A town in Colorado is looking into a proposal that would require that every home have at least one assault-style rifle, similar to the Bushmaster AR-15 used to slaughter 20 elementary school children in Connecticut last year.
The Craig Daily Press reported this week that the Craig resident Craig Rummel had asked the city council to consider an ordinance that would force the head of every household to own a sporting rifle capable of using high-capacity magazines.
The ordinance included exceptions for anyone not mentally or physically capable of owning a firearm, or anyone who objected to the idea because of religious or personal beliefs.
Rummel said that he hoped the city would pass the ordinance to send a message to the state and the country.
"Coal, the power plant and hunting pretty well sums up what we offer here in Craig, America," Rummel explained. "For too long, the state Legislature has been hammering us, and they’re destroying our economy."
"Our voices are not being heard, but if we pass an ordinance, it will go viral, and then they’ll be forced to listen to us."
According to the Daily Press, most of the council members agreed with the idea behind the ordinance, but hesitated at the notion of using their power just to send a message.
Council member Ray Beck suggested that a resolution could send the same message without carrying the weight of law.
But council member Tony Bohrer said he was "all for an ordinance, because at the end of the day there’s still going to be 20,000 head of elk at Black Mountain, and this would give me another thing to use to promote Craig."
Bohrer manages Elkhorn Outfitters in Craig and worried that gun control legislation passed by the state would hurt business.
Council member Don Jones, however, pointed out that encouraging every home to have an assault weapon might bring the wrong type of of media attention to the town.
"The state of Colorado is the laughingstock of the country," Jones argued. “We’ve passed an amendment legalizing marijuana that violates federal law and we’ve passed gun laws that violate the Second Amendment. I don’t think passing an ordinance requiring all residents to own an AK-47 is the type of attention Craig wants.”
Rummel insisted that the ordinance was "about more than just guns, this is about protecting our economy."
“This is an opportunity for us to protect and defend our economy, culture and heritage of Northwest Colorado," he said.
In the end, Craig Mayor Terry Carwile said that the council decided not to reject the idea.
“There is enough support up here of what you are saying, and I think there’s room for you to convince us,” Carwile explained. “The bottom line is we don’t need to make a decision tonight, but you have some work to do.”