So this debate deserves more time

Arkansas State Senator Stephanie Flowers spoke up.

Flowers, A democrat from Pine Bluff and the lone black face on the state’s eight-member committee, wanted more time to debate the merits of [the] “stand your ground law,” which argues that civilians have the rights to use their firearms when they feel threatened, because it disproportionately targets people of color.

“It doesn’t take much to look on the local news every night and see how many black kids, black boys, black men are being killed with these ‘stand your ground’ defenses that these people raise, then they get off,” she said. “So I take issue with that. I’m the only person here of color, OK? I am a mother, too. And I have a son. And I care as much for my son as y’all care for y’alls. But, my son doesn’t walk the same path as yours do, so this debate deserves more time.”

She added: “For a long time since I’ve been back here in Arkansas, I have feared for my son’s life.”

She also pointed to gun rights enthusiasts who openly carry guns in front of the Arkansas courthouse and how uncomfortable that makes her feel because she doesn’t know if any of these people are crazy. She called them bullies.

“In front of my doggone office,” she said; in front of the courthouse and in front of her office. Random people walking up and down with guns; no thank you very much. It’s scary enough seeing them on cops.

The bill failed.

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