Skubick: Anti-gun groups rally on Capitol steps, call for end to violence

LANSING, Mich (WLNS) - In the wake of the recent school shooting in Florida, the anti-gun lobby in our state demonstrated on the Capitol steps today urging lawmakers to take action now to end the violence.

Democratic candidate for governor Abdul El Sayed told the crowd, "if you believe the NRA is dead wrong, let them know."

Pro-gun lobbyist Tom Lambert countered, "when emotions run high people don't want facts. They want heroes to cheer and enemies to hate."

Several hundred anti-gun protestors want state lawmakers to beef up background checks on gun buyers and ban assault weapons.

Rally organizer Robert Van Kirk explains, "I'm hoping with the most recent violence, it's finally at the tipping point."

Those folks believe there is a gun problem.

But Senate Republican leader Arlan Meekhof counters: What gun problem?

"It's a safety problem and not a gun problem. The guns have been the same."

While the other side says guns are part of the safety problem, the senator counters the problem to consider is "mental illness, I'd say would be."

This week the president suggested arming some teachers might help and pro-gun advocate Lambert concurs.

"We don't need to hand them out to everybody. We don't need to open an armory. Let's have a couple here and there. It's a start."

Guns for teachers?

Candidate for attorney general Dana Nessel is clear on his view. "Absolutely not. My mother is a public school teacher and the thought of giving her a gun is really laughable. She has no idea how to operate a gun."

Some would like to ban assault rifles.

Candidate for governor Gretchen Whitmer says you can talk about that but "we have to start with acknowledging the mental health crisis, we have to have local support for our safety officers and keeping weapons out of the hands of people with mental illness."

Some want concealed weapons in schools but Gov. Snyder has opposed that.

The gun battle and gun debate continues.

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