The bills would allow concealed carry permit holders in Michigan who take 8-hours of extra training to carry weapons inside traditionally gun free zones like schools and churches.
“I don’t know if legislation such as what’s pending in Michigan is really the answer,” says Pastor Melvin Jones at United Missionary Baptist Church in Lansing.
Pastor Jones says when hearing people may be able to carry concealed guns into Sunday services, it worries him.
Michigan currently prohibits concealed pistol license holders from carrying in 9-types of buildings including churches, bars, and schools.
This legislation would change that.
Legalizing the right to carry in public buildings with the extra training and prohibiting open carry in certain areas.
A measure that Don Wotruba, Executive Director at the Michigan Association of School Boards says creates an added risk for students.
“We will hope that nothing happens and that there isn’t any accidents, but the feeling that as you put more guns around children, accidents are just more likely to happen,” says Wotruba.
Under the legislation, schools could ban students from carrying guns and also ban their own teachers and other employees from doing so.
Wotruba says, he doesn’t believe the 8-extra hours of training for gun owners is enough.
“Just by the fact that you’ve shot 94 rounds out of a pistol doesn’t make you more qualified to step into a situation,” says Wotruba.
However State Senator, Mike Shirkey, co-sponsor of the Senate bills disagrees.
“If you’re in charge of a congregation or a school, you better have a defense plan and that defense plan better be more than putting your head between your knees an getting under a desk i’m sorry to say that in today’s world but that’s the reality we face,” says Shirkey.
The next step for the bills is to go through the House and then if it passes the House to go to the Governor’s office for final approval.