Guns banned from Williamson Co., Brentwood parks

Guns banned from Williamson Co., Brentwood parks (Image 1)

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – Brentwood joins several other local governments in opting out of the new law to allow guns in parks.

The city council voted Monday night to ban guns from its local parks, after Williamson County commissioners already decided earlier in the day that guns should stay out of county parks.

A new law, to go into effect in September, allows guns in city and state parks, but cities and counties can opt out and make up their own law.

Many parents have said they believe guns have no place in parks where children play.

“When I first heard the initiative, I was actually aghast that they would even consider allowing guns in parks,” said Todd Binns, who moved to Middle Tennessee a few months from California. “You don't come to a park and expect a threat, so I wouldn't see the need to bear arms in a park.”

Binns says while he supports the second amendment, he thought Tennessee was going too far with legislation that allows permitted gun owners to carry guns in parks.

Anna Yontz said,”I don't feel that there's any need for us to carry guns around and protect ourselves in a family park.”

It was expected that Brentwood city commissioners would vote to opt out of the state's law, but some of them felt the city shouldn't have been put in that position in the first place.

Commissioner Regina Smithson said, “The time and money and everything that's been spent on this for us as a city to opt out is ridiculous.”

Brentwood isn't the only city to decide not to allow guns at its local parks.

Murfreesboro, Clarksville have already approved gun bans for parks. Franklin will take up its ban on Tuesday.

Though Williamson County commissioners unanimously voted to prohibit guns in county parks, they also agreed to reconsider the issue in May 2010.

Local governments have until September 1, which is when the new law allowing guns in parks takes effect, to decide whether to opt out of the new law.

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