Americans have been dealing this week with two more mass shootings that killed 31 people last weekend. In light of that, Gov. Doug Ducey had some very timely remarks last week about his ongoing effort to detain people deemed dangerous. Of course, with the number of mass killings in recent years, the governor’s remarks really weren’t a coincidence.
Ducey told Capitol Media Services he still would like to see legislation allowing judges to issue a Severe Threat Order of Protection, which would require people to submit to mental evaluations. Under some circumstances, an order could be issued by a court to allow police to detain someone for up to 14 days.
The Arizona Citizens Defense League disagrees and has fought the STOP legislation in the past. The group says existing law allows people to be declared a danger to others or themselves and prohibit the possession of weapons.
Last year Ducey was able to get his proposal through the state Senate after a compromise with the National Rifle Association. However, the ACDL persuaded some House members to kill it.
Some recent mass killers have been on the radar screens of local authorities, but of course stopping them is difficult and an imperfect process at best. However, the ACDL and NRA should at this point be ready to realize compromise is necessary. Society has way too many disenchanted people, many of them young, who lack the moral and religious grounding that society relied on in earlier times.
Congress is under pressure to pass some legislation, and so are state legislatures — perhaps more than ever. A majority of Americans want something done that would not give away their rights to a serious degree. There is no magic solution to this, but it is obvious that compromise and major effort will be needed by various groups and basically everyone. Ducey is attempting to be part of the solution, and he has been for some time.