Guns in the Capitol

Lt. Gov. Yvonne Prettner Solon has been presiding over hearings by an advisory committee on state capitol security this week. The topic is a hot one – should the state continue to allow people with gun permits to carry guns into the state capitol? Of course there are two deeply divided sides on this.

On the one side are those who say the state’s system, which allows people with gun permits to carry guns into the capitol, if they give capitol security advance notice, has been working fine and has never created a problem. In fact, it might deter problems if people intent on creating trouble know there might be gun-carrying citizens in the crowd.

The other side says the mere act of carrying a gun into the capitol can be intimidating, an attempt to stifle free discussion in a place where citizens should be allowed access to their lawmakers without fear of threat or intimidation.

We side with the pro-carry group. This policy has been in place for a decade, with no problem. Banning guns in the capitol might require beefed up security, costly metal detectors and restricted access to what is now the citizens’ building.

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