State Sen. Bell files resolution asking Congress, Obama to end gun-free zones at military facilities

Mike Bell

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – State Senator Mike Bell of Riceville announced on Monday that he has filed a resolution for federal action to end gun-free zones at military facilities.

The Republican senator drafted the resolution in wake of the attack on two military sites in Chattanooga on Thursday.

“We cannot in good conscience send young men and women abroad to fight our enemy only to disarm them when they serve here at home,” said Bell in a statement. “Our military men and women have the inherent right to carry a firearm and the training to do so effectively and responsibly. It has now been clearly established that our soldiers, sailors, marines and airman are targets of jihadi terror. We must give them the means to defend themselves — and us –when the War on Terror hits home.”

On Sunday, Governor Bill Haslam directed Maj. Gen. Max Haston, Tennessee’s adjutant general, to review current Guard personnel who are authorized to be armed in the performance of their duties and “identify and arm additional Guardsmen where necessary to protect themselves, citizens and Guard facilities.”

The resolution filed by Bell states, “we hereby urge Congress and the President of the United States to review and revise law and policy regarding the carrying of firearms by military service members on military installations or facilities so that military personnel can both help prevent and more readily defend themselves from terrorist attacks against such facilities.”

“The tragedy in Chattanooga serves as a grave reminder of the enemy we face,” added Bell. “Hopefully, we will see quick action by Congress or the President to change this policy before the Tennessee General Assembly returns in January. But if they do not, this resolution will be ready expressing the people of Tennessee’s strongest recommendation that we give our soldiers the tools they need to defend themselves if attacked in the future.”

Click here for complete coverage of the Chattanooga shooting.

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