WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — State law prohibits guns at schools, but a state senator from our area wants to make a slight change that law.
No guns in school is a no brainer, but what happens when your school is also a church? Sen. Thom Goolsby (R-9th District) hopes a new bill will help clarify.
“What this bill does is says you can have a gun at church which also serves as a school during worship services, as long as it does not coincide with a school function,” Goolsby said.
Concealed weapons are already allowed on church grounds. Goolsby created the bill after a church in New Hanover County told him members do not feel safe and wanted to make sure all their bases were covered so no one got in trouble.
The group North Carolinians Against Gun Violence says this bill is unnecessary.
“I always thought you had to trust in the lord, not on your gun,” activist Gail Neely said.
Neely says by allowing this, the problem may actually get worse.
“Fear perpetuates violence,” she said. “There are a lot of underlying causes that make people act in a way that is violent, and there are a lot of things that make people act in a way when they are fearful.”
The bill is still in committee in Raleigh. Goolsby says he thinks the bill will pass easily during the current legislative session.
We wanted to know which church inspired Senate Bill 924, but Sen. Goolsby did not want to share that information for privacy concerns.
We also tried to talk with Wilmington Police Chief Ralph Evangelous about expanding the law. He did not want to comment on pending legislation.
We could not reach Sheriff Ed McMahon for comment.