In 2019 the state of Texas saw two mass shootings in El Paso and Midland-Odessa that left a total 30 people dead. It was reported that the two shootings marked the sixth and seventh mass shootings that occurred in Texas over that year and the nine years prior. That year, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott—the Donald Trump of people who will never be president (of course, a lot of people also said that about Trump)—pledged to Texans that he and his office would do “everything we can to make sure a crime like this doesn’t happen again.”
Two years later, it turns out—*in my best Tyler, the Creator voice*—that was a fucking lie.
The Texas Tribune reports that on Wednesday, Abbott signed into law a bill that would allow Texans to carry handguns without a license or training starting Sept. 1, aka the day that marks the deadline for the last time my Black ass will ever visit Texas again.
From the Tribune:
House Bill 1927 eliminates the requirement for Texas residents to obtain a license to carry handguns if they’re not prohibited by state or federal law from possessing a gun. The signing was reported by the Texas Legislature’s official website, which tracks the progress of legislation. Abbott’s office has announced a ceremonial signing of the bill and other gun-related legislation at 11 a.m. Thursday.
Abbott’s signature seals a win to conservative activists who have long sought the measure without success. Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and other Republicans who were initially noncommittal about the bill were under immense political pressure this session from conservatives and gun rights advocates, who have long lobbied the Texas Legislature for permitless carry but historically struggled to win support.
So Abbott bent over to whatever right-winger Illuminati group lobbied for legislation that makes it easier for shooters to shoot people. And it’s an odd choice coming from Governor Probably-never-going-to-be-president, because, according to a University of Texas poll, a strong majority of Texas voters are against permitless carry.
To be honest, I’m just surprised this is just now becoming the law in Texas and that, prior to the signing of the bill, Texans needed a license to carry handguns and applicants for a license were required to “submit fingerprints, complete four to six hours of training, and pass a written exam and a shooting proficiency test,” according to the Tribune, which also noted that “Texas does not require a license to openly carry a rifle in public.” (That part, I easily believe.)
It isn’t just gun control advocates that are wary about the new law. Even Texas law enforcement was like: “So y’all just trying to make our jobs harder, or nah?”
Before the bill was approved, the state Senate had to appease law enforcement groups that opposed permitless carry by adding several amendments to the legislation including one that eliminated a clause that would have prohibited police officers from questioning people based solely on their possession of a handgun.
So basically, Texas—a state where police apparently don’t feel the need to follow its racial profiling laws—was about to bar police from engaging in gun-wielder profiling before police representatives stepped in because that crosses a line.
Anyway, the Tribune notes that in February, while Abbott was laying out his policy plans for his constituents, he declared that Texas must become a “Second Amendment sanctuary state,” and that “We need to erect a complete barrier against any government official anywhere from treading on gun rights in Texas.”
Interestingly, during that speech, Abbott didn’t mention any of the state’s mass shootings or his promise to do “everything we can to make sure a crime like this doesn’t happen again.”
Maybe he’s waiting on the next shooting to get back to that.