Gun rights advocates don't want red flag law in Tennessee

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The Tennessee legislature is looking at a special session later this month. The reason? Gun control.

Following the Covenant School shooting in Nashville, Gov. Bill Lee decided he wanted the state to pass a red flag law. So, he ordered the special session.


Anti-gunners in the state are licking their chops. They figure this is the best chance they’ve had for gun control in a while since the state is vehemently pro-gun.

But pro-gun folks in the state are calling on lawmakers to reject red flag law proposals.

Lawmakers are gearing up to return to the Capitol this month for a special session aimed at addressing gun control in the wake of the tragic Covenant School shooting that took place in March.

However, the chances of passing any significant gun reform legislation, particularly an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) or red flag law, appear slim as the debate intensifies.

Legislators adjourned their regular session without making progress on gun reform, leaving advocates for tighter firearm regulations frustrated.

Among those pushing for change are Governor Bill Lee and the grieving families of the Covenant Community, who are calling for the passage of a red flag law to prevent potentially dangerous individuals from accessing firearms.

Richard Archie, West Tennessee director of the Tennessee Firearms Association, remains staunchly opposed to any form of gun control.

“People in hell want ice water, but they can’t get it. You know, just because they won’t, it doesn’t mean that it necessarily has to come to fruition,” said Archie.


I get Archie’s sentiment, though I personally wouldn’t have phrased it that way.

The point, though, is that just because some people want it is no excuse to just pass a red flag law. Their wants don’t override people’s rights, and red flag laws have a lot of issues.

Lee’s proposed measure, which he tries to argue isn’t really a red flag law, doesn’t have some of the due process concerns others do. In that regard, it’s far better than what we’ve seen out of other states in the nation.

However, one major problem is that it takes guns from people who are supposedly a danger to themselves or others, then leaves them walking around with absolutely no treatment or anything to stop them from doing horrible things other than lacking access to a firearm.

I’m sorry, but you can kill an awful lot of people with a car, for example.

What Tennessee lawmakers should be doing is looking at how to address the underlying problems. Instead, they’re looking at something like a red flag law. It’s a complete waste of time.


Especially since there are already mechanisms in place to deal with people who present as an imminent threat to themselves or others. A 72-hour hold in a psychiatric facility would not just remove someone from ready access to firearms but also from cars, household cleaners, knives, or literally anything else they could use to hurt other people.

There’s no reason for this other than Lee feels bad and is using his power as governor to try and deal with his grief. That’s not how our system is supposed to work.

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