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Adversaries on gun issues agree to hear each other

On opposite sides of gun-control issues, Donovan Kuehl of Willmar and Linda Winsor of St. Paul sshake hands Wednesday before a Minnesota House gun hearing. They two first met before a Tuesday hearing and discussed why they believe the way they do.

ST. PAUL -- Donovan Kuehl wore a button proclaiming "I support the 2nd Amendment."

He shook hands with Linda Winsor, sitting next to him and wearing a sticker declaring "Minnesotans against being shot."

The Willmar man and St. Paul women produced a rare example of Minnesotans on two sides of the divisive gun debate wanting to learn about each other's views.

"It was a good conversation," Kuehl said.

The two met waiting in line to attend a Tuesday House gun hearing, and sat next to each other during a third gun meeting on Wednesday, shaking hands before the committee began.

"We need to take some common-sense measures," Winsor said about ways to control gun violence, such as mass shootings.

She said that she was "struck by the sense of Second Amendment rights and erosion" expressed by people like Kuehl.

The Willmar man voiced an opinion that gun-control supporters like Winsor often call extreme.

"I think guns in schools would be good," Kuehl said about proposals some Republicans support to allow teachers and other school workers to carry weapons.

"I'm concerned that there is an erosion of the Second Amendment," he said about the federal constitutional provision that conservatives say guarantees them the right to carry guns.

Don Davis
Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.