinance to ban the use of “bump stocks” and “trigger cranks” in the City of Columbia.

The simple fact is that automatic weapons have been illegal in this country for more than 30 years, and the only purpose these devices serve is to circumvent that law multiplying firing rates tenfold to approximately 400-800 rounds per minute and turning a semi-automatic firearm into a mass murder machine.

This is wrong in every sense.

This is not the first time we’ve taken the lead on issues vital to public safety.

Whether it’s banning texting while driving, cracking down on “bath salts” or issuing body cameras to all of our police officers, we have consistently stepped forward to meet the challenges before us when others have failed to act.

This is not the first time we’ve taken the lead, but it may be the most important.

I hope you’ll join us.


Mayor Steve Benjamin
 

Copyright 2017 WIS. All rights reserved. 

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