NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – It’s been a tradition for 35 years now, holding monthly gun shows at The Fairgrounds Nashville.
But after a controversial decision, gun shows are no longer allowed.
The decision came after 14 gun control advocates spoke out at a Metro Board of Fair Commissioners meeting Tuesday. One of those speakers was a mother who lost her 15-year-old.
“My baby was 15 years old. He was shot down by an 11-year-old accidentally. My baby was in his own driveway,” the grieving mom told the board.
“I still have nightmares, seeing my baby lying on the table. I still am living a nightmare because everywhere I go in my home, I see my baby,” she said.
A former newspaper reporter also spoke out, saying, “Tightening loopholes at gun shows may not save all the victims of domestic abuse, but it will go a long way in preventing children from losing a parent.”
Jenny Charles, Assistant District Attorney for Davidson County, raised questions regarding the gun shows influence.
“At the end of the day what does hosting a monthly gun show at the fairgrounds add to the community of Nashville? Is this activity enhancing safety in Nashville?”
“When you try to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people any step in that direction is a step in the right direction,” said Beth Joslin Roth with the Safe Tennessee Project, which supports the commissioners’ decision.
However, the Tennessee Firearms Association said Davidson County is only going to lose revenue there won’t be a reduction in gun violence.
“They’ll just move the big shows to the surrounding counties,” said TFA Director John Harris. “We think that these criminals don’t have cars? This decision is not going to stop crime at all.”
The association also released a press release, saying Harris “expressed outrage” at Nashville’s decision to ban gun shows at the city’s publicly-owned fairgrounds.
“Today, Nashville, under its new liberal Mayor, has thumbed its nose at Nashville gun enthusiasts by voiding a long-standing tradition of allowing gun shows at the centrally-located and publicly-owned Nashville Fairgrounds,” Harris said in the statement.
He continued, “Tennessee continues to suffer from the chronic infringement of its citizens’ Constitutional rights by elected officials who refuse to keep their oaths of office to ‘preserve, protect and defend’ those same rights. Their actions are a clear abuse of power.”