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Thu March 8, 2012
Missouri House passes legislation adding gun owners to protected minority groups
Legislation that would add gun owners to the state’s list of protected minority groups has passed the Missouri House.
The bill would forbid people from firing, denying benefits to or otherwise discriminating against an armed person who has a conceal-carry permit.
Democrat Mike Colona of St. Louis is an openly-gay House Member who spoke out against the bill.
“I can be fired because of my sexual orientation, my constituents can be fired because of their sexual orientation…what this body has done is put protecting gun ownership above discriminating against somebody because of their sexual orientation, and I just don’t think that’s right,” Colona said.
Colona also says Republicans are using the bill to put political pressure on Democrats during an election year. Supporters argued that they’re trying to protect Missourians’ Second Amendment right to carry arms. Around 20 Democrats joined the GOP majority in voting “yes.” The bill now goes to the Missouri Senate.