Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Police, Community: Guns, Bars Don't Mix"

Police and members of the Nashville community are speaking out against a bill that would allow permitted gun carriers to take their guns into places that serve alcohol. Metro Police Chief Ronal Serpas said House bill 410, which would allow Tennesseans to take their guns into places that sell alcohol, just doesn't make any sense. He is one of several chiefs, district attorneys, and sheriffs from around the state who signed their names to a strongly worded letter on behalf of the Tennessee Public Safety Coalition. The letter was sent to the state’s Speaker of the House. The letter repeats the familiar statement,... ... "Firearms and alcohol do not mix” and says, in part, “It makes absolutely no sense to us to allow persons to carry guns into establishments where alcohol related fights are most likely to occur.” The letter state the passage of the legislation will "not be good for Tennesseans or our visitors." ”…If all of us think it's not a good idea, I think that should carry some weight with the legislator,” said Chief Serpas. Employees at the Wildhorse Saloon downtown hope so. Others believe the legislation will simply make legal what people are doing anyway. “I think that people that want to carry their guns in a bar are carrying them anyway,” said bar customer JD Stewart. House bill 410 doesn't just apply to bars, but restaurants that serve alcohol. The House of Representatives will vote on this issue in the next couple of weeks. The bill has already passed in the Senate and its sponsor, Senator Doug Jackson, said the Tennessee Public Safety Coalition’s letter is misleading. He said, “What they fail to point out is that the bill does not allow anyone with a handgun carry permit that's carrying their gun to consume any alcohol. They can't consume a single drop.” Jackson also points out that more than 30 states have similar laws. To watch the video CLICK HERE: Copyright 2008 by WKRN Nashville Tennessee. All Rights Reserved.

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