Lawmakers in Texas have moved forward with plans to loosen gun restrictions across the state. This week, 18 members of the Texas Senate succeeded in their effort to push forth controversial firearms legislation known as HB 1927. Under this bill, residents who are 21 years old or older may purchase and carry firearms without a license. However, this bill will not allow adults of the appropriate age to carry firearms if they have already been deemed ineligible by the state legislature.
As expected, HB 1927 was approved along party lines. Eighteen Republican members of the state senate voted in favor of the bill while 13 Democratic senate members voted against it. Immediately after it was sent to Governor Greg Abbott's desk, a number of prominent GOP legislators delivered celebratory remarks.
"HB 1927 would recognize the United States Constitution as our permit to carry and allow all law-abiding adults, aged 21 years or older, to carry a handgun for the protection of themselves or their families, in public places, in a holster, without the requirement of a state-issued license," state Sen. Charles Schwertner said.
“I am proud that the Texas Senate passed House Bill 1927 today, the Constitutional Carry bill, which affirms every Texan's right to self-defense and our state’s strong support for our Second Amendment right to bear arms. In the Lone Star State, the Constitution is our permit to carry,” Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick added.
HB 1927 passes through state legislature as mass shootings continue to take place across the country. As of April 15, the Gun Violence Archive recorded 147 mass shootings during the first 4.5 months of the year. This figure includes mass shootings in Beaumont, Dallas, Palestine, Fort Worth and Bryan, Texas. From March 16 through April 15, there were approximately 45 mass shootings. If the nation moves forward at that pace, there will be more than 500 mass shootings by the end of the year.
"This bill is not a form of justice or liberty," state Sen. José Menendez said.
"It's going to be responsible for creating a path for more gun violence."
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