Minnesota Republican Won’t Store Guns Safely, Because Cows Out To Kill Us All

Gun Rights

A Republican state senator in Minnesota will not be cowed into voting for a proposed bill requiring that firearms be stored safely to prevent firearms thefts or accidental shootings. It’s the killer cows, you see. You just never know when sweet, big-eyed Bossy will turn into a homicidal maniac, requiring that you immediately terminate her with extreme prejudice.

The bill, Senate File 4312, would require that when firearms aren’t in use, they be stored in a “secure, tamperproof container designed to hold a firearm” or secured with a trigger lock or other locking device making the gun inoperable. Guns secured with a locking device must be unloaded, while those kept in a secure container could loaded or unloaded. It’s a pretty common-sense safe-storage bill of the sort that the NRA has opposed for decades now.

Not securely storing a gun would be a misdemeanor, or a felony if an unsecured firearm is accessed by a child or person who can’t legally have guns, with stiffer penalties if it’s used in a violent crime.

But according to state Sen. Warren Limmer (R-Maple Grove), SF 4312 could put rural families at mortal risk! That’s because they are under constant threat from bovines with hair-trigger tempers. No, really! You city folk just wouldn’t understand. Here, Limmer limns the deadly world of the barnyard:

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Limmer first wondered aloud how homeowners are supposed to even sleep at night if they can’t instantly grab their loaded gun in event of a home invasion.

If you’re “fumbling around for a lockbox key,” Limmer reasoned, you might suffer a “delay in reaction” when seconds count. “I find this bill cumbersome in the face of defending one’s self at home to a deadly threat,” Limmer explained.

How true this is! Many gun nuts are certain they can instantly wake up, accurately assess the tactical situation, and dispatch a murderous slimeball invader via the Mozambique Drill (two shots to center mass and one to the head) in a matter of seconds. You can get it on a T-shirt if you think you need a reminder. (From Amazon, but damned if we’re linking.)

For that matter, if you have to fumble around and unlock your gun, you might even be prevented from blowing away that shadow down the hall you think is a murderous slimeball invader but is your teenager sneaking in hours after curfew.

Limmer didn’t mention that statistically, home invasions — break-ins when residents are at home — are extremely rare, no matter how often they happen in movies and dark gunhumper fantasies. In real life, burglars far prefer the lower risk of breaking into empty houses.

But Limmer wasn’t finished. He hadn’t gotten to the cows. Farmers, he explained,

also have concerns about their own domestic farm animals. Farm animals at times can be dangerous. Take for example, a cow that has just recently had a calf. You even walk too close to a cow, and it will take you down and trample you into dust.

Again, we too easily get distracted by stories of fierce predators protecting their young. But Sarah Palin might just as well have spoken too of the righteous rage of Mama Guernseys, who may strike and kill before you can react:

“Many farmers have a readily available gun just for those emergencies,” Limmer explained. “Fumbling around with a lock while a cow or a bull or any other animal is going after your daughter or your son, you can’t fumble around with a key or try and find the lockbox or put your thumb on a biometric key of some sort in your home, while the danger is outside.”

There’s a lot to unpack here. For one thing, there’s all that fumbling, a surprising amount of fumbling when you consider that your steely-eyed patriot farmer is supposed to be a cool customer, a dead shot with a rifle or pistol. But that’s only if there’s no locking device to drive them to abject panicked fumbling. Rambo never had to scan his thumb.

We also like how Limmer seems to think SF 4312 would force hardy farmers to keep their weapons locked inside their houses, instead of having, say, a locked gun cabinet in the barn or the milking shed. There is no such requirement. We looked.

Also, we have a question: Even if you have a shotgun or Desert Eagle or AR-15 right inside the door of your barn or outhouse, or several scattered around for easy pickin’, how are you supposed to dispatch the berserk cow that’s about to trample your child without also shooting at, you know, your child?

Haha, silly question! With no locks to reduce you to a fumble-fingered boob, you would of course not miss your target. It’s your hero fantasy and you will end that cow, perhaps also using the Moozambique Drill.

Also, those spoilsports at Twin Cities TV station KMSP went and did a journalism on Limmer’s scenario of bucolic terror. They note that yes, agriculture can be a dangerous job, but Death By Cow is pretty rare:

However, data gathered by the University of Nebraska for its Central States Center for Agricultural Safety and Health […] shows only three trampling deaths between 2012 and 2021 in Minnesota. The incidents include an 85-year-old man trampled by a cow while tagging a calf in 2018, a 41-year-old man trampled near a bull and two cows in 2019, and a 66-year-old man “assaulted” by a cow while trying to deliver a calf in 2020.

The biggest risks for farmers are equipment-related deaths and traffic collisions.

Honestly, if that 85-year-old was going to do a fool thing like spray-painting his gang’s name on a cow, he probably had it coming.

Oh, yes, and while it’s nowhere near as funny as imaginary terror cows bent on mayhem, we should probably mention that, per CDC stats from Everytown for Gun Safety, firearms kill an average of 43 Minnesota children and teens every year. Forty-nine percent of those deaths are suicides, many of which could be prevented if firearms were securely stored.

Among adults, 363 Minnesotans die and 47 are wounded on average every year. Seventy-three percent of gun deaths in Minnesota are suicide by firearm. Again, some percentage of those suicides could be prevented by secure firearms storage, both by preventing access by those other than the gun owner, and by presenting an obstacle to impulsive actions.

If you’re having thoughts of harming yourself, call the national Suicide and Crisis hotline at 988.

Oh, sorry about that, we were having fun with killer cows, weren’t we? We miss the happier days of the Polish Freedom Cow, too.

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[Minnesota Senate File 4312 (2024) / Heartland Signal / KMSP-TV / Nation]

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