Empower Wisconsin | Feb. 28, 2020
By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — You could set your watch by it.
Moments after the first reports of a shooting at Milwaukee’s Molson Coors plant came the incriminations and the calls for more gun control from liberal politicians and their like-minded pals in the mainstream media.
A day later we know that the gunman who opened fired, Anthony N. Ferrill, 51, was a long-time electrician at the brewery. He reportedly had a long-standing feud with a fellow employee. Claims of racism permeated the deadly incident, but Milwaukee Police would only say Thursday that the investigation is ongoing.
“What’s most important right now is we, as a community, come together and put our arms around these grieving families,” said Mayor Tom Barrett at an afternoon press conference.
What was most important to Barrett’s gun-control allies was to again turn a tragedy into a political opportunity to expand government and limit liberty. On cue, they targeted the Second Amendment and gun-rights advocates for the deaths of five people at the hands of a madman.
With little information, they fired out angry tweets and statements.
“The details of this tragedy are still unfolding, but one thing is clear: we cannot allow the plague of gun violence to take any more lives,” tweeted Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Madison).
Our hearts are with the people of Milwaukee and all the workers at @MolsonCoors today.
The details of this tragedy are still unfolding, but one thing is clear: we cannot allow the plague of gun violence to take any more lives.#EnoughIsEnough
— Rep. Mark Pocan (@repmarkpocan) February 26, 2020
“Another avoidable uniquely American tragedy. It’s not normal, we should never accept it, and we should never relent when ‘leaders’ offer hollow thoughts and prayers but choose inaction,” tweeted the ever apoplectic Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes.
Another avoidable uniquely American tragedy. It’s not normal, we should never accept it, and we should never relent when “leaders” offer hollow thoughts and prayers but choose inaction.
— Mandela Barnes (@TheOtherMandela) February 27, 2020
Facts are the first casualties in such times. The Milwaukee workplace tragedy was terrible, heartbreaking, but it certainly wasn’t unique to the United States.
And the question arises again, what new law would have prevented this violent outburst from someone who does not appear to have a criminal record?
“These are always opportunities for gun-control activists to prey on people’s unrealistic need to have all of their desires, including safety, satisfied and fixed by the government,” said Nik Clark, president of Wisconsin Carry, Inc., a liberty group that advocates for open and conceal cary freedoms for law-abiding citizens.
Clark said he knows where liberals like Barnes and Gov. Tony Evers stand on limiting the Second Amendment. Evers in November called a special session of the Legislature to take up a bill on universal background checks — what many say as a prelude to a national gun registry — and so-called Red Flag legislation that would give courts and law enforcement the power to confiscate weapons from individuals deemed to be a threat.
It’s wavering conservatives that concern Clark at times like these.
“My concern is that these politicians are going to turn on the news and feel the pressure from the media. Even if it’s against their better judgement, they think they have to do something for political survival,” Clark said.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel played the tune Wednesday with a story headlined, “Hours before Molson Coors shooting, Wisconsin lawmakers said state’s gun laws won’t change.” The story, a transparent indictment of Republicans who have stood firm against legislation that would erode the Second Amendment, claimed that, “Hours before the rampage,” the governor “called on lawmakers to take up legislation aimed at keeping guns away from people who are dangerous.”
Never mind the fact that Evers’ call to lawmakers was just an answer to a pointed question by a reporter at an unrelated press conference. The newspaper then turned its attention to Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, “a Republican,” who “made it clear that Wisconsin’s gun laws would not change under a Republican-controlled Legislature.”
Fitzgerald said the discussion about the Second Amendment could go on forever, and that the Legislature, with Evers’ endorsement, has made strides in addressing the underlying problems of mental illness directly related to gun violence.
“A short time after, the 51-year-old man entered the factory with two handguns, firing on employees,” the Journal Sentinel piece screams, as if Fitzgerald defending a clear constitutional right placed the guns in Ferrill’s hands and demanded he murder his co-workers in cold blood.