gun rights

Flickr/Creative Commons/Robert Nelson

Kentuckians with concealed carry permits could bring firearms into schools, college halls and government offices where they may currently be banned under a bill proposed recently in the state House.

Under the proposal, any Kentuckian with a valid concealed deadly weapons license or a temporary permit could bring a concealed gun onto public elementary and secondary school property. Licensees and permit-holders could also bring concealed weapons to public universities and colleges, state and locally controlled government buildings, and to meetings of the state’s legislative body.

Courtrooms and detention facilities would be exempt under the bill.

The legislation was proposed last month by Republican state House members Diane St. Onge of Lakeside Park, Kenny Imes of Murray, Richard Heath of Mayfield and Tim Moore of Elizabethtown.

Moore said the bill is an anti-terrorism measure.

“I just want to eliminate soft targets,” he said.

flickr/creative commons/Shayne White

A Bowling Green resident who has been an instructor for concealed carry permits says President’s Obama’s executive actions on guns announced Jan. 5 are unnecessary. 

Mark Dunnegan  says stricter background checks on gun sales aren’t needed, especially in Kentucky.

“I feel very confident that Kentucky has a very good system of background checks," says Dunnegan. "The NCIC check is a sufficient method, in my opinion, of making sure that those who shouldn’t have guns, don’t have guns.”

He believes increased background checks will hurt law-abiding gun owners.

"I do believe the push to regulate guns is not the solution," he says. "I know the general public and the citizens here in the U.S. are upset and concerned. However, stricter regulations on law-abiding citizens wouldn't be the answer. It would only make it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to protect their homes, protect their land, and protect their families."

Dunnegan and his wife both previously taught classes for those who want to get concealed carry permits.

Meanwhile, a Bowling Green woman whose son survived a gunshot wound is praising President Obama’s speech on guns.

WKU PBS

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has bagged an award from the powerful National Rifle Association, giving him bragging rights for his re-election bid next year in a state where hunting is a tradition. The Republican's opponents are defending their own gun-rights stands in the campaign cross-fire.

Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes points to her NRA membership and says she'd welcome McConnell to shoot with her at a gun range.
 
McConnell didn't respond to a reporter's question Friday asking if he'd take Grimes up on her offer.

A bill is gaining steam in Tennessee that would allow teachers and other staff members with a background in policing to carry guns in schools. The Tennessean reports the measure is a compromise between those who want all teachers to be allowed to carry guns, and those who want to increase the number of armed security guards in Volunteer State schools.

The bill would allow school personnel who have worked as police officers to get certification allowing them to bring their weapons to work. Gov. Bill Haslam backs the plan, saying it strikes a good balance between cost considerations, school safety, and local control.

House Bill 6 is moving its way through legislative committees in Nashville and could reach the floors of the state House and Senate before the session adjourns next week.

A proposal meant to put more armed guards in Tennessee schools has begun moving forward in the General Assembly. It offers money for schools to hire retired police officers and allows teachers with law enforcement backgrounds to carry a gun to class.

Whether a retired officer hired part-time as a security guard or a teacher already on the payroll, both would have to go through at least 40 hours of special training.

The legislation has the backing of Governor Bill Haslam and has trumped other proposals aimed at more broadly allowing teachers to go armed to class.

Some Republicans still want to mandate armed guards in every school, but others say the only reason they support this bill is because it doesn’t. Rep. Ryan Haynes of Knoxville says schools aren’t as dangerous as they’re made out to be.

The state Senate on Monday overwhelmingly passed a nullification bill that would prohibit Kentucky from enforcing new federal gun control laws if they're enacted, despite concerns about the bill's constitutionality.

The vote was 34-3. Three of the Senate's 14 Democrats voted no, stating that the measure would be trumped by the U.S. Constitution's Supremacy Clause.

Sen. Jared Carpenter, a Berea Republican, sponsored the bill. He said the Supremacy Clause applies only if Congress is acting in pursuit of its constitutionally authorized powers, which he said wouldn't apply to stricter gun measures.

"If I thought the bill would be symbolic, I would've written a resolution," Carpenter told the Associated Press. "I thought it needed more than that."

Indiana Seeing Surge in Gun-Permit Applications

Feb 21, 2013

Indiana State Police are seeing a surge in gun permit requests amid the national gun-control debate sparked by December's deadly Connecticut school shooting.

The Indianapolis Star reports state police are now seeing up to 4,000 permit requests each week. That's three times the number the agency was handling at the same time last year.

Indiana residents make online gun permit applications to the State Police, but those applications are funneled to local police agencies for inspection, fingerprinting and background checks.

Each of those applications must be reviewed and approved or rejected by the local police chief, town marshal or county sheriff.