The right to bear arms
Following in the footsteps of guns-rights advocates who want to carry guns in National Parks and even at Presidential rallies, comes an interesting lobbying effort to allow guns in unusual places. For example:
The way Rev. Jonathan Wilkins sees it, members of his Baptist church in Thomaston, Ga., should have the right to carry guns into worship services to protect the congregation. USA Today
And he doesn’t mean armed security guards, but members of the congregation who are trained in the use of firearms. Protection from what?
My first thought was that Thomaston must be quite different than Elk Rapids. It’s population is larger (probably about 10,000 today), but there is no obvious indication that it has had an unusual history except during and immediately after the Civil War. Overview of Thomaston I could understand it if this Baptist Church were a fortress church in an urban area that is seething with turmoil and unrest. It does not appear to be, although there are several Baptist Churches in or near Thomaston, so perhaps one is feeling threatened.
So I’m at a loss to explain what is driving this minister to want guns in his congregation, except only as part of the “inalienable rights” movement that views gun ownership and open carry as mandated necessities – with no restrictions permitted whatsoever. Here is where I usually proclaim that I’m founding a new organization, Uzis for Infants, just to see if there are any restrictions possible to the spread of guns.
It would be interesting to see if these extreme views have moderated at all after the shootings in Tucson. Perhaps somewhat immediately after but probably not now.