Montgomery Officials Not Happy with New Gun Legislation

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By Ashley Thompson

Montgomery officials are speaking out against new legislation that was passed by the Senate that some say makes Alabama gun laws more lax.

Both Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange and Public Safety Director Chris Murphy are against parts of this new bill, saying it could be dangerous for Montgomery.

The new legislation, drafted by Senator Scott Beason of Gardendale, would make gettting and carrying a gun easier. There are several sections of the bill that have people talking but two parts especially, have Montgomery officials upset:

1. Would allow Alabamians the right to have a gun in their car

with a free, lifetime permit.

2. Would allow Alabamians the right to be able to carry a gun to a rally without a permit.

Public Safety Director Chris Murphy says these parts of the bill are just asking for trouble.

 

"In Montgomery, as you know, we've had a number of homicides and our aggravated assaults are up and since January we've seized over 240 illegal weapons," he says. "

Mayor Todd Strange echoes Murphy saying these parts of the bill are in direct conflict with what public safety's goals are.

"It's going to make it more difficult on law enforcement," says Strange. "In Montgomery, as we've alluded to, we have people clamoring because the police department is not doing enough and we'll accept that responsibility. But with so many other things in the national scene, they're tying our hands. They're making it more difficult to keep the bad guys off the streets."

We went out to the streets to find out what some people thought of the bill. Montgomery resident Willie Joe Moss found carrying a weapon without a permit to a rally disturbing.

"Emotions are high and then somebody steps on your toe, and you're ready to go and get your gun," he says.

Any of these criminals could have thrown their weapon in their car and go 'you cant touch this.'"

Some people say having a free, lifetime permit to carry a gun in a car shouldn't be viewed as negative.

"Having the right to own the weapon for the rest of your life is not a problem," says Montgomery resident Stuart Lawrence. "I think the biggest problem we've had with gun violence is a problem with our mental health system, not our gun registration system."

 



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