OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA — Last July, in the wake of the horrible shooting of military personnel in Tennessee, Gov. Mary Fallin (R-OK) issued an executive order authorizing military personnel to carry concealed weapons. Now, Sen. Frank Simpson has proposed a senate bill, SB 913, which will make that executive order permanent.
News 9 reports that Simpson and many other state level politicians are in support of measures which would give Air National Guard and Army National Guard personnel the means to protect themselves on and off base.
“It’s sad that our guard members, who are trained in the use of weapons, are not allowed to carry them. With so many recent shootings, including the one in July in Chattanooga where four Marines and a sailor were killed by an Islamic terrorist, it’s important that all authorized military personnel be armed and able to protect themselves and others in emergency situations,” said Simpson, R-Springer.
One of the stipulations is that the servicemen and women must be performing a military function in order for the law to be active. So, off-duty national guardsmen heading onto base to watch a movie? Your guess is as good as mine. However, with such provisions in this place, it may seem unlikely for any servicemember to be prosecuted so long as he or she is doing the right thing.
This marks a grand improvement in the ability of state-level military members to be able to protect themselves on base. Prior to such executive orders and, hopefully, bills that make it into law, servicemembers were very limited in their capacity to defend themselves on domestic soil. It seems silly that men and women that we entrust the safety of our country to would be unable to legally carry on their own base. Now, base can be extended to mean anything from a recruitment office in a shopping mall to an unprotected National Guard depot located along the interstate. Bills such as SB 913 only reinforce the concept that the right to self-defense shouldn’t end when an arbitrary “gun free zone” begins.
Thankfully, Tennessee was first to jump on this bandwagon following the shooting incident that took place in its own backyard. Florida and other states were sure to follow. And now, it appears Oklahoma is all too candid in expressing its opinion that this should be extended into law.
Good job, Oklahoma.
Carrying on Department of Defense facilities may still be restricted in some instances and active duty military members are heavily encouraged to investigate their own base commander’s orders regarding this subject.
And how ironic is that designation anyway? “Gun free” military base. It’s a military base. As a military base, it’s lawfully considered a viable target according to the Geneva Convention. Why on earth would it make sense to disarm your military personnel while on-board? More importantly, why would you leave them vulnerable to attack while entering and exiting the facility?