Following a shopping mall shooting in northeast Madison last weekend, a Republican lawmaker in Wisconsin is calling on law-abiding citizens with concealed carry permits to help rid society of “scumbags” who exploit gun-free zones.

In a statement Monday, state Rep. Bob Gannon said that having more people who conceal carry in areas like shopping malls will enhance public safety, according to the Wisconsin State Journal.

“Wisconsin does not have a death penalty law, but with significant practice and careful aim, law-abiding citizens can help clean our society of these scumbags,” he said. “Criminals no longer have any fear of our courts or our prisons, so it’s time that the citizens of this fine state stand up and fight back.”

Insisting that a “good guy” with a gun would have stopped the mall shooter, Gannon added that a “gang banger in the mall with a gun is going to think twice if there could be a law-abiding [concealed carry weapon] holder standing behind them fully prepared to shoot center mass,” he said, “as this is how you’re trained to eliminate the threat these creeps pose to you, your family, and all law-abiding citizens unwillingly dragged into their public crime spree.”

On the flip side, Democratic state Rep. Chris Taylor told the Journal that Gannon is living in a “James Bond dream world.”

“If more guns made us safer, we would be the safest country in the world,” Taylor said. “We should be making guns like the one used at East Towne Mall more difficult to obtain for those who abuse the law.”

Still, Gannon believes that areas that don’t allow guns, like the East Towne Mall, are “target-rich environments” for criminals looking to cause harm.

“That is not vigilantism. That is self-defense,” Gannon told WITI-TV. “Maybe that’s too strong, but it’s my nature to say things in a strong manner to make sure people are paying attention.”

Source: Chris Enloe,