We have a God-given right to defend ourselves — one that is affirmed by the Second Amendment. Our Founding Fathers understood that the right to bear arms was necessary and important and that government interference in that right would make us less safe.
Today, some in our government have shifted viewpoints. They have lost sight of what safety and defense truly mean, replacing them with fear and government regulation that only make it more difficult to carry out our natural right. But that may be starting to change.
Gun-Free Zones Don’t Stop Crime
After the senseless tragedy in Virginia Beach two weeks ago, people have once again started discussing the purpose and effectiveness of so-called “gun-free zones.” Can a gun-free zone protect our loved ones if a criminal brings a gun anyway? I have been vocal about their misleading effects for many years now, and it seems like some in Congress are finally starting to agree.
Last week, U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) introduced the “Safe Student Act.” This legislation would end the federal ban on guns in schools by repealing the “Gun-Free School Zones Act.” Originally passed in 1990, the bill made it illegal for anyone to knowingly carry a gun in a school zone. (In other words, it stripped law-abiding citizens of the right to defend themselves and our children while advertising to evil-doers that schools are soft targets.) With the passage of this bill, local communities would once again have more say over the safety of our schools.
Representative Jeff Duncan (R-SC) said “the only thing gun-free zones do is disarm law-abiding citizens and take away their ability to protect themselves and others. We shouldn’t leave our most vulnerable — our children — in an unsafe environment … where acts of violence cannot be stopped.”
I couldn’t agree more. The first line of defense in an emergency is a responsible gun owner who happens to be at the scene. We need to focus on educating more people about gun safety and creating more law-abiding gun owners, not making it harder to protect a constitutional right.
Constitutional Carry in Ohio?
Right now, the Ohio General Assembly is also making a move by proposing a constitutional carry bill. This would allow citizens who have already passed all the requirements to purchase a gun to carry it without a permit. In case you missed it, I wrote an op-ed for The Columbus Dispatch in support of this effort, explaining how it will increase our security.
If you want to hear more about the benefits of constitutional carry, also take a few minutes to listen to my radio interview with Ohio radio host Chuck Douglas here.
Around the Country
A new law in Florida will allow paramedics to carry firearms when responding to shootings, drug raids and other high-risk situations. Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the measure Friday. It says paramedics don’t have to retreat and are justified in using force to defend themselves or others against bodily harm. The law takes effect July 1.
- WRAL-TV (NBC-Raleigh, NC): Bill Allows Unlimited Handguns Per Permit
Legislation rolled out June 12 would let people buy multiple handguns without getting multiple permits from their local sheriffs, a change supporters billed as a “streamlining.” “This is not opening up more guns. It’s just cutting out some bureaucracy,” said Eddie Caldwell, executive vice president and general counsel of the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association.
- KVUE-TV (ABC-Austin, TX): Gov. Abbott Signs Bill to Allow Texans to Lawfully Carry Guns in Churches
On Friday, Gov. Greg Abbott signed a bill into law that allows gun owners with concealed carry licenses to bring their weapons into places of worship. In January, Texas Sen. Donna Campbell filed the bill, saying it would secure the rights of Texans to lawfully carry in churches and other established places of worship. Senate Bill 535 doesn’t restrict the rights of churches to prohibit weapons on their property if they post a sign saying weapons aren’t allowed, which most privately owned properties in Texas are legally at liberty to do.
Quote of the Week
On legislation that was signed this past week to allow more Texas teachers to arm themselves, Jefferson school superintendent Rob Barnwell said, “The quicker you have someone there to help stop something like that from happening, the better off we are. Hopefully, just having folks on campus [who] are trained and carrying a weapon can deter someone from doing something evil.” (KTBS-TV ABC)
Data Point You Should Know
Every year, Americans use guns to protect themselves or others between 500,000 and 3 million times. (Central Maine)