Campaign to protect gun rights
State Representative Jeff Thompson, R-Bossier City, has unveiled a new statewide campaign to defend the rights of Louisiana residents to bear arms, called “Defend Louisiana.”
“What's happening as reaction to some incidents in America isn't right,” said Thompson. “There comes a time when you have to stand up and defend your rights. Like a rising tide, if you don't take a firm stand, you're going to be surrounded by water.”
The campaign’s goal is simple: Defend Louisiana residents' right to protect their families.
“We’ve done some good things to protect the Second Amendment in Louisiana, but we’re not finished yet.The Defend Louisiana campaign gives our residents a way to let their voices be heard throughout the state and across the nation,” said Thompson. “We're standing together and sending a message to President (Barack) Obama, Vice President (Joe) Biden, the federal Government and those reactionary politicians who want to penalize law abiding citizens. We do not intend to allow any effort to interfere with the right to protect our families here go unanswered.”
Thompson will collaborate with several other legislators to develop a package of bills that will protect Louisiana gun owners from federal intrusion, make publishing the names of concealed carry permit holders illegal, enhance school safety, and promote responsible gun ownership and safety.
"We're showing our commitment to reform by doing more than just talking, we're presenting bold solutions that increase safety while maintaining our fundamental rights. In the coming weeks and months there will be a lot of discussion regarding guns. We need to make certain our children realize guns can be dangerous and that we educate people about responsible ownership and use of firearms," said Thompson.
The campaign plans to tour the state in the coming weeks to collect signatures in support of the Second Amendment.
“We’re very excited about traveling the state and talking with our neighbors throughout Louisiana who share our belief that we have the right to protect our families. The solution to gun violence is not found in restricting the rights of law abiding citizens or demonizing self-defense,” said Thompson.
During this tour, he will also be gathering ideas and sharing information to support legislation, culminating with unveiling the signed petition on April 8 during the opening day of the Louisiana legislative session in Baton Rouge.
"This is about defending our rights and protecting our families while supporting effective solutions to gun violence," Thompson said. "I hope my fellow legislators and thousands across Louisiana will join me on this journey."
In talking with constituents, he said they have been very supportive.
“We're in the sportsman's paradise — we grow up aroud guns and gun safety is paramount. The right to enjoy guns and protect our families is very near and dear to us,” he said.
Those interested in becoming involved can visit the campaign's website at defendla.org
The website is designed to inform people while letting them join together and have a “common and loud voice.” Thompson said it will bring all the different pieces of this issue together in one place.
“It's a one-stop shop for everything from conceal carry permits or how to locate a federally licensed dealer to gun safety, and giving people chance to stand up and have their voice heard,” said Thompson.