KC joins other cities in message to gun manufacturers

Photo © by Jeff Dean Originally from [http://en.wikipedia.org en.wikipedia

The city council on Thursday passed a resolution asking city pension officials not to invest in companies manufacturing guns.

Mayor Sly James introduced the largely symbolic action and spoke for it. He has long complained that the city can do little to combat illegal guns because of laws passed by the Missouri general assembly.

So this sidesteps the state. He made his stance clear before the vote.

“I don’t have a public position opposed to people lawfully owning guns,” he said.

As he told the police board of commissioners earlier this week, when he was a marine he fired more weapons than most people do in a lifetime.

But illegal guns – stolen or otherwise – are getting into the hands of criminals who are murdering people by the hundreds in cities, he said.

Kansas City is following the lead of Chicago and some other cities and states in passing an approach intended to pressure the gun manufacturers to at least discuss ways to reduce gun violence, James said.

The only council member to vote against the resolution was John Sharp, chairman of the council public safety committee.

The resolution comes across as against lawful gun manufacturing and gun owners like himself, Sharp said.

“It basically is saying that we as a council don’t feel the manufacture of firearms is appropriate and certainly not appropriate to invest in,” he said.

Sharp noted that police, fire and other city pension funds do not have any investments in the stock of gun manufacturers, anyway.

Violence in Kansas City can be better attacked by more funding for the No Violence Alliance and by persuading the Missouri general assembly to close a critical loophole on guns, Sharp said.

He  has said he would like to argue for it  to fix a loophole in the concealed carry law that allows people to keep loaded guns in vehicles without background checks and other concealed carry requirements.

With the many drive-by shootings in Kansas City, he said, that law makes no sense.

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