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In response to the shooting deaths of 4 innocent people and a shooter at a medical building on the Saint Francis campus in Tulsa, Oklahoma Democrats have proposed the SAVE Act to curb gun violence. Wednesday’s mass shooting  was the second incident of gun violence in the state over the last week following a shooting in Taft, Oklahoma.

The SAVE Act will be a radical departure from current Oklahoma gun laws. The Act would repeal anti-red flag laws, repeal permit less carry, and repeal concealed carry in public parks and zoos. 

Additionally, the SAVE Act would add a red flag law, a waiting period on the purchase of firearms, and increase the minimum age for gun purchase. Currently, an 18-year-old in Oklahoma can buy a gun without restriction. 

Tulsa mass shooter identified as 45-year-old as Michelet Louis, family says
Emergency personnel respond to a shooting at the Natalie Medical Building Wednesday, June 1, 2022. in Tulsa, Okla. Multiple people were shot at a Tulsa medical building on a hospital campus Wednesday. (Ian Maule/Tulsa World via AP)

Oklahoma mass shootings highlight nationwide gun violence

The first Oklahoma shooting incident this week occurred at a Memorial Day celebration in Taft. One person was killed, with several injuries reported. 

Meanwhile, on Wednesday afternoon, Tulsa Police responded to reports of a man identified as Michael Louis who sought out his own doctor after complaining of back pain following a surgery. He purchased a semiautomatic rifle hours before the shooting in the Natalie Building, a medical office building. Two doctors were killed, along with two bystanders, while the shooter died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. 

Unfortunately, Wednesday’s shooting was just the most recent in a spate of gun-related deaths across the country. On May 14, a shooter targeted a grocery store in a Black community in Buffalo New York, where 10 people were killed

After the Buffalo shooting, on May 24, 19 elementary school students in Uvalde, Texas, were killed, along with two teachers. Seventeen others were injured in the mass shooting. 

According to Oklahoma state representative Monroe Nichols (D-Tulsa), “Tulsa, Taft, Uvalde, these events are preventable. The SAVE Act is a common-sense approach to help prevent gun violence in Oklahoma.”

Monroe continued, “House Democrats refuse to sit idly as our citizens begin to fear grocery stores, hospitals, community events, and schools. The solutions we are presenting are not ‘liberal’ ideas. They are common-sense, life-saving ideas.” 

Change in gun laws unlikely in Oklahoma

Currently, Oklahoma’s legislature has a GOP super-majority, along with Republican Governor Kevin Stitt. Stitt has not commented on potential changes to gun laws. 

In fact, few Oklahoma politicians have come forward to demand gun law changes in order to save lives. Both Senators Inhofe and Lankford have tweeted that they are praying for families, and thanking first responders. 

According to Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, Gun violence is the leading cause of death among children and teens in the United States. 

Erika Stone is a graduate student in the Master of Social Work program at the University of Oklahoma, and a graduate assistant at Schusterman Library. A Chess Memorial Scholar, she has a B.A. in Psychology...