Handgun hypocrisy

by Emily Miller, Washington Times  |  published on December 10, 2012

The loudest advocates of gun control are well protected. President Obama said he wants more laws restricting firearms ownership because, in his hometown of Chicago, “there’s an awful lot of violence, and they’re not using AK-47s, they’re using cheap handguns.” With his own armed Secret Service detail, the president doesn’t need to worry about crime.

Illinois State Sen. Donne Trotter takes the hypocrisy up a notch. On Wednesday, Mr. Trotter was arrested on felony charges after attempting to board a plane at O’Hare International Airport with a loaded .25-caliber Beretta.

The South Side Democrat, who has been the leading candidate to fill the congressional seat vacated by scandal-plagued Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., claimed that he forgot to take the gun out of his garment bag after working his security job. Illinois is the only state in the union that denies citizens all rights to bear arms, but Mr. Trotter got himself an exception — a special permit to pack heat to and from his side gig.

Since he was first elected in 1988, Mr. Trotter has voted against legislation that would grant other Illinois citizens the right to concealed carry. He also voted “present” on a bill that would have reduced the penalty on carrying a concealed weapon. In his official biography, he describes himself as “an advocate of gun control” who “ushered in Illinois’ first comprehensive law banning assault weapons.”

“This is the kind of hypocrisy that fuels the mistrust of politicians by gun owners,” Second Amendment Foundation founder Alan Gottlieb told The Washington Times. The organization has been backing legal challenges designed to force Illinois to recognize carry rights for all residents.

“Trotter and many other anti-gun Democrats don’t trust people with firearms but flaunt the very laws they want to impose on the rest of us,” said Mr. Gottlieb. After a night in jail, Mr. Trotter is out on bond. He says he’s still running for Congress.

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