Mom's Demand Action group marches to state capitol, urges lawmakers for sensible gun laws

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Hundreds of members of "Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America" braved the rain and cold Tuesday afternoon to urge lawmakers to vote "no" on House Bill 1936.

"It's something that we are very concerned about," one member told KY3/KSPR.

The bill, which failed to make it through the legislature last year, would allow gun owners who have a conceal carry permit to carry guns in areas that are currently gun free zones, such as college campuses, bars, daycares, and other businessses.

"It would mean more concealed carry handguns in public places that are currently restricted," said local Moms' group leader, Kristin Bowen.

Bowen feels having guns in these places increases the chance for a shooting to happen.

"The evidence shows that more guns in more public places does not make us safer," Bowen said. "Unfortunately, putting guns in the hands of dangerous people in places like our college campuses would mean more people in danger."

Representative Jered Taylor, a republican from Nixa who sponsors the bill, disagrees.

"The criminals don't pay attention to a sign," Taylor said. "They don't pay attention to statute saying, 'well, you can't carry your gun in here.' So, they don't say, 'oh, you know what? I probably should turn around and go somewhere else.' They know that they're not going to be stopped in a significant way, and they're able to carry out their attack."

The bill would also allow private businesses to decide whether or not they are gun-free zones, something Taylor believes shouldn't be the government's decision anyway.

"Let's leave it up to them," Taylor said. "They make the best decisions for their business."

During our interview, members of the group gathered around Taylor wanting to talk to him about his bill.

He was unable to chat with them at that time due to committee hearings, but invited them all to his office to meet later in the day.

Bowen says the time to act on gun laws, is now.

"Lives are being lost, and it's urgent that we act now. If we don't have this conversation now, when will we. The time is now."

This bill was last heard in the General Laws committee last month, and according to the Missouri House website, does not have a hearing scheduled on the calender at this time.