MichMash: Michigan gun owners who support gun laws reform

Bridge Michigan’s Ron French explains how national polls show an increase of gun restrictions are supported by gun owners. 

Stock photo of handguns.

After the mass shooting at a private Christian grade school that left three students and three adults dead in Nashville, Tenn. last month, MichMash host Cheyna Roth looks at the effectiveness of red flag laws with Bridge Michigan’s Ron French. The two discuss the misconception of gun owners and their feelings toward gun laws.

In this episode:

  • How the national polls show gun owners support gun restrictions  
  • Gun ownership in the “Michigan gun belt” is seen as a way of life and a means of safety 
  • Lapeer Library faces criminal charges for carrying an award-winning book

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The National Rifle Association and members of the Republican Party have gone against several gun laws being proposed to stop mass shootings. However, their disposition may differ from gun owners.

Bridge Michigan’s Ron French explains how national polls show an increase of gun restrictions are supported by gun owners. 

“We went to several counties that have the highest rate of handgun ownership…and they ranged from supportive to shrugging their shoulders for these things because they worry about crime too and they think maybe these things will work,” says French.

French shares that the vast majority of gun owners are safe with how they handle their weapons. “They have no problem with a red flag law or a universal background check because they are law abiding citizens and it’s not going to affect their lives.”  

French referred to the rural area of the state as Michigan’s gun belt. Residents in this region have specific reasons for carrying guns. Most of them grew up with firearms and see them as a household tool. Lastly, they live farther away from the nearest police station in comparison to major metro areas, so carrying guns is more of a safety issue. 

Also in the episode, Cheyna asks French about a library book ban in Lapeer County, where library director Amy Churchill is facing criminal charges from conservative county prosecutor John Miller in a fight over a nationally award-winning LGBTQ-themed book. 

The book, “Gender Queer: A Memoir,” was singled out because of fear that the illustrations in the book “may accost, entice or solicit a child for immoral purposes” according to Miller. French predicts Miller has a zero percent chance of success in this charge.

“There is no law against having this book on a shelf. It was in an adult section anyway,” French says.

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  • Hernz Laguerre
    Hernz Laguerre Jr. is a Multimedia Journalist at 101.9 WDET. He is one of the co-host for "Detroit Evening Report," one of the weekend anchors for "Weekend Edition," the producer for our political podcast, "MichMash," and reports on arts, culture and politics.