OUR VIEW: Gun ordinance is common sense solution

Published 1:00 pm Tuesday, October 15, 2019

The Valley City Council will decide to vote on an ordinance in late October about firing weapons within the city limits.

Basically, the law boils down to making it so residents can’t fire a weapon within 50 yards of another house, church or commercial property.

According to the law, target practice can take place within 50 yards of the places mentioned earlier, but it must be confined to the property and conducted in a manner that doesn’t potentially endanger another person.

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Violating this ordinance, if it’s adopted on Oct. 28, can result in a $500 fine and possibly 60 days in jail.

Of course, this law doesn’t apply for police officers or military personnel discharging their weapons in the line of duty.

A gun can also be used for self-defense or to kill destructive animals that could endanger another person or are a nuisance on a person’s property.

However, when shooting at nuisance animals, the shooter can’t point toward another home so there isn’t a chance of the bullet ricocheting.

The biggest thing we want to point out is that this isn’t a ban on guns. It’s not telling Valley residences they can’t shoot their weapons. It’s outlawing the action of firing a firearm in a way that could harm people. It’s a common-sense solution to a problem.

If approved by the council, gun owners can still practice on their property, but they have to be careful the bullets don’t leave the premises and could hurt somebody else.

That’s how this whole thing got started.

There was an argument in the Shawmut community when one resident was shooting at a tire in his backyard.

Another neighbor felt it was unsafe due to the close proximity of the homes on the block. Also, the complaining neighbor says some children play outside regularly, and it’s not safe for a gun to be fired while children are present.

We think that’s a reasonable thing to enforce. We want safe communities throughout the Greater Valley Area.

If restricting shooting to wide-open spaces or forcing someone who wants to practice their marksmanship on their own property is a potential solution, then we support it.