Tulsa Police Chief Wendell Franklin is calling for a 9/11 style response to gun violence and suggesting people may have to give up some of their freedom in exchange for gun control.
NPR posted an interview with Franklin on Sunday, noting he is critical of constitutional carry, wants more regulations on firearms that Democrats describe as “ghost guns,” and is open to a waiting period for the purchase of AR-15s and similar firearms.
Franklin said, “Law enforcement – we are the experts. We’re the subject matter experts at protecting America – right? – protecting our cities. And, you know, we should be utilizing that in that manner. So I am charged with protecting this community. And if there are better ways of protecting it, I think we should be looking at those better ways to protect it.”
Public Radio Tulsa quoted Franklin saying:
Ultimately, I’m a Second Amendment guy…But I’m okay giving up some of that freedom, right? We had to give up some of that freedom after 9/11. I’m okay with waiting three days, five days, or whatever to get my firearm if I go out and purchase another firearm.
So I’m okay with a pause to allow for weapons to be purchased and allow the government and the gun companies to look at the background and do a thorough check before that gun goes to someone.
Franklin compared giving up some freedom in exchange for gun control to the process people went through in adapting to seatbelt laws when they were first enacted.
He said, “You know, we put seatbelt laws in place, I’m not exactly sure when, probably the 1980s, I think. And we mandated that everyone starts wearing a seatbelt, and it took some time for people to grab hold of that. But if you look today it is an automatic thing that people put on their seatbelt when they get into a vehicle. You feel uncomfortable not wearing that seatbelt. I think again, we give something up to get safety for, for something safe. I think that’s where we are today. We are going to have to give up some things. And I think there are some things that we can give up for a safer community.”
Franklin became Tulsa’s 40th police chief on February 1, 2020.
U.S. News & World Report lists Tulsa as No. 8 in a list of the “Top 25 Most Dangerous Places in the U.S.”