The violence epidemic that continues to plague this country has some seeking innovative solutions. One popular, but all-but-impossible pipe dream is to disarm everyone. And now one mayoral candidate has built the idea into his platform. He wants to take all of the guns, even those in the hands of police officers.
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State Representative Raymond Dehn is running for mayor of Minneapolis. And Dehn wants to take away guns from cops. His new approach comes after a Minneapolis officer shot dead a woman from Australia in an odd case that has still not been explained.
Maybe, Dehn concedes, they would need some access to guns. “I’m not saying they don’t have access to that, just like they have access to more lethal weapons in their cars, I would believe they would still have access to their guns in their cars,” Dehn said at the recent Democratic Farmer Labor convention.
Dehn, who spoke with a local Fox affiliate, acknowledged that police need to protect themselves. He thinks batons and pepper spray would suffice.
“I think as we look at how to change policing and how we get officers to not react to use their gun in situations, but learning skills around de-escalation training I think are important,” he said.
Just how police should de-escalate a situation when they are being shot at is a question Dehn has yet to answer.
Yet his radical approach has Dehn’s name in print. A Minnesota mayoral candidate is now national news. And this means the incumbent mayor has to take the half-baked idea seriously.
“And if we are going to talk about changes in gun policy, we shouldn’t start with police officers who are going to be operating in a world with people who have guns,” said Mayor Betsy Hodges.
Dehn, though, knows there are holes in his idea. After all, at this early point, all he has to do to get attention is speak in loose abstractions, but he notes he would like to meet with police and develop the idea further.
Lt. Bob Kroll, head of the local police union, isn’t buying it.
“I don’t think the people in Minneapolis are logically ready for anything like this,” said Kroll. “Who would ever do the job of policing again? It’s absolutely an absurd thought.”